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Beware white supremacists masquerading among Baltimore protesters | READER COMMENTARY

A white supremacist carries a Nazi flag into the entrance to Emancipation Park in Charlottesville, Va. in the summer of 2017. How many such men may now be trying to sabotage Black Lives Matter protests? (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
A white supremacist carries a Nazi flag into the entrance to Emancipation Park in Charlottesville, Va. in the summer of 2017. How many such men may now be trying to sabotage Black Lives Matter protests? (AP Photo/Steve Helber) (Steve Helber/AP)

Beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing. Baltimore protesters should be on the lookout for white supremacists who are joining demonstrations around the nation for the purpose of bringing discredit to the Black Lives Matter movement (“Baltimore Police arrest 6 people during mostly calm demonstrations Monday,” June 2).

Sometimes they are lone wolves. Often, they operate in 3- or 4-member teams and march along with the peaceful demonstrators, looking for opportunities to cause disruption. They will charge a barrier, push a police officer, throw something, spray graffiti, start a fire, destroy property — anything to provoke a reaction by the police. The larger the law enforcement response, the better.

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I have seen this tactic used before. As legal counsel for several civil rights groups in the 1970s, my clients were frequently “joined” by provocateurs who had similar special agendas.

So far, Baltimore demonstrators have been rather successful in thwarting these men. Several of them were surrounded and neutralized by protesters last week. It is not that they are “outside agitators” (“Blaming ‘outside agitators’ a deflection rooted in civil rights era,” June 1). They may be locals, but they have ulterior motives. They are persistent and are not easily deterred. We must remain alert to protect our city and our cause.

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Larry S. Gibson, Baltimore

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