NAOMI WOLF: Stand up for Steve Bannon lest it be you next

On July 1, 2024, the US detained its most prominent political prisoner; its most obvious political prisoner probably since the incarceration of Japanese-Americans in World War 2.

On July 1 2024, podcaster, entrepreneur, former Navy officer, and political advisor to President Trump, Stephen K Bannon, “surrendered,” in his words, to authorities, to begin serving four months’ incarceration at Danbury Federal Prison.

FCI — Federal Correctional Institution - Danbury, in Danbury, Connecticut, is a serious prison. The handbook, which all inmates receive, reveals a range of minute restrictions on liberty, and even on any adult decision-making, that characterizes strict incarceration.


Stephen K. Bannon, now one of the loudest and most powerful dissident voices in America in our time, will have no access at all to the internet, according to FCI Danbury inmates’ handbook.

Could that one condition alone be the actual end-goal of this sentence, so assiduously sought? As I have pointed out elsewhere, from my experience in the world of aides around President Clinton and VP Gore, everyone advising the President and VP relied on the protections of executive privilege, and they do so to this day. Mr Bannon is being treated with a shameful double standard.

The myriad restrictions on every aspect of an inmate’s daily life, at FCI Danbury, reveal that while this is a “minimum security prison”, there is at that facility an approach to incarceration that is mentally wearing and “institutionalizing”.

Looking at these prison regulations, one can see from where the global mental torture of COVID-era “lockdowns” — the minute regulation of time, space, decisions, options — may have derived (“lockdown” itself is a prison-derived term).

Mr Bannon will receive a set number of “points” a month for visitors, and each visit uses up these points. He will need to submit to authorities, in advance, a list of visitors, and fill out forms for each; each visit will need to be approved. Points are used up for metrics as random-seeming as the distance the visitor travels.

Mr Bannon will be awakened at six am every day, and if he oversleeps, there will be disciplinary action. He can possess no more than twenty postage stamps at a time. He will be able to shop at the commissary, but with a limit of $360 per month. Visits restrict human contact from family members: “Kissing, embracing and hand-shaking/holding are allowed only upon arrival or departure.”

In force for all but ten minutes a day is “controlled movement”, which is not clearly defined in the handbook, and can only be imagined by those of us outside the prison; inmates within it, are permitted “open movement” for just ten minutes a day.

Running and jogging are not permitted at all.

There are five inmate counts a day.

Phone calls are limited to 15 minutes each, for a total of 300 minutes a month.

Can we hear from Steve Bannon? Can we hear from him at all?

“Inmate Correspondence with Representatives of the News Media:

An inmate may write, following Special Mail procedures, to representatives of the news media when specified by name and title. The inmate may not receive compensation or anything of value for correspondence with the news media. The inmate may not act as a reporter, publish under a byline, or conduct a business or profession while in BOP custody. [Italics mine]. Representatives of the news media may initiate correspondence with an inmate. Correspondence from a representative of the news media will be opened, inspected for contraband, for qualification as media correspondence, and for content, which is likely to promote either illegal activity or conduct contrary to BOP regulations.”

Interestingly, there is a rich offering of educational opportunities in this prison. Bannon can take martial arts, use the legal library, receive subscriptions, learn ESL or complete a GED, get religious instruction, and accomplish any number of other educational tasks.

He can send snail mail.

However, Bannon’s voice has been effectively silenced, by FCI Danbury, for the critical next four months; months which just happen to overlap with this make-or-break, do-we-survive-as-a-free-nation-or-die, Presidential race.

The Warroom “Posse” cannot mass in the visiting room. They can’t see him. His globally successful podcast cannot broadcast his actual voice, as I understand the prison regulations.

Mr Bannon can’t even follow the Presidential campaign, via online news. He can’t tweet. He can’t livestream. He can’t record for later transmission.

His mass-movement-mobilizing, unyielding, Constitution-defending voice has been cut off from the flowing lifeblood of journalism and of politics: from the digital world.

The thousand and one restrictions that circle his every action, in the next four months, will require tremendous fortitude to resist psychologically. His physical incarceration seems like a secondary outcome of what seems to be the primary goal of his sentence — that is to say, the removal of Steve Bannon from the stream of public conversation, public guidance, public mobilization; and from the public resistance to the murderous globalist plans for us all.

So let me say this:

Where the hell are you, everyone?

Where are you, Conservatives? Libertarians? Independents? Hell, where are you, liberal Americans?

Anyone, anyone, who claims to care about an open society and due process of law?

Where are you, “freedom-lovers”?

Where are you, alt-media?

Do you not realize what time it is?

I look at the reaction to Bannon’s imprisonment — which is, with the exception of a few horrified podcasts and a handful of distraught articles in the alternative press, a non-reaction — with astonishment.

I am amazed that millions of ordinary citizens who should know better, and thought leaders who should know better, and elected officials who should know better, all seem blithely unaware of the lessons of history.

Do you think that if you ignore what has happened to Mr Bannon, that you will be spared?

I have been warning since 2007, in my book The End of America, about the sequence of steps that tyrants always take, in order to close down an open society. Since 2020 we are, in the US, at Step 10 of the “Ten Steps to Fascism” — that is, at the point of enduring emergency law.

We have, as the whole world saw during the recent Presidential debate, that true symbol of a Banana Republic: a puppet leader.

But in the last few months, the hallmark final events signaling a murdered democracy have started to unfold in earnest.

This is the stage of the physical mopping-up of the opposition.

Independent commentator Mark Steyn, against medical instruction, though seriously unwell, crossed the ocean to appear at a judicial hearing in London in which OfCom, the UK government media regulator, explained that the agency was entitled to destroy his career, reputation and livelihood because of the “harm” he had caused by reporting the truth about dangerous mRNA injections (some of which have now been pulled off the market in the UK).

Podcaster and commentator Alex Jones asserts that Federal agencies are trying to shut down his studio, and he has been compelled by a judge to pay $1.5 billion to the families of the Sandy Hook victims, a judgment that is forcing him into bankruptcy.

Epoch Times, the third most read digital publication, and an independent voice regarding issues ranging from President Trump’s campaign to the events of January 6 to the COVID injections, has been hit by a major reputational attack, via a hard-to-follow story involving bank cards, unemployment benefits, and the alleged financial misdeeds of a CFO, who has denied the charges.

Dr Joseph Mercola, a major independent medical voice critical of pharma, was debanked, due, he believes, to his views on COVID.

What you need to understand is that debanking, loss of medical licenses, deplatforming, fines, are all mere annoyances that go along with the late-stage decline of free civil societies.

But the physical incarceration of critics — signaled now by the imprisonment of Stephen K Bannon — means we have passed a point almost of no return.


Once they take your body into custody, anything can be done to you, in addition to the suppression of your voice. One of the scary things about FCI Danbury is that inmates have a “responsibility” to accept medical treatment and follow medical treatment protocols. That could mean anything.

Mr Bannon would probably dismiss my concerns. His courage, and that of his daughter Capt Maureen Bannon, is unimpeachable. His farewell speech, given just prior to his “surrender” to imprisonment, is one for the history books, delivered with that elan of a Celt wading into a throng of vicious enemies, swinging a sword and shouting with the joy of battle.

I barely know Mr Bannon personally, except in my role as a guest on his podcast. But I recognize in him a patriot, a brother in the fight for our nation’s liberty, and a hero for our times.

Though I don’t agree with him on any number of policy concerns, I recognize that he is the general on the battlefield of the freedom movement; a general for all of us, of whatever political stripe, who love our country and will not see it die if we can help it.

Sometimes I have expressed to him anxiety about the future (I come from a whining subculture).

Whenever I do so, he responds sternly, “Stop.”

And then he adds: “Get to work.”

So I assume he would not condone the worry I have — not just for him, but for us all.

Those of us who are left un-ruined as of yet, un-incarcerated as of yet, are braced for what may be coming our way.

We are checking our food and water supplies, checking our security systems, and we are training (peacefully) with firearms.

My worry is that once you are in “their” physical custody, whoever “they” are who wish you silenced — whether this custody is in a quarantine camp, a restricted hospital setting where loved ones are not permitted, or in a prison — they can do anything to you.

Once they take your physical body into custody, we have arrived at that notorious six-month period in 1933 in Germany:

“Within days of the Reichstag Fire, and the resulting presidential decree for the Protection of the People and State (February 28), the SA and SS escalated the violence against Nazi political opponents. Thousands of Communists and Social Democrats were arrested and jailed. In March—April 1933, an estimated 40,000 to 50,000 political foes were taken into “protective custody” (Schutzhaft) and imprisoned in concentration camps. The SA and SS routinely beat up and tortured political opponents and vandalized, looted, or destroyed leftist parties’ offices. Sometimes, individuals were murdered.

Not even individuals holding political office at the local or national level were safe from such violence. Some 500 municipal administrators and 70 mayors were forcibly removed from their positions by the end of May 1933. By the end of spring, the violence had spread to non-leftist political figures. On June 26, Heinrich Himmler, the head of Bavaria’s political police and the head of the Nazi SS, ordered his forces to place all Reichstag and state assembly representatives from the Bavarian People’s Party in “protective custody.”.’


In this period, the SS informally seized opposition leaders and civil society leaders who had stood fast against their party and ideology.

They seized union leaders; journalists and editors; outspoken religious leaders; and elected officials.

They seized prominent people of all kinds. They marched them off.

They took them into informal custody — basement prisons — and beat them; and eventually released some of them, to tell the tale of their abuse.

Or they disappeared them.

People heard about these basement prisons. They were scared. They went quiet. They complied. In six months, civil society had ended in Germany.

They complied just as you, national political leaders, thought leaders, are scared, and going quiet, and complying, in the wake of Steve Bannon’s arrest, hoping that this silence will buy you freedom from a similar fate.

So many people in the freedom movement are dead. Perhaps it is all just coincidence, just bad luck. Dr Vladimir Zelenko, who warned presciently in December 2021 that the COVID virus was a bioweapon, that the COVID vaccine was “premeditated mass murder”, and that “we are in World War III”, is dead. Dr Kary B. Mullis, who invented and exposed the limitations of the PCR test, is dead. Dr Rashid Buttar, a member of the “disinformation dozen”, claimed that he had been poisoned, and shortly thereafter, passed away. Italian MEP Francesca Donato, who was a “vocal anti-vaxxer” during COVID and criticized the “green pass” system that restricted the travel of the unvaccinated in Italy, lost her husband; he was found dead in a LandRover.

Are all of these accidents, losses and mishaps, irrelevant?

Your silence will not protect you, to quote poet Audre Lorde:

“I was going to die, if not sooner than later, whether or not I had ever spoken myself. My silences had not protected me. Your silence will not protect you.

What are the words you do not have yet? What do you need to say? What are the tyrannies you swallow day by day and attempt to make your own, until you will sicken and die of them, still in silence? We have been socialized to respect fear more than our own need for language.”

Six months after the SS’s detentions and beatings began, after these silences of others about the detentions and beatings, the National Socialists consolidated their power.

And that was the end of the chance to speak out, till that party was defeated in a bloody world war.

That’s what time it is now, leaders from all walks of life — you fools.

This is where we are.

If you don’t speak out now, they won’t pass you by. That is a false calculation.

It won’t be Steve Bannon, next time, and thus “not you.”

Because of your silence now —

Next time, it will be you.


Image: Title: bannon


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