Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Father and son

"Hundreds of historians call for Trump’s removal from office after Capitol riot" (lotsa ((()))):

"The letter’s principal drafters were Sean Wilentz, Sidney Blumenthal and David Greenberg." 

Sidney's son is Max.

"Max Blumenthal: Breach of Capitol Security Was Like a Military Operation" (Garrison).

"Chaos agent: Right-wing blames US Capitol riot on notorious instigator banished by Black Lives Matter" (Blumenthal).  A professional agent provocateur.
"Through my conversations with the Sullivan brothers, I learned that they had become the subject of a documentary by a Los Angeles-based photojournalist named Jade Sacker. Sacker appeared briefly in Sullivan’s footage filming inside the Capitol and could be heard congratulating him for the invasion. “We did it!” she chirped to Sullivan as the mob flowed inside the building.

Sacker’s documentary project is being advised by Bryan Fogel, maker of Icarus, the Academy Award-winning Netflix documentary on alleged doping by Russian Olympic athletes, and The Dissident, which covers the murder of Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi government agents, and has been endorsed by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Sacker said she hoped Fogel would agree to serve as executive producer on her project about the Sullivan brothers “once he sees the sizzle and a demonstration of the work that I’ve done.”

When I reached Sacker on January 9, she initially downplayed the role of her documentary subject, John Sullivan, in the Trumpist rampage through the Capitol three days before. “He’s passionate, and he’s apolitical,” she said of Sullivan. “He is against the system, but he’s extremely nonviolent.”

Portraying herself as “someone who is very much [politically] progressive,” and opposed to Trump’s agenda, she framed her congratulatory comments to Sullivan as an expression of surprise, not approval.

“John knew somehow that people were considering storming the Capitol,” Sacker told me. “He had had intelligence days before, and I didn’t believe him. I never thought that something like that would happen. And then when we showed up at the Capitol, there were 1000s and 1000s of people there. I didn’t think that we would be able to document what was going on. So when I said we did it, I was just shocked that we like got in there at all, and that we were on the front lines of being able to tell the story.”

Upon further questioning, Sacker conceded she was not aware of the full extent of Sullivan’s actions in the Capitol. “As far as reliving the whole thing, like, I’m still processing it. And I’m still, I think also, like, a little bit scarred by what happened,” she said.

Sacker has also focused her documentary lens on John Sullivan’s brother, James, a pro-Trump activist who helped organize the January 6 “Stop the Steal” rally in Washington. James Sullivan is a Black Republican, inheriting the rigidly conservative political line of the white Mormon parents that adopted him.

His and John’s adoptive father is an Air Force Major General named Kevin J. Sullivan who was disciplined for his role in wrongly sending fuses for nuclear warheads to Taiwan. Following his retirement after some two decades of service, Maj. Gen. Sullivan went to work for an arms industry firm that contracts with the Pentagon.

In an apparent bid to protect his family’s reputation and that of the Trumpist cause to which he is dedicated, James Sullivan has campaigned to blame the riot on his brother, and by extension, on the leftist forces he supposedly represented. If the recent DFR/Vox poll is to be believed, his efforts have been surprisingly fruitful.

But the real John Sullivan is far from a committed social justice activist. Within the larger BLM community, he is considered as dangerous to the cause as any Proud Boy. In fact, after suffering the effects of his caustic presence, several DC-based BLM activists told me they now refer to Sullivan as “Proud Boy X.”

While describing herself as Sullivan’s friend, Sacker conceded that his ultimate agenda is to spawn as much destruction as possible.

“He’s just angry,” she reflected to me. “And he says it in a lot of his videos – ‘Fuck the system, burn it down.’ He doesn’t think it can be reformed. Like he kind of wants his civil war. He’s a bit of a provocateur and he wants to dismantle the system, and he believes in the value of civil disobedience. And because he is apolitical, I think he feels more a sense of allegiance to anyone who shares that the values of, I guess, chaos.”"
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