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tv   Nightline  ABC  November 5, 2021 12:37am-1:06am PDT

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♪ this is "nightline." >> tonight, the informant next door. how one man risked his life to help the fbi stop a terror plot. >> i'd like to get ahold of some rpgs, blow every [ bleep ] in the building up right there, boom. >> meant to target new migrants in america's heartlands. >> they checked the prayer schedule when they thought the most people would be in there to kill the most people that they could. plus passing. a provocative new film which is anything but black and white. >> it's easy for a negro to pass for white, i'm not so sure it would be so simple for a white person to pass as colored. >> the story of one woman who chose to deny her own race to
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live a life of privilege. festival of lights. diwali, a welcome sight in dark times. who was scared to fly. fly? ahhh, maybe next year. so her friends gave her the greatest gift of all. it's a flying machine! ♪ ♪ oh no! ♪ ♪ i just have to believe! ...the gift of believing in herself. so you ready to fly to grandma's? okay ♪ ♪ okay ♪ ♪ ♪
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♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ thanks for joining us. tonight we take you inside a domestic terror plot thwarted with the help of one man from
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garden city, kansas, who risked his life. with the threat of domestic extremism on the rise, an unlikely informant helped agencies stop a deadly attack that some say could have been bigger than the oklahoma city bombing. ♪ ♪ >> how are you guys doing? >> good. >> good. >> garden city is one of the most loveliest place that i have ever been. i was born in somalia. and right after i was born, the country went to civil war, and we moved to kenya. my whole life, i've been a nomad. but kansas became my home. and so it was for the first time that i could call a place home. >> why garden city? >> there's a packing plant. >> meat packing? >> yes. >> reporter: that part of kansas
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for several decades has had enormous need for labor in the meatpacking plants. in the early 2000s, the somali refugees began settling in and going to work in the meatpacking plants. >> it's like there was a world within a world in garden city. one world coming together as a community. and another world -- >> yeah. >> but you had no idea? >> uh-huh. no idea that people can be so hateful. so bluntly hateful. >> this whole story started in the strangest of ways. dan dase in many respects is an ordinary guy. grew up in kansas. he was accompanying his son while his son was doing a workout for the high school track team. afterwards they went to the local library to cool down.
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>> you went to the library, you saw this flyer. what was the flyer? >> it was actually an anti-israel, pro-palestine flag on the bulletin board. and i was like, what the heck is this? i'd never seen anything like that. so i ripped it off. >> dan was facebook friends with a former co-worker, and he had noticed in recent months his friend's facebook page had really become overtaken with all this anti-terrorist, anti-isis, anti-al qaeda declarations. >> he invited me and my son over for a barbecue. >> this is not your ordinary barbecue? >> no, no. i realize that this was a militia recruiting meeting. >> in garden city, in 2015, there emerged a branch of the three percenter militia, which is a national militia, that his
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former co-worker has become involved in. >> after we ate, they all gathered around. the leader of the militia, to my surprise, brought out that flag. >> your flag? >> yes. they were passing that around. then they started talking about isis. then i realized that they, were you know, adding things to the story. then the next day, one of the militia members put it on facebook. and it went viral. they were talking about isis recruiting at the library. and there were somalians guarding the isis recruiting flag. they had that flag on there which had nothing to do with isis. >> but people are reading this and believing it? >> a lot of people were believing it, yeah. that's how the fbi got involved. >> according to facebook, there was a posting that said that there were people recruiting for isis at the library. i went to the library to
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investigate. because obviously if that's true, that's something we want to know about. >> we learned that there was an individual that might have some more information about it. >> we went to talk to him. >> when they met dan day, a couple of things are going on. >> three percent of southwest kansas, they believe strongly in less government, second amendment rights. and they were concerned about some of the somali population and what threat they may pose. we were concerned that they might do something to someone within the somali community. >> we talked to dan for a little while. dan seemed to fit the mold of, okay, yeah, i can see this guy being in a militia group. >> he was like, yeah, i think he might be able to provide us some information. >> it's fbi investigatory 101,
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having someone on the inside of a militia group was something you'd want. for the next six months, dan day attends meetings of the three percenters, gets to know the guys. it's a largely slow and uneventful six months. but that all changes early in 2016. >> i meet patrick stein. that's when things changed. >> how would you describe patrick stein? >> you know, he's a farmer. >> this is what farming's all about, basically. >> patrick stein and his family were on "national geographic" in the '90s talking about the family farm, they showed them farming. >> only about two times a year that we as a family get together. >> when patrick stein came into the picture, things got amped up. >> i'd told the fbi about him. man, this guy, this guy is crazy. he's on a different level.
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he made the other guys look like boy scouts, you know? to me, it was like evil. >> patrick stein made it clear to dan that he wanted dan to come with him in a fringe militia group. so dan, going where the action is, agreed to leave the three percenters and go with patrick. >> so it's you, patrick, gavin, curtis. >> right. >> who was curtis allen? >> curtis allen, he was -- he'd been in the military. he was more cautious. the same hate, but he was more quiet. >> who's gavin wright? >> he -- he is -- he was a friend of curtis allen's. they owned a mobile home dealership. so he was the third member. >> this is something that i wanted to grab a core group. cockroaches in this country have got to go, period. they've got these apartment
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complexes over there where literally every [ bleep ] apartment, that's all it is, [ bleep ]ing [ bleep ] cockroaches. if i could get ahold of rpgs, i'd blow every [ bleep ] building up right there, boom. >> they wanted to start something big and have other militias follow. and make a manifesto, you know, to send out. >> we put out a manifesto, write up a [ bleep ] page length -- what was his name, kaczynski? what he does, he made the papers publish his [ bleep ] manifesto. that's what we've got to do. >> at one of the meetings they talked about good places to hit. they talked about the somali mall, which is up here. and then the other one is the merry apartment complex.
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>> up here on the right is where the mosque is located. >> so they chose three. they checked the prayer schedule, when they thought the most people would be in there, to kill the most people that they could. >> what was the plan? >> they were going to have cars with bombs in them, like at certain points around the complex. and then across the road at certain points. so all these and this. >> so they come up with this plan to meet at the crack of dawn in dodge city, in the parking lot of a mcdonald's. obviously, what patrick doesn't realize is that he's walking into an fbi operation. >> breaking news, an alleged terror plot foiled in garden city, kansas. federal authorities arresting three men -- >> a year and a half after you
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start working with the fbi, patrick stein, the other crusaders are arrested. >> it was a big relief. it was like, it's finally done. >> according to the fbi, the men had planned to target anyone who tried to help the somali muslims. they finally decided on this apartment complex in garden city. >> did it shake your faith in america? >> for a moment. i'm not going to lie. for a moment, it did. but then i realized that -- america is resilient. there's so much good people out there. dan day -- he is one of the things that make america great. he saw the humanity comes first, he saw that we were beyond what
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they had described us to be. we were not just mere cockroaches. he put his family, himself, in jeopardy for us. >> "the informant: fear and faith in the heartland" is now streaming on hulu. coming up next, the new film "passing," crossing the color line in 1920s harlem. e our hous, been here for years. yeah. but there's an animal in the attic. (loud drumming) yeah yeah yeah yeah!!!! (animal drumming in distance) (loud drumming) drums! drums! aaaaaahhhh! at least geico makes bundling our home and car insurance easy. we save a lot. aaaaaahhhh! ohhh! (loud drumming) animal! aaaaaahhhh! for bundling made easy, go to geico.com. uh-oh... there's a different way to treat hiv. it's once-monthly injectable cabenuva. cabenuva is the only once-a-month,
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harlem, one of whom chooses to live her life as white. here's abc's chris connelly talking with the film's stars and its director, who reveals a few surprises about her own family history. >> things aren't always what they seem. >> reporter: the new movie "passing" based on a 1929 novella and debuting next week on netflix takes a nuanced look at two women navigating minefields of race and identity, yearning and defiance. >> she had something that i think -- i call an absolute fearlessness to be herself, but lives in a society that cannot and will not accept her as her whole self. she isn't the tragedy, the society that she's born into is. >> reporter: its topic, visual style, and powerhouse performances likely to spark oscar buzz. >> isn't she extraordinarily beautiful? >> reporter: "passing" describes a phenomenon where a person of one racial group is classified
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or mistaken for another. >> have you ever thought of what you'd do if joan found out? >> reporter: for people of color subjected to racism and discrimination, choosing to pass as a white person could offer access to a world of privileges. it also meant personal sacrifices and grave risk. >> it's not a rejection of your blackness, it's a way to survive. people had to leave their histories behind, leave their families behind, leave their bloodlines behind. but really, that's not possible. it will follow you. >> i think so often, in the history of american cinema, there's this idea of moralizing the person that decides to pass, that this is something that is bad. >> reporter: beloved for her work in the marvel cinematic universe, tessa thompson is irene redfield, part of harlem's black upper middle class in 1920s new york, wedded to a doctor. >> it's easy for a negro to pass for white, i'm not so sure it
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person to pass as color. te - >> it seems irene is constantly worried she will lose something. >> yeah, she's a worry wart. >> yeah. >> she's beginning to think that no one is ever happy, free, or safe. certainly the treacherous waters of her mind feel rather unsafe, i would say. >> reporter: the academy award nominee for "loving," ruth negga, is the dazzling clare balieu, passing as a white woman, married to a white racist unaware of her past. >> clare gives voice to the unspeakable, desiring, wanting things. >> reporter: a chance reunion upends both their lives. >> pardon me, i don't mean to stare, but i think i know you. >> clare? >> why is she drawn in the way that she is, to her old friend? >> this is her homecoming. the book is a lot about longing for familiarity, for one's people, something that was
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denied to people who enacted the -- oh, i don't know -- it's the life severance that is passing. >> oh, of course i know you, reenie. you look just the same. tell me, do they still call you reenie? >> what leads to her demise is her yearning to be in the company of blackness again. but in that way, it's a complicated celebration of the beauty of blackness. >> i don't know if she's oblivious to the risks. i don't think so. there's a certain "f-u" as well. you say i can't go there, i can't do this? look what i've done. i kind of admire that, actually, because it's using what's available to you to subvert the system that is quite obviously broken. >> you dislikening rows? >> no, no, not at all. i hate them. >> our film is not just about the ways in which one might pass across the race line. irene says herself, we're all of us passing for something or other, aren't we? we're privileged to live in a
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time where ideas around race, around gender, that there's a cultural conversation around those things being a construct, right? >> reporter: for actress-turned-director rebecca hall, bringing "passing" to the screen involved more than a decade of struggle and a personal connection to the material. >> i come from a family where there was passing. where passing made up an awful lot of my family history. my grandfather on my mother's side was african-american. and he passed white for most of his life. he passed as indigenous for a chunk of his life too. >> how did you come to know about him? >> my great grandfather was born enslaved and ended up giving a toast to frederick douglass at the white house about the uplift of the race. and that history was entirely hidden from my mother. she didn't even know his name. but now she does. >> what's this been like to share with your mother? the film? >> i was very nervous about what
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she was going to think. it's a lot for me to have done, i think. and i -- but she watched it. and she's enormously proud. and she just said, i feel you have liberated me and my father. and the thing that he could not talk about, we now can. >> i'm curious, is that it? >> you can ask me anything, anything you want. >> it looks like a film that might have been made in a bygone era. and the truth is, when we were making films like that in hollywood, we weren't making them with two women that looked like us. >> we weren't in them. >> i think what's interesting now is to think of, like, in terms of hollywood iconography, all the stories that would have been told had more people had access to tell the stories. and that's why for me, it feels -- it feels impactful. >> our thanks to chris. "gma" will have more with director rebecca hall tomorrow
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finally, tonight's dewaiwal the festival lighting up the sky. a five-day festival, a ceremony of joy celebrated by millions across many faiths. it's the biggest holiday in india for adults and children alike. streets and temples filling the night sky with lights. the name coming from a row of clay lamps symbolizes inner light that protects against spiritual darkness. and that's "nightline" for tonight. you can watch all of our full episodes on hulu. we'll see

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