KEY POINTS

  • FBI warns that white supremacists are planning to spread the coronavirus
  • Those who are infected are being told to expose police, Jews to their bodily fluids
  • One method described is using spray bottles

As officials across the country struggle to convince Americans to self-isolate and businesses to keep their employees at home, a new threat to containing the spread of the coronavirus has emerged: Radical right-wing and neo-Nazi groups are encouraging their members to spread the coronavirus.

The FBI has recently issued a report warning that members of these groups are encouraging each other to “spread the virus, if contracted, through bodily fluids and personal interactions” with law enforcement, According to ABC News. According to the alert, this would mean using spray bottles to target officers in the community.

Neo-Nazis and right-wing radicals are also encouraging members to target their local Jewish communities by going to “any place they may be congregated, to include markets, political offices, businesses and places of worship” and similarly spreading the coronavirus.

Fortunately, many places of worship, including synagogues, have temporarily ceased holding public services in order to help curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, organizations which follow radical right-wing groups’ communications online have seen a great number of conspiracy theories attributing the creation of the coronavirus by Jews, while debating how best to take advantage of the crisis to advance their agenda. Law enforcement agencies are seen by many members of these groups as working on behalf of a Jewish-controlled government.

Law enforcement and other first responders, however, are already struggling to cope with the strain that’s come with the pandemic.

In a recent conference call with President Donald Trump and the Department of Homeland Security, police chiefs from across the nation described how they were struggling to find the resources to test officers who may have been exposed to the coronavirus. In many cases, officers have been ordered to self-isolate, putting a heavy strain on those still on duty.

This has led some police departments to order their officers to discontinue routine traffic stops and to avoid physical contact with the public, including only making arrests in special circumstances.

With the FBI reporting that white supremacists will be looking to intentionally infect members of law enforcement with the coronavirus, police departments will be under an additional, man-made strain.

Washington police U.S. Capitol Hill Police officers stand guard on the east side of the U.S. Capitol before U.S. President Barack Obama makes his sixth State of the Union address inside the House Chambers on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Jan. 20, 2015. Photo: Reuters/Larry Downing