WASHINGTON -- According to the U.S. government, I am an extremist. I am a Christian and meet regularly with other Christians to study God's word. My faith convinces me the prophecies in the Holy Bible are true. I believe in the sanctity of human life, oppose abortion, and want to preserve marriage as the union of a man and a woman. I am a veteran with skills and knowledge derived from military training and combat. I own several firearms, and I frequently shoot them, buy ammunition, and consider efforts to infringe on my Second Amendment rights to be wrong and unconstitutional. I fervently support the sovereignty of the United States, and I am deeply concerned about our economy, increasingly higher taxes, illegal immigration, soaring unemployment, and actions by our government that will bury my children beneath a mountain of debt.
Apparently, all this makes me a "rightwing extremist." At least, that's what it says in the April 7 "Assessment" issued by the Office of Intelligence and Analysis at the Department of Homeland Security. The nine-page report, titled "Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment," is full of warnings about American citizens who share any part of my background or subscribe to the beliefs above. It is one of the most alarming documents produced by our government that I ever have read.
Evidently, neither you nor I ever was supposed to read this "Assessment." At the bottom of the cover page is a warning that it is "not to be released to the public, the media, or other personnel who do not have a valid need-to-know." We're Americans. We have a need to know what's going on in our government, especially in an administration that promised to be "transparent." A full copy of the report is posted at http://www.FreedomAlliance.org.
The "Assessment" purports to alert law enforcement officials that "rightwing extremists" -- the term is used more than 35 times -- are intent on exploiting Americans who have strongly held beliefs on everything from Christian faith to rising unemployment, U.S. sovereignty and the Second Amendment. It vilifies those of us in these categories by references to neo-Nazis, racists, militias, white supremacists and other "hate groups." Notably, the report includes a warning that right-wing extremism "may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration."
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.