The Cleveland ACT for America chapter hosted John Guandolo for a virtual “National Security Briefing.”
While the meeting’s core audience seemed to be comprised of civilians, the ACT chapter encouraged attendees to “please invite active & retired law enforcement to this meeting.”
“Your Assignment: Bring along Law Enforcement Staff from your community,” read a flyer for the event.
While no evidence surfaced of police officers attending, according to a recording of the event, Cuyahoga Council member Nan Baker was in attendance at the invitation of the local ACT chapter leader.
During the briefing, Guandolo, who heads Understanding the Threat (UTT), warned of supposed terrorist training camps across the United States. He claimed UTT has “gotten direct firsthand reporting” of these camps from law enforcement officials across the country who have attended his courses. He provided one example of activity during the brief, however, the only crime these alleged perpetrators seemed to have committed was outdoor leisure camping while Muslim.
“We just got one last week from a police officer in Arizona of people dressed in–here’s the way he wrote it up is–they were dressed in traditional Saudi Arabian garb, they had weapons, they were in the middle of the desert, and they said they were camping,” Guadolo told the crowd. “Now it’s not illegal for them to have weapons there in Arizona, but he knows what they’re doing, but he was alone … so he wasn’t about to take on, there was about a dozen guys.”
Guandolo said he the told the officer that from an FBI standpoint, they were conducting “tactical training” despite seemingly any actual evidence.
Guandolo commended the officer for reaching out to him, saying, “This is a guy who came to our weekend training. Obviously it opened his eyes and he realized when he came upon these guys because of our training that it wasn’t just a bunch of guys hanging out, you know, hunting.”
Elsewhere during the briefing, a member of the audience asked Guandolo what to do about people who find it impossible to believe that their “wonderful, peaceful” Muslim neighbors could be part of this greater “terrorist group” in the U.S.
“I would ask them: have they ever been lied to by somebody when they thought they were being told the truth?” Guandolo responded.
He added: “I’m not saying that every Muslim does that. What I am saying is that’s what Islam is and that’s what Islam teaches, and they’re teaching it at every mosque in America.”