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Over a year before Nashville bombing, bomber’s girlfriend told police he ‘was building bombs in the RV trailer’

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The girlfriend of Anthony Warner, the man who detonated the devastating bomb Christmas morning in downtown Nashville, Tennessee, told police over a year ago that he “was building bombs in the RV trailer,” new documents obtained by The Tennessean reveal.

Despite this new information, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation had stated that he wasn’t on their “radar” before the bombing that killed him and injured three other people.

No motivation behind the bombing has been determined yet. The bombing, which exploded outside an AT&T switching facility, blew up a city block and left 41 buildings damaged. The FBI has been investigating whether conspiracies surrounding 5G cellular networks were involved.

The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department (MNPD) on Tuesday published an incident report and synopsis dating back to August 21, 2019 showing the department asked the FBI to perform a background check of Warner after a woman named Pamela Perry who claimed to be his girlfriend alerted police that Warner “was building bombs in the RV trailer at his residence.”

Police first got in touch with Perry when her attorney, Raymond Throckmorton III, phoned them that day detailing worries about suicidal threats she was allegedly making while she sat outside her home with firearms, the Associated Press reported, referencing an MNPD statement.

Furthermore, Warner “frequently talks about the military and making bombs,” Throckmorton told police, according to the report. The report also notes that he said he represented both Warner and Perry.

Back in August 2019, officers witnessed an RV parked in Warner’s fenced backyard but weren’t able to catch a glimpse of the vehicle’s interior when they stopped by his home in the Nashville neighborhood of Antioch, according to the report. When they knocked on the door, no one answered.

“They saw no evidence of a crime and had no authority to enter his home or fenced property,” MNPD spokesman Don Aaron told The Tennessean about how that trip to his house transpired.

Following this visit to Warner’s property, the city’s police said they warned Nashville’s Hazardous Devices Unit (HDU), a bomb squad, and requested that the FBI look into Warner’s background and see if he previously had any connections to the military.

The next day, “the FBI reported back that they checked their holdings and found no records on Warner at all,” Nashville police said Tuesday. On August 28, 2019, the U.S. Department of Defense reported that “checks on Warner were all negative,” Aaron added.

“At no time was there any evidence of a crime detected and no additional action was taken,” Nashville police also said Tuesday.

Joel Siskovic, a spokesman for the FBI in Memphis, said Wednesday that there weren’t allegations of a crime made at that time to the authorities, providing them no probable cause.

“If we were going to take action like a search warrant, we would have had to have probably cause,” Siskovic said. “We weren’t even at the stage where a crime had been alleged.”

Police and the HDU say they followed up during the week of August 26, 2019 and reached out to Throckmorton. The attorney allegedly said investigators couldn’t speak to Warner, who “did not care for the police,” or enter his property, the FBI told The Tennessean.

Throckmorton contested the authorities’ claim, saying he wasn’t working with Warner in August 2019, according to The Tennessean.

“I have no memory of that whatsoever,” Throckmorton said. “I didn’t represent him anymore. He wasn’t an active client. I’m not a criminal defense attorney.”

“Somebody, somewhere dropped the ball,” he added.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation on Monday published a criminal history for Warner. That report, however, only detailed a single arrest back in 1978 by Nashville police for marijuana possession.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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EXCLUSIVE: Former Trump appointee explains an ‘America First Strategy’ in the ME

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Photo: Israeli Government

The author interviewed Ellie Cohanim, one of the authors of the new book: “An America First Approach to US National Security.” Ellie is the former U.S. Deputy Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism under the Trump administration. She is currently a Senior Fellow with the Independent Women’s Forum focusing on Iran, Israel, and global antisemitism, and is a national security contributor for the Christian Broadcasting Network. In 2021, Ellie launched and hosted for Jewish News Syndicate 30 plus episodes of the show “Global Perspectives with Ellie Cohanim.” Ellie spent 15 years in media and NGO management before serving in the public sector. How would you define an “America First” strategy in the Middle East?

Cohanim: An America First strategy in the Middle East would seek to advance American national security interests in that region, while maintaining our status as THE global superpower. To do that, the US would ensure that our principal allies in the region, countries like Saudi Arabia and Israel, are economically and militarily strong, and that our adversaries in the region are deterred.

Postal: How has the United States’ standing in the Middle East differed between the Trump and Biden administrations?

Cohanim: Under President Trump, for four years we had peace, stability and prosperity in the Middle East/North Africa (MENA) region. Under President Biden, in just three tumultuous years there has been war in the region, which holds the potential for becoming a regional conflict and even a nuclear confrontation. Meanwhile, the US’ status in the region and the world has diminished due to Biden’s disastrous mishandling of the Afghanistan withdrawal, his emboldening of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and his weak response to Iranian attacks on our personnel and assets in the region. 

 

Postal: Do you think the United States and Israel are/were in a stronger position to deter Iran’s nuclear and territorial ambitions in Biden or Trump’s administration?

Cohanim: America’s position of strength has not changed under either administration vis-à-vis the Islamic Republic of Iran. What has changed is our Iran policy. Under President Trump’s administration, the US contained and constrained Tehran. Trump applied a “Maximum Pressure” sanctions campaign which left the Iranian Regime with only $4 billion in accessible foreign currency reserves by the end of his term, giving the Iranians less cash and less ability to fund their terror proxies and their nuclear program, and Trump eliminated Qassem Soleimani. While all President Biden needed to do was to continue implementing such successful policies, his administration instead did the exact opposite.  Under the Biden administration, Israel, our leading ally in the region, was attacked for the first time directly from Iranian soil. This was an unprecedented escalatory attack by the Iranian regime, and could only happen under the Biden administration.

Postal: In your chapter of the book, you discuss the weakening of US relations with Israel and Saudi Arabia under the Biden administration. How has the Biden administration affected the likelihood of future normalization between Israel and Saudi Arabia, and deals between Israel and other Muslim countries (i.e., new Abraham Accords)?

Cohanim: The good news is that the Abraham Accords have withstood the test of multiple Hamas provocations against Israel, and now the current war. Despite numerous claims from the Biden administration regarding “successful” efforts to normalize ties between Saudi Arabia and Israel, I do not think that the Biden administration will be able to clinch such a deal. In the Middle East, people have a long memory. Saudi Arabia’s de-facto ruler Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) has not forgotten President Biden’s snub when he first came into office, and Biden’s incredibly poorly advised behavior towards the Crown Prince when he made his first visit to the Kingdom as president. The last thing the Crown Prince wants is to hand Biden his first foreign policy success with a Rose Garden peace deal ceremony. So, I do not believe President Biden can broker Saudi/Israeli normalization.

However, I am also convinced that it is a matter of “when” and not “if” such a peace deal will happen between those two countries, as it serves both of their interests to make such a deal. The Saudis understand better than anyone that it is the Islamic Republic of Iran that threatens the Kingdom’s security and stability, not Israel.

Postal: What do you think of the Biden administration’s latest statements withholding arms to Israel?

Cohanim: President Biden will go down in history for his abject moral failure in not standing by Israel while she fights a five-front war. Biden has shown his despicable personality for trying to keep his anti-Israel arms embargo concealed until he could first deliver a speech on the Holocaust. Biden’s behavior is despicable on so many levels.

Ultimately, Biden is betraying the American people. He came into office presenting himself as a “centrist Democrat,” but has proven repeatedly to be beholden to the radical, extremist, pro-Hamas wing of his party.

Postal: How does the Biden administration’s support of a Palestinian state differ from the Trump administration’s support of a Palestinian state under its Peace to Prosperity framework?

Cohanim: The Biden administration stated that they will “unilaterally recognize” a Palestinian state. What the borders of that state are and who would lead it, nobody knows. 

The Trump administration’s “Peace to Prosperity” was a detailed plan that was premised on the realities on the ground in Israel. The plan required that the Palestinians reach benchmarks proving a real desire to live in peace with their Israeli neighbors. It included over $50 billion in investment in the region, which would have been a road to prosperity for all. Perhaps most significantly, the Palestinian state envisioned under the Trump plan would have been demilitarized, the wisdom of which could not be more clear following the October 7 massacre and attack.

The author would like to thank Ellie Cohanim for participating in this interview.

 

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