Douglas Andrews / Aug. 12, 2020

Bill Barr Takes the Gloves Off

In an interview with Mark Levin, the AG takes on BLM, antifa, and the Left.

In an age of clever soundbites and quips without context, Mark Levin’s Sunday night show on Fox News is a refreshing change of pace. Each week on his “Life, Liberty & Levin” show, Levin conducts an hour-long interview with a leading political or cultural figure on the Right. The conversation is always thoughtful, and never uninteresting or uninformative.

So it was this past Sunday when Levin sat down with Attorney General William Barr and immediately promised never to reclaim his time.

As Fox News’s Brian Flood reports, it was “a news-making interview in which the country’s top law enforcement officer discussed the ongoing Black Lives Matter riots rippling through U.S. cities. He told Levin that the organization — which has been characterized by the media as a fed-up activist group — is comprised of ‘Bolsheviks’ with a focus on ‘some form of socialism, communism.’”

Not surprisingly, The Washington Post took exception to the substance of the interview, and Levin took exception to the WaPo’s exception-taking.

Barr had been critical of antifa, which he called “a new form of guerrilla warfare.”

“They are essentially shielding themselves or shrouding themselves in First Amendment activity,” Barr said. “They hijack these demonstrations and they provoke violence. And they have various tiers of people from the sort of top provocateurs down to people who are their minions and run the violent missions.”

Facts are stubborn things, of course, but that didn’t stop the Post’s Jaclyn Peiser from throwing up a smoke screen in antifa’s defense. “Despite Barr’s claims,” she wrote, “there have been no arrests or solid proof connecting antifa to violence at Black Lives Matter protests, The Washington Post’s Fact Checker reported in June. The far-right boogaloo movement, meanwhile, has been tied to a murder and several bomb plots aimed at escalating violence.”

Got that? There’s no evidence of antifa’s violence. The real threat is from “the far right.”

Perhaps what set Peiser off was the following assertion from Barr, which cuts to the core of the modern progressive movement: “The Left wants power because that is essentially their ‘State of Grace’ in their secular religion. They want to run people’s lives so they can design utopia for all of us, and that’s what turns them on. And it’s the lust for power and … [Trump’s victory] outrages them.”

The Post’s misinformation was too much for Levin, who tweeted in response, “This is a shocking lie. Not only is the evidence everywhere, but notice the Post doesn’t even attempt to find out for itself; instead, this reporter cites its paper’s fact-checker. And the dismissive tone and journalistic disinterest in Antifa is truly outrageous. The media have demonstrated that they are all in with the violent Marxist movement in our country.”

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