Small Wars Journal

Coast Guard Lieutenant Used Work Computers in Alleged Planning of Widespread Domestic Terrorist Attack, Prosecutors Say

Coast Guard Lieutenant Used Work Computers in Alleged Planning of Widespread Domestic Terrorist Attack, Prosecutors Say by Lynh Bui, Dan Lamothe and Michael E. Miller – Washington Post

The U.S. Coast Guard lieutenant spent hours on end planning a wide-scale domestic terrorist attack, even logging in at his work computer on the job at headquarters to study the manifestos and heinous paths of mass shooters, prosecutors say. He researched how to carry out sniper attacks, they contend, and whether rifle scopes were illegal. And all the while, investigators assert, he was amassing a cache of weapons as he ruminated about attacks on politicians and journalists.


But Christopher P. Hasson was not an isolated figure, according to a contractor who worked with him. The 49-year-old lieutenant with more than two decades in the Coast Guard was part of a project to replace some aging cutters in the fleet, tasks that regularly required interacting with civilians and military officials at meetings and on travel.


“I don’t remember him saying anything that was crazy,” said Adam Stolzberg, a contractor who worked at headquarters and was in meetings with Hasson a couple of times a month. Politics never came up, Stolzberg said.


It was only after Hasson’s arrest last Friday at his workplace that the chilling plans prosecutors assert he was crafting became apparent, detected by an internal Coast Guard program that watches for any “insider threat.”


The program identified suspicious computer activity tied to Hasson, prompting the agency’s investigative service to launch an investigation last fall, said Lt. Cmdr. Scott McBride, a service spokesman…

Read on.


With regard to my thoughts and quoted items in my comment below, perhaps the following will prove useful:


The character of war describes the changing way that war as a phenomenon manifests in the real world. As war is a political act that takes place in and among societies, its specific character will be shaped by those politics and those societies—by what Clausewitz called the “spirit of the age.”


What we must come to understand here is that:

a.  Much as the threat posed by the global economy and its advocates to, shall we say, "conservative Islam" (and those the "Old Order" there that maintain power, influence, control, wealth, status, etc., via same); much as this is such threat is considered to be a valid "resistance to unwanted transformation" "call to Jihad" in certain areas of the Islamic World,

b.  Likewise the threat now posed by globalization and its advocates to, shall we say, "conservative Westernism" (and those of the "Old Order" here that are privileged and protected by same); this, also, is now considered to be a valid "resistance to unwanted transformation" "call to war" in certain areas of the U.S./the West.

What has caused this increased "radicalization" and "terrorist" bent -- found now both in the East and in the West  -- this would seem to be: 

a.  Government decisions to actively undermine the culture of their own -- and other  -- states, societies and civilizations; this,

b.  Given that same is thought to be "in the way" of market progress.

Based on these such suggestions, and given the Lieutenant Christopher P. Hasson case above, let's  look at this "threat" -- posed by the global economy and its adovocates -- (a) as relates to the U.S. in this case and (b) through the lens of recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions:



Constitutional scholars have recognized that periodically, the Supreme Court brings about major Constitutional shifts. For example, Bruce Ackerman has described a system of “higher lawmaking” where the Supreme Court at certain moments will issue “a series of transformative opinions” which may be at odds with fundamental principles of the earlier era. Ackerman argues that such a shift took place when the Supreme Court approved the New Deal legislation of President Franklin Roosevelt. The Supreme Court is now similarly engaged in another project of transformational decision-making.

Robert Delahunty and Antonio Perez have recently argued that the Supreme Court is in the process of restructuring American constitutional law so as to help usher in the era of the market state, as understood by Bobbitt, which would then allow the United States to be competitive in the globalized economy. According to this account, the primary purpose of the United States government is “to increase the international competitiveness of the American economy.”

According to Delahunty and Perez, we can understand the Supreme Court’s new doctrine in a number of areas in light of the Court’s effort to accommodate the emerging market state as we move away from the nation state. For instance, with respect to federalism, the Supreme Court is taking the position that if states were to become involved in foreign affairs, they might introduce issues of morality, which could inhibit the development of the market state and the international market. They interpret the Supreme Court’s decision in American Insurance Ass’n v. Garamendi—which invalidated California’s attempt to tie foreign corporations to the Holocaust—to mean that states have no legitimate interest in subjecting international capital markets to moral judgments. Instead, the top priority is to construct efficient international and crossborder markets.

In the area of race and gay rights, the Supreme Court’s cases also reflect the emerging market state. For instance, in Lawrence v. Texas, the Supreme Court held that states could not outlaw sodomy. The moral judgment of the state could not serve as a basis to outlaw this activity. In addition, Lawrence, properly understood, is an effort to promote efficient markets. The general idea is that gay workers may be more efficient than non-gay workers for a number of reasons. As Delahunty and Perez explain:

"Homosexual employees may, for example, be able or willing to work longer hours than married heterosexuals with families; may be more open to relocating as corporate needs require; may not be as likely to sacrifice career goals to childbearing or child rearing; [and] may require a lower level of health care benefits . . . .Similarly, in Grutter v. Bollinger, the Supreme Court upheld affirmative action in large part because of the needs of the market."

For instance, Justice O’Connor, who wrote the majority opinion, observed that: “[m]ajor American businesses have made clear that the skills needed in today’s increasingly global marketplace can only be developed through exposure to widely diverse people, cultures, ideas and viewpoints.” Beyond all of this, the Supreme Court is reaching these conclusions in large part through its reliance on elite decision makers and their views on what is needed for the nation to succeed in the international market.

Summarizing these developments, Delahunty and Perez conclude that: Our review of the Court’s decisions should have made it clear that fundamental premises of constitutional law are undergoing a tectonic shift . . . . What is happening in the case law reflects, on the judicial plane, the processes by which the nation state is steadily yielding its place to a new order . . . . The Court is more or less self-consciously engaged in the project of adapting and restructuring the Constitution so that it can be made to fit the perceived requirements of the multicultural, value-free, libertarian, market state whose emergence Professor Bobbitt envisages and describes.

The ongoing turn toward a market state has important implications for issues of race, including immigration law. In particular, this section argues that the shift to a market state explains a number of race-related phenomena negatively impacting racial minorities and that sub-national efforts to control immigration in order to preserve “American” culture are doomed to failure and should be viewed as the last gasp of a dying nation state.

Bottom Line Thought -- Based on the Above:

Thus, to suggest that:

a.  "Jihad," radicalization and terrorism in the West (see the LT Hasson case above),

b.  Much like "jihad," radicalization and terrorism in the East,

c.  May have a common cause?

(The Trump, Brexit, etc., phenomenon, now being experienced in the West, thus to be understood more in such -- "culture is standing in the way of necessary progress for national security" -- terms?)