The U.S. military is reportedly paying some ranchers in Big Spring, Texas, to use their property as part of the controversial Operation Jade Helm training from July 15 through Sept. 15.
Big Spring Mayor Larry McLellan recently assured NewsWest 9 that residents will not be forced out of their homes, as has been rumored (video below).
McLellan didn't have any details about how much the U.S. military will pay residents, nor would military officials comment. Even cash will not comfort some residents who believe the conspiracy theories about Jade Helm.
McLellan countered, "I don't think we're going to have people kicked out of their homes or (military personnel) knocking on their door in the middle of the night."
Big Spring resident Timothy Yanez said, "I support our troops, but when they're trying to take over our civilians, that ain't cool. That's their homes. That's where they live."
McLellan did confirm Operation Jade Helm soldiers would be buying groceries and services, bringing extra income to the small town.
But McLellan has even caught heat for that, as he has been accused of being bought off by the U.S. military.
McLellan recalled, "That's another rumor. I've had a call that we were paid $150,000 ... absolutely no compensation."
Mush of the anti-Jade Helm paranoia has come from Alex Jones' conspiracy website InfoWars.com, which has run stories such as "Master the Human Domain: The Domestic Plan Behind Jade Helm" and "Confirmed: Jade Helm Is For The American People."
InfoWars.com ran a story (video below) on May 14 about U.S. troops training in Arizona, which played on the Jade Helm theme: "Marines Practice Subduing Citizens Inside Internment Camp."
A recent poll found 32 percent of Republicans believe the U.S. military is planning a takeover of Texas.