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This is a real slide from an Air Force brief on the real threat of incels
At least one Air Force base is on the lookout for a sinister new threat: angry men who can't get laid.
Personnel at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland were recently treated to a threat brief regarding an "increase in nationwide activity" by self-described "incels," members of an online subculture of "involuntary celibacy" who adopt an ideology of misogyny, mistrust of women, and violence in response to their failed attempts at romantic relationships.
The brief was first made public via a screenshot posted to the popular Air Force amn/nco/snco Facebook page on Tuesday. An Air Force spokesman confirmed the authenticity of the screenshot to Task & Purpose.
"The screenshot was taken from a Joint Base Andrews Intel brief created following basic threat analysis on an increase in nationwide activity by the group," 11th Wing spokesman Aletha Frost told Task & Purpose in an email.
Several mass casualty events apparently tied to the incel movement have occurred with relative frequency in recent years starting in May 2014, when 22-year-old Elliot Rodger shot and killed six women in Isla Vista, California in "retribution" for years of romantic rejection that he detailed in a twisted, vengeful manifesto.
Indeed, the screenshot appeared the day after Brian Isaack Clyde, a former Army infantryman who frequently posted memes that referenced the incel movement alongside anti-government conspiracies to his Facebook page, was shot by federal officers after he opened fire outside a Dallas, Texas federal building.
The screenshot features a reproduction of an internet meme popular among incels known as "Becky vs. Stacy." A derivative of the 'Virgin Walk' or 'Virgin vs. Chad' meme that contrasts awkward virgin incels against an imaginary hyper-masculine bro known as Chad, the Becky vs. Stacy meme purportedly reflects how incels judge women based solely on their physical features.
Incels believe "they are owned attention from 'Beckys,'" the Joint Base Andrews brief reads. "Most Incels believe only men can be Incels as women could engage in sexual activity if they wanted to."
According to the Dallas Morning News, one of the many incel memes Clyde shared included one he referring to "virgin shooting" vs. a "Chad rampage" — yet another derivative of the 'Virgin Walk' meme featured in the Joint Base Andrews brief.
While Frost did not elaborate on the specifics surrounding the purported "increase in nationwide activity" that prompted the threat brief, the screenshot cites an "increase in discussion" on popular online forums like Reddit and 4Chan that followed the April 2018 van attack in Toronto that left 10 dead at the hands of 25-year-old Alek Minassian, who lauded Rodger as a hero and claimed on Facebook that he wanted to incite a "incel rebellion."
"The intent of the brief was to educate the Joint Base Andrews commanders on the behaviors and activities attributed to the group to safeguard our Airmen/installation," Frost told Task & Purpose.
The following November, 40-year-old Scott Beierle shot and killed two women in a Tallahassee, Florida yoga studio. A former Army second lieutenant, he was discharged for "unacceptable conduct" that involved "inappropriate contact with female soldiers," according to a Washington Post investigation.
Beierle "was an avowed hater of women, a man who repeatedly grabbed women in real life and fantasized about raping and killing them in the horrific collection of lyrics, poetry and novels he began writing as a teenager," according to the investigation. "His interactions with the opposite sex had gotten him fired from teaching jobs, booted from the Army and hauled before the principal of his high school
Then, in January 2019, 27-year-old Christopher Wayne Cleary was arrested on terrorism charges following social media posts threatening a mass shooting over his virginity. "I'm planning on shooting up a public place soon and being the next mass shooter cause I'm ready to die and all the girls the turned me down is going to make it right by killing as many girls as I see," he wrote on Facebook.
It is unclear at this time where the request for the Joint Base Andrews incel threat brief originated, or if other units in the Air Force or other services have received similar briefings. Follow-up questions to the 11th Wing received no response.
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Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher will retire as a chief petty officer now that President Donald Trump has restored his rank.
"Before the prosecution of Special Warfare Operator First Class Edward Gallagher, he had been selected for promotion to Senior Chief, awarded a Bronze Star with a "V" for valor, and assigned to an important position in the Navy as an instructor," a White House statement said.
"Though ultimately acquitted on all of the most serious charges, he was stripped of these honors as he awaited his trial and its outcome. Given his service to our Nation, a promotion back to the rank and pay grade of Chief Petty Officer is justified."
The announcement that Gallagher is once again an E-7 effectively nullifies the Navy's entire effort to prosecute Gallagher for allegedly committing war crimes. It is also the culmination of Trump's support for the SEAL throughout the legal process.
On July 2, military jurors found Gallagher not guilty of premeditated murder and attempted murder for allegedly stabbing a wounded ISIS fighter to death and opening fire at an old man and a young girl on separate occasions during his 2017 deployment to Iraq.
Trump orders dismissal of murder charge against former Green Beret accused of killing a suspected Taliban bomb maker
President Donald Trump has ended the decade-long saga of Maj. Matthew Golsteyn by ordering a murder charge against the former Green Beret dismissed with a full pardon.
The Army charged Golsteyn with murder in December 2018 after he repeatedly acknowledged that he killed an unarmed Afghan man in 2010. Golsteyn's charge sheet identifies the man as "Rasoul."
President Donald Trump has signed a full pardon for former 1st Lt. Clint Lorance, who had been convicted of murder for ordering his soldiers to open fire on three unarmed Afghan men, two of whom were killed.
Lorance will now be released from the United States Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, where he had been serving a 19-year sentence.
"He has served more than six years of a 19-year sentence he received. Many Americans have sought executive clemency for Lorance, including 124,000 people who have signed a petition to the White House, as well as several members of Congress," said a White House statement released Friday.
"The President, as Commander-in-Chief, is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the law is enforced and when appropriate, that mercy is granted. For more than two hundred years, presidents have used their authority to offer second chances to deserving individuals, including those in uniform who have served our country. These actions are in keeping with this long history. As the President has stated, 'when our soldiers have to fight for our country, I want to give them the confidence to fight.'"
Additionally, Trump pardoned Maj. Matthew Golsteyn, who was to go on trial for murder charges next year, and restored the rank of Navy SEAL Chief Edward Gallagher, who was found not guilty of murdering a wounded ISIS prisoner but convicted of taking an unauthorized photo with the corpse.
Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth first announced on Nov. 4 that the president was expected to intervene in the Lorance case was well as exonerate Army Maj. Matthew Golsteyn, who has been charged with murder after he admitted to killing an unarmed Afghan man whom he believed was a Taliban bomb maker, and restore Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher's rank to E-7.
For the past week, members of Lorance's family and his legal team have been holding a constant vigil in Kansas anticipating his release, said Lorance's attorney Don Brown.
Now that he has been exonerated of committing a war crime, Lorance wants to return to active duty, Brown told Task & Purpose on Wednesday.
"He loves the Army," Brown said prior to the president's announcement. "He doesn't have any animosity. He's hoping that his case – and even his time at Leavenworth – can be used for good to deal with some issues regarding rules of engagement on a permanent basis so that our warfighters are better protected, so that we have stronger presumptions favoring warfighters and they aren't treated like criminals on the South Side of Chicago."
In the Starz documentary "Leavenworth," Lorance's platoon members discuss the series of events that took place on July 2, 2012, when the two Afghan men were killed during a patrol in Kandahar province.They claim that Lorance ordered one of his soldiers to fire at three Afghan men riding a motorcycle. The three men got off their motorcycle and started walking toward Afghan troops, who ordered them to return to their motorcycle.
At that point, Lorance ordered the turret gunner on a nearby Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle to shoot the three men, according to the documentary. That order was initially ignored, but the turret gunner eventually opened fire with his M-240, killing two of the men.
But Lorance told the documentary makers that his former soldiers' account of what happened was "ill-informed."
"From my experience of what actually went down, when my guy fired at it, and it kept coming, that signified hostile intent, because he didn't stop immediately," Lorance said in the documentary's second episode.
Brown argues that not only is Lorance innocent of murder, he should never have been prosecuted in the first case.
"He made a call and when you look at the evidence itself, the call was made within a matter of seconds," Brown said "He would make that call again."
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