BEN DIMIERO/Media Matters for America
In an outlandish column for WorldNetDaily, Bradlee Dean suggests that the mass shooting last week in Newtown, Connecticut, was staged in order to aid the passage of the UN Arms Trade Treaty and gun control legislation, comparing the administration's purported actions to that of the Nazis setting the Reichstag Fire.
Though WorldNetDaily often publishes conspiratorial stories like Dean's column -- the site was the driving force behind the birther movement -- it's still regularly validated by more mainstream conservatives. Last month, the site announced that they had hired former GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum as a columnist.
Dean, an "ordained preacher, heavy metal drummer, [and] talk-show host of Sons of Liberty Radio," suggests in his December 21 column that the "timing is impeccable" for both the theater shooting in Aurora and the shooting in Newtown because they happened while the UN was deliberating over the Arms Trade Treaty:
The Sandy Hook shooting occurred just days after Sen. Rand Paul sent out an alert that the U.N. was set to pass the final version of the Small Arms Treaty, supported by Obama the day after election.Part of the treaty bans the trade, sale and ownership of all semi-automatic weapons ... like the one Adam Lanza used to kill 20 children and 6 adults.The "Batman shooting" in Aurora, Colo., also happened to coincide with the same time as negotiations of the U.N. Small Arms Treaty.The timing is impeccable.
Aside from its conspiratorial nature, Dean's column is also plainly inaccurate. Contrary to his suggestion that the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty would ban "the trade, sale, and ownership of all semi-automatic weapons" like the one used by Newtown shooter Adam Lanza, it does nothing of the sort. The Arms Trade Treaty is an effort to regulate the international arms trade and overtly affirms the "sovereign right" of countries to regulate the domestic ownership of firearms "pursuant to its own legal or constitutional system."
As we have previously explained, the Department of State has stated that it will oppose any treaty that contains "restrictions on civilian possession or trade of firearms otherwise permitted by law or protected by the U.S. Constitution."
Dean also provides links to several "reports" alleging inconsistencies in eyewitness accounts of several recent mass shootings in our country. He concludes that "[e]yewitnesses in all of these massacres said there were more shooters than the media maintain, indicating the shootings were coordinated and planned."
Among the sources for these "reports" are Alex Jones' InfoWars website, a forum posting at a separate Alex Jones affiliated site, and a site called "Conscious Life News." Reliable sources, all. (For a sample of the type of conspiracy-mongering Jones' websites have been engaged in this week, a few days ago they published an article proposing that the presence of the phrase "Sandy Hook" on a map in the latest Batman movie is "bizarre evidence" that the shooting "may have been staged.")
According to Dean, Obama's call for "meaningful action" and the push from others for new gun violence prevention legislation in the wake of Sandy Hook is akin to Adolf Hitler "attacking his own Reichstag to start a world war":
When the "fire" is started, these government gun banners are right there to strip away your rights in an attempt to gain control under the guise of "putting out the fire."Adolf Hitler was responsible for attacking his own Reichstag to start a world war. Hitler was also responsible for sending his brownshirts to incite the people so he could play the role of solving their problems. No one believed Hitler was guilty of these crimes until after the fact.Then it was too late.Today, these gun banners are doing the opposite of what our forefathers fought, bled and died to give us.
Dean's column also includes a video suggesting that the Oklahoma City bombing and the Columbine shooting (among others) were similarly staged.