The Infidels Motorcycle Club, a group made up of troops, veterans and military contractors in Colorado Springs, drew attention recently with its pig roast to protest Ramadan, the holiest of Muslim holidays.
Stars & Stripes While some people decried the club’s gathering as tantamount to a KKK cross-burning, the group is not classified as an outlaw motorcycle group by authorities. But other, less-law-abiding motorcycle gangs are actively recruiting troops in the Pikes Peak region and worrying federal agents, a federal report obtained by the Gazette says.
Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms Denver spokesman Chris Amon said his agency’s concern over the interaction of troops and outlaw motorcycle gangs is obvious. Other experts say outlaw motorcycle life appeals to some troops. “I think it makes a natural draw for them,” said Steve Cook, who heads the Midwest Motorcycle Gang Investigators Association. “You have to look at people in the military and fresh back from deployment — they are into a warfare mentality.”
“Warfare?” American Infidels motorcycle club in Washington DC participated in the 2 Million Bikers to DC rally as a counter-protest to the planned Million Muslim March in Washington DC on 9/11 in 2013
Even as the number of crimes involving troops and veterans continues to decline in the Pikes Peak region, the rising number of troops in the ranks of outlaw motorcycle gangs is setting off alarm bells.
“Since 2007, ATF and its law enforcement partners, domestic and abroad, have discovered that documented OMG (outlaw motorcycle group) members have been employed as federal employees and contractors, active-duty military, reservists and National Guardsmen,” the report says.
Colorado Springs Police Lt. Mark Comte said local authorities are well aware of ties between the military and outlaw motorcycle gangs. “There are some that cater to the military that are of and for military,” Comte said.
The Infidels are a growing club that has drawn the wary gaze of ATF. The agency says the club founded in 2006, with chapters near military bases nationwide, has been seen riding at events alongside notorious outlaw groups including the Hells Angels and Pagans in other states.
Police say the gang isn’t considered outlaw, and isn’t suspected of criminal ties. The Infidels, who didn’t respond to numerous calls for comment, portray themselves as something far removed from outlaw gangs. “Infidels Motorcycle Club is a veteran-formed and -based MC for patriotic Americans and our supporting allies,” the group says on its website.
Welcome to the Infidels Motorcycle Club website. Slingshot, Founder of the Club, originated the idea of starting the Club while serving as a security contractor in Iraq during his third year in 2006. Within a few short weeks membership had grown to nine individuals, all security contractors. These Original Nine men reviewed, and agreed upon, the Mission Statement and Bylaws.
Photos in the Photo Gallery are provided by Club members, and have been taken in the U.S., Iraq, and Afghanistan. Our members support our troops stateside, the sandbox, and wherever else is necessary.
Current chapters are located in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida (Fort Walton Beach & Panama City), Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina (Fayetteville, Raeford & Sanford), Tennessee, Texas (Bonham & San Antonio) and Virginia.
International membership is considered on a case-by-case basis.
Sources familiar with the club say its leaders include several prominent Air Force Space Command contractors and a soldier from Fort Carson’s 4th Combat Aviation Brigade — people in positions of trust who carry security clearances.
The anti-Islam rhetoric coming from people who appear to be on the Pentagon’s payroll upsets Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a designated terrorist group posing as a Muslim rights organization in North America.
“It would be great concern if these were members of the military or contractors, not because of the barbecue, but because of the anti-Muslim extremist views it represents,” Hooper said. The pig roast, while offensive, doesn’t bother Hooper as much as the people behind it. It was a private, extremist party, he explained.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office kept a close eye on the event at the Infidels clubhouse near Peterson Air Force Base. A few dozen people gathered behind a guarded chain-link fence. The fence had a scrawled cardboard sign attached: “Private Party No Media Beyond This Point.”
Sheriff’s Lt. Rick McMorran said deputies were concerned that the party would draw protests from Islamic groups, or worse, from terror organizations. The barbecue’s theme wasn’t a law-enforcement concern, though. “From the standpoint of the Sheriff’s Office, we don’t get into the politics,” McMorran said.
Local military leaders aren’t happy with what they see in the ATF report on motorcycle gang recruitment of troops. At Fort Carson, spokeswoman Dee McNutt said leaders want to keep troops out of outlaw clubs like the Deciples and away from groups with extremist views such as the anti-Muslim protest of the local Infidels chapter.
At Air Force Space Command on Peterson Air Force Base, where several purported leaders of the Infidels work as contractors, a spokeswoman said joining an outlaw or extremist group can be a career-killer.
Col. Kelly Thompson cited Pentagon regulations and Air Force instructions banning troops from those organizations. “What I can tell you is that military personnel should not participate in organizations that discriminate based on race, creed, color, sex, religion, or national origin and those who violate this prohibition are subject to disciplinary action,” Thompson wrote.
An example of what the Infidels Motorcycle Club does:
This is an annual motorcycle run dedicated to a severely wounded veteran from New England. You don’t have to be a biker to support this cause. The ride is inspired by Cpl Vincent Mannion- Brodeur of the 82nd Airborne. He is purple heart and bronze star recipient. Vincent was in a coma for 1 year , 17 hospitals and 35 operations. Our first ride was dedicated to him. Every year in his name, we will continue to raise money for a different veteran. Whether it be for housing modifications or medical bills, the purpose of this run is to comfort those who survived war’s scaring aftermath!