Nearly eight years ago, Daryl Johnson was caught in a firestorm because of a report he’d authored at the Department of Homeland Security. It warned of a surge in activity by right-wing groups, including militias, white supremacists, anti-government activists, and others upset about the first black U.S. president and the consequences of a faltering economy, reports McClatchy Newspapers. Republicans slammed the report as an attack on conservatives. Then-Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano apologized for the report and it was withdrawn. Johnson’s unit was disbanded.
Johnson’s warnings have proved prescient in a string of incidents from the murders of a Kansas abortion doctor and a security guard at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington to mass shootings at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin and an African-American church in South Carolina. Last week, a foiled plot by three militiamen to attack a Kansas apartment complex inhabited by Muslim Somali immigrants demonstrated that it isn’t just foreign terrorists or those sympathetic to them that Americans have to worry about. “This is exactly the type of threat we were talking about,” said Johnson, now a homeland security consultant. “It’s continued to grow over the past eight years.” Three Kansas men were indicted by a federal grand jury last week for conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction. They are accused of plotting to detonate truck bombs at the complex in Garden City, Ks., where 120 people live and worship.