Welcome to the second installment in my series examining the notorious Christian Identity compound known as Elohim City, a place that has long been linked to arms trafficking, bank robberies, and acts of terrorism, most notably the Oklahoma City bombing. In the first installment I briefly addressed Elohim City but mainly focused upon various groups within the Christian Identity movement that had taken on paramilitary characteristics, such as the Covenant, the Sword, and the Arm of the Lord and the Order. To fully appreciate what Elohim City had become by the early 1990s when it became involved in the Oklahoma City mess the context in which it emerged must be closely considered. Thus, this installment will also be mostly concerned with context. With that in mind, we pick up our story in Germany during the late 1980s...
On November 9, 1989, a supposedly spontaneous event occurred that had tremendous and largely ignored repercussions in the decades to come. On the night of that fateful day young Germans from East and West Berlin began tearing down the notorious wall that separated their city since 1961. They climbed atop the 13 1/2 foot slab of concrete, cleared coils of barbed wire and extended their hands to jubilant strangers, pulling one another over the hated symbol. People hugged and kissed, drank, and danced until dawn.
No other event is more closely associated with the end of the Cold War and the defeat of communism than the Fall of the Berlin Wall. For many in the West it was a time for jubilation while many in the East looked forward to a brighter future. In those heady days in the late 80s and early 90s there was a sense that the world was heading towards a new era of peace and prosperity.
And yet the date on which the Wall begin to come down piece by piece carried with it most ominous associations from Germany's past. The date of 11/9 had witnessed several significant events in Germany prior to Hitler's rise, most notably the end of the monarchy in 1918, but it was largely associated with the mythology of the Nazi Party both before and after the Second World War.
"And so it was the day of the Beer Hall Putsch of 1923, a day that Hitler commemorated forever after with speeches and festivities, and sanctified with the creation of Blood Order: a society of those men who marched with him on that fateful day, and symbolized by the Nazi flag that they carried and with which all other Nazi flags were 'blessed' by being touch with it in an impressive ceremonials proceeded over by Hitler himself. It was the day of a failed assassination attempt in 1939 on Hitler's life at a meeting commemorating the Putsch. (Coincidently, November 9, 1939, was also the date the trial of American Nazi and Bund leader Fritz Kuhn began in New York City, a trial that resulted in his conviction of various charges and his sentencing to Sing Sing.) And it was also the day of Kristallnacht, when roving Nazi gangs went on a rampage in 1938, smashing shop windows and destroying Jewish homes, businesses, and temples. If anyone in Hitler's Germany believed in numerology, they would have spent a considerable time in analyzing this most pregnant of dates for the Third Reich."
(Unholy Alliance, Peter Levenda, pg. 142)
|the notorious ' blood flag' of the failed Beer Hall Putsch of 11/9/1923|
The Fall of the Berlin Wall unleashed a chain of events that would result in the reunification of East and West Germany in just a little less than two years. Germany, which had long shared leadership in the the emerging European Union with France, now found itself as the undisputed master of European politics.
"However, Germany's reunification also dramatically change the real parameters of European politics. It was simultaneously a geopolitical defeat for Russia and for France. United Germany not only ceased to be a political junior partner of France, but it automatically became the undisputed prime power in Western Europe and even a partial global power, especially through its major financial contribution to the support of the key international institutions. The new reality breads mutual disenchantment in the Franco-German relationship, for Germany was now able and willing to articulate and openly promote its own vision of a future Europe, still as France's partner but no longer is its protégé."
(The Grand Chessboard, Zbigniew Brezezinski, pg. 66)
On May 1, 2004 (the first of May is also an important date in Nazi occultism) ten nations, formerly members of Yugoslavia and the Eastern Bloc, joined the European Union in a move symbolic of the unification of Eastern and Western Europe. In many ways this merger also represented a realization of Hitler's dream of a united Europe dominated by Germany. And it was all made possible by the events that transpired on November 9, 1989 in Berlin that made German reunification all but inevitable.
Present at the Berlin Wall on the night of 11/9/89 was a man named Gunter Strassmeir, the leader of the Christian Democratic Union in West Berlin. Strassmeir, whose father was an early member of the Nazi party, became the de facto chief of staff for Chancellor Helmut Kohl and played a key role in the reunification of Germany in the early 90s. At the same time as Gunter was involved in this endeavor his son, Andreas, was beginning his stint as Elohim City's chief of security.
Seemingly this was a rather strange career move for a man who was the son of a former Parliamentary Secretary of State, whose uncle was in the German Parliament and brother sat on the Berlin City Council, and who have been in the midst only promising military career before departing for the United States.
"Andreas served as a lieutenant in the German Panzer Grenadiers (the equivalent of our Special Forces), had formal military intelligence training, and did a stint as a liaisons officer for the Welsh Guards. He told the London Sunday Telegraph that part of his work was to detect infiltration by Warsaw Pact agents, and then feed them disinformation. 'If we caught a guy, we'd offer him amnesty. We'd turn him and use him to feed false information back to the Warsaw Pact.' While Strassmeir would not admit it, it is reported that he is an agent for the German national anti-terrorist police, the GSG-9."
(The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, David Hoffman, pg. 122)
|the GSG-9, who will appear again in our story in a rather dramatic fashion|
Accounts of when exactly Strassmeir entered the United States and under whose auspices vary. In some versions Andreas arrived here in 1989 as part of a group of Germans looking to participate in a reenactment of the Battle of Gettysburg. It was amidst the Civil War reenactment crowd that Strassmeir began rubbing shoulders with members of the US intelligence community, most notably retired U.S. Air Force Col. Vincent Petruskie. This website notes:
"Once Strassmeir arrived on our shores... he quickly gravitated toward, of all things, the Civil War reenactment crowd. Why does this seemingly innocuous bit of trivia merit mention? Because historically, this group has been infiltrated by a variety of CIA splinter groups that use it as a front for illegal gun-smuggling. More importantly, though, The London Times reported that when Strassmeir first arrived in the United States, he was befriended by retired Army officers, CIA veterans, and Civil War reenactment history buffs. These men were part of a network that is very powerful in this country, and one that stretches into the Pentagon and other federal agencies.
"One of these men was Vincent Petruskie, who was a special agent for the Air Force Office of Special Investigation (OSI) from 1954-1975, and who also knew Strassmeir’s father in Berlin. Petruskie was also a foreign intelligence officer in Vietnam, a member of the 1131st U.S. Air Force Special Activities Squadron, a Special Projects Officer in the Special Activities Branch of the counter-intelligence division in Washington, D.C., and was also reactivated during the Gulf War to fulfill a ‘sensitive assignment.’
"Needless to say, Petruskie was connected to deep intelligence sources for decades, and interacted with a cabal of ex-military men and former & current CIA employees who were involved in gun running, mercenary actions, espionage, drug trafficking, blackmail & subversion, and money laundering. These were off-record, black budget operatives, and Vincent Petruskie made a career out of soliciting and deal-making with these shadowy figures.
"So, when Andreas Strassmeir arrived in America and needed a place to stay, who opened his doors to him? None other than Vincent Petruskie of Petruskie Associates in Manassas, Virginia; a man who was making at the time $1.6 million/year by working out of his house. How did Strassmeir know Petruskie? In his own words, Strassmeir described his ally as, 'a former CIA guy my father had known.' But Petruskie’s friendship didn’t end at mere lodging. In addition, he tried to get Strassmeir a job at the DEA, the Treasury Department, with INS, and also the Department of Justice."
|the murky world of the Civil War reenactment crowd|
As unlikely as it may seem that a AFOSI officer would have such connections, keep in mind that the AFOSI was deeply involved in various PSYOPs involving alleged extraterrestrials in the 1980s, most notably the Bennewitz affair. I've written much more on said topic here and here.
But back to Strassmeir. At roughly the same time as, or shortly thereafter, Strassmeir was dabbling in Civil War reenactments he also became involved with a militia, known as the Texas Light Infantry. This apparently didn't work out much better than his attempt to get a job with the DEA.
"According to information obtained by the Telegraph, Strassmeir infiltrated the Texas Light Infantry militia between 1988 and 1989, and set up some illegal gun purchases. They soon suspected that Strassmeir was a ATF informant. When some members followed him to a federal building one night, they observed him entering it using the building's combination key-pad."
(The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, David Hoffman, pg. 130)
|the Texas Light Infantry militia|
In other accounts Strassmeir does not arrive in the United States until sometime around 1991 at the behest of his American attorney, Kirk Lyons, who also helped Strassmeir procure his job as chief of security at Elohim City.
"In 1991 Andreas Strassmeir's American attorney, the ubiquitous Kirk Lyons, visited his client's parents at their plush residence in Berlin. Lyons assured Gunter Strassmeir that his son was doing well in the United States. It was Lyons who helped arrange for Andreas to come to America in the first place. Lyons also introduced his young German friend to the folks at Elohim City."
(The Beast Reawakens, Martin A. Lee, pgs. 352-353)
At this point we pause in our story to consider the figure of Kirk Lyons, who is a major character in this drama. Over the years Lyons has become something along the lines of the Johnny Cochran of the radical, white supremacist right. His ties to the Christian Identity movement are deep and have had a profound effect on the development of said movement for decades.
"Kirk Lyons, an attorney from Texas who defended a rogue's gallery of neo-Nazis and white supremacists, tied the knot at the Aryan Nations encampment in September 1990. It was actually a Scottish-style double wedding, with kilts and bagpipes. Lyons and his friend Neil Payne Mary two sisters, Brenna and Beth Tate, respectively. Their brother, David Tate, was then in prison for murdering a Missouri state highway patrolman. David had been a member of 'the Order,' a terrorist offshoot of the Aryan Nations that embarked upon a spree of bank heist and killings in the United States during the early 1980s. Tate had participated in several commando raids against armored cars before the police caught up with him...
"In 1988, thirteen white supremacist, including Miles and Reverend Butler, were prosecuted for conspiringto overthrow the U.S. government. Federal authorities argued that the defendants had hatch their sinister plans while meeting at the Aryan Nations headquarters five years earlier. Miles, Butler, and a third defendant, Louis Beam, Jr., were pegged as the subversive ringleaders, the hardest of the hard-core, who secretly directed the Silent Brotherhood. Following their command, members of the Order murdered several people and stole more than $4 million, according to U.S. officials, who suspected that most of the missing cash ended up in the coffers of American neo-Nazi groups.
"Kirk Lyons, then in his early thirties, represented fellow Texan Louis Beam at the sedition trial, which was held in Fort Smith, Arkansas. A former helicopter gunner in Vietnam, Beam became the Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon of the Lone Star State. To avoid arrest on charges related to the Order, he fled to Mexico with his wife. A fugitive on the FBI's 'Ten Most Wanted' list, Beam was captured after a gunfight in Guadalajara and return to the United States.... But the federal government failed in its attempt to convict Beam and the other defendants of seditious conspiracy. Lyons and his client celebrated the verdict at a Confederate memorial opposite the courthouse, where Beam proclaimed victory over the enemy...
"The Fort Smith sedition trial marked Lyons's debute as a lawyer for the white supremacist movement. He became something of a celebrity among ultrarightist for his successful defense of Beam, who, by all accounts, was one of the key players in America's neo-Nazi underground..."
(The Beast Reawakens, Martin A. Lee, pgs. 339-341)
For Lyons this was only the beginning. By the early 90s he was the attorney of choice for the American white supremacist underground.
"At the 1988 Aryan Nations World Congress, Lyons suggested forming an ACLU of sorts for the extreme-right, and attended the annual event and Hayden Lake as Louis Beam's representative. Not that Lyons was desperate for clients. He happily defended the Confederate Hammer Skins of Dallas, the National Socialist Skinheads of Houston, the White Vikings of Chicago, and WAR leader Tom Metzger, who was accused of inciting the murder of a black student from Ethiopia. Lyons also defended Holocaust revisionist Ernst Zundel, who claimed that Nazi gas chambers were a Jewish invention, and other so-called ' prisoners of conscience.'
"Lyons was also the guest of honor at the British Nationalist Party in London, where he applauded the Party's stance on white power, and... predicted a future race war."
(The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, David Hoffman, pg. 136)
|Ernst Zundel (top) and Tom Metzger (bottom), two other 'star' clients of Lyons|
Lyons, along with his longtime associate Louis Beam, was able to make early inroads into the militia movement which was just beginning to emerge in the early 1990s. Indeed, it was Beam who first advocated the concept of a leaderless resistance which has since been adopted by much of the militia movement.
"'No more Wacos, no more Weavers!' became the rallying cry for a slew of angry right-wing extremists who shared Lyons' apathy towards the US government. While these two tragedies served as lightning rods for the growth of the militias, the actual nuts-and-bolts strategy for building up a nationwide paramilitary network was forged at a closed-doors meeting in Estes Park, Colorado, on October 23, 1992. Lyons and Beam were among 150 ultra-right-wing leaders who attended the session, which was hosted by Christian I him and Identity pastor Pete Peters. a top-thumping white supremacist who claimed that the Bible justified killing homosexuals, Peters had encourage members of the Order to embark upon their deadly crusade a decade earlier...
"During the Rocky Mountain assembly, several speakers endorsed the idea of a grassroots militia movement that would serve both as a focal point of mass opposition to gun control and as a pool from which terrorist cells could be recruited. Aryan Nations ambassador Beam emerged as a key player at this parlay. He laid out his plan for 'leaderless resistance,'which entailed the creation of small autonomous units composed of five or six dedicated individuals who were bound together by a shared ideology rather than a central commander...
"One advantage of Beam's guerrilla-warfare scenario was that it reduced the risk of infiltration or detection. By virtue of its secretive structure, the cell system would immunize leading tacticians, like himself, while affording underground components an unrestricted operational range...
"Beam's proposal would soon be adopted by much of the militia movement as part of a sophisticated two-tiered strategy that enabled White Power advocates to bury their leaderless resistance cadres inside the sprawling network of aboveground, hierarchically structured paramilitary organizations."
(The Beast Reawakens, Martin A. Lee, pgs. 347-348)
There is also evidence that Lyons had made extensive inroads with German neo-Nazi outfits as well, giving him a true international reach.
"During a previous trip to the Fatherland, Lyons had befriended a man who was in many ways his German counterpart, Jurgen Rieger. Described by Die Zeit as 'a neo-Nazi in lawyer's robes,' Rieger headed a group called the Society for Biological Anthropology, Eugenics, and Behavioral Research, which is based in Hamburg. In this capacity, Rieger edited Neue Anthropologie, a pseudo-scientific journal for intellectual racists who believed in Aryan supremacy. At the same time, Rieger served as defense counsel for Michael Kuhnen, Christian Worch, Ernst Zundel, and several other key neo-Nazis. Widely respected within the neo-Nazi scene, Rieger had connections to all factions of the extreme Right in Germany.
"Lyons maintained ongoing ties to the German neo-Nazi movement through CAUSE, a group he set up in Black Mountain, North Carolina. An acronym for ' Canada, Australia, United States, South Africa and Europe' (places where the democratic rights of white people were in jeopardy, according to Lyons), CAUSE functioned as an information clearinghouse and gossip-mill for right-wing extremists at home and abroad. Jurgen Rieger was one of a handful of CAUSE-affiliated attorneys in Germany."
(ibid, pgs. 342-343)
To recap: Lyons' influence ran through much of the white supremacist underground thanks to his close association with the Aryan Nations, various paramilitary groups and celebrity right-wing extremists in the United States, and the German neo-Nazi underground; in addition to his relationship with Andreas Strassmeir, Elohim City's chief of security. Unsurprisingly, Lyons would also appear to have ties to the US intelligence community like Strassmeir. This website notes:
"... an attorney named Kirk Lyons entered the picture. Who is he? Well, Michael Collins Piper, author of Final Judgment and a veteran reporter for the American Free Press, wrote in an unpublished article that, 'For many years Kirk Lyons functioned in some way as a federal undercover agent and/or informant in a movement in which he put himself forward as a legal advocate and spokesman for its cause.' Piper went on to conclude that Lyons was undeniably, above all else, Strassmeir’s 'handler.' Lyons even visited Strassmeir’s parents at their plush Berlin residence in 1991"At this point I shall wrap things up for now. The notion of Lyons as some type of informant, if not an actual asset, is highly plausible. His vast connections to the extremist right in both the United States as well as Europe make Lyons a natural candidate for such things. The notion of Lyons as Strassmer's handler is far more debatable. Strassmeir was a highly trained soldier who had also worked in intelligence and who was a member of a highly politically connected family. In the next installment I shall consider the possibility of Strassmeir as the senior partner in his dealings with Lyons and the implications of this. I may finally get around to Elohim City and the Oklahoma City bombing as well. Stay tuned.