Alphabet Boys Podcast Reveals US Government Informants Infiltrating Groups After George Floyd Protests

Alphabet Boys Podcast Reveals US Government Informants Infiltrating Groups After George Floyd Protests

government informants

Police officers pull a man off his bike to arrest him during a protest in Brooklyn against the death of George Floyd, who was killed May 25 in police custody in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

A new explosive podcast series investigates and gives evidence of how government informants infiltrated protest groups following the police killing of George Floyd in May 2020.

Forty-six-year-old Floyd was an unarmed African-American man who was murdered by a police officer in Minneapolis, Minnesota, during an arrest made after a store clerk suspected Floyd may have used a counterfeit $20 bill, on May 25, 2020. His death sparked worldwide protests against police brutality and for racial justice and gave the Black Lives Movement a global platform.

Now the podcast “Alphabet Boys” reveals the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s use of Informants to instigate violence and target Black activists. The podcast was created by award-winning investigative journalist Trevor Aaronson, contributing writer for The Intercept. He is also author of the book “The Terror Factory: Inside the FBI’s Manufactured War on Terrorism.”

Alphabet boys is a slang term for government agencies like the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), FBI, ATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives), DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), DHS (Department of Homeland Security), and IRS (Internal Revenue Service).

The podcast focuses on the protests in Denver in summer 2020.

“What’s significant about this show is it’s the first behind-the-scenes look of how the FBI infiltrated and investigated racial justice groups and the racial justice movement of the summer of 2020,” Aaronson told Democracy Now. “The FBI in Denver…hired a convicted felon…to infiltrate these groups…the informant ended up becoming one of the leaders of the movement.”

In the position, the informant began accusing the real leaders of the movement of being government informants and also tried to instigate violence, with the FBI’s approval, and pin it on the movement, Aaronson pointed out.

He adds, “These types of tactics are used far more against left-wing groups and left-wing political activists than it is used against right-wing groups.”

The podcast, which is produced through Western Sound and iHeartPodcasts, uncovers several incidents, including the FBI paying an informant at least $20,000 to infiltrate and spy on activist groups in Denver, Colorado. The informant also encouraged activists to purchase guns and commit violence.

The podcast debuted on Feb. 7, and is a 10-episode documentary podcast series. It will post new episodes through April 4.

Season one of the podcast draws from hours of secret FBI undercover recordings and reveals that the FBI recruited a violent felon with a sexual assault conviction and paid him tens of thousands of dollars during the summer of 2020 to pose as a racial justice activist.

“When concerned that his cover might be blown, the FBI informant accused leaders of the racial justice moment in Denver of being police cooperators — a controversial tactic known as ‘snitch-jacketing‘ that was employed to devastating effect during the FBI’s COINTELPRO investigations of Black political groups in the 1960s,” IHeart reported.

The podcast features access to never-before-heard FBI undercover recordings and interviews with activists who were the targets of the federal probe.

“The first season of ‘Alphabet Boys’ addresses an important question: How did the FBI respond to racial justice protests during the summer of 2020?” Aaronson said. “We answer that question through FBI internal records and undercover recordings, revealing that federal agents viewed these activists as ‘anti-government extremists’ and tried to set them up in violent crimes using an informant with a long history of violence and deception.”

Trevor Aaronson being interviewed by Democracy Now (Photo: Twitter screenshot, https://twitter.com/democracynow/status/1622956024859852800?s=61&t=WV89PVfgXYPzBW3rkt1zjw)