Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz activates all National Guard troops as George Floyd protests continue

by Editorial Team

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz ordered all National Guard troops activated for the first time in the state’s history Saturday, vowing to put an end to the “wanton destruction” that he pinned on outside forces — from drug cartels to white supremacists.

But President Trump seemed to point to leftist agitators and poor leadership for the unrest in Minnesota following the death of George Floyd.

“It’s ANTIFA and the Radical Left. Don’t lay the blame on others!” Trump tweeted Saturday.

Walz told reporters in a pre-dawn briefing: “The absolute chaos — this is not grieving, and this is not making a statement [about an injustice] that we fully acknowledge needs to be fixed — this is dangerous. You need to go home.”

“The terrifying thing is that this resembles more a military operation now as you observe ringleaders moving from place to place,” he added. “There are simply more of them than us.”

The visibly drained Walz said that outside forces, including anarchists, white supremacists and drug cartels, could be fanning the violence.

“Last night is a mockery of pretending that this is about George Floyd’s death, or inequities, or historical traumas to our communities of color,” Walz said.

“Our great cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are under assault by people who do not share our values, who do not value life and the work that went into this and are certainly not here to honor George Floyd,” the governor said. “They need to see today that that line will stop and order needs to be restored.”

Walz, a Democrat in his first term, estimated that 80% of the demonstrators live in other states, the Daily Beast reported.

Moments after Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey spoke at the news conference, President Trump took to Twitter.

“Mayor Jacob Frey of Minneapolis will never be mistaken for the late, great General Douglas McArthur or great fighter General George Patton,” Trump tweeted. “How come all of these places that defend so poorly are run by Liberal Democrats? Get tough and fight (and arrest the bad ones). STRENGTH!”

Trump’s tweet followed a call for the chair of the Minnesota Republican Party for Walz and Frey to resign.

Walz said Saturday he had received reports of hordes of white supremacists who joined in the looting of businesses, NBC News reported.

“It gets worse than that,” Walz said of allegedly marauding racists. “The cartels, who are wondering if there was a break in their drug transmissions, are trying to take advantage of the chaos. That’s why this situation is on a federal level.”

Walz’s directive for troops came mid-morning after demonstrators took to the streets of Minneapolis for a fourth straight night, NBC News reported. Floyd, who was black, died Monday after a white police officer, Derek Chauvin, knelt on his neck during a confrontation. Chauvin was fired and now is facing murder and manslaughter charges.

About 700 Guard troops took to Minneapolis’ streets Friday order to try to restore order; by noon Saturday, the state’s 2,500 Guard troops had been activated.

During the press conference, Walz and Frey laid out plans for quelling the violence that has rocked the city since Floyd’s died Monday. They are working with the federal government to gather intelligence on who is taking part in the violence and whether they belong to organized groups.

Walz called his order for troops “an action that has never been taken in the 164-year history of the Minnesota National Guard.”


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