On October 12, 2020, domestic terrorists made unprecedented and violent actions, destroying the 153-year-old Soliders’ Monument on the historic Santa Fe Plaza, with police fleeing the scene and letting these bad actors destroy the culturally significant, federally protected monument.
The obelisk-shaped 33-foot-high monument was dedicated to Union soldiers who fought the Confederacy — something all New Mexicans should be proud of. But instead of protecting the monument, Mayor Alan Webber’s Santa Fe Police Department ordered officers to stop protecting the monument and let the terrorists destroy it.
Now, officers who claim to have given the orders, likely scapegoats, say they had no other choice. However, for months preceding the Columbus Day massacre of the monument, extremist anti-Hispanic hate groups such as The Red Nation and the Three Sisters Collective have targeted the monument — even bragging about it being attacked with red paint.
In the time surrounding the devastating fall of the Soldiers’ Monument, violent terrorists targeted multiple Catholic and Hispanic artifacts around the state capital. They spray pained “1680 Land Back” on a statute of Catholic priest Fray Angélico Chávez outside the Museum of New Mexico History in Santa Fe. 1680 refers to the bloody Pueblo Revolt of 1680, which was led by Popé — a murderous man who many Native Americans shun for his evil ways.
In June of 2020, Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber unilaterally ordered the removal of the Don Diego De Vargas statue from Cathedral Park in Santa Fe, another blow to Hispanics who have deep cultural history and connections with De Vargas, who peacefully resettled New Mexico. The Red Nation hate group then held an anti-Semitic rally in Albuquerque supporting Hezbollah-linked terrorist groups.
In October, domestic terrorists desecrated the Cross of the Martyrs in Santa Fe, which is dedicated to the murdered victims of the blood-thirsty killer Popé. A total of 400 people were killed in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680, including 21 friars.
The Cross has long been attacked by these domestic terrorists, most recently on the 2021 anniversary of the Revolt, with the monument being not only desecrated with red paint, but with people defecating on it in an act of targeted hate against Hispanic people and Catholics. The Kit Carson statue in front of the federal courthouse in Santa Fe has also been a target of vandalism.
With all these actions taken by these bad actors who aim to wipe out Hispanic and Catholic people who live in New Mexico, the City of Santa Fe, the State Police, and all other law enforcement bodies have a duty to protect our communities against hate crimes. They must stand up against extremism and protect these critically important historic landmarks and culturally significant places by stationing officers to watch all of these landmarks, both to protect them and to show solidarity with Hispanic and Catholic communities that have been targeted. Those who let these acts continue perpetuate hatred, division, and domestic terrorism stemming from evil forces.