First of all, these were not young punks. The average age of the nine who died in the Waco shootout Sunday was 42.5, with the youngest being 27 and the oldest 65. These guys are not latter-day Marlon Brandos out for a Sunday adventure in their black denim trousers and motorcycle boots. These are hardened criminals who happen to like motorcycles and use motorcycle enthusiasts as their mafia soldiers.
The Bandidos, whose motto is "We are the people our parents warned us about," was founded in a suburb of Houston in 1966 as a crime syndicate. They call themselves "one-percenters," an appellation gleaned from an apocryphal statement by a former president of the American Motorcyclist's Association, who supposedly said, "99% of motorcyclists are law abiding citizens. Only 1% are outlaws."
The Bandidos boast 2,000 members worldwide, but only about 900 in the United States. According to the US Department of "Justice," they are involved in cocaine, marijuana, and methamphetamine, as well as more aggressive criminal activities such as extortion, fencing of stolen goods, and murder. The FBI and Canadian Criminal Intelligence Service list the Bandidos as an outlaw motorcycle gang.
The Cossacks Motorcycle Club was also founded in Texas – in Tyler in 1969. The Cossacks' motto is "We take care of our own" and their number one rule is "Never lie to a brother." The Cossacks are a similar sized gang – about 900 members – but they have recently been augmenting their Texas base by bringing bikers in from out of state.
They have also been deliberately antagonizing the Bandidos, who consider Texas their exclusive turf, by wearing the Texas bottom rocker on their "colors." As if this weren't provocation enough, the Cossacks have been circulating rumors that they are considering aligning with the Hell's Angels, the California-based motorcycle gang that is the traditional enemy and major drug traffic competitor of the Bandidos.
Why are the Cossacks trying to pick a fight with the Bandidos? Is this just a bunch of overage juvenile delinquents hopped up on beer, meth, and testosterone spoiling for a fight? Or is there something more at play here? What do the Bandidos have that the Cossacks want?
The Bandidos don't publish an annual financial report, but it's suspected they have a substantial income from their illegal drug trade, which stretches over 17 States from Alabama to Washington. Could it be that the Cossacks want to muscle in on that business? But the Cossacks have no history of being involved in drug trafficking. And why start a war? If the Cossacks are willing to make nice with Hell's Angels, why not with the Bandidos?
So do the Bandidos have something that someone else wants? Could the Bandido's long time enemy, the Hell's Angels, be using the Cossacks as cannon fodder in a bid to take over the Bandidos' drug trade?
Or could this be another Fast and Furious operation? Could the federal government have infiltrated the Cossacks with the intent of starting a war in Texas that would offer an excuse for federal intervention – at a time when JADE Helm troops are in Texas? It would not be the first time the DC criminals colluded with private sector criminals – or the first time they tried something that stupid.