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A hashtag on Twitter is filled with praise for the "martyr."
On Saturday, a man armed with a rifle and Molotov cocktails or flares, according to reports, and angered by "factually inaccurate portrayal" of the facility, according to the company operating the facility, attempted to set fire to an ICE detention center in Tacoma, Washington.
In a subsequent confrontation with police, the Antifa activist was killed. And some of his fellow activists called him a martyr for it.
Nevertheless, the media has not reported any connection with Antifa, nor are they speculating about what may have motivated this man, who made the attempt to set fire to the building amid protests against the building.
On the CNN and MSNBC websites, you'll need to hunt to find the story at all, in fact. CNN's on air report, in particular, is striking in its above-and-beyond effort to remove this bomber from anything even remotely related to objections to ICE facilities or, one can surmise, calling them "concentration camps."
The Seattle Times, however, reported extensively.
Willem Van Spronsen, who has been arrested before during immigration protests at this very facility, was shot and killed on Saturday. Police say the man threw his incendiary devices at the building, striking some vehicles and setting them ablaze, while armed with a rifle. He also attempted to ignite a propane tank.
Police reported "shots fired," although it is unclear who fired first. Emergency responders found Van Spronsen dead when they arrived.
Here's an early report from local station KING 5 News in Seattle.
A friend of the man spoke with the Seattle Times. She believes it was his intent that this end in his own death. And her description of him politically should raise the eyebrows of anyone living in the state of Washington. Because it is a familiar one.
Deb Bartley, a friend of Van Spronsen's for about 20 years, described him as an anarchist and anti-fascist, and she believes his attack on the detention center was intended to provoke a fatal conflict.
"He was ready to end it," Bartley said. "I think this was a suicide. But then he was able to kind of do it in a way that spoke to his political beliefs … I know he went down there knowing he was going to die."
She said he is an "anti-fascist." Yet the press refuses to use the word "antifa" here.
His name was Willem Van Spronsen of Vashon Island, Wash.
History will remember this hero! pic.twitter.com/4m6zBWVvdY
— ⒶnarchoRaver2.0↙↙↙🏴 (@Raver0) July 14, 2019
Perhaps their motives are equally unclear to the mainstream press.
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