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News ::
Congress Seeks To Split Environmental Movement
06 Nov 2001
As the War On Terrorism fails to yield anyone responsible for the 9-11 attacks, the witchhunt turns on American citizens. Congress has sent a letter to various environmental organizations (Greenpeace, Sierra Club, NRDC, WWF, etc.) 'requests' that they publically denounce groups such as ELF and ALF, calling them terrorist cells.
For Immediate Release: November 2, 2001 Contact: Blain Rethmeier (202) 225-4761


Washington, DC – Representative Scott McInnis (R-Colorado) today sent a letter signed by himself, Representative James Hansen (R-Utah), Chairman to the House Resources Committee, and other Members of Congress to key environmental organizations calling on them to publicly disavow the actions of eco-terrorist organizations like Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and Animal Liberation Front (ALF), terrorist cells that have exacted a substantial financial and personal toll on scores of individuals and enterprises throughout the United States.

On October 30, 2001, ELF claimed responsibility for the radical firebombing of a U.S. Bureau of Land Management wild horse corral near Susanville, California. The incendiary device set a blaze and caused nearly $85,000 in damage.

McInnis, who chairs of the Resources’ Subcommittee on Forests and Forest Health, has scheduled a hearing to probe the threat of eco-terrorism early next year. One of the witnesses scheduled to testify is Craig Rosebraugh, the self-appointed spokesman of the Earth Liberation Front (ELF). Rosebraugh was subpoenaed earlier this month after rejecting earlier offers by McInnis to testify voluntarily.

"In probing the threat of terrorism, it only stands to reason that Congress should probe the threat of eco-terrorism as well," McInnis said. "It is crucial that key environmental organizations join with us in combating these underground eco-terrorist organizations."

The text of the letter is as follows:

October 30, 2001

As our Nation begins the recovery and healing process following the tragedy of September 11, we believe it is critical for Americans of every background and political stripe to disavow terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. No matter its shape, source or motivation, Americans simply cannot tolerate, either overtly or through silence, the use of violence and terror as an instrument of promoting social and political change.

With this understanding, we are calling on you and your organization to publicly disavow the actions of eco-terrorist organizations like Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and Animal Liberation Front (ALF). Eco-terrorist cells like these have exacted a substantial financial and personal toll on scores of individuals and enterprises in all corners of the United States. In the dark of night and under the cover of anonymity, environmental radicals have firebombed government offices, research centers, schools, homes, and businesses. In so doing, they have sent a ripple of fear through all the many communities in their destructive path. While the attacks of eco-vigilantes have not yet reached the magnitude of what America experienced over the last several weeks, their tactics are no less deplorable, their methods of pursuing political change no less appalling, and their use of fear and terror no less repugnant.

In February, then FBI Director Louis Freeh identified radical eco-terrorist organizations like ELF and ALF as one of America's leading domestic terrorism threats. The FBI's announcement came on the heels of a January 1st ELF communiqué proclaiming, "This year, 2001, we hope to see an escalation in tactics against capitalism and industry." In the time since, ELF has made good on its threat to ratchet up the violence in 2001, using incendiary devices to, amongst other things, level the University of Washington's Center for Urban Horticulture, torch an entire fleet of trucks owned by a private timber company, and burn the Oregon Offices of Superior Lumber Company. Alarmingly, ALF arsonists struck a biomedical lab in New Mexico just nine days after the horrors of September 11, destroying property estimated at $1 million. This year’s attacks, together costing local businesses and taxpayers upwards of $5 million, are in addition to the over $40 million in damage that ELF and ALF have inflicted since their inception. Even during this hour of national crisis, ELF and ALF continue to terrorize Americans in pursuit of their militant agenda.

We trust that you will join us in publicly condemning this source of domestic violence. Your statement would send a profound and powerful message to these organizations: Americans of every background and political persuasion repudiate the use of terror in every form, including environmental terrorism.

Thank you in advance for your attention to this important issue. We look forward to receiving a timely response to this letter.

James V. Hansen
Scott McInnis
House Subcommittee on House Resources Committee Forests and Forest Health
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