Friday, March 5, 2010

Terrorists in our midst?

Bossier Parish Sheriff Larry Deen has stirred up a hornet’s nest with his ‘Operation Exodus”, which, according to his press release “will provide for self-sufficiency in the event of a manmade or natural disaster or a terrorist attack. Exodus will take local volunteers, train them and use them in response to a catastrophic disaster in the area. These volunteers will work in conjunction with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office to secure and protect viable resources in such an event.”
So far so good. The sheriff has provided very good emergency services when needed, as in the tornadoes last fall. Sheriff’s patrols were out immediately protecting vulnerable areas and offer assistance to the areas affected.
I think he would have been better served to leave the project to ‘emergency preparedness’ and ignore the preceived ‘Islamic Terrorist’ threat which at best is very tenuous, and which seems to some people just a tad paranoid.
I also think using the Biblical connection with ‘Operation Exodus’ could have been a mistake. A spokesman explained that Exodus had nothing to do with the Biblical connotation, but referred to the Sheriff’s office ‘moving outside’ it’s normal boundaries. Unfortunately, when people see Operation Exodus and Islamic Terrorists in the same paragraph they sort of jump to conclusions. Here is a video put out by the sheriff dealing with the program. Doyle Dempsey, chief deputy for support services, says in the video that if the project is successful "we will be ahead of the curve when it comes to fighting Islamic extremists."

The volunteers will be equipped with shotguns, riot shields and batons, according to reports. A .50-caliber machine gun will be mounted on what the sheriff's office calls "the war wagon."
The War Wagon is a .50 caliber machine gun that will be mounted on some sort of rolling conveyance. That makes it sound like they are preparing more for an invasion than a random terrorist act.
The War Wagon troubles me.
Now I know a number of Bossier Parish deputies, and they are a well-trained, professional bunch. Operation Exodus brings everyday citizens into the equation, and although I like my fellow Bossierites, I don’t think I want them wielding a War Wagon down my street. I think I would trust the ‘regulars’ for security.
The program has attracted a lot of national interest, little of it good.
Talking Points Memo interviewed Ed Baswell and this is an excerpt of what they printed.
The office of the Louisiana sheriff who's forming a citizen militia to defend the parish in the event of a terrorist attack says it has information about possible Islamic terrorist activity in its midst.
"We understand, based on some intelligence that we've collected over the last year, year and a half, that there have been cells and people operating even within our parish that have been trained as terrorists or went overseas to be trained as terrorists," Ed Baswell, a spokesman for the Bossier Parrish Sheriff's Office, told TPMmuckraker this morning.
So this is not something that's far, far away," Baswell added. "This is something that is a possibility here in Bossier Parish."
Baswell said that his office believed that the suspected terrorists had been operating in Bossier Parish at one time but have since left. "We have had indications that there have been some that have come and gone from the parish," he said.
"Islamic terrorists have been in and out," he said. "And we've had intelligence information that confirmed that for us."
Baswell added that the sheriff's office had worked with the Feds on the threat. "A lot of our intelligence information has come in conjunction with the FBI and other law enforcement agencies," he said. The FBI's Louisiana field office told TPMmuckraker they would look into the claim.
Baswell said it wasn't entirely clear what the suspected terrorists were up to. "We didn't get the impression they were plotting an attack," he said. "We got the impression they were in training or headed for training overseas." He stressed: "We don't believe in any way shape or form that there is any sort of imminent threat."
Baswell described the intelligence as "just tidbits of information we've gotten over time."
KTBS did a story on it.

Did Chrissie Coile just say that the program ‘comes at no cost to taxpayers’? I would like to hear the justification for that statement. Is it being funded by private donations? Are those donations paying for the use of the training center, the salaries of the officers doing the training? If it is a training operation under the auspices of the Sheriff, then of course it is paid with taxpayer money. I would find it very troubling indeed if something like this was privately funded.
All of the negative aspects to this could have been avoided with a little common sense. The name of the program (if you must name it), could have been 'Operation Preparedness' or something of the kind. The purpose of the program could have been limited to preparing for natural or manmade disasters, not Islamic Terrorism. Had those simple steps have been followed, then this wouldn't even be a story.
Here are just a few of many links available on the story.
USA Today

HOA Nuthouse

The Mike Malloy Show

The Klaxon

Now Public

Craig Considine

Media Monarchy

Arkansas Times

The Zombie Squad

Democratic Underground




  1. Jim, use just a little common sense here. The sheriff's department is not going to turn over the "war wagon" to civilians that offer to help in a time of panic or perceived threat. If there is a time when either a natural or terrorist disaster happens AGAIN in this country there will be no National Guard protection most likely. They have either been deployed or will be sent to the epicenter of whatever the threat might be. Now, who will be left to protect the city from looters, criminals or just panicked citizens who want to make a run on the banks, grocery stores or gas stations in anticipation of nationwide chaos. Do you believe the city police and sheriff's deputies can do that alone?

    Do we not have a perfect target in BAFB for a jihadist nutjob to make a martyred name for himself?

    Do you realize that more than one Bossier Parish resident has been confirmed to authorities to have traveled to places like Yemen for "training" and has been placed on a National Watch List?

    Did it ever occur to anyone here why we have so many Citgo & now the smaller Chevron gas stations owned by Muslims around the parish?

    What if some idiot takes a potshot at Obama? The rioting in Shreveport will make the Cedar Grove riots look like a campfire. Do you think they will stay in Shreveport? Hell no, they are going to try and cross that bridge and take it out on the white folks in Bossier

    Tell you what, watch from any news source you like the words of the son of the founder of Hamas what the God of the Koran requires of it's people. I'll give you one here and listen to his words.

    Or just search son of hamas and get back to me. Tell me if the sheriff is being paranoid.

  2. I didn't say the sheriff is being paranoid, I'm saying that's the way it appears to the whole country. Whether you want to admit it or not, the way this was approached was a PR disaster. As I have nothing against the program overall, I just believe that it could have been handled much, much better.

  3. The sheriff should have a goal of training at least 10,000 militia. We have enough former military and true patriots to do this.

    This is a good idea and we cannot afford to be politically correct in this area.

    The truck with mounted gun is perfect for urban warfare. I fell safer knowing we have it. Don't bash a good idea just because its not candy coated.

  4. Jim, don't you think the Sheriff might have wanted some of this type publicity to let the potentially dangerous citizens & non citizens know that Bossier Parish might not be the place to come looking for their 72 virgins?

    Let's celebrate the idea and willingness to help protect the Parish, and not nitpick what it's called or how it's portrayed. If Rachel Maddow is against it I am all for it.

  5. The sheriff has completely embarrassed the state and our parish - the branch davidians would be shocked at precher deens level of paranoia - did you see this clip on national news - he set our parish back 40 years

  6. I saw the clip on msnbc last night- we are a laughing stock - deen is a nut - can anyone say deliverance - banjo plays - white people assemble and talk bad things about what darkies are doing to their women

  7. It sounds like a Constitutional Militia to me. I don't know why he's running from the word, he should use it as a platform for education.

    According to the "Investigative Project on Terrorism", Muslim terrorists are alive an well in Louisiana.

    BTW, where do I sign up for OE?

  8. How do we distance ourselves from this nut job - he should immediately resign - and any idiot that advised him to continue with such a complete insane idea should go with him - we need a scape goat - a serious mea culpa and an retraction - deen do something right for a change

  9. Matt, he's not running from the Word. He sincerely hopes and prays that he never has to call these men into harms way, but he wants to be prepared when there is no one, no state police and no National Guard, between the citizens and chaos whether it's real or manufactured.

    You can contact Deputy Doyle Dempsey for information about the program.

  10. Exodus Member - do you see how this looks to the rest of the united states - he is presenting a picture of our community that is crazy - no sugar coating this one - this time he has completely allowed his own personal paranoia and power hunger to damage our community - he is a nut - everyone now has no doubt that he is a nut and we are all being labeled as nuts because we have elected him

  11. Do you think Deen will be selling rides on the war wagon - i can not think of a crazier thing to do that to put some non-trained sheriff's deputy on the back of a war wagon with a 50 cal that i assure you he cant set the head space and timing on - with ruler size bullets - going 10-8 to a hot bed of terrorist activity - or at least some event with a bunch of non-militia types

  12. Wake up people!!!

    This is not about what other people think. This is about staying safe during the reign of King Obama.

  13. This is old news...
    Check the date...

  14. What I'm talking about in the blog post is the national reaction to the program and that has just developed this week.

  15. Larry Deen has lost his mind! Most of his deputies think he is a nut job! As for his brain washed few, I'm sure they will be the ones running the " war wagon". Barksdale maybe a terrorist target, but the military will more than handle the attack, and laugh in Deen's face. Most north bossier residents are aware of Deen's OP and also are keen to the fact that he only has a select group that will benefit. This man needs to resign. He has embarrased the people of Bossier Parish enough! I could go on and on!

  16. The irony of it all is when all these republicans around here start quoting what MSNBC is reporting. Go figure. So you think we look like fools to a bunch of liberals in New York and Boston.....who cares. Larry's doing a good job end of story.

  17. It's like an army of Dale Gribbles and Dwight Schrutes! That in itself is scarier than these perceived threats from the brown people.

  18. this is just an excuse for people with small penises to play with guns.

  19. Jim, you have to love our public officials. They are the gift that just keeps on giving to your blog.

  20. "Jim" you can attack Larry Deen all you want to but he is a good God fearing man who is doing as he is led. Maybe you should move to Shreveport and let Whitehorn take care of you when these people come after you.

  21. "True Spirit" - do you know something I don't? Are "they" coming after me?
    Maybe you can point out where I "attacked" Larry Deen while you think about it. Please let me know if you find that part, I seem to have missed it.

  22. True Spirit- Jim did not attack Larry Deen, he merely reposted an article and commented that it was now news nationwide. Larry Deen is a wants Bossier Parish to be a dictatorship- with him as the dictator! Ask his former employees how they feel about him. He is takes the phrase power hungry to a whole new level! Having lived in Bossier Parish all my life, I would much rather Steve Prator or Whitehorn govern the parish law enforcement, or even Howdy Doody over Larry Deen any day!

  23. Jim, you published the blog and made comments that were negative to the sheriff. dont try to deny that. you don't have much credibility left.

  24. Saying that it was a PR disaster is not being negative, it is just a fact. The only real negative I had was on the so called war wagon. Of what practical use do you think it could be? Offering a little criticism isn't 'attacking' or even being negative.
    I stand by everything I said. (If you read the post, you will also see some positives about the sheriff.)

  25. Larry deen has got to be the worst example of a law man I have ever seen - paranoid - power mad - not trained - never thinks things through - knee jerk reacts to every possible political opportunity - except this one is biting his butt - nice to see ed burchette has lined up behind this lunacy - two birds of a feather

  26. Larry - Jesus called and he wants his 50 cal back

  27. Man, about a bucket of worms...nyuk!

    I think every Parish, County, etc. should have a trained citizen force for emergencies.

    I'm not old enough to remember, but isn't that kinda what the Civil Defense was in the way back? I could be wrong.

    I tend to agree with a previous comment...I'd like to see it larger than 200. A couple of thousand, maybe.

    If anyone does not believe that civil unrest is a real possibility, or acts of terrorism, etc. Well...they're kidding themselves.

    When I lived in LaPlata County, Colorado, the sheriff was assembling something similar to this (about 15 years ago). In fact, there are many counties out West that have done just such things.

    I think the fact that it's named "Exodus," was a bad call. But, at least it wasn't "Apocalypse," or "Revelation."

    I tend to agree also that if Rachel Maddow is huffing her ugly pie hole about it, then it's probably a good thing. The media is always going to paint junk the way they want to. I for one really don't care how we are perceived.

    I think the coverage of the Rusheon Middle School story makes our area look much more ignorant than this one does.

    And, to your defense, you did not disparage Deen. Just my two cents.

  28. It was probably a slow news day for some to hop on their "wagon" of criticism....all in all Deen has done much good for the parish. The only lunacy as the poster refers to it is sitting back and not being "prepared". The haters of Deen from the DA's office and other factions will always be there to criticize.

  29. To the last couple of posters:
    Andy - Civil Defense was sort of like this minus the War Wagon. I know I'm fixating on the War Wagon, but in the scenario they are acting out it is pretty useless. I'll bet the boys are having a ball with it though. If there should be an incident, either manmade or natural, which would lead to civil unrest (looting etc), the perps won't be a bunch of Muslims. As to national perception, I agree with you to a point, I don't care to a point, but a little forethought would have eliminated it.
    Anon at 7:02 - I agree with you, Larry Deen has done a lot of good. A good example, as I mentioned in the post, was the sheriff's response during the tornados last fall.

  30. "If there should be an incident, either manmade or natural, which would lead to civil unrest (looting etc), the perps won't be a bunch of Muslims."

    Oh, no doubt about that, Jim. None whatsoever!

  31. Jim - everyone is so scaird to say the emperor has no clothes - this is exactly the reason this goofy ass plan made it off the cutting room floor - not one staff member working for deen will tell him know or even offer him constructive criticism - to compare a biblical end of days plan with the civil defense is ludicrous - finally some of deens minions realize what a blood bath he is taking - which will be worse next week - and they are trying to make this a vanilla law enforcement good government program - it is what it is - paranoia - powerhungry - craziness - he needs to rename it - issue a restatement - sell the 50 cal and mark it off as surplus purchase we thought would be good but is overkill and continue training his folks to respond - this looks so backwater and redneck and waco texas like that it demands a public resolution

  32. Jim, first off, why don't you get out from in front of your computer and get somebody to drive you (I'll pay for cab fare if need be) over to the substation on Viking Dr and take a look at the "war wagon?" It's an armored people hauler similar to a SWAT transport vehicle that law enforcement agencies all over the country have.

    Secondly, at your age why would you care what the NY liberal MSM think about how we choose to protect ourselves in a crisis or panic situation? Based on the tone of your blog comments it was NOT a positive piece.

    To the anon that stated the military would take care of itself if something of a terrorist nature happened at BAFB. You really believe the military can control the wind if a dirty bomb or worse is set off on that base? Are you really that ignorant and shortsighted? If something happens on BAFB the military is going to take care of the military. Why do you think civilians & low level military personnel can't get on the base when they are under a high threat level? Think people!!!

    A panicked citizenry will do some stupid things just like a person that is drowning will fight off a rescuer. This is a preparation plan, this is not a redneck sheriff going power-mad.

    Andy, you'll be glad to know that the 200 is just a starting place.

  33. Anon 8:15 - Please tell me you were educated outside the Bossier school system. "scaird," are you serious? The funny part is you called Deen a redneck? Wow

  34. Exodus Member: I will be down that way Monday and will go take a look. Perhaps they will let me take a picture of it so I can post it on the blog and people can have a much better idea of what we are talking about. Your description is the best that I have seen.
    As I have said, this whole thing is a PR disaster. If we can help make it better understood, so much the better.

  35. Fox news won't even support this crazy talk - bunch of frustrated old men looking to pick a fight after a day of hording food and water in preparation for hyperinflation and the "big one" - and the biggest problem is their leader is a jim jones wantabe with a 50 cal and a war wagon

  36. Well this sure has turned into a PR nightmare. If I read Jim's post correctly I don't think he is against training civilians for response to situations when needed. His main point was on the PR side. Don't give the other side an opening to criticize you with. This sometimes takes a whole PR team. The term WarWagon is something that conjures up some pictures. I don't think this is what the SO was intending to say. But they said it anyhow. I don't have a problem with training a civil defense force. I can say from my line of work that on a Friday night during High School football season the SO can get stretched pretty thin and it may take time to get help. So if your neighbor just happens to be trained in some sort of defense, that might come in handy. I know the SOs have reserve officers. What they were saying is as a last line of defense we will have people prepared to step in. As far as the PR issue, why did the liberal media seem to want to take off with this and paint it as a republican, white, southern, KKK, paranoia issue? They didn't even look at this logically. If you read the posts on the talking points website Jim listed you will find 99% are calling us what I listed above. I will say it right now, it is a good chance that terrorist living in our midst. That statement right there will earn me the title of paranoid, christian, conservative, republican, white male, branch davidian and a few other names I won't mention. Don't believe it, go read the comments on that blog. To call someone paranoid is to assume you know everything and also to deny the possibility of terrorist living in our midst. "The Ostrich Syndrome" I help with designing security for plant and other industries in this area. Why, because we believe there is this possibility. Does that make us paranoid? No, just realist trying to prepare. Some just don't know what industries are in their backyard and how easy it would be to cause a major incident. We need to be prepared. If something happened and we found out that they had drawn up the plan to train these people and didn't because of politics, the Sheriff would be hung out to dry. So you can't win.

  37. After Annon at 835 AMs post saying that Fox was involved in this too, i will have to add this to my comment. If the news media would get their brains out of neutral and quit trying to make money with ratings at selling news and making political points, maybe one day I will be able to trust something they actually put out on the air.

  38. I hope someone in the sheriff's department will soon begin an exodus plan to operation exodus - this is really embarrassing - all that wasted tax payer money - facilities - training - record keeping - staff time to coordinate - train - deal with the pr nightmare - this is costing taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars for no reason

  39. Darrell, to clarify: I'm not at all against training civilians to act in emergencies. If fact, I think it is a good idea. I just think that, as I said earlier, it was just a PR nightmare, not well thought out.
    I always appreciate your comments.

  40. Jim you said. "I'm not at all against training civilians to act in emergencies." That was the way I understood your post, if I didn't make that clear or it came off otherwise, my apologies.

  41. Got it Darrell, just wanted to be sure everyone understood.

  42. I heard he and his wife are both ordained ministers. Not sure if the plan name is biblical but it gives that impression. The Sheriff really screwed up the way he informed the public...terrible press release. Also the conflicting statements from Baswell and Dempsey. As was mentioned in the blog comments it's a PR disaster.

  43. I hope the watchdog with do an expose on how many tax dollars are wasted on this "end of days" project - she should detail how many public man hours are used on putting this plan together, buying the war wagon, 50 cal, riot batons, pads, facility use, electricity, janitorial service, letterhead, copies, calls, faxes, recruiting efforts, records and training maintenance and the list goes on and on. The sheriff is completely flush with tax payer dollars - he needs tto account for this horrible waste.

  44. I haven't really made up my mind about this whole deal yet. Part of me says it's a good idea because of the possibly of terrorist threats. If a terrorist attack occurs, Sheriff Deen is a hero. If not, either he's a nut job or his plan worked?

    The other good thing is the only place I've seen this mentions in national news in on MSNBC. What's great about this is not too many people with any sense watches MSNBC, and those who do are nut jobs themselves. (I don't watch MSNBC, but I saw the link to the story on this blog, had a low IQ moment and linked onto it. After watching Rachel Maddow I hope I didn't suffer permanent brain damage.)

  45. If I had to choose between Larry Deen and Mayor Glover, I'd pic Larry Deen any day of the week.

    Mayor Glover has already proven himself to be a gun grabber (check for his membership to Mayor Bloomberg's group). Also, Glover's idea of the power of the police is dictatorial at best.

  46. Wasn't there something in that little "Operation Exodus" about women serving in "support positions?" Ugh...

    Nightly prayers: Please God do not let the redneck militia take over in event of a crisis....

  47. To those who think people are paranoid about terrorists living among us, check out the reactions of the people who lived around Jihad Jane.

  48. With regard to the "women" part, it is an undeniable fact that men, by nature, are stronger than women. The duties of these combat roles will probably include holding a line with shields against a wall of angry people.

    Now, none of this is to say that every man is stronger than every woman, but God built us differently.

  49. I did not read all these post but,
    I have to comment on a couple of points.
    A. Only trained S.W.A.T. members will operate the "War Wagon".

    B. Sheriff Deen asked for anyone over the age of 21 to volunteer.
    In the first meeting a woman asked if women could volunteer. I am paraphrasing. He said yes, but in a support role because he did not want a women shot at.

    C. If you stop and think about it, the Sheriff would not put men in a position they are not qualified to be in. He will train these men to help keep the peace in a time of civil unrest.

    For example; In case of a natural diaster, someone or a team must be posted at many different business and care centers. If it is bad enough there will be rationing.
    So, Food, drinking water, medicine, hosipital care, fuel, etc. will be rationed.

    So when you go to Wal-mart someone has not bought every gallon of water and every can of beans.

    Same thing at the gas station and so on.

    These would be normal law abiding people any other day but put under stressful conditions they may want to purchase more than they need and leave nothing for everybody else. If there is no one of authority there to prevent it, it will happen.

    Now, think about how many businesses would need to be secured in Bossier Parish compared to how many police officers' are currently on the payroll in the parish.

    It just makes sense to have a reserve unit to call on.

    Thank you Sheriff Dean, I think you are a man with vision and I am gald to see you have the guts to be pro-active on this matter.


  50. Sorry Sheriff Deen, I see that I misspelled your name in the last sentance. I have a uncle Dean and I guess I'm used to that spelling.

  51. Exodus Member: that's an excellent comment and very good points.

  52. Original Exodus MemberMarch 11, 2010 at 7:12 AM

    Jim, have you had a chance to go by and test drive the war wagon?

    Darrell, that is a very good point about Jihad Jane's neighbors and how they reacted to her arrest. We have some of the same type of naivete' posting on this very blog.

  53. Called the Deputy. Will fill out application and attend next meeting.

    Thanks for the info.

  54. Someone seriously call the ACLU because I'm going to throw up on the comments about women here.

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