WASHINGTON (JTA) — Jack Teixeira, the National Guard airman arrested on charges of leaking a large trove of U.S. intelligence documents, reportedly recorded himself making antisemitic and racist slurs before opening fire on a target.
The Washington Post first reported the video of the antisemitic rant, which was shared with members of the chat group where Teixeira allegedly shared sensitive intelligence. Teixeira, 21, was the suspected administrator of the group, and the FBI arrested him yesterday at his Massachusetts home.
Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green, the influential Republican congresswoman from Georgia who has drawn fire from Jewish groups for remarks described as insensitive and antisemitic, has come to Teixeira’s defense. She tweeted that “Teixeira is white, male, christian, and antiwar. That makes him an enemy to the Biden regime.”
Greene appeared to be an outlier in her embrace of Teixeira, even in her own party. “No, it makes him an enemy to America. Leaking classified documents, especially this sensitive in nature, is a crime and he should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law,” Mike Lawler, a New York Republican, replied to Greene on Twitter. “His conduct is indefensible and should be universally condemned.”
The Post was the first news outlet to track the leaks to a Discord group of about 25 gamers allegedly led by Texeira. At the time of that report, on Wednesday, the Post did not know his name — only his handle, “OG” — but interviewed other gamers in the group who identified him as the person delivering the rant and disseminating classified material.
The Post account describes a video Teixeira shared in which he is at a shooting range. He “yells a series of racial and antisemitic slurs into the camera, then fires several rounds at a target,” the account said. It did not further detail what slurs he used.
In a follow-up report on Thursday, the Post named Teixeira and quoted a friend who said he was a “devout Catholic” who often spoke of God in the chats. He also reportedly referred to government raids on far-right compounds in the 1990s, events that have spurred extremist anti-government anger.
The documents Teixeira allegedly leaked exposed weaknesses on both sides in Russia’s war against Ukraine. They are seen as damaging because of the extent to which they expose U.S. intelligence gathering means. They also include an allegation that leaders of Israel’s Mossad intelligence service encouraged anti-government protests this year, which the Israeli government denies. A member of Teixeira’s group chat allegedly leaked them to a much larger group, which is how some Russian Telegram users got hold of them and spread them further. PJC