Who is Stewart Rhodes? Oath Keepers founder calls Joe Biden 'illegitimate', says 365M 'patriots ready to rise up'
Less than a month after the devastating events of the Capitol, the leader of the Oath Keepers labeled Biden's supporters as an occupying enemy force
The Oath Keepers, the far-right paramilitary group led by Stewart Rhodes, has refused to back down in their resistance against the Joe Biden administration. Even as the FBI continues its investigation against the group, Rhodes has been actively slamming the newly-appointed president by calling his regime "illegitimate". Talking on Infowars on January 30, Rhodes said: "You gotta declare everything that comes out of King Biden's mouth as illegitimate — null and void from the inception because he is not a legitimate president."
For those unaware, CNN best describes Infowars as a "media organization that is one of the leading purveyors of conspiracy theories in the US". Less than a month after the devastating events of the Capitol, the leader of the Oath Keepers labeled Biden's supporters as an occupying enemy force in an interview with Infowars. "There is going to be resistance. The only question is what will be the spark," he said.
Who is Stewart Rhodes?
Rhodes was raised in the Southwest and enrolled with the Army soon after his high school where he became a paratrooper. He was discharged honorably after an injury following a night parachuting accident. According to Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), he later attended college at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he also taught street crime survival and rape prevention. The site also added that his political job was to supervise interns in Washington DC for libertarian Ron Paul, then a Republican congressman from Texas.
He went on to graduate from Yale Law School in 2004 and served a stint clerking for Arizona Supreme Court Justice Michael D Ryan. Soon after, he was disbarred in 2015 by the Montana Supreme Court for violating the Montana Rules of Professional Conduct. Rhodes had refused to respond to two bar grievances filed against him in the federal district court in Arizona.
With regard to the Oath Keepers, he founded the organization in March 2009. According to a recent CNN report, the leader has refused to back down saying there are "365 million armed patriots ready to rise up". Prior to the rally, Rhodes was instrumental in pushing the people to revolt. "All Patriots who can get to DC need to be in DC. Now is the time to stand. It's not too late to go. Jump on a plane! Jump in your car! Just get there," Rhodes said on his group's website on January 4. "Stand now, or kneel forever," he added.
The far-right paramilitary group was formed as a response team to the election of former president Barack Obama. A description by SPLC says the Oath Keepers are one of the largest radical anti-militant groups in the country at present. The organization reportedly accepts anyone willing to become a member. The hiring though is focussed on former members of the military, first response teams and law enforcement.
MEAWW cannot independently verify and does not support the claims.