New York City, NY — In an ugly display of retaliation against immigration activists who illegally placed a banner on the Statue of Liberty which read ‘Refugees Welcome‘ Tuesday afternoon, a self-proclaimed group of “patriots” known as APART (Armed Patriots Against Radical Terrorists), took it upon themselves to hang their own banner on Lady Liberty reading ‘GTFO‘ (acronym for Get the F*ck Out) early Wednesday morning.
APART members Rob Remus, John Lanza, Del Wilkes and Jason Dant, all scaled the Statue of Liberty in the pre-dawn hours to avoid detection. The banner was hung at approximately 4:30 am. It was up for nearly three hours until the National Parks Service tore it down just before 8 am.
The group said the sign was put up in direct response to the “cowards” who put up the ‘Refugees Welcome’ sign.
APART’s founder/leader Rob Remus said he wanted to make a bold statement to all the “bleeding hearts who want open borders.”
“This is personal to me,” said Remus, “we are at a crucial point in history. Like President Trump says it’s time for America first. We have nothing against legal immigration; it’s the unvetted refugees and illegal aliens that need to go.”
APART first made national headlines in 2015 after the militia conducted a pre-dawn raid against what they believed to be a “terrorist training camp” run by the Islamic activist group Muslims of America (MOA). After a tense 10-hour standoff, the rag-tag group of mercenaries were ordered to stand down after authorities threatened the group with felony weapons and trespassing charges, a move that angered many in the patriot community and generated an outpouring of support for Rob and his gang of vigilante mountain men.
Remus added that tourists who witnessed the GTFO banner being hung were largely supportive. “We had people shouting we were heroes. Watching that banner swaying in the wind during the ferry ride home filled my heart with pride,” Remus said while fighting back tears.
The Statue of Liberty has become a symbol for protesters in recent weeks, especially since Trump’s executive order banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority nations.
The National Parks Service confirmed to Gish Gallop that the banner was placed on the Statue, and other photos taken today show a group of students looking on at the monument in amazement.
As of right now, the members of APART are facing vandalism and possible trespassing charges.
“It comes with the territory,” said APART’s “dark horse” Del Wilkes, “won’t be my first brush with the law and certainly won’t be the last.”
Del and several of his APART cohorts were arrested late last year after clashing with anti-Trump protesters in Portland, Oregon.
Wilkes said at least his people were “man enough” to “own up” to what they’ve done, unlike the “snowflakes” currently being sought by US Park Police in Tuesday’s illegal pro-refugee banner.
The Statue of Liberty (Liberty Enlightening the World) was a gift to the United States from the people of France. The statue is an icon of freedom and was a welcoming sight to immigrants arriving from abroad.