Bible study groups are not unusual in Virginia, a Southern dominion where churches compete with Confederate statutes for dominance. One such claimed Bible study outfit is now under investigation for being a front for a violent militia operating in the suburbs of Northern Virginia.
Federal law enforcement authorities arrested 27-year-old Fi Duong of Alexandria with several guns, including an AK-47 assault-style rifle, material to make 50 explosive cocktails and other weapons and a goal to “build resistances on what will inevitably come.”
Duong has been under surveillance since Jan. 6, the day of the Capitol Riot that led to destruction and murder. He told an undercover District of Columbia officer that he headed up a “Bible study” group that discussed firearms use and trained with “three percenters,” the tag based on a disproven claim that only three percent of the population of the original 13 colonies actually fought in the American revolution.
In a March meeting of the “study group,” attended by undercover officers, Duong told the group to “keep your guns ready and be ready to use them.”
On Jan. 6, a video now in the hands of the FBI, shows Duong, dressed in all black, shouting “We’re coming for you Nancy,” in reference to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. A deposition from one of the undercover officers, said Duong called himself “an operator” who wore all black to pose as an anti-fascist activist. He also claimed he was part of a “cloak ad dagger group” who planned to overthrow the government.
The undercover operative said he and Duong visited the jail in Lorton, Va., where he said he could test an explosive to free prisoners and talked about a “manifesto” to pass on to his son.
“If I get into a gun fight with the feds and I don’t make it, I want to be able to transfer as much wisdom to my son as possible,” he said.
Duong is currently one of 165 people charged with crimes from the Jan. 6th assault on the Capitol. The FBI says it has received more than 210,000 tips that have led to most of the charges but also says, on Twitter, that “some of the most violent offenders have yet to be identified.”
(Our thanks to Rachel Weiner and Spencer S. Hsu of The Washington Post for providing much of the information for this article.)