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Wednesday, April 29, 2020



UPDATE May 4, 2020: This article has been updated to include a brief description from witnesses of the the signs the QAnon ralliers were holding and an explanation of the QAnon beleif in a "Great Awakening."

“Q anon is currently at the bike bridge off of failing and Missouri and is currently doing a banner drop,” the Pacific Northwest Youth Liberation Front (PNWYLF) tweeted Wednesday at 1:45PM.

“One of the fash displaying the Qanon banners from the bridge was wearing a Proudboy [sic] hat and drove a white Kia,” they added. (‘Fash’ is short for ‘fascist.’)

Two antifascists were present at the rally.

“They were just passing by when they saw the banners on the foot bridge, and then went to keep an eye on them,” the PNWYLF told LCRW.

According to text messages reviewed by LCRW, a man wearing a Proud Boys baseball cap started chasing after the antifascists with a knife along with another person, also believed to be a Proud Boy.

The Youth Liberation Front are “an autonomous network of youth + student collectives dedicated to direct action towards the liberation of all.” They have chapters across the country including in Wisconsin, Illinois, Maryland and the Bay Area. Members are often as young as 14 or 15. They’ve often been at the forefront of physical confrontations with far-right agitators, but also participate in events like last year’s Climate Strike and Fare Strike protests. Most of their recent work focuses on mutual aid in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Because their activism risks violence and surveillance from police and far-right groups, members of the YLF spoke to LCRW on the condition of anonymity. LCRW was not given the survivors of the attack’s names.

Members of the Pacific Northwest and Seattle chapters of the YLF were in close contact with the survivors. They provided LCRW with logs of text chats between one of the two survivors and a YLF member. The survivors themselves were not members of the YLF, but a YLF representative also gave LCRW a separate written account of the incident. When LCRW asked if the YLF representative witnessed the incident firsthand, the YLF representative said “[w]e can't answer that.”

“There were multiple fash there,” PNWYLF’s statement said. They said that the survivors weren’t able to recognize any of the attendees.

“The one with the knife was wearing a Proud Boys baseball cap, and they displayed multiple QAnon banners from the footbridge for a while," they continued. The banners included an American flag with the letter Q on it and a sign that said "The Great Awakening"–a common QAnon slogan. Witnesses said they took their banners with them when they left.

QAnon is a conspiracy theory that worships Donald Trump. Believers follow “Q,” an anonymous poster on 4chan and 8chan. Q claims to be a high-level government official leaking secret information about Trump and the military’s heroic battle against the “deep state.” Q prophesies a coming “storm” of mass arrests, military tribunals and executions of all of Trump’s enemies.  QAnon believers think media, government and corporate leaders are part of a shadowy, Satanic cabal that ritualistically molests and sacrifices children. Once their enemies are purged, QAnon believers think society will enter a golden age they call "The Great Awakening" where they'll be vindicated about their beliefs and secret government technology like cancer cures and free energy will be available to the public. Aside from these central tenets, QAnon often incorporate subjects like aliens, evangelical Christianity, and anti-vaccine hokum into their beliefs.

QAnon has motivated multiple acts of murder and terror. One QAnon believer murdered his brother last year with a sword because he believed his brother was a lizard-person. Another killed a mob boss. Yet another had a standoff with law enforcement on the Hoover Dam after he blocked the road with an armored vehicle. One prominent QAnon follower, actor Isaac Kappie, died by suicide and mentioned failing the “Q” movement in his suicide note. Last year, the FBI’s Phoenix field office released a memo stating conspiracy-driven extremism is a new front for domestic terror threats.

The QAnon rallygoers in Portland turned violent on the two antifascists.

“Proud Boys chasing me on foot need help,” one of them texted.

The YLF member who shared the texts with LCRW asked how they could help. The antifascist asked if they could send a car to pick them up. The YLF member asked if they were okay.

“Hiding,” the antifascist replied. “There’s two of us.”

According to the texts, an hour passed.

“Ok, someone stopped. We got in. Thanks.”

“Oh thank god,” the YLF member replied.

“Dude pulled a knife,” the antifascist recounted.

A Seattle YLF spokesperson later confirmed to LCRW that both survivors had escaped safely.

Another local antifascist contacted LCRW and claims to have seen man in the Proud Boys hat driving his white Kia. The local antifascist said the man was in a parking lot off Russel Street with a sign that said “Portland Service Unit Albina Yard.” The man’s Kia had Washington plates. For about 10 to 12 minutes, the local antifascist watched.
Google Maps view of the location of the parking lot and the QAnon rally locaiton.

“[I] sat for a few in front of him then a big black chevy, an SUV and a grey Toyota came ripping out from under the Fremont [Bridge] each full of dudes,” the local antifascist said. They said they saw the men in the back of the truck wearing “a few ballcaps and a tan beanie.”

“After they came out from under the bridge and he took off I drove down and was met by a security guard within minutes,” the local antifascist recounted. They said the fact that security blocked him while allowing the man in the Kia and the other vehicles to park “makes me feel like they have allies at one of those facilities or at the railroad.”

LCRW cannot confirm at this time whether these were the same people from the QAnon rally. According to Google Maps, it’s about a twenty minute, 1.1-mile walk from the bike bridge the rally occurred at to the parking lot.

The incident Wednesday has a dangerous precedent. Last year, a series of attacks against LGBTQ+ people terrorized Portland. A Patriot Prayer affiliate, Matthew “Deme” Cooper, admitted he was involved in one of the attacks but was never charged. Some survivors of the attacks last year said some of the attacks were by men who drove around in trucks and either jumped out to beat people or threw things at them while shouting queerphobic slurs. Those who spoke up about it faced a torrent of online harassment afterwards. Very few people came forward because of this. The chilling effect was exacerbated when the New York Post gave Portland-based far-right provocateur Andy Ngo a platform to say the attacks were what he calls a “hate crime hoax.” Ngo’s evidence was that nobody would talk to him about them. The perpetrators remain unidentified and at large.

LCRW does not currently know if the perpetrators of the attack on Wednesday were affiliated with Patriot Prayer, the Proud Boys or any other known local extremist group. Far-right and white supremacist groups in the Pacific Northwest have a long history and are often deeply interconnected with each other. The link, however, cannot be assumed. It is entirely possible the attackers have no connections with local groups. The man in the Proud Boys hat may not even be a Proud Boy. LCRW covered an incident in 2018 where a band was kicked out of 924 Gilman because their frontman was wearing a Proud Boys hoodie. The frontman was not a member of the Proud Boys–just a huge fan of their founder, Gavin McInnes.

There is a prominent associate of Patriot Prayer in Portland, Lilith Saer, who’s often pictured at rallies with a “Q” flag. There is Portland chapter of the Proud Boys. Neither appear to have mentioned this incident on their social media as of this writing. LRCW has yet to find any local far-right actors posting about the QAnon rally on social media. We will continue to monitor the situation and update when appropriate.

Please send any news tips to or DM @lcrwnews on Twitter.

Sunday, April 26, 2020


4/27/20 7:12 AM: A quote attributed to Patriot Front founder Thomas Rousseau was removed because of doubts as to the authenticity of the Twitter account it came from.
4/27/20 9:54pm: This article was updated to include a statement from Symbiosis PDX and more information on Amber Krabach's participation in a far-right rally in January this year.


“Hey @TheJusticeDept, my grocery store has been out of flour for a month...are people hoarding it?? Why are antifa/communist groups giving away 3k pounds of it suddenly? @FBI @FBIPortland,” Amber Krabach wrote on Twitter Sunday.

Krabach was quote-tweeting Symbiosis PDX, a Portland-based mutual aid organization. Instead of just seeking donations and doing charity work, mutual aid groups seek to build networks in their communities that support each other independent of government and corporate power. They often use the slogan “Solidarity, not charity.”

Symbiosis claimed they received 3,000 pounds of flour and other grains from Milwaukie, Oregon-based Bob’s Red Mills. Milwaukie’s just south of Portland on the east side of the Willamette. Since the COVID-19 crisis began, Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays Symbiosis has been taking in and distributing supplies at their mutual aid hub in the Social Justice Action Center in Portland.

But Krabach, who lives just east of Seattle in Washington’s 45th district where she’s running for State Representative, spent the next several tweets drafting a conspiracy for her followers about Symbiosis.

“Report is that Bob’s Red Mill is nearby and supplying the flour. I would love it if @BobsRedMill could comment on this. Would be great to have their side of the story. Perhaps they could explain why grocery stores are completely out of flour, but they have 3k pounds to donate,” she tweeted.

Grocery store shelves aren’t out of flour because of actual food shortages. Instead, a combination of panic-buying and closures of schools, restaurants and retail stores because of COVID-19 mean distribution systems are disrupted. In Symbiosis PDX’s case, they cut out the middleman and went straight to the miller to get flour for their community. But Krabach saw it as something sinister and conspiratorial. That’s because she believes in QAnon.

QAnon is a conspiracy theory premised on pseudo-messianic worship of Donald Trump. QAnon believers follow “Q,” an anonymous poster on online message boards 4chan and 8chan, who claims to be a high-level government official leaking secret information about Trump and the military’s heroic battle against the “deep state.” Q prophesies a coming “storm” of mass arrests, military tribunals and executions of all of Trump’s enemies. QAnon believers think media, government and corporate leaders are part of a shadowy, Satanic cabal that ritualistically molests and sacrifices children. Aside from these central tenets, QAnon often incorporate subjects like aliens, evangelical Christianity, and anti-vaccine beliefs into their beliefs.

QAnon has motivated acts of murder and terror. One QAnon believer murdered his brother last year with a sword because he believed he was a lizard-person. Another killed a mob boss. Yet another had a standoff with law enforcement on the Hoover Dam after he blocked the road with an armored vehicle. One prominent QAnon follower, actor Isaac Kappie, died by suicide and mentioned failing the “Q” movement in his suicide note. Last year, the FBI’s Phoenix field office released a memo stating conspiracy-driven extremism is a new front for domestic terror threats.

Krabach ran for Representative in Washington’s 45th district and lost against Larry Springer (D) in 2018. She got a little under a third of the vote. It’s unclear when she became a QAnon follower. Her earliest post about it was last December. LCRW counted 17 tweets promoting QAnon by Krabach, most recently on April 16th. A analysis of her account shows she’s used #QAnon five times, #wwg1wga–short for the QAnon slogan “Where we go one, we go all,” four times.

“Qanon is just an anonymous entity that shares information to help the public connect important dots concerning current issues the MSM refuses to research/cover,” she tweeted in February.

“QAnon followers are convinced they have access to secret knowledge about how the world really works,” said Travis View, a host of the QAnon Anonymous podcast which dissects and analyzes the sprawling conspiracy theory.

Because of this, View told LCRW, “in QAnon world, the most innocent actions by an ideological enemy are seen as secretly nefarious.”

“Admitting that the flour donation is benign wouldn't fit well with their dark, conspiratorial fantasies,” he said.
Amber Krabach at the MLK Day "MAGA March Against Racism and Bigotry." Photo courtesy of University of Puget Sound Antifa
QAnon isn't the only right-wing extremist group Krabach engages with. On Martin Luther King Jr. Day this year, she was one of the few attendees at a Seattle "MAGA March Against Racism and Bigotry." The rally was organized by "Patriots of Washington," a group of far-right activists with ties to Patriot Prayer and the Proud Boys.

People on Twitter let Krabach have it and she backpedaled, claiming she wasn’t targeting antifa–she just wanted answers about supply chain issues from Bob’s Red Mill. As of this writing, the company hasn’t responded to her tweet.

“You’re mad at antifa for distributing four when your system crumbled,” an antifascist told Krabach on Twitter.

“Nope. I’m concerned that flour isn’t getting into our grocery stores when it’s obviously available through the right suppliers. This isn’t a charity problem, it’s a broken supply chain problem,” Krabach replied.

“Damn, if only there was group giving away flour for free,” another antifascist said. Krabach blocked them.

Incidentally, Krabach’s Twitter bio says “This is my personal Twitter, so yes, I CAN legally block you.”

Symbiosis, meanwhile, successfully distributed the flour and other supplies.

Wow the flour and grains went fast today! We're all out now but we are so grateful for the opportunity to provide this to our community!” Symbiosis said of the giveaway on their Twitter account.

And we, uh, do not think providing flour to our neighbors which would otherwise have been discarded is a sinister act...despite certain insinuations from right wing politicians in an entirely different state,” they added, ending the tweet with a ‘shrug’ emoji.

Saturday, April 25, 2020


Sharpened metal rods disguised as Sharpie brand pens advertised in a private MeWe group for anti-quarantine protestors.
On the streets this week, they held signs calling for businesses to opened back up–public health be damned. But behind closed virtual doors, they’re talking about getting armed.

“Time to form a militia!” Matthew Hinrichs wrote on a closed Facebook group planning the “ReOpen California” protests across the state on May 1st.

LCRW received a small trove of messages from a private group called “Reopen California” on Facebook with 98,200 members and a linked private group on the lesser-known social network MeWe with 732 members. MeWe, founded in 2012, touts itself as a privacy-oriented alternative to Facebook and claims it has over 4 million users.

In their chats, anti-quarantine protestors shared an event organized by apparent III% militia movement members, traded conspiracy theories about politicians molesting children and advertised concealed weapons for sale.

Eventbrite page for Long Beach rally wil III% logo for banner.
One demonstration shared in the private groups is the “Liberate Long Beach” event. It has a banner with the III% militia movement logo on it. The III% movement formed largely as a reaction to Obama’s presidency. Though not explicitly white supremacist, ‘threepers’ have repeatedly targeted Muslims for attack including firebombing a mosque. III% groups also stood with white supremacists at Unite the Right, only disavowing them afterwards

Minor conservative media figure Jesus Cisneros, who ran for Long Beach City Council in March and goes by “The Right Latino” on Instagram, is promoting the event in Long Beach and plans to be there. It’s unclear who’s actually putting the rally on. Long Beach’s mayor asked people to stay home but the city government doesn’t seem to be getting in their way.

Louren Khanty, who apparently was a campaign worker for former State Assemblyman Travis Allen, was part of the MeWe group. LCRW has previously photographed Travis Allen with members of the Proud Boys. In 2017 he appeared on a panel with Kyle Chapman, aka ‘Based Stickman,’ the founder of the Proud Boys’ now-defunct paramilitary arm, the Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights.

The social media groups planning these events are deeply conspiratorial. One MeWe post sent to LCRW showed California Governor Gavin Newsom’s Twitter profile, which the poster claimed had a “pedophile symbol” on it. Right-wing conspiracy theories like PizzaGate and the cultish QAnon movement are premised on the world being run by a shadowy cabal whose leaders, including top politicians and media figures, ritualistically abuse children. These conspiracies have lead believers to commit multiple acts of violence including at least one murder.

The protests in California have been heavily attended by antivaxxers, some of whom were in the closed group as well.

“I wish they would stop this flu shot crap. I will NEvER [sic] submit to a shot,” Cheryl Hanhart-Beck wrote.

One poster shared a meme on MeWe comparing people being urged to stay at home to slow the spread of COVID-19 to being loaded on the trains to concentration camps. It got six likes, one bullseye emoji and an angry face reaction.
Some on the MeWe group asked if antifascists had infiltrated the Facebook group. They talked about the thinly-veiled anti-Semitic conspiracy that Jewish billionaire George Soros is paying antifascists to protest against them.
“If ANTIFA comes out during these times, these face covering pussies are going to get their collective asses kicked by a bunch of pissed off citizens that are tired of this bullshit,” Kelly Antrim wrote.
Others wondered if "ANTIFA" would be out in force because of May Day–historically an important day for leftist mobilization. It's unclear whether any events will overlap with various leftist groups' calls for a general strike and rent strike on May 1st.

One poster on the MeWe community is a company called Patriot Shit Outfitters. One example of “Patriot Shit” they advertised to rallygoers and organizers was a “Cold Rolled steal [sic] spike” hidden in a Sharpie on their page. It’s available for $12.99 on their website. Other “Patriot Shit” on the website includes one that combines the U.S. flag, the III% logo and the confederate flag. It also comes in camo.

Users of the “ReOpen California” group adopted MeWe largely because they anticipated Facebook shutting them down. Facebook has removed some, though not all, anti-quarantine events. Facebook has a long history of allowing white supremacists, conspiracy theorists and antivaxxers to proliferate on their platform. As of this writing, the “Reopen California” group is still up on Facebook, though members claim some  of their posts have been removed by moderators for “spreading disinformation.”

Many of the anti-quarantine protests are being attended by extremist groups like the Proud Boys. Some of these protests were funded by dark money groups including one linked to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. They’re also being cheered on by President Trump. The Huffington Post found that many of the protests  “have been organized or attended by white nationalists, conspiracy theorists, anti-government militias, members of a neo-fascist street gang, and other assorted extremists and scam artists.”

“[A]nti-lockdown rallies are basically Trump rallies w/out Trump,” Huffington Post reporter Ben Collins said on Twitter.

In addition, much of the online activity around these protests is being amplified and driven by botnets. According to Business Insider, “An analysis from Bot Sentinel, a bot tracking platform, found that bots and trolls have been stoking sentiments online that have fueled the protests, using hashtags like #ReopenAmericaNow and #StopTheMadness.”

Brooke Binkowski, managing editor at Truth or Fiction and former managing editor at Snopes, told Business Insider the protests are “completely inauthentic and coordinated” and said foreign state actors are likely stoking the flames of the movement. 

“Empowering violent extremists is a very old method for collapsing unstable states,” she said.

After reviewing livestreams of anti-quarantine events this week, LCRW has found that many of those publicizing the protests on the West Coast are part of a highly active and organized network of right-wing extremist media figures that have been promoting right-wing rallies for years. Examples include Christian supremacist AM radio host Ben Bergquam and Washington III% leader Matt Marshall. In other words, the same people who always help promote and bring the far-right out into the public are the ones showing up now.

As of this writing, the MeWe “Reopen California” group is involved in planning at least eleven anti-quarantine protests across the state, mostly in coastal Southern California. Five of them are scheduled for Friday, May 1st in L.A., Sacramento, San Bernardino and Orange Counties and in San Diego. 

“It’s going to have to be simultaneous OPERATION GRIDLOCKS at numerous locations to dilute their ability to respond,” Tracy Burns wrote in the MeWe group.

The consequences of this wave of protests may already be showing. Kentucky saw a spike in COVID-19 cases after the rallies hit the state. But right-wingers have been told constantly for months that the virus is either a complete hoax or that it's drastically exaggerated to make Trump look bad. Even when they acknowledge the danger, their rhetoric often puts restarting the economy above their own and collective safety. There has been at least one major incident of violence at an anti-quarantine protest, when a man pulled a knife on a reporter in Huntington Beach on the 17th.

Take, for example, Joey Gibson, leader of the violent, cultish protest group Patriot Prayer, said to a crowd of about 80 in Boise, Idaho yesterday.

“Liberty or death, right?” Gibson asked the crowd, continuing, “If you’re willing to sacrifice everything for freedom, that means you’re willing to do everything before that. And it’s gonna take some real sacrifices, guys.”

Gibson didn't make clear what those "real sacrifices" might be, but he and other extremists are making clear that for them and their followers, nothing is off the table.

Saturday, April 18, 2020


Screenshot from a video by Kelly Campagna of the protest in Sonora, CA on Wednesday.
Nearly 100 protestors, mostly small business-owners and church-goers, gathered in Courthouse Park in Sonora Wednesday to protest the stay-at-home order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

One man held a sign that said “Give me liberty or give me death!” with his Twitter handle, @libertylover61, on the bottom.

“I’m here to support the small business community,” @libertylover61 said. He described measures against COVID-19 like shuttering non-essential business and restricting public gatherings as an “overreaction.”

As of this writing, Tuolumne county has of today has only two confirmed cases of COVID-19. However, as of today there are 700,000 cases in the U.S. with the confirmed death toll at over 31,000. Thursday saw the highest single-day death rate in the country at 4,591.

The event in Sonora is part of a wave of right-wing protests against COVID-19 restrictions, many of which were attended by extremist groups like the Proud Boys. Some of these protests were funded by dark money groups including one linked to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. Ongoing protests are being cheered on by President Trump, giving encouragement to extremist groups.

While the group who organized and attended the protest paid a lot lip service to social distancing, Sonora’s police chief had to tell organizer Cindy Zelinsky to make sure people were keeping far enough apart.

Zelinsky had a sign that said “Those who give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” It’s a Benjamin Franklin quote. Zelinsky owns a restaurant and a bed and breakfast in town. 

“Technically we are able to exercise — go for a walk — so that is what we are doing,” she said sarcastically to before the rally.

Kelly Campagna, a conservative internet commentator with 88 thousand Twitter followers, livestreamed the event.

“I hope Gavin Newsom sees this,” she said on her video. As she spoke, clusters of people across the street stood close together and held up signs and cheered as trucks went by and honked at them.

Another attendee was Bob Wilson. On his Facebook page Wilson recently posted a video by white nationalist-favored pundit Tucker Carlson insinuating that COVID-19 was cooked up in a lab in China and a fake news article about Bill Gates’ desire to “microchip” people. Both of these are popular conspiracy theories on the right.

Wilson live-streamed the event on his Facebook page and got almost 6 thousand views and 860 comments.

“You are NOT maintaining 6 ft between you and other people on the sidewalk. Hell the sidewalk is only 6 ft wide. You should be arrested,” one commenter said.

“We need to begin to move forward,” Wilson replied.

“The biggest concern I have is taking away our right to corporate worship,” Wilson said in his live-stream.

‘Corporate worship’ essentially means gathering together and worshipping with others. Many on the religious right from Church pastors to Ammon Bundy have defied stay-at-home orders in order to prove a point about religious freedom. This often has disastrous results, especially for the many churchgoers who tend to be older and more vulnerable to the respiratory problems associated with COVID-19.

“I can’t get together with my brothers and sisters and it’s frustrating,” Wilson told Campagna at the protest.

In addition to being a devout churchgoer, Wilson is a respiratory therapist at Sonora Regional Medical Center.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020



Young fascists from the University of Maine to San Diego State signed a resolution at the end of March calling for President Trump to “pass an indefinite moratorium on all immigration to the United States.” Seven college Republican groups from Maine, Arizona, and California initially signed on.

The statement, viewable in full at the bottom of the story, was originally drafted by the University of Maine Real College Republicans. It cites the “Wuhan Virus,” known by non-racists as the disease COVID-19  or the novel Coronavirus, as their latest excuse for wanting draconian immigration policy. Specific groups they want expelled are foreign students, tech industry workers with H1-B visas and DACA recipients who by definition have lived in the United States for most of their lives. They also call for a punitive tax on money that “alien workers” send abroad. And, of course, they want the border wall finished.

The demands aren’t really about practical containment of the virus. They’re the same demands fascists in the United States have made for decades. For example, the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement’s “25 points” included a demand that “[a]ll non-White immigration must be prevented” and that all non-Whites must be expelled.

But college Republicans are more likely influenced by the side of white nationalism that wears a suit and tie and pretends at academic and political legitimacy. The San Diego State College Republicans and the Berkeley College Republicans (BCR) follow VDARE on Twitter, as does BCR president Matt Ronnau,

Peter Brimelow, the founder of the white nationalist VDARE magazine hob-knobs with conservative outlets like The Daily Caller, publishes Ann Coulter, and had a close rapport with White House advisor Steven Miller. Brimelow and VDARE writers often advocate for an immigration moratorium. The SPLC writes that VDARE “has produced a deluge of propaganda related to the pandemic,” most of it urging Trump to further restrict immigration. The racism in the articles is blatant. One article from February is titled “Do You Know All Coronavirus Victims Appear To Be Chinese? Thought Not!”

But VDARE isn’t the main engine of this insurgent college fascist movement–Nick Fuentes and his “America First”/”Groyper” movement is. Fuentes, a Unite the Right attendee and Holocaust denier, is the main figure behind the coalition that’s succeeded the alt-right.

To understand the Groypers, LCRW spoke to Devin Burghart of the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights (IREHR,) which released a report in February called From Alt-Right to Groyper: White Nationalists Rebrand for 2020 and Beyond.

"[W]e looked at the ‘Groypers’ as a political force, and as a marketing and organizing strategy,” Burghart told LCRW. “Like the ‘alt-right’ before it, the Groyper mobilization is not a new social movement, but rather a flashpoint in the latest mainstreaming strategy deployed by white nationalists.”

The “America First”/ “Groyper” crowd’s ideological leaders are indeed mostly white nationalists. They include Patrick Casey, head of the neo-Nazi group Identity Evropa (now rebranded as American Identity Movement,) Vincent James of the white nationalist propaganda outlet “The Red Elephants,” and Scott Greer, a former Daily Caller editor who pseudonymously wrote for Richard Spencer’s white nationalist journal Radix.

But their most famous supporter is Michelle Malkin, a one-time darling of the more mainstream and corporate-friendly conservative movement who authored a book-length defense of interning Japanese-Americans. [Jesus Christ lol] Malkin lost her gig as a Young Americans For Freedom speaker after publicly backing Fuentes and his “Groyper Army.” She’s since doubled down. Incidentally, Malkin was supposed to speak at the University of Maine College Republicans’ invitation in January but the venue cancelled.

Malkin was thrilled with the resolution.

“AMEN AMEN AMEN: New alliance of nationalist College Republicans calls for immediate immigration moratorium to protect safety, security & economic well-being of #AmericaFirst! Do @yaf & @TPUSA (and their donors) support or oppose this common-sense resolution?” she said in a post sharing the resolution on Twitter.

“We will no longer surrender this country or its people to the false song of globalism,” the Arizona State University College Republicans said on Twitter, referencing the anti-Semitic dogwhistle.

“The immigration moratorium resolution is the clearest manifestation of the Groypers’ strategy to date,” Burghart wrote to LCRW, continuing, “Nativism and xenophobia are central to the Groyper’s white nationalist rebranding efforts.”

Burghart and IREHR found that Fuentes’s crowd is employing two main strategies. The first is “driving a wedge between the Trump camp” and billionaire-funded conservative campus groups like Turning Point USA and Young Americans for Freedom.

“If the ‘alt-right’ strategy most associated with Richard Spencer sought to pull disaffected reactionaries and misogynists outside the Republican Party into the white nationalist fold,” Burghart said, “the ‘Groyper War’ is aimed at pressing Donald Trump and Trump-backing conservatives to adopt the core issues and political framings of white nationalists in the lead-up to the 2020 election and beyond.”

Fuentes first sent his Groypers out to billionaire and foundation-backed conservative speaking events last Fall Semester. Fuentes’ goal was to challenge “Conservative Inc” talking heads like Charlie Kirk and Ben Shapiro on the issues that really matter: Anti-semitic dogwhistle gotcha questions about the Israeli military’s sinking of the U.S.S. Liberty in 1967 and calls for endorsing bigoted policy like exclusionary immigration laws.

The Groypers managed to disrupt events with Donald Trump Jr., Charlie Kirk and Fox News commentator Kimberly Guilfoyle and, as LCRW covered in detail, Shapiro spent virtually all of a speech at Stanford trying to differentiate his own bigotry from the alt-right’s/the Groypers’ and thereby disavow them.

The IREHR identified the Groypers’ second strategy as entryism, which, Burghart explains, is “gaining a place in more mainstream organizations by moderating one’s appearance and expressed values in order to further movement goals.” While college Republican clubs are nothing new, Fuentes and the Groypers latched on to a population of ambitious young right-wingers across the country and his movement is trying to establish itself on campuses.

Four of the college Republican clubs who sponsored the resolution and whose names appear on its masthead, UCLA, Arizona State, San Diego State and University of Maine explicitly brand themselves as “America First.” An apparently separate “America First Bruins” club signed on to the resolution alongside UCLA’s college Republicans. Kansas State University also has an America First student group.

“This marks the emergence of a network of groups willing to push Groyper themes on campus, attacking both ‘SJWs’ and other college Republicans who disagree about nativism,” Burghart told LCRW.

One of the most influential groups to join the Groypers are the Berkeley College Republicans (BCR.) BCR don’t explicitly brand themselves as “America First” but have a long history of aligning with Fuentes’s peers and predecessors. BCR has well-documented connections with fascists. Current president Matt Ronnau and former Vice-President Naweed Tahmas were interviewed by Identity Evropa founder Nathan Damigo for the white nationalist outlet Red Ice TV on inauguration day 2017. Then-president Troy Worden invited Milo Yiannopoulos, the Gamergate harassment king-turned Breitbart editor who wrote admiringly about the alt-right to present on campus a month later. Antifascists staged a violent shutdown of Yiannopoulos’s event, breaking windows at UC Berkeley’s Amazon store, punching and pepper-spraying people who wanted to attend Yiannopoulos’s speech. I remember watching them set a police generator on fire.

In response, the far-right began a year of staging rallies in Berkeley, one of which was used by Damigo and other white nationalists as a testing-ground for what would become the deadly Unite the Right rally that August. During Fall semester that year, Tahmas and other BCR members coordinated with local far-right activists including the Proud Boys for Yiannopoulos’s fizzled return to Berkeley. BCR members even passed out t-shirts that said “Nuke Mecca” and “Lesbians aren’t real.” Worden, Tahmas and other BCR members posed with Martin Sellner, founder of the neo-Nazi group Génération Identitaire, which received money from the Christchurch shooter. They also palled around with Kyle Chapman, founder of the now-defunct militia arm of the Proud Boys, the Fraternal Order of Alt-Knights. Worden also gushed about Génération Identitaire at The Liberty Conservative, a far-right website he was a contributor at. Coincidentally, neo-Nazi James Allsup, who used to host a podcast with Nick Fuentes, was also a contributor at The Liberty Conservative.

In February last year, most college Republican organizations in California broke off from the statewide California College Republicans (CCR) organization and formed the California Federation of College Republicans (CFCR.) The CFCR was recognized by the College Republican National Committee and with 32 chapters is now the dominant organization in the state. Ronnau told USA Today that the split was initially ideological–the old CCR represented the “traditional Conservative” wing of the movement while the new CFCR organization represents the more pro-Trump wing. Many college Republicans I spoke to in 2017 who went with the pro-Trump CFCR themselves as “Nationalists.” They associated  themselves more with former Trump advisor Steve Bannon than Trump himself. The “Nationalists” viewed their enemies within the Republican Party as the “NeoCons” wing associated with the Bush administration. These “NeoCons” apparently went with the old CCR.

“There is good reason to believe that the Groypers are attempting to take advantage of the space afforded by Donald Trump’s framing of his own presidency and administration, dating back to his 2016 electoral campaign,” Burghart said. Trump ran an explicitly nativist campaign, famously calling for a massive border wall between the U.S. and Mexico and repeatedly claimed Mexico was sending rapists and murderers across the border. He also called for a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslims entering the United States.

“Nativism and xenophobia are issues that have a) already reached the mainstream, particularly thanks to Trump and b) where their white nationalist positions find the most support,” Burghart said. “They don't have to go through all sorts of ideological contortions to make their message fit the moment.”

Burghart said that “The Groyper message of ‘Non-white immigrants bad. Expel them. Keep them all out. Protect the core white identity of the nation’ is in lock-step with” the broader pro-Trump crowd.

Groypers have gone well beyond being just “pro-Trump.” Matt Ronnau of the Berkeley College Republicans is the CFCR’s president presumably until he graduates at the end of this semester. Ronnau himself followed VDARE on Twitter until some time after an antifascist group called Berkeley Collective Safety called him out for it in January. Ronnau retweets Groyper thought leaders like Malkin and Scott Greer regularly and invited VDARE columnist Ann Coulter to speak on campus last November. If Ronnau is not personally a white nationalist, he is at least someone who spent years as part of a group of BCR members that fraternized with right-wing extremists and white nationalists and openly sympathizes with their goals. And he’s ending his last semester at Berkeley as the head of the premiere college Republican organization in the most populous state in the country.

But Ronnau is far from the only college right-winger with direct links to white nationalism. Christian Secor, president of UCLA’s America First Bruins attended AFPAC, Nick Fuentes’s counter-conference to the annual Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) gathering. He apparently interned for Michelle Malkin. Secor’s Twitter bio also says he’s a “/k/ brand ambassador.” /k/ is the weapons board on 4chan.

Jaden McNeil is not only the president of Kansas State University’s America First Students but is a minor thought leader in the Groyper movement.

From Alt-Right to Groyper notes that “Though McNeil lacks the same lengthy paper-trail of explicit white nationalism as that of Fuentes or Casey, he has already signaled his affinity with such ideas.” The report also notes that McNeil involved himself with four Unite the Right attendees: Fuentes, Tim Gionet aka Baked Alaska, white nationalist propagandist Faith Goldy and Patrick Casey of Identity Evropa. Identity Evropa’s telegram channel even listed McNeil’s telegram channel as a resource for a time.

But the point of being a college Republican is to network and move on to a career in right wing politics. On this end, the “America First” crowd have already produced a Senate candidate: Lauren Witzke in Delaware.
#AmericaFirst College Students are fighting for a chance at a better future. Great work, guys.” Witzke tweeted in response to the resolution.

“Immigration has been and will continue to be, a defining issue for the ‘Zoomer’ generation. The issue is less about the particulars of policy, but more about defining who we are as a nation in the 21st century,” Burghart told LCRW.

“Groypers are definitely gaining ground in the college Republican scene. They’ve made those gains by relentlessly attacking ‘establishment’ conservatives (what they call ‘Conservative Inc.’), and recruiting amongst the disenchanted ranks of establishment conservative groups like Turning Point USA,” he said.

“In 2020, the Groypers also reached a significant milestone when they moved from online army to building a real-life network,” Burghart said, concluding, “The Groypers represent a growing threat, and it will require creative new approaches to defeat them.”



PORTLAND: "Q anon is currently at the bike bridge off of failing and Missouri and is currently doing a banner drop" #DefendPDX ...