Capitol Rioter Guy Now Also In Trouble For Plot To Bomb Amazon Data Centers
Seth Aaron Pendley, a 28-year-old who brought a sawed-off shotgun to the Capitol riots, has pleaded guilty. Though not to that particular crime.
You see, after January 6, Pendley decided that terrorism suited him just fine and decided to step up his game by plotting to bomb the Amazon servers in order to take out "70 percent of the internet." Unfortunately for him, and fortunately for the rest of us, he was actually terrible at terrorism and decided to discuss these plans on a website that anyone can access, called MyMilitia.com.
On January 8, a concerned user on MyMilitia.com contacted the FBI to let them know that someone calling himself Dionysus was going around the site talking about how "he was planning to 'conduct a little experiment,' that he said would 'draw a lot of heat' and could be 'dangerous.' When asked what the plan was, Dionysus said 'death.'"
Would just like to note what the sidebar on MyMilitia.com says:
Everything you have heard about militias from the media is likely wrong. Main stream news has primarily reported on the negative stereotypes and criminal activity of groups that have nothing to do with militia. The true militia has exactly the opposite purpose; to uphold the law and the Constitution.
Except, you know, for the ones who want to bomb Amazon data centers for being mean to Nazi Friendster.
In plea papers, Mr. Pendley admitted that he disclosed his plan to blow up a prominent tech company's data center to a confidential human source via Signal, an encrypted messaging app, in January.
In late February, he sent the source a list of data center addresses and said he hoped a successful attack could "kill off about 70% of the internet." When the source offered to help him obtain C4 explosives to use in the attack, Mr. Pendley responded, "F*** yeah."
Mr. Pendley then showed the source a hand-drawn map of a data center on Smith Switch Road in Virginia, featuring proposed routes of ingress and egress at the facility. He later described how he planned to disguise his car to evade detection by law enforcement.
In late March, the confidential source introduced Mr. Pendley to an individual who he claimed was his explosives supplier. In actuality, the man was an undercover FBI employee.
In recorded conversations, Mr. Pendley allegedly told the undercover employee he planned to attack web servers that he believed provided services to the FBI, CIA, and other federal agencies.
"The main objective is to f*** up the Amazon servers," he said, adding that he hoped to anger "the oligarchy" enough to provoke a reaction that would convince the American people to take action against what he perceived to be a "dictatorship."
You know, for someone who is supposed to be suspicious of the government and frightened of "the oligarchy" and thinks he is living in a dictatorship, Seth Pendley is not at all paranoid. What kind of paranoid government conspiracy theorist talks about planning to commit crimes on the internet, where anyone can see, and then sets up a meeting with a total stranger to buy some C4? Not a very good one, I will tell you that much.
Pendley's particular anger at "Amazon servers" likely had much less to do with "oligarchy" than with the fact that, after the Capitol riots, Amazon decided to kick the rightwing social media site Parler off its servers. Parler had served as a major organizing hub for the insurrection, and, as a result, no one really wanted anything to do with them anymore — except for the users of the site who were very, very mad about this, because no one on any other social media site wanted to talk to them.
If you think you are living in an oligarchical dictatorship, you probably assume most people are narcs. You probably assume that the government is monitoring honey-pot-sounding sites like MyMilitia.com and also clocking your Google searches. If you are an entitled white man who feels your power slipping away because you have to make room for other people at the table, you don't. Because you're used to getting to be the exception, you're accustomed to getting away with things. It's awfully hard to be a Republican in this world if you ever, for one moment, consider that you could be the person that bad things happen to.
Pendley is now facing between five and 20 years of prison time he likely thought he'd never serve.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse