The former media director for the white nationalist militia the Oath Keepers was hired to do a political “kill list” in the form of easy-to-consult playing cards, it was revealed today during the House Select Committee January 6th hearings. Inspired by cards used in the Iraq war to identify targets, Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes commissioned tattoo artist Jason Van Tatenhove to create a personalized deck with Hillary Clinton portrayed as the Queen of Hearts.
In public testimony before the Jan. 6th Select Committee on Tuesday, Tatenhove went into detail:
“One of the first assignments that he brought to me, wanting me to do as more of a graphic artist function, was to create a deck of cards. You may remember back to the conflict in the Middle East where our own military created a deck of cards which was a ‘Who’s Who’ of the key players on the other side that they wanted to take out. Stewart was very intrigued by that notion and influenced by it, I think. He wanted me to create a deck of cards that would include different politicians, judges, including up to Hillary Clinton as the Queen of Hearts.”
While he passed on the job, he stayed a member of the increasingly violent and alt-right group until around 2017. Leaving, according to Tatenhove, because the group continued moving further and further to the extremist right. The straw that broke the camel’s back was when group members denied the Holocaust, with Tatenhove saying, “That was for me something I could not abide.”
Founded in 2009 as an anti-government militia, the Oath Keepers have strayed from their original mission becoming more violent and racist at every turn. With a primary focus on recruiting, the Oath Keepers have become synonymous with white supremacy and nationalism. They played a key role in instigating the violence of January 6th, and have seen over a dozen high-profile members arrested – including their founder, Rhodes, who was charged with seditious conspiracy and is now facing 20+ years behind bars.
Tatenhove now says he regrets being a part of the organization that tried to overthrow the government. If only the other members were equally remorseful.
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