An overwrought exposé on the supposed lurking menace that is antifa.
The framing event for Ngo’s narrative, about which readers are frequently reminded, is a moment when, in June 2019, he was attacked and beaten at a demonstration in Portland, Oregon. “I was nearly killed by a violent mob,” he claims. “At no point did the police intervene to help.” His attackers, he concludes, must have been members of the anti-fascist, or antifa, movement—and never mind that in several well-documented events, the perpetrators of violent acts have been right-wing extremists disguising themselves as fellow travelers. Ngo is correct when he deems the organization to be “a relatively small group of committed radicals.” After muddying the waters to shift blame away from the Minneapolis police for their killing of George Floyd Jr. and dismissing the thought that the heavily armed, proudly violent boogaloo movement has anything to do with the far right, Ngo goes still farther out onto a logical limb when he urges that the progressive forces of education, health care, government, and the media are allies of the black-masked anarchists. According to the author, there are “whole networks of writers and so-called journalists who intentionally spread pro-antifa messaging.” Though he professes not to support the former president’s view that the press is the enemy of the people, he demurs, “but one can see the basis for that sentiment when looking at how transparently extreme ideologues are presented as the arbiters of truth.” Those extreme ideologues, the proceedings make plain, include anyone who questions Ngo’s account of events, which is right at home with the collected works of Dinesh D’Souza and Michelle Malkin. His conclusion seems particularly untimely given the events of Jan. 6, 2021. He argues that antifa will yield naught but “ash, blood, and feces-stained rubble,” when of course that would better describe what the mob of right-wing extremists left behind at the U.S. Capitol.
A book that belongs in any QAnon subscriber’s collection.