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US Army Cuts Soldier With Extremists Ties Who Says He Joined Military to Become ‘Proficient in’ Killing Black People  

A former soldier who has been arrested and kicked out of the Army said he enlisted to become more skilled at killing Black people.

Killian Ryan, a former paratrooper, was apprehended on Aug. 26 and discharged from the service. The FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force found that Ryan had ties to white supremacy and made threats of violence against Black people on social media, according to reports. He was indicted for lying on his security clearance application.

FBI Black Identity Extremists
The FBI’s “black identity extremist” designation was met with criticism, as the agency set its focus on African-American activists while white nationalists have proven to be a clear threat. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

“I serve for combat experience so I’m more proficient in killing n—–s,” Ryan wrote in a social media post on May 27, 2021.

Federal prosecutors said Ryan made contact with “racially motivated extremists” on social media. His personal email address before enlisting was “NaziAce1488,” a reference to Adolf Hitler and a common white supremacy symbol. He was a fire support specialist and held the rank of a specialist when he was released from the Army last month. In the position, Ryan was responsible for gathering intelligence and enemy target locations to help the service determine where and how to deploy artillery. It requires secret security clearance.

Reports show that Ryan was asked on the questionnaire for clearance whether he ever advocated for any acts of terrorism. The question was part of a new vetting process implemented by the Pentagon. Ryan went to basic training in May 2020 and was assigned to Fort Bragg in December 2021. He was not deployed.

The same month Ryan started his post at Fort Bragg, the Pentagon updated its guidance, clarifying its definition of extremist activity. It also provided directives on social media activity.

“It basically clarifies that service members are responsible for the contents that they publish on all personal and public internet domains, including social media sites, blogs, and websites. Now, liking or sharing a post that promotes extremist activity could be prohibited,” one official told CNN.”Liking something with the intent to promote or endorse would be in violation of the policy.”

Authorities launched a probe into Ryan’s social media activity because he reportedly said on the application that he had not been in contact with his father, who was incarcerated for more than 10 years while he was in prison for auto theft and drug charges. Investigators found that he had been communicating throughout the 10 years and had an account with a username referencing Sigurd, a German literary figure adopted by white supremacists.

The number 1488, used in Ryan’s email address, is a combination of two popular white supremacist numeric symbols, according to the Anti-Defamation League. ADL says 14 is short for 14 words: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.” The number symbol, 88, stands for “Heil Hitler” since H is the eighth letter of the alphabet.

Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said in December the new guidance “preserves a service member’s right of expression to the extent possible, while also balancing the need for good order and discipline.”

Sources told military.com that Ryan was discharged from the Army for DUI offenses, even though they said drunk driving does not normally lead to separation. It was the easiest way to discharge Ryan, an anonymous source told reporters.

Reports show that tackling extremism in the military has been a top priority for Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin after the Capitol riot in January 2021. According to CNN, at least 95 people charged in the riot served in the military.

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