Militia founder still sees plots in government

Billings Gazette/September 1, 2002
By Rob Chaney

The spotlight may have drifted away from the Militia of Montana, but co-founder John Trochmann is still focused on government corruption, United Nations conspiracies and other "threats to liberty."

The Noxon resident and former snowmobile parts maker spoke to the Missoula County Republicans' Pachyderm Club on Friday about his suspicions of an international plot to put most of the United States off limits to human use in favor of "biosphere reserves, buffer zones, corridors for wildlife passage and zones of cooperation."

"It's the biggest land-grab ever without a shot being fired," Trochmann said. "This is land-acquisition by the globalists."

Trochmann co-founded the Militia of Montana in 1994, and saw it rise to national notoriety after the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City was bombed in 1995. He spoke before a Senate panel on terrorism that year, and has made numerous other national appearances on militia topics.

The Militia of Montana has no leadership or membership, he said, but does have a "pretty big" mailing list of people interested in its newsletters and publications. He would not give specific membership numbers. The group maintains a web site at .

While several of the roughly 45 people in the audience loudly agreed with Trochmann's comments, others challenged him. His claim that "the U.S. Constitution was suspended on Sept. 13 and we are under martial law, whether the people know it or not," drew several objections. He also got questions about his claims that the United Nations was advancing a system of "biosphere reserves" to remove human access from most undeveloped land in the United States.

And at times, he sounded self-contradictory. Referring to recent reports that some African governments were refusing U.S. food aid because it was genetically modified, he criticized the environmental groups he said convinced those governments to let their people starve. But he also said he wouldn't eat genetically modified food himself.

Pachyderm Club program director Susan Reneau said Trochmann's appearance fit well with the club's goal of a wide-open speaker's forum.

"We have speakers from all across the board - I say the more the merrier," Reneau said. "I didn't agree with all John said. I have a lot of disagreements with him on the environment. I pick the people that I know are going to get hearts pumping. That's why we had (former Democratic Congressman) Pat Williams a few weeks ago."

Asked if he favored dismantling the U.S. government or if he supported anarchy, Trochmann said he was opposed to both. Rather, he wanted "those who swore an oath to uphold our Constitution to do their duty. I'm a constitutionalist. How could we gain by maiming and killing fellow Americans?

"I am labeled a terrorist, but I've tried to expose terrorism in the federal government. Everything we've looked at in the government has got corruption in it."

The only way to stop that is to force elected officials to remain true to their role in representative democracy, Trochmann said. He claimed that none of Montana' s congressional delegation, Republican or Democrat, was truly working to help Americans preserve their rights of land ownership. Only Montana Gov. Judy Martz earned his praise for her recent comments about loggers producing healthy forests.

"I don't see Americans turning around," Trochmann said, "so long as they've got a six-pack, the boob tube and, forgive me for saying it, their neighbor's wife."

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