Infowars associate and former Navy SEAL Matt Bracken is giving out tactical advice to white nationalist audiences about attending a pro-gun rally in Virginia Monday and laying the groundwork to bolster “false-flag” conspiracy theories in the event of violence.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency ahead of the Jan. 20 pro-gun event at the state’s capitol in Richmond in response to threats of violence and reports that violent hate groups may attend. On Thursday, the FBI arrested neo-Nazis who had discussed opening fire at the event and who possessed an assault rifle and a cache of ammunition.
Although he does not plan to go to the event Monday, Bracken gave a nearly two-hour interview Friday about the rally to the web-based outlet Red Ice, which acts a megaphone for white nationalist and white supremacist rhetoric. Bracken claimed that the FBI arrested the neo-Nazis in order to fabricate a timeline of events that the agency could later use to smear people opposed to gun control laws. He also compared the FBI to the East German Stasi and attempted to downplay the threat the violent neo-Nazis posed to the event.
“[The FBI] arrested them because they’re setting a narrative. They’re basically putting up the background music, the subliminal background music, that really, really bad white racist nationalists are coming to Richmond and we’ve got to stop them,” Bracken said. “So no matter what happens on Monday in Richmond—if there’s any shooting or there’s somebody driving a car into a crowd—believe me, it’s going to be blamed on the 2nd Amendment.”
Bracken went on to claim that the U.S. government is consciously elevating the threat profile of white nationalism in the United States in order to advance a globalist conspiracy to open borders and undermine sovereign countries by convincing the public that MS-13 and radical Islam are less dangerous than violent white nationalists inside the country. Like-minded conspiracy theories have been advanced by outlets like Infowars, where Bracken frequently appears and occasionally guest-hosts.
“This is at the highest level a battle between globalists and nationalists,” Bracken said.
He advised those planning to attend the event to bring wire-cutters so that they could separate the chain-link fencing used to barricade the event space if police start making arrests. Bracken also suggested that attendees bring their lawyer’s business card and two-way radios, and he cautioned people to “be prepared for pepper spray” by bringing masks and goggles.
Media Matters’ Timothy Johnson reported Wednesday that Bracken had appeared on Infowars in December with an assault weapon and “told viewers how to accessorize it for battle proficiency.” He reportedly told Infowars viewers that the Richmond rally would serve as a warning to politicians who pass gun control legislation, saying, “there’s going to be a fight,” and “never in history ever has there been a civil war where half of the people had deer rifles that could make 500-yard shots.”
Over the course of the Red Ice interview, Bracken repeatedly claimed that the government desired and may even seek to provoke a violent incident at Monday’s pro-gun demonstration. He claimed that a similar scenario had occurred in the run up to the 2017 Unite the Right white supremacist gathering in Charlottesville, Virginia, which turned violent and resulted in the murder of a counterdemonstrator.
“This is like Charlottesville, times 10,” Bracken said
Bracken refused to definitively assert that the FBI was actively orchestrating a false flag attack but said he wouldn’t rule out the possibility.
“You know what they want to happen,” Bracken said.
Later in the broadcast, Bracken explicitly said he was alleging the government might provoke violence at the rally, “not because I want to disparage the people going, but because if there is something catastrophic that comes out of it, I want us to be able to point at people that were saying, ‘Look, this is a set-up.’ It won’t completely flip the script, but it can turn the temperature down, or it can partly turn the script so that more people don’t just accept it at face value.”