Pottawattamie County, Iowa wanted to hold an anti-terrorism drill. They spent four months planning it around a scenario wherein anti-immigration white supremacists shoot up a school. And then they had to cancel it, because real white supremacists started making threats.
"Patriot group leaders," the Des Moines Register tells us, "complained the exercise was intended to portray people who legally possess guns and who fight illegal immigration as extremists." Seems fair! Indeed, at least one "patriot group" member was apparently so frustrated with his (or her!) portrayal as an extremist that he (or she!) left "a particularly disturbing voice-mail message" that, in the words of Treynor school district superintendent Kevin Elwood, "basically indicated that... that type of an incident could become a reality in our school district."
Well, yes, it's not the smartest move to respond to perceived allegations of extremism with... more extremism. But Iowa Minuteman director Robert Ussery knows what the stakes are: "[Ussery] believes government officials were pursuing a political agenda supporting amnesty for illegal immigrants when they crafted the scenario."
And poor Treynor, Iowa, white population: 918, minority population: 1, remains unprepared for any kind of terrorist attack.
[Des Moines Register; image, of neo-Nazis in Paris, Texas, via AP]