Munster, IN – An international law enforcement training organization is under fire after it posted a document that called Black Lives Matter and antifa “terrorist” organizations.
The International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA) provides training and education materials to law enforcement agencies on five continents, according to its website.
Its members are educators, trainers, and supervisors or managers of criminal justice education or training and the stated goal of the group is “the reduction of law enforcement risk through the enhancement of training for criminal justice practitioners.”
The organization was put on the hot seat recently after they published a training document entitled “Understanding Antifa and Urban Guerrilla Warfare” that painted a picture of Black Lives Matter and antifa movements as radical militants in the midst of violent nationwide protests by members of those groups, according to The Hill.
The guide, which has since been removed from the organization’s website, called protesters in Seattle and Portland over the summer “useful idiots” who covered up for “hard-core, terrorist trained troops.”
“Extreme acts of violence are expected and called for,” the document warned.
A link to the since-deleted document was included in a recent email newsletter sent out to ILEETA members, the Associated Press reported.
“Antifa and Black Lives Matter have no intentions to negotiate,” the document read. “These are revolutionary movements whose aims are to overthrow the U.S. government.”
The document claimed some of the observations about Black Lives Matter and antifa in the document had been made by people who had served in Iraq and Afghanistan and “have witnessed these types of terrorist groups organizing, creating insurgencies and the horrible consequences of it,” The Hill reported.
The guide was labeled “restricted to law enforcement” but was posted publicly on ILEETA’s website.
ILEETA Executive Director Harvey Hedden told the Associated Press that the document reflected one member’s opinion and had been open for critique and debate.
Hedden said his organization supported the exchange of ideas and doesn’t endorse specific recommendations, and that publishing the document gave other trainers an opportunity to peer review it.
He said that restricting distribution of the guide or attempting to fact-check it would amount to censorship, the Associated Press reported.
“There will always be differences of opinion on training issues but so long as the disagreements remain professional and not personal we do not censor these ideas,” Hedden explained. “I am willing to allow the trainer to evaluate the information themselves.”
“Just like law enforcement, I am afraid BLM has earned some of these criticisms and others might be overgeneralizations,” he told the Associated Press.
But law enforcement critics and Black Lives Matter supporters said they felt such a training document was actually dangerous.
“It’s stunning. It’s distressing in many ways. It’s untethered to reality,” Phillip Atiba Goff, a Yale University professor and head of the Center for Policing Equity, said. “I worry that it leads to people dying unnecessarily.”
Goff called it irresponsible of ILEETA to promote the document and said the police executives he had discussed it with found it disturbing, the Associated Press reported.
Sherice Nelson, an assistant professor of political science at Southern University and A&M College who studies Black political movements, called the claims in the document distributed by ILEETA “wildly outlandish.”
“This document is below the belt because of how much misinformation there is, how many conspiracy theories there are, how much violence it promotes and how many reasons it gives to justify dehumanizing people,” Nelson told the Associated Press.
But the allegations in the document are not completely unfounded.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani called on President Donald Trump to declare Black Lives Matter a domestic terrorist group in August, citing claims by founders that they were “trained Marxists,” FOX News reported.
“I can’t understand why major American corporations are giving money to Black Lives Matter, which is run by three Communists who are avowed terrorists,” Giuliani said.
“The money that they get comes from a terrorist named Susan Rosenberg, who was convicted and sent to prison for 58 years for being involved in this conspiracy to kill cops,” Giuliani told FOX News. “She’s funneling the money to them. If you spend 10 minutes… and read [about BLM], it’s the end of our government.”
“The president should consider, very carefully, declaring Black Lives Matter a domestic terrorist organization,” the former mayor continued. “Today they had four or five beatings they took part in, they’ve been recorded saying that police officers should be murdered and killed. And one of their members this weekend defended looting as [something] people are entitled to do … because they have no bread.”
“They were taking televisions, they were taking liquor, they were basically engaged in stealing. So this is an illegal organization and their intent is to overthrow our government,” he said.
Giuliani also pointed to reports that the group is heavily funded by left-wing billionaire activist George Soros, FOX News reported.
“The president should declare them a domestic terrorist organization and maybe we can stop Soros from giving them $150 million,” he suggested. “Soros is intent [on] destroying our government for some sick reason of his that goes back to his sick background.”