Jade Helm 15, the war game that spawned conspiracy theories of a military takeover, asteroids and underground tunnels in Walmart, begins across 14 locations in Texas on July 15. For a site of a military exercise, however, the locations were oddly silent. No military tanks or heavy equipments moving, no sound of cannons whatsoever – none that the media and the residents are made aware of.
Over the social media sphere, netizens come up with jokes, making fun of the rather quiet military drill. But as silence shrouds the state, Texans kept themselves armed, some burying weapons on the ground, “just in case.”
The invisible Jade Helm 15 that will destruct the nation
Nobody has seen anything, Dan Whitaker, a business owner in the town of Bastrop, told kxan.
“What you would expect to see is equipment and material coming in that they are going to actually have to live with and use, but you just don’t see it,” Whitaker said.
“If the military comes in and are doing their training exercises, I don’t think they will mess with anybody.”
He added, “It could even be good for the local economy, so I say to them, ‘Jade Helm, come on down, we are waiting for you. If it comes and goes peacefully, great, we’re all happy. But we’re of the mindset that it’s not.”
Michael Holmes, another business owner at Bastrop, strongly believes that whatever is taking place will eventually lead to a martial law.
“There’s two theories, which both of them lead to martial law. Either which way it goes. Whether it is because of the asteroid coming and they’re preparing for evacuations and things of that nature for the asteroid, or it’s for martial law to take over nation. But both of them point to the same thing which is the destruction of our nation,” Holmes said.
Dr Jack Campbell, an emergency physician in San Angelo, brought extra ammunition for guns he kept in his home.
“Just in case,” Campbell told The New York Times. “People are just vigilant. Not vigilantes, but vigilant. They don’t want to be caught off guard,” he said.
In Christoval, Scott Degenaer, a navy veteran, was wary as staff of The New York Times interviewed him. He was cautious of the photographer’s beard, saying, “Spec Ops grows beards.” He then asked whether the reporter and the photographer have “a military ID.”
The Times’ staff noted that Degenaer is flying both an American flag and a Confederate battle flag on his porch. His house is surrounded with signs that say “Pray for America” and “Warning: The Door you are about to break down is locked for your protection!”
Degenaer spoke about his anti-Obama sentiments, saying that the presence of the president in the White House made him anxious of an impending martial law.
“With Obama being in there, with the way he’s already stomped all over the Constitution, pushing his presidential authority to the max, it would only be just the stroke of a pen for him to do away with that. This man is just total anti-U. S.,” Degenaer said.
Eric Johnston, the founder of Counter Jade Helm, believed that Texans are on watch.
“I would like to think that if the situation were to turn afoul, many more of our people would stand up and come to assist,” said Johnston.
Jade Helm 15 conspiracy theories are fat-fetched
While many are cautious of Jade Helm 15, there were those who believed that that the military drill is for the nation’s advantage.
“We support our military, we’re behind those guys. Right now we understand they’re really proficient at fighting in the desert and they need to see other environments, which we have here,” said Troy Michalik, a Bastrop entrepreneur.
Eldorado mayor John Nikolauk had even allowed troops to use his ranch. He considered the conspiracy theories on Jade Helm 15 as “far-fetched.”
If the theories were true, then the government is being stupid to come to Texas and take away guns, said Bill Ford, a commissioner in Tom Green County.
“If the government has an idea they can come in and take over, and take guns away, the stupidest place they could come is West Texas. There’s more guns and ammo here and more people willing to use them than any combat area they’ve fought in, Ford said.
For Sylvia Pate, an owner of a bed-and-breakfast, Jade Helm 15 is not a significant enough of an issue to worry about.
Sindy Miller, a salon owner, has a rather straightforward message to those who believed in the conspiracy theories.
“They’re worried that they’re going to come in and take their firearms away. Martial law, basically. I try not to listen to all these conspiracy-theory-type people. All they’re worried about is their beer and their guns.”
Twitter laughs at Jade Helm 15 conspiracy theories
Elsewhere in Twitter, netizens have come up with humorous take on the issue.
"Tell us your Texas secrets!"
"We have ways of making you talk…"
*drops peas in guacamole*#JadeHelm15
— Tim Devine (@TimDevine) July 15, 2015
Troops are herding us into WalMart tunnels, forcibly vaccinating children and coercing us into same-sex marriages. Please help. #JadeHelm15
— Wanda Cash (@cashUT) July 15, 2015
— Dayton Ward (@daytonward) July 15, 2015
Also read: Jade Helm 2015: Texans Uncovering The Truth
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