Person One

Stewart Rhodes was arrested last week.

From Day One of the Jan. 6 investigation, the FBI was after Person One — the Justice Department’s legal term for Elmer Stewart Rhodes III, a Yale-educated military veteran who founded the extremist group Oath Keepers.

He was not among the hundreds charged in the year after the attack with crimes ranging from assaulting a police officer to unlawfully entering the Capitol.

But he made frequent appearances in prosecutors’ court filings, which said that “Person One” was in regular contact with those who allegedly attacked Congress, pushing his disciples to prepare for an apocalyptic confrontation with those who would acknowledge Joe Biden’s presidential victory and the end of Donald Trump’s time in office.

In other words he wasn’t messing around.

On Thursday, a year and a week after the riot that rocked the U.S. Capitol, FBI agents in Texas arrested Rhodes, based on a newly unsealed indictment accusing him of the rare crime of seditious conspiracy.

Another newly charged Oath Keeper, Edward Vallejo of Phoenix, appeared briefly before a federal magistrate judge in Arizona, who ordered that he, too, should be held in custody until a detention hearing next week.

The last successful federal sedition prosecution came 26 years ago, when Omar Abdel Rahman, also known as the “blind sheikh,” and nine others were convicted of plotting to blow up the United Nations, the FBI building in Manhattan, and bridges and tunnels between New Jersey and New York.

Not excited amateurs with horns on their heads but serious conspirators.

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