Category Archives: GOVT CORRUPTION

CHINA VS. JESUS

Christian church DESTROYED as Chinese police drag worshippers into street and beat them
www.express.co.uk

“While no doubt the envy of US Democrats, China will lose, Jesus will prevail.” – M Souza

Fascist-Communists

Violence broke out in Shanggiu in Henan province after 300 police officers and officials demolished the Shuangmiao Christian Church—which was under construction.

Officers dragged out around 40 Christians with one worshipper comparing the brutal scenes to the Japanese invasion of China during the Second World War, according to charity China Aid.

Eight Christians remain in custody following the incident amid a crackdown on churches by the communist regime.

China Aid said: “During the demolition, officials beat dozens of church members, pushing them to the ground and twisting their hands.

“The church was completely razed, and a church member likened the scene to the Japanese invasion of China during World War II.

“Of the 40 Christians seized, eight are still in custody, and the cases of Shuangmiao Christian Church pastor Zhang Di and the church’s vice director, Lü Yuexia, were recently transferred to the Procuratorate, which will decide whether or not to formalise their arrest.”

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate is the highest agency in China responsible for prosecutions.

According to churchgoers Xi Jinping’s Communist Party ordered the church to be destroyed after branding the building an “illegal structure”.

Party officials were sent to the church to search the building and belongings of people on site.

China Aid said the party confiscated phones and other personal property, damaged closets, smashed offering boxes, and stole laptops, money, and jewellery.

The demolition came as row between the church and government escalated over allegations the church refused to pay a £450 arbitrary road usage fee.

Pastor Zhang Di was summoned for questioning last month and accused of assaulting police officers and attacking a village official.

Church leaders are urging the government to release the pastor and churchgoers. They are also calling for police linked to the investigation to be punished.

The Chinese Communist Party has launched a major crackdown on religion in recent months in an attempt to oppress religious freedom and exercise control.

Churches not sanctioned by the government have been put under surveillance with hundreds of Christians arrested for disturbing public order for offences such as holding bible study groups and displaying crucifixes outside their homes.

There have been reports of Christians being banned from praying, singing hymns, crosses removed from buildings and people arrested for attending church services.

“Being white is terrorism” says Self-Loathing Leaker

Jailed NSA Leaker Reality Winner: ‘Being White is Terrorism’
www.infowars.com

Reality Leigh Winner, the 25-year-old federal contractor who was arrested on Saturday for leaking classified information to the media, is a #Resistance activist who believes “being white is terrorism.”

Winner reportedly confessed to leaking a top secret NSA document on purported Russian hacking to an unnamed news organization, believed to be The Intercept.

Her social media profiles show she’s a thoroughly brainwashed, far-left #Resistance activist who said Donald Trump is an “orange fascist” and “the most dangerous” person in the country.

She’s an ethnomasochist who believes “being white is terrorism.”

She was a huge supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement.

She considered herself part of The Resistance™.

She was radicalized by John Oliver, The Daily Show, Stephen Colbert, Michael Moore and others. She said Leonardo DiCaprio’s propaganda film “Before The Flood” changed her entire outlook on life and said she’s now “#waitingtodie” from climate change and doesn’t want to have kids.

She replied to the Foreign Minister of Iran saying she’d “stand with” Iran over America if Trump declared war:

She also openly sided with Mexico over America:

She tweeted #TrumpIsACunt, #NotMyWall and #NotMyPresident:

She shared similar comments on Facebook, though less openly:

Despite being given access to classified information, she was completely retarded and had terrible OPSEC.

The most remarkable part of this story is how our nation’s standards have collapsed to the point where 25-year-old female social justice warriors are given access to classified information.

It’s also tragic how this beautiful, young girl was radicalized by Hollywood and the entertainment industry into hating herself simply because she was born white.

Before the Hollywood mind virus took.

After.
She’s now likely going to go to prison for a decade and has ruined her life simply to leak uninteresting, classified information she must have thought was proof of some vast Russkie conspiracy which could bring down “Drumpf.”
Hollywood and the fake news media is ruining people’s lives.

COMMENT

L.A. OPPOSED TRUMP, GAVE SANCTUARY TO ILLEGAL ALIEN GANG-BANGERS

L.A. law enforcement on high alert after street gangs threaten officers
www.latimes.com

On-duty law enforcement officers are under a potential threat by criminal street gangs, according to a safety bulletin issued by the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau. (Patrick T. Fallon / For The Times)
Police officers across Southern California are being warned to be on guard after L.A. County sheriff’s homicide investigators discovered unspecified threats by street gangs targeting officers.

The warning was issued about two weeks ago by the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau after a shooting by an officer.

“During the course of an officer involved shooting investigation, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Homicide Bureau was made aware of information regarding a potential threat by criminal street gangs against Southern California on-duty law enforcement officers,” the department said. “This threat was not specific as to the law enforcement agency or agencies that might be targeted, or as to the individual or individuals who may be involved.”

Capt. Darren Harris said the threat doesn’t name a specific agency. The officer safety bulletin was meant to advise local agencies and officers about the threat, officials said.

“The purpose of this bulletin is to reinforce the need for law enforcement officers to be continuously alert and active in assessing their surroundings,” the bulletin said. “The information upon which this bulletin is based, as well as any new information obtained, will continue to be evaluated and investigated by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.”

COMMENT

DEEP GOVT SPENDING CUTS

Trump Seeks $3.6 Trillion in Cuts to Reshape Government
www.bloomberg.com
President Donald Trump would dramatically reduce the U.S. government’s role in society with $3.6 trillion in spending cuts over the next 10 years in a budget plan that shrinks the safety net for the poor, recent college graduates and farmers.

Trump’s proposal, to be released Tuesday, claims to balance the budget within a decade. But it relies on a tax plan for which the administration has provided precious little detail, the elimination of programs backed by many Republican lawmakers, and heavy use of accounting gimmicks.

Trump’s fiscal 2018 budget proposal has already been declared dead on arrival by many of his Republican allies in Congress. The plan would slash Medicaid payments, increase monthly student loan payments and cut food stamps and agricultural subsidies, each backed by powerful constituencies. The administration is unbowed.

“We’re no longer going to measure compassion by the number of programs or the number of people on those programs,” White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said. “We’re going to measure compassion and success by the number of people we help get off those programs and back in charge of their own lives.”

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has already said he expects the Republican-led Congress to largely ignore the proposal, saying in an interview last week with Bloomberg News that early versions reflected priorities that “aren’t necessarily ours.”

Campaign Promises

The president’s proposal would fulfill his campaign promise of leaving Social Security retirement benefits and Medicare untouched while increasing national security spending. He’s also proposing severe cuts to foreign aid and tighter eligibility for tax cuts that benefit the working poor. He also seeks cuts in food stamps and disability insurance.

Read more: Trump Budget Has Little on Drug Prices Despite Tough Talk

The plan calls for some new domestic spending, including $25 billion over 10 years for nationwide paid parental leave — a cause championed by First Daughter Ivanka Trump — and an expansion of the Pell Grant program for low-income students. The Department of Homeland Security’s budget would increase $3 billion versus the final full year of President Barack Obama’s term, while the Pentagon’s budget would see a $6 billion increase over that same time.

The sheer ambition of the president’s plan, which would cut domestic agencies by 10 percent in 2018 and by 40 percent in 2027, make the budget even less likely to gain traction on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers regularly flout the annual blueprint offered by the executive branch. But lawmakers are also likely to view some of the administration’s accounting gimmicks with extreme skepticism.

Economic Growth

The budget predicts a sweeping tax overhaul package that would strengthen economic growth while providing few details of how the tax code would change. The one thing the administration has said is people and businesses will pay less; the budget asserts the amount of revenue collected won’t drop.

Neither of the White House’s assertions — that Trump’s tax plan would be both revenue neutral and fuel budget coffers by $2 trillion to $2.6 trillion through economic growth — are realistic, said Maya MacGuineas, president of the bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

She called the administration’s projections of three percent annual growth “really not possible — they have impossible assumptions of no changes in revenue and tax cuts.” She added that to see three or four percent growth “is nearly unprecedented. You’d need productivity growth at a level you’ve never seen.”

The scant detail in Trump’s tax proposal was likely to hinder tax reform, she said. “They rolled out all the goodies but none of the offsets that would be necessary,” MacGuineas said. “I’m not a fan of surprises, and you have to set realistic expectations, because there are real trade-offs and choices.”

Congress needs a “responsible guide” to finish appropriations this fall with some essential Democratic votes to avert a government shutdown, Terry Haines, managing director of Evercore ISI, wrote in a note to clients. Haines said Congress is likely to continue the stable spending pattern over the last four years with small increases for defense and domestic programs.

The independent Tax Policy Center estimated that Trump’s campaign tax plan would add $7.2 trillion to the deficit. Economic growth spurred by Trump’s tax and regulation policy would add more than $2 trillion in tax revenue, according to the budget documents.
Accounting gimmicks

The budget also makes use of several other classic accounting gimmicks. It assumes that the wars in Afghanistan and the Middle East will cause future Congresses to allocate $593 billion in extra war funding that won’t be needed and then claims to save that amount by not spending it.

The Trump budget also assumes a $35 billion savings from changes to financial services industry regulations and a repeal of the Dodd-Frank law’s orderly liquidation authority, under which financial regulators are empowered to untangle and wind down the biggest banks in a crisis. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected savings of $14.5 billion over a decade from eliminating the authority.

Trump has promised a wall on the southern U.S. border that Mexico will eventually pay for, and the budget includes $2.6 billion in 2018 – $1.6 billion for “new and replacement border wall’’ in certain locations and about $1 billion for other items including aircraft, equipment and surveillance technology to deter illegal activity. Trump estimates the wall will cost $8 billion to $12 billion, but most experts say it will likely be more expensive.

While Trump is proposing to increase the defense budget, the push for more high-priced weapons will wait another year.

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The Trump budget requests 70 Lockheed Martin Corp. F-35s and 14 Boeing Co. F/A-18E/F fighters — the same quantities anticipated by Obama’s administration for fiscal 2018. Similarly, the administration is requesting eight new Navy ships, the number proposed by Obama. With Trump pledging to increase the Navy fleet to 350 ships from 275 that can be deployed today, the Navy has said it will need to request 12 new vessels in fiscal 2018 to start the acceleration.

Safety Net

But while defense spending is set to see a boost, social safety net programs are in the president’s crosshairs. Medicaid cuts of $610 billion would come alongside $250 billion savings — partly fueled by limiting expanded Medicaid — from repealing Obamacare. Food stamps would be cut by $193 billion.

Federal workers would see much less generous retirement benefits under the budget. Eliminating cost-of-living adjustments for retirees would save $42 billion while increasing required employee retirement contributions would save $72 billion. And the budget would save $72 billion through cuts to Social Security Disability Insurance.

The administration has pitched its changes to student loan programs as beneficial to students. The budget would create a single repayment plan that would cap monthly payments at 12.5 percent of discretionary income, an increase from the 10 percent cap under some existing payment plans. But students would only need to repay their loans for 15 years, rather than 20, with the remainder wiped out by the federal government. That change would cut the federal subsidy by $76 billion.

COMMENT

SOCIALISM VS. PRIVATE PROPERTY

Germany Confiscating Homes To Use For Migrants
www.infowars.com

In an unprecedented move, Hamburg authorities confiscated six residential units in the Hamm district near the city center. A trustee appointed by the city is now renovating the properties and will rent them — against the will of the owner — to tenants chosen by the city. District spokeswoman Sorina Weiland said that all renovation costs will be billed to the owner of the properties.
Similar expropriation measures have been proposed in Berlin, the German capital, but abandoned because they were deemed unconstitutional.
Some Germans are asking what is next: Will authorities now limit the maximum amount of living space per person, and force those with large apartments to share them with strangers?
Authorities in Hamburg, the second-largest city in Germany, have begun confiscating private dwellings to ease a housing shortage — one that has been acutely exacerbated by Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to allow more than two million migrants into the country in recent years.

City officials have been seizing commercial properties and converting them into migrant shelters since late 2015, when Merkel opened German borders to hundreds of thousands of migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Now, however, the city is expropriating residential property units owned by private citizens.

In an unprecedented move, Hamburg authorities recently confiscated six residential units in the Hamm district near the city center.The units, which are owned by a private landlord, are in need of repair and have been vacant since 2012. A trustee appointed by the city is now renovating the properties and will rent them — against the will of the owner — to tenants chosen by the city. District spokeswoman Sorina Weiland said that all renovation costs will be billed to the owner of the properties.

The expropriation is authorized by the Hamburg Housing Protection Act (Hamburger Wohnraumschutzgesetz), a 1982 law that was updatedby the city’s Socialist government in May 2013 to enable the city to seize any residential property unit that has been vacant for more than four months.

The forced lease, the first of its kind in Germany, is said to be aimed at pressuring the owners of other vacant residences in the city to make them available for rent. Of the 700,000 rental units in Hamburg, somewhere between 1,000 and 5,000 (less than one percent) are believed to be vacant, according an estimate by the Hamburg Senate.

Socialists and Greens in Hamburg recently established a “hotline” where local residents can report vacant properties. Activists have also created a website — Leerstandsmelder (Vacancy Detector) — to identify unoccupied real estate in Hamburg and other German cities.

It remains unclear why the landlord in Hamm left his apartments vacant for more than five years. Some have posited that, given the location of the properties, the renovation costs may have been too high and probably would not have been offset by the rental income.

Others are blaming city officials for not approving more building permits to allow for the construction of new residential units. A study conducted in 2012 — well before the migrant crisis reached epic proportions — forecast that by 2017, Hamburg would have a deficit of at least 50,000 rental properties.

In 2016, however, only 2,433 new residential units came onto the market, while only 2,290 new building permits were approved, accordingto statistics provided by the City of Hamburg. These numbers were up slightly from 2,192 new units and 2,041 new permit approvals in 2015.

In 2012, Hamburg’s Socialist government presented a plan to build 6,000 new residential units per year. The plan never materialized, however, because prospective builders were constricted by government-imposed rental caps which would have made it impossible for them to even recover their construction costs.

Since then, the city has turned to seizing private property to resolve its self-inflicted housing crisis.

On October 1, 2015, the Hamburg Parliament (Hamburgische Bürgerschaft) approved a new law that allows the city to seize vacant commercial real estate (office buildings and land) and use it to house migrants.

City officials said the measure was necessary because, at the time, more than 400 new migrants were arriving in Hamburg each day and all the existing refugee shelters were full. They said that because the owners of vacant real estate refused to make their property available to the city on a voluntary basis, the city should be given the right to take it by force.

The measure was applauded by those on the left of the political spectrum. “We are doing everything we can to ensure that the refugees are not homeless during the coming winter,” said Senator Till Steffen of the Green Party. “For this reason, we need to use vacant commercial properties.”

Others have argued that efforts by the state to seize private property are autocratic and reek of Communism. “The proposed confiscation of private land and buildings is a massive attack on the property rights of the citizens of Hamburg,” said André Trepoll of the center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU). “It amounts to an expropriation by the state.” He said the proposed measure is a “law of intimidation” that amounts to a “political dam-break with far-reaching implications.” He added: “The ends do not justify any and all means.”

Katja Suding, the leader of the Free Democrats (FDP) in Hamburg, said that the proposed law is an “unacceptable crossing of red lines… Such coercive measures will only fuel resentment against refugees.”

Similar expropriation measures have been proposed in Berlin, the German capital, but abandoned because they were deemed unconstitutional.

In November 2015, lawmakers in Berlin considered emergency legislation that would have allowed local authorities to seize private residences to accommodate asylum seekers. The proposal would have authorized police forcibly to enter private homes and apartments without a warrant to determine their suitability as housing for refugees and migrants.

The legislation, proposed by Berlin Mayor Michael Müller of the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), would have amended Section 36 of Berlin’s Public Order and Safety Law (Allgemeine Gesetz zum Schutz der öffentlichen Sicherheit und Ordnung, ASOG), which currently allows police to enter private residences only in extreme instances, to “avert acute threats,” that is, to fight serious crime. Müller wanted to expand the scope for warrantless inspections to include “preventing homelessness.”

The proposal was kept secret from the public until the leader of the Free Democrats (FDP) in Berlin, Sebastian Czaja, warned the measure would violate the German constitution. He said:

“The plans of the Berlin Senate to requisition residential and commercial property without the consent of the owner to accommodate refugees is an open breach of the constitution. The attempt by the Senate to undermine the constitutional right to property and the inviolability of the home must be resolutely opposed.”

Since then, both the mayor’s office and the Senate appear to have abandoned their plans.

Following an investigation, Gunnar Schupelius, a columnist with the Berlin newspaper BZ, wrote:

“A strange report made the rounds at the weekend: The Senate would authorize the police to enter private homes to house refugees, even against the will of the owner. I thought it was only satire, then a misunderstanding, because the Basic Law, Article 13, states: ‘The home is inviolable.’

“So I went on a search for the source of this strange report and found it. There is a ‘proposal’ which the Senate Chancellery (Senatskanzlei) has apparently circulated among the senators. The Senate Chancellery is another name for the mayor’s office. The permanent secretary is Björn Böhning (SPD)…

“The proposal is clear: The police can enter private property without a court order in order to search for housing for refugees when these are threatened with homelessness. You can do that ‘without the consent of the owner.’ And not only should the police be allowed to do this, but also the regulatory agencies.

“This delicate ‘proposal’ attracted little public attention. Only Berlin FDP General Secretary Sebastian Czaja spoke up and warned of an ‘open preparation for breach of the constitution.’ Internally, there should have been protests. The ‘proposal’ suddenly disappeared from the table. Is it completely gone or will it return?”

It remains unclear why no one has challenged the constitutionality of Hamburg’s expropriation law.

Meanwhile, some Germans are asking what is next: Will authorities now limit the maximum amount of living space per person, and force those with large apartments to share them with strangers?

THE PROBLEM: LATIN AMERICA

Why does the United States of America get criticized for  wanting to control its own immigration?

The citizens of the United States are the legitimate stakeholders of their Republic; the citizens own the country. What we decide to do within the bounds and confines of our US Constitution and our country is our own business. Our Constitution says we have the sovereign right to protect and defend our nation, and that includes securing our borders.

The Southern Border

I find it odd that virtually no scrutiny nor blame is ever placed on the governments Latin America – from the US-Mexico frontier south. I shall take the liberty and cut through the thicket so there is little chance here for you to misunderstand me: The Latin American countries that experience substantial exodus are corrupt and incompetent.

I have been to Mexico dozens of times; I have never seen a starving Mexican! Starvation simply does not exist in Mexico. Mexico has an abundance of every resource imaginable, including its hardworking and industrious people. I have never seen a beggar there either. So why are there 12 million Mexican nationals in the US?

The two ton elephant in the room everyone ignores; why is a significant portion of their citizens in the US? Incidentally, I am using Mexico  because it is the only country along the entire length of our southern border.

Mexicans do themselves a great disfavor by not openly and loudly criticizing their own government; one reason I theorize is latinos inextricably associate their country with its government. They love their country, as they should, so they feel compelled not to criticize the government. Oh, but they complain a lot about the US Government,  how it doesn’t give them a fair shake and let them work here etc. Isn’t that weird?

Berkeley cops sit in patrol car as Trump supporters attacked –
www.theamericanmirror.com
There were numerous reports from those on the scene that Berkeley police largely stayed back as Antifa agitators took pot shots at Donald Trump supporters on Saturday.

“As the violence escalated police in Berkeley stood down and retreated from the crowds,” reporter Tim Pool tweeted.

As the violence escalated police in Berkeley stood down and retreated from the crowds. I have never seen so few police at an event like this

— Tim Pool (@Timcast) April 16, 2017

“I have never seen so few police at an event like this.”

One observer claimed police “ran away,” despite several Trump rally attendees being attacked.

Literally blood on the streets and the police ran away from the #BerkeleyProtest live now on twitter pic.twitter.com/XRbh8hhMB5

— Luke Rudkowski (@Lukewearechange) April 15, 2017

Mother Jones reporter Shane Bauer saw two officers at a patrol car, not engaged in protecting citizens from violence.

I tell a police officer I’ve been seeing people get beat up all day and they haven’t been around. “Okay, and?” he says. pic.twitter.com/OuGEcvvb8R

— Shane Bauer (@shane_bauer) April 15, 2017

“Hey, how come you guys are hanging back?” he asked an officer standing in an open door of the car and another sat in the back seat.

“That would be a question for the chief of police,” an officer sitting in the driver’s seat responded.

“You want a public statement, right?” the standing officer asked the reporter.

“I would refer you to our public information officer.”

“Do they told you to hang back?” Bauer said.

“As I said, I refer you to our public information officer,” the cop responded.

“I’ve been watching all day people get beat up pretty bad and I haven’t seen you guys around much,” Bauer said.

“Okay, and?” the officer responded.

Numerous videos show Trump supporters being beaten in the streets as police failed to keep the two sides apart.

Breakouts in Berkeley California #berkrally on #PatriotsDay Trump supporters Vs AntiFapic.twitter.com/FZZtZ7qG30

At one point, several black-clad agitators isolated a lone Trump supporter and pummeled him with fists and feet.

Someone jumped in and clubbed him with a skateboard.

Here’s an aerial angle:

Absolutely chaotic scenes in Berkeley where pro- & anti-Trump protesters are clashing. @BuzzFeedNews also on scene: https://t.co/GHfElQPq6U pic.twitter.com/XX5mR0s7LC

— David Mack (@davidmackau) April 15, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

DHS PUBLISHING DETAINER VIOLATIONS

Hennepin Co. on DHS list for rejecting immigrant detainer requests

PoliticsRichard Gonzales · ·
Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers escort a man who was arrested in a New York City apartment building. New York is a city that won't detain noncitizens on behalf of the federal government.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers escort a man who was arrested in a New York City apartment building. New York is a city that won’t detain noncitizens on behalf of the federal government. AP

PHONEY OBAMA-FBI TERROR STINGS

FBI undercover stings foil terrorist plots — but often plots of the agency’s own making
www.kansascity.com

Announcements of foiled terrorist plots make for lurid reading.

Schemes to carry out a Presidents Day jihadist attack on a train station in Kansas City. Bomb a Sept. 11 memorial event. Blow up a 1,000-pound bomb at Fort Riley. Detonate a weapon of mass destruction at a Wichita airport — the failed plans all show imagination.

But how much of it was real?

Often not much, according to a review of several recent terrorism cases investigated by the FBI in Kansas and Missouri. The most sensational plots invoking the name of the Islamic State or al-Qaida here were largely the invention of FBI agents carrying out elaborate sting operations on individuals identified through social media as being potentially dangerous.

In fact, in terrorism investigations in Wichita, at Fort Riley and last week in Kansas City, the alleged terrorists reportedly were unknowingly following the directions of undercover FBI agents who supplied fake bombs and came up with key elements of the plans.
“What I get concerned about is where the plot is being hatched by the FBI,” said Michael German, a fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice and former FBI agent. “There has been a clear effort to manufacture plots.”

Law enforcement has increasingly used undercover agents and informants to develop such cases in recent years, especially against people suspected of being inspired by the Islamic State.

Of 126 Islamic State-related cases prosecuted by federal authorities across the country since 2014, nearly two-thirds involved undercover agents or informants, according to the Center on National Security at the Fordham University School of Law in New York. The FBI has stepped up its use of sting operations, which were once seen as a tactic of last resort.
FBI officials have said the sting operations are just one tool for thwarting terrorist attacks and that the suspects in such cases are given many opportunities to back out before their arrest. Federal authorities employ the stings on the theory that a person willing to engage in terrorism would eventually find real accomplices to carry out an attack.

Such cases are almost never successfully challenged in court with entrapment defenses.

But some question whether the FBI is catching real terrorists or tricking troubled individuals into volunteering for a long prison sentence.

The most recent alleged plotter, 25-year-old Robert Lorenzo Hester Jr. of Columbia, was indicted last week after federal prosecutors accused him of participating in an Islamic State plan to cause mass casualties in a bombing attack on a train station and possibly buses and trains in Kansas City on Feb. 20.
The two men leading Hester in the alleged plot were actually undercover FBI employees. They suggested the time, place and type of attack, and loaned Hester $20 to buy the 9-volt batteries, duct tape, roofing nails and copper wire that they implied would be ingredients for a bomb. Hester reportedly failed to buy the copper wire, saying he could not find it. There were no actual bombs.

The FBI employees had identified Hester as a suspect after seeing Facebook posts he made about his “conversion to Islam, his hatred for the United States and his belief that supposed U.S. mistreatment of Muslims had to be ‘put to an end,’ ” according to court documents.

But despite Hester’s denials, the FBI employees noted, he continued to test positive for marijuana even though it is frowned upon by Islamic teachings. And he allegedly found it necessary to bring his children to a meeting with the FBI workers because he had no other options for child care.

At a December meeting, one of the FBI employees threatened Hester with a knife, saying he “knew where Hester and his family lived” to make the point that Hester was not to plan any attacks of his own.

“It seems like outrageous conduct,” said German, the former FBI agent, who noted other aspects of the investigation that he thought seemed “odd.”

The FBI found Hester on Facebook in August and made contact with him through an undercover employee on Oct. 2, a day before Hester was arrested in Columbia for reportedly throwing a pocket knife through a grocery store window during an argument with his wife and menacing store employees with a 9 mm handgun he carried in a diaper bag.

Hester was released from jail on bond and remained under electronic monitoring for the next three months as he continued talking with the undercover employees and allegedly grew more deeply involved in their plans.

In January, Hester pleaded guilty in the Columbia case. He remained free on bond and was taken off electronic monitoring. The plot with the undercover FBI employees sped up, ending with his arrest in February, a month before he was to be sentenced in the Columbia grocery store incident.

German questioned why Hester was allowed to walk free.

“If the government had a legitimate reason to think this person was a danger to society, why would they let him out on bond?” he asked. “And this person was about to walk into a jail cell. It makes me think the reason is they didn’t believe he was a threat, but they could use him to make a case.”

It’s not unusual for authorities to go undercover to try to foil terrorist plots, said Daryl Johnson, a former analyst for the Department of Homeland Security. And some plots show evidence of being very real.

In 2007, Johnson noted, six Muslim men from New Jersey and Philadelphia were charged with plotting to attack Fort Dix with automatic weapons and possibly rocket-propelled grenades in what authorities said was a plan “to kill as many soldiers as possible.”

“The Fort Dix case was the most serious — they actually had a small arsenal,” Johnson said.

In Kansas last year, authorities uncovered what they said was a plot by a militia group to detonate bombs at a Garden City apartment complex where a number of Somalis live. The defendants in that case included three men who, according to court documents, had stockpiled weapons and told an FBI source of their plan.

Johnson said it’s harder to find the real threat in sting cases, such as Hester’s, where a person spouting off on social media, with no resources or ability to carry out an attack, is led by undercover FBI agents down a path to acting out a pretend terrorist plot.

“Most of these cases are trumped-up, FBI facilitated,” Johnson said. “A lot of times, these people are just engaging in free speech. If they’re American citizens, they can say they hate America, they can say, ‘I support ISIS.’ Then they become targeted.”

In these cases, he said, law enforcement has facilitated a terrorist plot with someone who held some hateful views but didn’t have the capability to do anything.

“And they were either provided the capability, or they were arrested for just the plotting aspect,” he said.

KC terrorism cases
Several of the Kansas and Missouri cases followed a similar pattern.

In 2013, FBI agents arrested a 58-year-old Kansas man as he tried to use his employee badge to bring a fake bomb onto the tarmac of a Wichita airport. The arrest of Terry L. Loewen came after a months-long sting operation in which two FBI agents posed as his co-conspirators and led him in a supposed plot they devised with phony explosives.

The FBI had found Loewen on Facebook, where he told an undercover agent of his interest in jihad. Over a period of about six months, the agents arranged for Loewen to meet in person an undercover agent posing as a terrorist, asked him to scout the airport and take photos for an attack they planned, and instructed him to gather items supposed to be used in bomb-making. According to court documents, Loewen eagerly participated and expected to die in the explosion.

In 2015, FBI agents arrested 20-year-old John T. Booker Jr. as he attempted to set off a fake car bomb at Fort Riley. Booker had been befriended by a pair of undercover FBI agents after posting inflammatory messages on Facebook. Booker told the agents he wanted to join the Islamic State and would do whatever they said. “I will follow you,” he said.

When the agents, posing as terrorists, asked what target they should attack, Booker suggested Fort Riley. At the agents’ direction, Booker rented a storage locker and went with an agent to local retailers to buy components for what was supposed to be a homemade bomb. No real explosives were involved in the operation.

In court, Booker’s attorney said Booker was being treated for bipolar disorder. He pleaded guilty to two counts related to the bomb plot and faces 30 years in prison.

The same year, an FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force arrested 20-year-old Joshua R. Goldberg at his parents’ home in Orange Park, Fla. Goldberg was accused of trying to help plan — online — an attack on a 9/11  memorial in Kansas City by providing details on how to build a pressure cooker bomb.

FBI agents had become aware of Goldberg through a social media account in which he reportedly posed as a terrorist instigator living in Australia. Online, Goldberg allegedly took credit for inspiring a May 2015 attack on a “Muhammad Art Exhibit and Contest” in Garland, Texas, in which police killed two armed men.

An undercover FBI agent contacted Goldberg online and expressed interest in carrying out a bomb attack in Kansas City. Goldberg allegedly suggested targeting the Sept. 11 memorial event, supplied links to online bomb-building manuals and suggested packing the bomb with nails, glass and metal dipped in rat poison.

While FBI agents kept Goldberg’s home under surveillance, they received information from Australian police that Goldberg had been identified as an “online troll” who engaged in internet hoaxes. Days later, they arrested Goldberg on one federal count of distributing information relating to explosives.

Since his arrest, Goldberg has been held in a federal detention center in Miami and repeatedly found incompetent to stand trial because of mental illness. Psychological examinations found him to be “paranoid,” “childlike” and unable to understand the legal proceedings against him.

His defense attorney, Paul Shorstein, said a federal court may make a decision in the next few weeks on whether Goldberg can be tried. Shorstein said Goldberg was not a real terrorist.

“He was sort of pretending to be somebody and playing the role,” Shorstein said. “He’s not a threat to anybody. It’s not a terrorism case — it’s a mental health case.”

Still, these investigations could help thwart terrorism, said Dru Stevenson, a law professor at South Texas College of Law in Houston who has studied how such undercover cases prevail over entrapment defenses.

By locking up people who would be willing to carry out terrorist acts, the stings can reduce the potential recruiting pool for real terrorists looking for willing followers, Stevenson said. And the knowledge that undercover FBI agents and informants are out there could make that recruitment more dangerous, difficult and slow for actual Islamic State plotters.

“If the choice is between waiting for the person to find some real terrorists to get involved with, or giving them a phony plot, I’m fine with giving them a phony plot,” Stevenson said.

Taking the Boston Marathon bombers as an example, he said, “Those are the kind of people I wish someone had caught in a sting before they hurt a lot of people.”

So far, the courts have agreed. No defendant in the Islamic State sting cases has successfully argued entrapment.

But the sheer volume of cases that depend on sting operations in which FBI agents supply the plot says something about the reality of the terrorist threat, said Karen Greenberg, director of the Center on National Security, which authored the Islamic State prosecutions report.

Most of the potential terrorists being prosecuted have a lot in common, Greenberg said. Their average age is 26, 77 percent are U.S. citizens, a third are converts to Islam and a third live with their parents. Nearly 90 percent are active on social media. Only a handful had any link to Islamic State members overseas.

“If you take away the undercover cases to see what are the real organized terrorism cases, we’re not seeing it,” Greenberg said. “What do we have? The threat is different from what we’re being told.”