Global Independent Analytics
Satori Wolstenholme
Satori Wolstenholme

Location: USA

Specialization: Politics

Facing FBI encirclement, patriots refused to surrender for hours, taken in for “conspiracy to impede officers” in Oregon

“Show us where it’s okay to charge a rancher with “terrorism” under the Patriot Act for burning weeds. I’ll wait.”

On Thursday, February 11, 2016, the remaining four patriots cheated death, after being surrounded by the Oregon State Police wearing full body armor, FBI agents equipped with bullet-proof MRAP vehicles and military helicopters flying overhead. 

Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, along with Reverend Franklin Graham, were the key negotiators running interference between the FBI and the remaining few patriots who refused to “surrender” and only agreed to “turn themselves in” to law enforcement authorities after hours of shouting and aggressive posturing by law enforcement.  Ms. Fiore urged the patriots to give themselves over peacefully so that they could continue to carry their message, defying the tyranny of the BLM (Bureau of Land Management).

The remaining patriots taken into custody were Sean Anderson, Sean's wife Sandy Anderson, Jeff Banta and David Fry.  Sean surrendered holding the American flag and clasping his wife's hand.

David Fry was the last member to turn himself in. David can be heard on record shouting, “I will not live another day as a slave to this system! It's liberty or death!” More telling was Fry's additional statement, which was, “I declare war against the federal government.  I have peacefully voted and nothing is ever done.” Later in the day, as Fry became exhausted, he is heard mumbling he would surrender if someone would just bring him a pizza and some weed. 

A chilling and lengthy audio file of this event were recorded live by Washington activist Gavin Seim.  Service to cell towers bordering the scene had been cut, making it impossible for the trapped protesters to communicate with their anxious constituents gathered beyond the law enforcement barriers.  From inside the sanctuary, techno-genius David Fry was able to defeat law enforcement's blocks and rig a transmission system so that the events could be streamed directly to 70,000 concerned citizens who had tuned in from around the nation.

During the recording, Sandy can be heard screaming, “They are inching closer every minute!  They are going to kill us!”  David can be heard defiantly shouting that he, and the others inside the building, are standing up for the constitutional rights of every citizen in the United States.  This audio file is important evidence that will not disappear, along with the drone video which displays the execution of rancher LaVoy Finnicum on January 29, 2016.  LaVoy was the de-facto spokesperson for the group.    

From inside the surrounded building, David continued his rant, “Where are the 'Oathkeepers'?  Where are the 'Three-percenters?'  They are infiltrated by the FBI, that's what!” David is heard to shout in anger and frustration as the Feds continue to move in.  “Where are all the people who said they would join us and help defend us?” 

David and his co-patriots holed-up inside their compound were unable to see that hundreds of reinforcements and protesters had, in fact, flocked to the area to support those making their last stand, but were prohibited by police barricades from joining their brothers-in-arms. Some were holding flags and dressed in military garb to show their support for those trapped inside the refuge. 

Although the Malheur Wildlife refuge is now empty after the 41-day standoff, the battle is far from over.  The theater continues within the U.S. District Court and a federal prison, where Ammon Bundy continues to speak publicly through his attorney, Mike Arnold.  Ammon's desires for the southwest are for the BLM to withdraw and for the federal government to stop interfering with the use of public lands, and for the lands already seized by the government to be returned to the ranchers, the native tribes, and the individual states.

Shawna Cox was one of the patriots presents during the execution of LaVoy Finnicum, and publicly presented a list of grievances against the BLM, as made on behalf of the Citizens for Constitutional Freedom, which is what the group has called itself. 

The BLM was created in 1946 and now owns 247.3 million acres inside the U.S., most of them located in the western states.  Harry Reid, U.S. Senator from Nevada, owns 93 acres next to the Bundy Ranch, a land rich with yellow-cake uranium, a key component in the creation of nuclear weapons. Reid has allegedly run at least 20 families out of Nevada during his greedy land-grab, with the BLM bullies serving as his thugs.  

16 patriots are now facing federal conspiracy charges via a complaint filed in U.S. District Court. Noteworthy is that among those charged is Pete Santilli, a journalist, and broadcaster who initially covered the occupation.  Although Pete's attorney argued that his client must get back to work or risk losing everything, he has been denied bail and will remain detained until trial.  Pete's naked contempt for law enforcement and his public remarks regarding his Second Amendment rights branded him a “trouble-maker” and although his comments are constitutionally-protected under the rules of free speech, Pete still remains behind bars.

The occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge began on January 2 of this year when two ranchers, Dwight Hammond and Steven Hammond, father, and son, were sent back to prison after already serving lengthy sentences for setting a controlled back-burn on their own leased land to prevent damage to their property.  Their cases were reviewed by attorney Amanda Marshall, an Obama-appointee, who was grossly under-qualified for the position of the US Attorney for the State of Oregon.  Marshall pushed for a highly unusual court action, a second review of the sentences the Hammonds had already served, and another order sending the ranchers to jail a second time for the same offense, this time for 5 years each, under “terrorist/arson” charges. Citizens from near and from afar, outraged by the re-sentencing and by the second incarceration of the Hammonds, gathered at the refuge to bring attention to the travesty, which they consider “cruel and unusual punishment.”

Most would agree after hearing the live broadcast of the trapped patriots that if Michele Fiore had not intervened, the FBI and the Oregon police would have turned the scene into another bloody slaughter.  During a recent press conference, Michele made a covenant not to abandon those persons who were brave enough to stand up to the blatant tyranny and theft of the federal government.  Also, in attendance with Michele on public camera were Nevada constituents Assemblyman John Moore and Assemblywoman Shelly Shelton. 

Quite telling is that Assemblyman Moore is a former US Army Airborne Ranger and during this press conference, offered an experienced law enforcement opinion, that LaVoy Finnicum was murdered by the Oregon State Police and other law enforcement officials on-scene.

Many elected officials have received payoffs so that the advancing agenda of the BLM may continue to march forward, as they continue to procure acre after acre of mineral-rich ranch land located in the southwest United States.  Michele and her co-patriots now stand fast with their brothers in prison, remaining immune to both bribes and threats which will surely come as they have promised to see justice through until the end.  Michele was able to get all parties to “stand down,” as she encouraged the final patriots to just move the battleground somewhere else, and live to fight another day.  On the phone, she reminded them they would not do very much good if they allowed themselves to be shot to death that day when the FBI began to move the armored MRAP vehicles closer and closer to the patriots' compound as helicopters could be heard flying overhead.

Enough cannot be said in praise of the negotiation skills of Michele Fiore, who kept Sean, Sandy, Jeff and David on the phone from the time she landed at the Portland, Oregon airport and while she was en route to the Mahleur Wildlife Refuge, the location of the holdout. 

There is new information regarding the “kill zone” created on January 29th to ambush the original group fleeing to the safety of a planned meeting with the Harney County, Oregon sheriff.  LaVoy Finnicum, unarmed, was shot 9 times. The first shot fired by an Oregon State Trooper.  A chilling testimony of Victoria Sharp describes the scene of the FBI ambush: “there were snipers in the trees, our van was riddled with 120 rounds of bullets and no one inside the van had drawn a weapon, we only stayed alive because we were hugging the floor boards inside the van... and when we finally got out of the van, I was painted with at least 20 lasers.”  Victoria is 18-years old and watched the body of her good friend LaVoy fall limp into the snow, where he continued to bleed out without the usual protocol of medical attention.

Ammon Bundy was among those arrested at the original standoff.  After Ammon's arrest, he was held in solitary confinement for two weeks before he was able to meet with his attorney or receive visitors.

Public blogs sport many disrespectful comments by ill-informed persons eager to condemn the ranchers for their brave, yet brazen, defiance of federal authority.  There was one thoughtful comment that stood out among them, which was:

“Show us where it’s okay to charge a rancher with “terrorism” under the Patriot Act for burning weeds. I’ll wait.”

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