The FBI is using its ‘Black Identity Extremist’ report to crack down on activists

A new trial demonstrates how the FBI is using its controversial "Black Identity Extremists" report to target Black activists. (CREDIT: Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)


Last October, an internal FBI report flagging the threat of so-called “Black Identity Extremists” went public, after Foreign Policy magazine obtained a copy of the document and published it online.

The troubling report cited numerous instances of violent extremism, pinning them on the current wave of Black Lives Matter demonstrations and allowing law enforcement to pursue aggressive surveillance and investigations into individuals they believe may one day pose a threat.

Now, six months on, fallout from the report is beginning to be seen. On March 26, a trial reportedly got underway in a Texas court on what some say is the first “Black Identity Extremist” (BIE) case to be prosecuted in the United States under the new FBI guidelines. Although the FBI has refused to confirm whether the case against Black Dallas resident Christopher Daniels falls under the BIE label, to many activists, the connection is clear.


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