Friday, February 12, 2016

Oregon Standoff Ends Peacefully

 photo goodbye.jpg

Previous Related Posts:
Bad Week for Ammon Bundy - Busted
Malheur Occupation Enters Third Week
Bundy Militia Invades Oregon
Bundy Family Shows Up to support Fiore Land Bill
Bundy Ranch Supporters Have Sniper Denial
Wingnuts Declare Victory as Feds Leave Bundy Ranch

What started several weeks ago with Ammon Bundy's invasion and takeover of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, ended peacefully on Thursday as the final four militia members were persuaded to turn themselves in to the FBI and go to jail. However, that followed almost 24 hours of nail-biting drama as various far-right sympathizers carried on a livestreaming dialogue with the hold-outs that was half-prayer eeting, half-defiance of authority. Nothing was certain until the last one gave up.

Cast of Characters - and remember, most of the people who negotiated with the final four were actually going against their own beliefs. In fact, Seim, Fiore, and Hall have been cheerleaders for the sovereign citizens movement and cheered on the Bundy Malheur Occupation! So the whole thing was quite surreal.

Gavin Seim: Owner of the anti-government YouTube Livestream that broadcast the final hours at Malheur

Michele Fiore: Meddling Nevada Assemblywoman who was at Bundy Ranch, she actually did a pretty good job of brokering the deal the night before after flying into Portland to consort with Ammon Bundy's lawyer. Although Fiore believes the same crazy stuff as the Bundy Militia, she accessed her non-crazy side and firmly told the final four they needed to respect the rule of law. At the same time she was quite motherly and sympathetic, asking them if they had eaten and if they had enough water. Slowly she won over Sean Anderson's wife Sandy, who was nearly hysterical at the idea of surrendering to the FBI, whom she was convinced would kill them on sight. They had a discussion about the movie "Braveheart" and the next day Sean Anderson gave himself up while playing a bagpipe dirge from that movie.

Franklin Graham: Son of evangelist Billy Graham and far-right icon, stayed on phone praying with hold-outs and agreed to be there during surrender, probably because it will be great for fundraising.

KrisAnne Hall: Far-right lawyer who came online to do some self-promotion of her strange anti-government Constitutional ideas during Seim's livestream. When David Fry balked at leaving his bunker, she kept trying to talk him into leaving with a mixture of Christian Bible stories comparing Fry to Jesus, which Fry threw back into her face by stating he wasn't a Christian anyway. At the last minute he told Seim and Hall that he had a gun to his head, Hall decided to be scolding instead of empathetic, leading listeners to wonder why she of all people was talking him down instead of a professional with psychological training.

In the end, David Fry ate a cookie and smoked a "last cigarette," then told an FBI negotiator that he was willing to come out if all the police would shout "Hallelujah," to which they eagerly agreed. The loud "Hallelujah" could be heard over the livestream as Seim and Hall sat in complete silence, listening. When it was over, Hall burst into tears saying she wanted a bath and a massage, because of course, it was all about her and not the troubled suicidal young man with a gun to his head.

Last hours on Seim's Livestream - Ending at 3:14:14

From The Oregonian:

What happens next, from the FBI Statement:
  • The refuge will remain closed for "some number of weeks" as law enforcement maintains security checkpoints around the crime scene.
  • Agents are scouring the refuge to ensure no one else is there. Then they will search for bombs, which could take days.
  • Then  teams will document and collect evidence. Forensic examiners will work to recover and process computers and electronic devices. Collection could take several weeks, and analysis could take several months.
  • Other teams will work on cultural property investigations with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Burns Paiute Tribe to identify and document possible damage to artifacts and sacred burial grounds. The process could take weeks.
  • Through the process, the FBI will consult with Fish and Wildlife Service about returning the refuge to the agency.

The remains of "Camp Finicum"

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