There is a vocabulary of tactics of fascism which people ought to very quickly become aware of in this day and age. For we are beset with a government which has telegraphed its belief in the utility of these tactics -- most pertinently, a President who believes them to be a commonplace part of governing, and a key adviser who knows them to be effective.

The first and most prominent concern is of the false flag attack. A false flag attack is an incident essentially engineered against oneself, or a friendly target, used to frame an enemy and incite fear and hatred which the true causer of the attack will exploit to justify retaliation against such enemy, or to impose oppression at home in the name of protecting the people.

False flag attacks may be directly carried out by agents of or loyal to the fascist government which wishes to appear to be attacked, or they may genuinely be carried out by enemies, but enemies who have been manipulated into desiring to attack, unaware of the tightly controlled circumstances under which they are being allowed to carry it out successfully. The September 11 attacks offered two conspiracy theories of these tactics. Some people believe that the World Trade Center was brought down not by the airplanes striking it but by US government operatives via controlled demolition; others note that the executive branch had advance notice of a planned foreign attack, including the means intended to be used, and simply chose to ignore the warnings in favor of allowing the attack and preparing to retaliate. Some even accuse that the atmosphere of tragedy are heightened by the use of "crisis actors," professional paid to behave like distraught victims or brave rescuers at a staged event.

It is clear from his rhetoric that Donald Trump believes, and has surrounded himself with advisers who have a very high belief, that false flag attacks and other such tactics are both commonplace and a legitimate governing technique -- even to the point of Trump having hinted, as conspiracy theorists are wont to propose, that "9/11 was an inside job."

For a bipartisan sentiment, by the way, there is a comparable theory that FDR had advance notice of the Pearl Harbor attack, and chose to ignore it and allow the attack it to happen in order to justify entry into World War II. More recently, others have accused that any number of school shootings and other mass shootings in recent years, and attacks like the Boston Marathon bombing, are false flag attacks as well.

In fairness to these claimants, having agents infiltrate organizations is old hat, and even agitation is used in law enforcement efforts. It is not uncommon to hear in the news that the FBI or some like agency has captured some potential terrorists by posing as like-minded people and inciting their targets to the point of engaging in some criminal step, such as building a bomb. Though the point of such exercises is to bring about a splashy, headline-grabbing arrest, the same techniques could be used without the final arresting step to infect even moderately volatile citizens with the fire to carry out a politically useful attack.

Infiltration and excitement is a related game which occurs where the dominant power uses agents first to infiltrate an opposition group, and then incite members of the opposition group to undertake extreme positions and even extreme acts. Most groups in opposition to the dominant power are peaceful, and pursue legal means of opposition. But, in most every such group, a subset of participants can be identified as those most likely to be drawn to extremism. The role of the agent then becomes to persuade these most excitable members to actually engage in the extremism of which they are latently capable. In this way, the dominant power is able to carry out its false flag attack without even using any of its own agents to perpetrate the attack itself, instead using the actual opposition group by stirring it just right from within. Or, the infiltrator can simply join the group in its intendedly peaceful protest, but then himself act violently so as to bring disrepute to the group. A famous example of this occurred in an "Occupy" protest at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, where a right-wing infiltrator began trashing the area around the drone exhibit, leading to further conflict. This was only discovered when, later, the infiltrator foolishly took to social media to gloat about the damage he had done.

Where such self-outing is not forthcoming (as usually it is not), the difficulty of identifying excitement infiltrators lies in their apparent extreme commitment to the cause. And while a typical information-gathering infiltrating agent will act as though they have the lowest level of commitment necessary to maintain possible participation, the infiltrator who's agenda is excitement of the group will likely appear to be the most committed and passionate member of the group. They will assume a leading role, if not a formal position of leadership.

Oh, and don't forget about straight-up brainwashing and mental programming. You probably think that you've seen it all in the movies, but it's in the movies, and so it cannot be real: use of techniques like hypnosis and injection of behavior-altering drugs, and simply deeply coercive counseling, leading a normal citizen into being used as a tool of the brainwasher. And indeed, it probably doesn't happen like it happens at the movies. But, it probably does happen in some less obtuse manner. There is no doubt that our intelligence agencies have expended massive efforts in the mastery of psychological warfare. This includes identifying persons most vulnerable to some sort of manipulation, and the techniques most effective for carrying out that manipulation, which may indeed include pharmaceutical alteration, and social bombardment with messages meant to compel a particular course of action.

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