The name ‘Antipodean Resistance’ (AR) has been in the news again recently, both on account of its conducting so-called ‘training camps’ in Victoria and Queensland but also as a result of it spreading homophobic propaganda at the University of Tasmania. Most of the reportage on the group has slotted into the “SHOCK! HORROR!” category, and revealed bugger-all about its origins, membership, or relation to the broader milieu from which it emerged.
This is par for the course when it comes to media reportage on the antics of the far-right in Australia, and is to be expected. To cite one example, ‘What is Australia’s white supremacist group, Antipodean Resistance?’ (Olivia Lambert, news.com.au, September 7, 2017): ‘AUSTRALIA’S secret collective of neo-Nazis is spreading shocking messages of hate, yet chillingly claims its members are growing in number.’ Further:
The Daily Telegraph reports the neo-Nazis are now being monitored by the ASIO out of fear the extremist group could turn violent.
“Members of these groups are diverse and have different agendas, including extreme right-wing and extreme left-wing ideologies,” ASIO said to a parliamentary review into the expenditure of security agencies.
In other words: ASIO is undertaking the work it always has.
A few more preliminary remarks are in order:
First, AR is not unique, and neo-Nazism isn’t ‘new’ (in this sense): there have been neo-Nazis running about the place since Hitler killed Hitler, and there likely always will be. One of its contemporary expressions may be found in the AltRight; The Beast Reawakens by Martin A. Lee (Little, Brown and Co., 1997) explores the re-emergence of Nazism in Germany in the aftermath of WWII and its renaissance in various territories in Europe, the United States and elsewhere: you can read the introduction to Lee’s 1997 work here; of related interest is David Bird’s Nazi Dreamtime, ‘the ground-breaking story of extreme-right, ultra-nationalist thought and practice in Australia in the period immediately before and during the Second World War. It focuses on those native-born Australians who were attracted to the ideology of Nazism in Germany from 1933.’
Thirdly, all the reportage on AR thus far has failed to recognise its links to and origins within the so-called patriotic movement. Reclaim Australia — along with the United Patriots Front (UPF), True Blue Crew (TBC), and various other extreme-right satellites — has provided precisely the warm and nurturing environment in which an explicitly neo-Nazi grouplet like Antipodean Resistance has been able to gestate. Further, no reportage has noted that the group has publicly stated that it models itself upon relevant groups overseas: National Action (NA) in the UK and the Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM) in Scandinavia in particular.
In this context, it’s worth noting that in December 2016 NA was proscribed in the UK as a ‘terrorist’ organisation, while most recently 11 suspected members of the neo-Nazi group have been arrested on suspicion of terror offences across England and Wales (National Action: 11 suspected members of banned neo-Nazi terror group arrested in England and Wales, Lizzie Dearden, The Independent, September 27, 2017). As for the NRM, in July three of its members were sentenced to jail for ‘carrying out bomb attacks on a left-wing bookstore and an asylum center and an attempted bombing of a second asylum center’; last year, another NRM member, ‘Jesse Torniainen, was sentenced to two years in jail for an aggravated assault that allegedly led to a man’s death at a Nordic Resistance Movement demonstration in Helsinki’, while Finnish police have applied to have the organisation proscribed in that country.
In Australia, the NRM’s kissing cousins, the ‘Soldiers of Odin’, are compared to the Guardian Angels by The Age.
The group has its origins on tumblr and on neo-Nazi website ‘Iron March’ (IM), with two young fellows from Melbourne, one using the handle ‘kehlsteinhaus’ (‘Eagle’s Nest’: a Nazi-era building erected atop the summit of the Kehlstein, a rocky outcrop that rises above the Obersalzberg near the town of Berchtesgaden), and the other ‘Xav’, forming its core.
On March 2, 2016, ‘kehlsteinhaus’ wrote by way of introduction to IM that he was 22yo, unemployed, and interested in creating an Australian version of NA. Originally from Perth, he now resides in Melbourne. ‘kehlsteinhaus’ also claims to have been a ‘communist’, a ‘democratic socialist’, to have attended meetings and rallies organised by Socialist Alternative, but most recently to have been involved with the UPF. And, like Blair Cottrell and Neil Erikson, he also claims to be a member or former member of the Melbourne-based neo-Nazi grouplet ‘Nationalist Alternative’ (NAlt). According to ‘kehlsteinhaus’, ‘Blair and Thomas [Sewell] are full 14/88. I’ve met and talked to them in person many times. They’ve recently converted [Chris] Shortis, who now thinks Hitler was right about pretty much everything. [Scott] Moreland [sic] is shit. [Dennis] Huts is a mixed bag.’
‘kehlsteinhaus’ also maintained several tumblrs, among them: antipodeansolutions, nedkellyofficial, the-kangaroos-nest and thesagesworld (now closed, but traces of which remain) and often skipped from one to the other. The launch of AR in late 2016 meant that he transferred his online activities from tumblr to IM and the grouplet’s own site (launched in November 2016) and Twitter account (created in February 2017). His parting message:
In September 2016, ‘kehlsteinhaus’ also stated that he does volunteer work at a church and dreamed of being a politician, academic or teacher — or possibly a member of a right-wing death squad. Further, the aspiring acdemic and/or RWDS member claimed to have an uncle and a sister who are married to ‘Indians’ (with whom they — gasp! — have children), not to drive a car but to use public transport, being 5’10” or 5’11” and going to Wollongong in October 2016 in order to attend his cousin’s wedding.
The boys made their first step into LARPing as an organised grouplet in July 2016 at a tiny ‘Blue Lives Matter’ counter-rally in Melbourne, where they joined Blair Cottrell (cleverly disguised as ‘Bruce’) in order to hold a brief rally before being told to shoo by police. According to kehlsteinhaus:
I’m not fully certain on everyone, but some are ‘from’ the UPF, Ironmarch, [The Right Stuff], a uni group I know little about, and skinhead groups. There’s actually quite a lot of us, and I thoroughly recommend starting things in your city. We can’t do this all by ourselves. Two of the people there flew over from Adelaide for goodness’s sake. … I was carrying the GO HOME SOROS DRONES sign.
Prior to this, he and his crew (above) also attended the TBC anti-leftist counter-rally in Coburg, for which he provided a terribly exciting account on his tumblr of how the TBC & Co beat to a pulp their anti-fascist opponents. On that occasion, most of the boys appear to have been wearing merch with the Wolfsangel (AKA the Dopplehaken or Wolf’s-Hook emblem). Old School bonehead and ‘Combat 18’ member Dan Newman (AKA Danny Krieger) was also in amongst the boys on that day, and has worn the fashionable ensemble on other occasions.
On his own or in the company of others, ‘kehlsteinhaus’ also attended: the UPF rally in Melbourne in November 2015 (‘I arrived early because I wanted to finally meet Blair, after following his progress since he began … I met Thomas Sewell, who I am a bit of a fan of … I doubt I made the best first impression on Thomas, who probably saw me as just another supporter (which I am determined not to be)’; the failed launch of ‘Fortitude’ in Bendigo in February 2016 and; the TBC flag rally in Melbourne in June 2016 (at which Blair ‘made his most moderate speech I’ve heard that was thematically all over the place, as well as containing yet more attempts at trying to look non racist in front of the media (for those not aware, Blair Cottrell is the leader of the group, and a National Socialist, which makes the whole thing quite frustrating)’. On most of these occasions ‘kehlsteinhaus’ was masked, but he did post one photo to tumblr in which he is not:
Perhaps someone out there recognises him? (Keeping in mind he may be 1/364th Aboriginal.)
The other key figure in AR is another young fellow who posts on IM as ‘Xav’. ‘Xav’ joined the IM forum in May 2015, describing himself as a 22yo national socialist of English and German descent, a Uni dropout who lives in Melbourne, and as someone who was, like many of the other AR boys, ‘radicalised’ online. His favourite authors are dead nazis William Pierce (author of The Turner Diaries) and George Lincoln Rockwell.
Another tumblr radical (his blog now also deleted), borderprotectionist is an older Melbourne resident who more closely approximates the Old School nazi stereotype: crudely racist and with shit tatts. He also has children, it appears, and likes to play and to pose with guns.
Another IM user, Vandal Nationalist joined in April 2016 and described himself at the time as a 17yo and of British and German descent. A self-described edgy, atheist and leftist gamer at 14:
I started playing a lot of Company of Heroes and that got me interested in World War 2. I always liked the Germans better since I have German heritage and was/still am learning German. I wanted to learn more so I started watching the good goy World War 2 documentaries on Youtube until I stumbled upon Adolf Hitler: the greatest story never told. I’ve been a bad goy ever since. I normally frequent 8ch.net/pol and therightstuff.biz forums but I decided to join the Iron March forum after listening to all of Fascism 101 videos on YouTube. They’re excellent but I wish there were more on there. I’m interested in joining any Fascist/National Socialist group in Melbourne.
Very oddly, ‘Vandal Nationalist’ posted several photos purporting to be of himself (which I won’t republish here) on IM.
Finally, earlier this year a geek was spotted chucking up AR stickers in Carlton and Fitzroy. This fine young fellow would appear to be J***** H****** — a very naughty boy, and someone whose parents do not share his love of Mister Hitler.
NB. I’ll probably be adding more detail to this post in time, but for various reasons — not least because a number of the geeks in question are young and their parents are not. happy. with their career choices — what this consists of is not entirely up to me.
That said, having been arrested and charged with terrorism offences in August 2015, there wasn’t much news, apart perhaps from the fact that police allege that Galea was planning on blowing up the Resistance Centre (Socialist Alliance) in the CBD and the Melbourne Anarchist Club in Northcote (!).
Magistrate Charlie Rozencwajg heard Mr Galea tried to get a contact — now a prosecution witness — to buy fertiliser, and that he had adopted the Anarchists Cookbook to become a “patriots cookbook”, which he planned to distribute.
“There’s a bit of irony, isn’t it, in that he’s against anarchists,” Mr Rozencwajg said.
According to Kieran Bennett, who also attended the hearing, the bulk of the police case appears to rely on telephone intercepts, however the case also involves the testimony of witnesses; Galea’s next court dates are in April and May.
Galea has been linked to a range of ‘patriot’ groups. He was an admin on the Reclaim Australia Melbourne page, supported and attended Reclaim rallies as well as established the RA Media website and Facebook page. (The site’s “International Allies” are Breitbart, Britain First, Knights Templar International, PEGIDA and UKIP.) He was also closely associated with the United Patriots Front, True Blue Crew and Patriots Defence League of Australia and has even been linked to neo-Nazi groupuscule ‘Combat 18’.
Of course, Galea reserved his biggest props for the TBC, and was terribly excited by their activities, especially when they organised an anti-leftist rally in Coburg in May. A handful of TBC gronks were arrested and charged with various minor offences as a result of their brave, racist expedition and this week one, Nicholas Edward Abbott, got a slap on the wrist for being naughty; another TBC-aligned meathead, Mathew Wingrave, has also been reprimanded by The Law.
Since their last anti-Muslim rally in Melton in August (where the TBC methgoblins got into a shouting match with the ‘Soldiers Of Odin’) and a previous flagwit rally in Melbourne in June (one of Galea’s last public appearances), the wheels seem to have fallen off the TBC hate bus, with at least three of its members, including its leader, Kane Miller, being either convicted or accused of domestic violence and, in Miller’s case, ‘financial impropriety’ (ie, running off with his supporter’s money). But whether or not the boys resurrect themselves as the ‘True Blue Crew’, capitulate to Blair Cottrell’s Führerprinzip, or create some other motley assortment of thugs, it’s highly likely that they’ll continue fighting the menace of the Islamic State from the safety of their keyboards.
In which context, two things: 1) NEVER READ THE COMMENTS; 2) I understand that police will be releasing images of the man captured on CCTV.
Finally, and briefly, Blair Cottrell (United Patriots Front), Neil Erikson (‘Australian Settlers Rebellion’) and Chris Shortis (Australia First Party) are due in court in March next year to face charges of racial and religious vilification (inter alia) as a result of their media stunt in Bendigo in October last year. In connection with the case, for some reason — the charges were laid several months ago — Cottrell appeared on Ten News last week (December 15):
The lying neo-Nazi’s appearance resulted in more likes for the UPF Facebook page and presumably further donations towards the fuehrer’s legal defence. In the meantime, Shortis — who recently had his gun licence revoked — is appealing for funds via the Australia First Party while Erikson has declared that, presumably in an attempt to provide some comic relief, he’ll be representing himself in court. Sadly, Shermon Burgess, the other half of ASR, has received a letter from Sutherland Shire Council claiming $170,287.58 in costs incurred following the legal battle over the Cronulla Riot Re-enactment of last year.
In June 2015 I wrote A (very) brief guide to the Australian far right, a summary of most (but not all) of those groups and projects which I think could reasonably be placed in this category. Eighteen months later and as 2016 draws to a close, I thought it appropriate to update it. New entries are marked with an asterisk, and where appropriate old entries have been updated to take into account developments since mid-2015. Otherwise: Facebook is awash with hundreds of pages and groups dedicated to propagating racism, fascism, xenophobia, Islamophobia and White nationalism and I’ve not bothered to detail any but a handful of these; a few articles have appeared in the interim which provide some insight into the far right and White supremacist milieu in Australia, including: Extremism taking us to dark places, Paul Toohey, news.com.au, June 18, 2016, Far-right fringe raises profile by reclaiming immigration debate, John Lyons, The Australian, August 8, 2015 and Inside the strange dynamic of Reclaim Australia’s rallies, Martin McKenzie-Murray, The Saturday Paper, July 25, 2015.
A long-running project centred on Gerald Fredrick Töben and based, as the name suggests, in Adelaide. The Institute promotes Holocaust denial and (a very specialised form of) ‘historical revisionism’.
Anti-Antifa Australia (AAA)
Anti-Antifa Australia was a project of neo-Nazi skinhead and Brisbane resident Chris Smith. Smith has a criminal record for robbery and assault and was a key figure in the now dissolved bonehead gang Volksfront (see below). AAA was an attempt to monitor and expose anti-fascists in Australia, details of which were published on Smith’s blog. The AAA blog ceased updating in March 2015 and its Facebook page, after a few twists and turns, was eventually turned over to Geelong neo-Nazi (and ex-PUP candidate) Buddy Rojek.
*Antipodean Resistance (AR)
A new kid on the neo-Nazi bloc, AR evolved on tumblr and made a splash in October when the boys claim they plastered the Hawthorn campus of Swinburne University in homophobic propaganda. In early December, they threw up racist posters at the University of Melbourne. Modelled on National Action in the UK, and closely associated with other boys on the altright in Melbourne, it will presumably seek further publicity through staging similarly provocative stunts. Member/s attended a number of nationalist rallies in 2015–2016.
AFP is the largest and most well-established of the far-right groups, one dedicated inter alia to the resurrection of a White Australia policy. Founded in 1996 by former Labor MP Graeme Campbell, AFP is a registered political party and in 2016 the AEC also confirmed the Eureka flag as its official logo. Dr James Saleam is the party’s current leader, a position he assumed a few years after being let out of prison for organising a shotgun assault upon the home of Eddie Funde (then the African National Congress representative in Australasia). Previously, Saleam was the leader of neo-Nazi group National Action and in the late 1960s/early 1970s a member of the Australian Nazi Party. The party regularly contests elections, with generally meagre results, and its HQ is in Tempe in Sydney — where it has the largest following. Two AFP members have been elected to local council (Bruce Preece in Adelaide and Maurice Girotto in Penrith – both resigned their memberships following their elections). Saleam and other party members frequently post on Stormfront (the world’s leading neo-Nazi/White supremacist website) and occasionally on Daily Stormer (another US-based neo-Nazi site). In 2015, AFP absorbed the rump of the One Nation Party in WA.
*Australian Coalition of Nationalists (ACON)
The formation of the Australian Coalition of Nationalists was announced in October 2016. It consists of the Australia First Party, Australian Protectionist Party and Nationalist Alternative; the Eureka Youth League and the Hellenic Nationalists of Australia are considered ‘associate’ groups. The coalition represents an attempted reconsolidation of White nationalist and national socialist organisations in Australia.
Australian Defence League (ADL)
The ADL formed within the space of a year following the establishment of the English Defence League in 2009. Gaining only a fraction of the support the EDL did, the ADL has undergone numerous splits, fractures and changes in leadership, but of those who’ve nominated themselves its leader Martin Brennan and Ralph Cerminara – along with Nathan Abela – are probably the best-known, along with Shermon Burgess (‘The Great Aussie Patriot’). There have been dozens of Facebook pages created by and for the ADL and it exists as a very loose network of anti-Muslim activists. Sporadic public rallies in Melbourne and Sydney have been poorly-attended but the group has been very active on social media. See : Who Are The Australian Defence League?, New Matilda, January 29, 2014. As of December 2016, the ADL remains a moribund institution.
Australian League of Rights (ALOR)
The Grand Old Man of Australian fascism, the ALOR has been around for a very long time, successfully defending God, Queen & Country from the ravages of International Communism. The group’s weekly newsletter may be read online and is useful for gaining some insight into the ‘Lunar Right’ and the many … er … ‘interesting’ characters which populate its ranks.
Australian Liberty Alliance (ALA)
A creation of the Q Society (see below), the ALA was formally registered with the AEC in July 2015. Modelled on Geert Wilders’ Dutch party — Wilders attended the ALA’s official launch in Perth in October 2015 — it fielded a number of candidates at the 2016 federal election but failed to attract much support, with the anti-Muslim vote largely being attracted to ONP. In September 2016 the ALA announced it would be going into a temporary hiatus.
Australian Patriots Defence Movement (APDM)
Established by Darren Beatle Bailey-Morris, the APDM is (was) a short-lived, Brisbane-based project very similar to the ADL and PDLA. The APDM is largely defunct but may continue to eke out an existence online and has most recently been invoked as a supporting organisation to the UPF. As of December 2016, it remains defunct.
Australian Protectionist Party (APP)
The APP formed as a split from AFP in 2007 when one of its Sydney branches – the two most prominent members of which were Nicholas (Hunter) Folkes and Darrin Hodges – elected to defect. It was active for a few years, producing propaganda and holding events, but is now largely moribund. Tasmanian Andrew Phillips is its leader.
In 2016, the APP joined the AFP, NAlt and Golden Dawn (AKA Hellenic Nationalists of Australia) in forming the Australian Coalition of Nationalists. Hodges has retired from political activity while Folkes split from the APP to form the Party for Freedom (see below).
*Australian Settlers Rebellion (ASR)
In essence, the Facebook page of Shermon Burgess and Neil Erikson. Launched in August 2016, the ASR is yet to organise any activities in meatspace and is mostly dedicated to promoting the pair’s views and opinions.
*Australians Resistance Network (ARN)
Originally established by Neil Erikson as ‘Generation Identity Australia’, ARN is one of many Facebook pages dedicated to anti-Muslim, anti-leftist and White nationalist propaganda.
A tiny neo-Nazi grouplet based in Bundaberg (QLD), largely active online and seemingly consisting of Damien Pearce, Wil Herbener and a handful of other boneheads.
Blood & Honour (B&H)
B&H is a neo-Nazi musical network, originally established in England in the late 1980s, and has been operating in Australia for over 20 years. Activities are generally confined to selling neo-Nazi muzak and merch (via 9% Productions) and holding gigs. It functions essentially as an adjunct to the SCHS (see below).
Christian Identity (CI)
CI is a tiny sect on the fringes of the far right with a handful of adherents and a minuscule social media presence. One, James Lawrence, popped up at the May 31, 2015 UPF rally and attended subsequent nationalist rallies. According to the ECAJ (Report on Antisemitism in Australia 2016): Christian Identity churches, unlike almost all other denominations of Christianity, place the concepts of race and racial purity high on their priorities. They are expressly anti-Jewish from a medieval Christian theological perspective. There are several Identity type churches. The one with the most prolific and popular website is Bible Believers.
A tiny, bizarr0 White supremacist kvlt. ‘Pastor’ Ken Cratchley is its chief propagandist in Australia.
Citizens Electoral Council (CEC)
The CEC is the name under which the LaRouchite kvlt travels Down Under. Seemingly most active in Melbourne, the group presents a range of entertainingly batshit theories about the world Lyndon LaRouche inhabits. It contested the 2016 Australian federal election and gathered a tiny fraction of votes.
Combat 18 (C18)
C18 is another foreign import, having its origins in England in the late 1980s. The group was established in order to protect B&H gigs and other fascist events from disruption by anti-fascists and has a rather bloody history. It’s widely suspected that it was infiltrated by British intelligence on account of the close relationship between C18 and Ulster paramilitaries. In Australia, the ‘brand’ has been adopted by a number of different neo-Nazis including in WA, where C18 was responsible for a poorly-executed attack upon a mosque (see Bradley Trappitt). AFAIK, its only active ‘branch’ currently is in Melbourne under Patrick O’Sullivan. As of December 2016, O’Sullivan seems to have been joined by a handful of others, media has reported on various instances of C18 propaganda appearing around Melbourne and several boneheads in the orbit of C18 have attended various nationalist rallies during the course of 2015–2016.
A bizarre, White supremacist ‘religion’ established in the US some decades ago. It’s undergone numerous, often violent splits: its main exponent in Australia is Colin Campbell (Adelaide) and Patrick O’Sullivan (Melbourne). Scott Harrison was a ‘Reverend’ in the ‘church’ for many years before joining the Young Liberals.
Eureka Youth League (EYL)
The EYL is AFP’s putative youth wing and its ideology mirrors that of the AFP. It’s largely inactive, and is currently presided over by (and may only consist of) a right-wing youth from Canberra, Matthew Grant. Grant is a Presbyterian, a White nationalist, an anti-Semite, and spoke at an anti-Muslim rally in Bendigo in October 2015.
European Australian Civil Rights League (EARL)
A one-man band established a few years ago by Melbourne-based neo-Nazi activist Neil Erikson. EARL later morphed into NRG (see below). Erikson has a criminal conviction for harassing a Melbourne rabbi and was close to the ‘Crazy White Boys’, a short-lived neo-Nazi group responsible for badly beating Vietnamese student Minh Duong in 2012. As of December 2016, EARL remains defunct.
*Expel the Parasite
A neo-Nazi website run by 30-something Brett Light. Light identifies with Christian Identity and there are no prizes for guessing who he believes the ‘parasites’ are.
Full Blooded Skips (FBS)
A White yoof gang based in Melbourne which emerged shortly after the SCS (see below), the FBS was closely-linked to NRG and a shifting network of neo-Nazi skinheads. Several FBS members were present at the April 4 Reclaim Australia rally in Melbourne and the May 31 UPF rally in Richmond. As of December 2016 it remains moribund.
Golden Dawn (GD) / Hellenic Nationalists of Australia (HNA)
Golden Dawn is the Australian branch of the Greek neo-Nazi party. Its chief spokesperson in Australia is Iggy Gavrilidis while other organisers include Christos Cakouros in Adelaide, Christina Tsimtsirids and Sofia Krokos in Melbourne, Elias Vamiakis in Sydney, Peter Poulos in Queensland and Nikolaos Mitsakis in Tasmania. GD has a very small support base, chiefly concentrated in Melbourne and Sydney, and over the last few years has raised funds for its parent body and organised a handful of protests in conjunction with AFP and a smattering of local neo-Nazis and fascists. In December 2015, GD registered in NSW as an incorporated association named Hellenic Nationalists of Australia. GD held its first national conference in Sydney on October 28, 2016 at which over a hundred supporters attended along with Saleam of AFP and a handful of Russian fascists.
Klub Nation/Klub Naziya
A bizarr0 groupuscule based in Sydney. At one point KN attempted to infiltrate and take over the Humanist Society of NSW. It didn’t work, but the nazis had a red-hot go. Presumably, its membership continues to be active but not publicly.
Ku Klux Klan (KKK)
With an obvious indebtedness to the US, in numerous, generally short-lived permutations and combinations, the KKK has been a minor player on the far right for decades. In one form or another, it continues to generate occasional stories and the image of the KKK is regularly invoked in various rural and regional settings, but the organisation itself is largely moribund.
*Love Australia Or Leave (LAOL)
The creation of TV personality Kim Vuga (Go Back To Where You Come From, SBS), the party achieved registration in October 2016. Vuga attended and spoke at many nationalist rallies in 2015-2016. Contesting the 2016 federal election as a Senate candidate in Queensland, Vuga received 172 votes (0.01%). LAOL is unlikely to challenge ONP for hegemony over the (White) nationalist vote.
Nationalist Alternative (NAlt)
NAlt is a neo-Nazi group which has its origins in anti-Muslim agitation in Melbourne. Its leader is Mark Hootsen, who has travelled to the US in order to receive political training with Stormfront. NAlt was present at the April 4 Reclaim Australia rally in Melbourne. As of December 2016 its activities are largely confined to the keyboard, though the group can boast of having produced figures such as Blair Cottrell and Thomas Sewell of the UPF (see below) and Neil Erikson.
NRG is EARL rebranded and since the beginning of 2015 worked closely with Reclaim Australia, UPF and Shermon Burgess in order to produce agitprop promoting these groups and individuals.
NRG has now essentially collapsed and forms one iteration among many centred on Erikson. Other stillborn projects include Generation Identity Australia (now known as Australians Resistance Network), Aussie Patriot Army (deceased) and United Patriots Front – Originals (defunct).
New Right (/National Anarchists) (NR)
The New Right emerged in the mid- to late-2000s as a project of Sydney-based fascist Welf Herfurth – Herfurth envisaged NR as the theoretical expression of ‘national anarchism’, a tendency on the far-right with origins in the UK fascist movement. It has produced some propaganda, staged a few publicity stunts, and attracted a handful of neo-Nazis (eg, Bradley Trappitt) and other fascists to its banner but is currently largely inactive. As of December 2016, it remains a dead horse in Australia.
One Nation Party (ONP)
See : Pauline Hanson. Initially a deeply attractive formation for the far right, the history of ONP since the late ’90s is long and complex. Its activists belong to a broader far-right milieu, with some degree of overlap with groups like AFP. The possibility of a reconsolidation of the far right in AFP remains, though is somewhat complicated by Hanson’s periodic political revivals.
ONP’s success at the 2016 federal election, when it won four Senate seats — Pauline Hanson and Malcolm Roberts (QLD), Brian Burston (NSW) and Rod Culleton (WA) — has helped revive its fortunes. By the same token, ONP’s success has meant failure for the ALA, and ONP is now the primary expression of politically-organised anti-Muslim sentiment. Finally, despite a deserved reputation for harbouring anti-Semites, ONP was invited to hold a meeting in Caulfield (Melbourne) in December 2016. In the face of local Jewish opposition, the two Senators invited to speak — Pauline Hanson and Malcolm ‘Jew World Order’ Roberts — elected to cancel the circus.
Party for Freedom (PFF)
Modelled on Geert Wilders’ Dutch party, PFF is what happened when the Sydney branch of APP decided to hold a public rally in mid-2012 demanding that the Australian government blow up refugee boats. APP disavowed the action and so the Sydney branch of APP decamped to form PFF. It holds regular events in Sydney but has little discernible support outside of it. Is chief and seemingly only spokesperson is Nicholas (Hunter) Folkes, a publicity whore who delights in provocative stunts (see : Cronulla). In April 2016 the PFF travelled to Melbourne to protest outside a halal expo and got a clip around their ears for their troubles; in November 2016 they returned to Melbourne and the suburb of Eltham to protest a refugee housing project. Joined by the SOO and TBC (see below) they were again defeated by a combination of butterflies and unicorns.
Patriotic Youth League (PYL)
The PYL was established in the early 2000s as the yoof wing of AFP. It was not a successful venture and collapsed a few years later to be replaced by the EYL.
Patriots Defence League of Australia (PDLA)
An ADL splinter, the PDLA is largely a Facebook creation, with numerous, very small branches across the country which hold semi-regular, private meetings. In its latest incarnation, the PDLA was established as an incorporated association (Australian Defence League) which later changed its name to PDLA. Mark Lenthall, TJ (Torin) O’Brien and Daniel Sutcliffe are its current office bearers. Also prominent is John Oliver of Newcastle, who helped organise and spoke at the Reclaim Australia rally in Newcastle on April 4. In November 2016 its Melbourne organiser, Shannon Wallace, deaded.
The Q Society is an anti-Muslim propaganda group which functions as the ideological ballast for the anti-Muslim movement in Australia and largely consists of educated, middle class, bigots. See : International guests Q up for bigotry, Andy Fleming, Overland, March 10, 2014.
Reclaim Australia (RA)
Largely the brainchild of online activist and (former) ADL member Shermon Burgess (‘The Great Aussie Patriot’), RA was the first anti-Muslim project of its kind to generate anything more than minimal public interest and to successfully mobilise anti-Muslim networks. Its April 4, 2015 rallies attracted several thousand supporters who attended over a dozen rallies across the country — to which the largest and most effective opposition was in Melbourne. Following April 4, RA split and Burgess established the UPF (see below). RA’s next series of anti-Muslim rallies took place on the weekend of July 18/19 while a third and final round of protests organised by RA took place in November 2015. In general terms, RA attracted every Tom, Dick & Harry ‘patriot’, (White) nationalist, racist, fascist, neo-Nazi and xenophobe in the country, but experienced a good deal of internal difficulties, with a rump faction led by John Oliver eventually going on to establish itself as an incorporated association in NSW in January 2016. The majority faction intends on rallying in Sydney on January 26, 2017.
Another one-man band, Restore Australia is the political vehicle of Queensland-based anti-Muslim activist Mike Holt. Holt/Restore Australia is part of a shifting network of anti-Muslim activists, largely active online on sites like Facebook. Last year Holt wrognly claimed that I was a man named Robert Godino (with predictable results).
*Right Wing Resistance (Australia) (RWRAU)
With origins in Aotearoa/New Zealand, the Australian branch of RWR has a very patchy record, assembling a mere handful of neo-Nazi skinheads under its banner; Kyle Chapman, a veteran neo-Nazi activist, was RWRNZ’s fuehrer until his resignation in September 2016. Members of RWR in Australia have distributed propaganda and attended a small number of nationalist rallies over the course of 2015–2016, but its only real claim to fame was in September 2016 when its putative 2IC, Ricky White, was arrested and charged with the arson of a church in Taree (NSW).
RUAP is the political vehicle of Christian fundamentalist Pastor Danny Nalliah (‘Catch the Fire Ministeries’), a man who is perhaps best known for blaming the Victorian bushfires of 2009 on the state government’s decision to decriminalise abortion. In 2015, RUAP entered into a loose alliance first with RA and then the UPF, the Christian fundamentalists happily joining neo-Nazis on stage to promote hatred of Muslims and refugees. Other than Nalliah, deputy leader and Casey councillor Rosalie Crestani has been very active in promoting bigotry (see : Rosalie Crestani really is deplorable, Kieran’s Review, November 28, 2016).
*Soldiers of Odin (SOO)
Founded by Finnish neo-Nazi activist Mika Rata in late 2015, the Soldiers of Odin formed a branch in Melbourne in early 2016 and the organisation claims support in a number of other cities, though none seem to be especially active. Its President is Jason Moore, a former activist with the PDLA. See also : Who are the Soldiers of Odin?, Kieran’s Review, October 10, 2016.
Southern Cross Hammerskins (SCHS)
SCHS is the Australian franchise of neo-Nazi skinhead gang the Hammerskins. It was introduced into Australia 20+ years ago via Scott McGuinness, the lead singer in neo-Nazi band Fortress (now defunct). The Hammerskins last came to world attention when in 2012 one of its members, Wade Michael Page, shot dead six worshippers at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin. The SCHS organises several social events a year.
Southern Cross Soldiers (SCS)
A short-lived yoof gang from Melbourne which came to public attention following the police killing of Tyler Cassidy in 2008. The name of the group was re-invoked by Shermon Burgess in 2015 as a supporter of the UPF but as of December 2016 it remains deaded.
Squadron 88 (S88)
S88 was a tiny neo-Nazi group based in Sydney. Its titular head was Ross ‘The Skull’ May, an ageing bonehead and one of Dr Jim Saleam’s closest allies. S88 organised a protest against the construction of a mosque in Penrith and obtained some small media traction via stuffing letterboxes in Sydney with badly-composed anti-Semitic tracts.
*True Blue Crew (TBC)
The True Blue Crew formed during late 2015 and early 2016, largely in response to anti-Muslim campaigns in Bendigo and Melton. Building upon pre-existing social networks, the TBC made its formal debut in Coburg in May 2016, where it attempted but failed to disrupt an ‘anti-racist’ rally. It organised two further rallies — a flag-waving event in Melbourne in June and an anti-Muslim rally in Melton in August — but most recently has been subject to internal dissent following the conviction of several of its members for ‘domestic violence’ and allegations of abuse and financial impropriety by its leader, Kane Miller. Its most infamous supporter is alleged ‘terrorist’ Phill Galea. See also : Galea intended to bomb “left wing premises” according to police, Kieran’s Review, November 1, 2016.
United Australian Front (UAF)
The UAF was a new player on the far right bloc in July 2015, bringing together a number of the leading organisers of RA and UPF. Its members were present at the RA rally on April 4 and UPF rally on May 31 in Melbourne sporting UAF merch. The establishment of the UAF was largely the responsibility of UPF member Kris0 Richardson; the UAF was eclipsed by the emergence of the UPF when it formed in early- to mid- 2015. Around mid-2016, the UAF Facebook page re-badged itself as ‘Order 15’ and now promotes neo-Nazism and White supremacism. (Richardson states that he is no longer responsible for the page.)
United Patriots Front (UPF)
Established in April/May 2015, the United Patriots Front emerged as a splinter group within the network of anti-Muslim activists known as ‘Reclaim Australia’, bringing together neo-Nazis, fascists, White supremacists and Christian fundamentalists and conceiving of itself as the Antipodean expression of various European fascist parties and movements. It organised an unsuccessful rally in Richmond on May 31, 2015 to protest socialism which attracted around 50-70 participants. On June 27 2015, the UPF staged a tiny rally outside ABC HQ in Melbourne to protest Islam and the presence of Zaky Mallah on the previous week’s episode of Q&A. Members present were Troy Bloodstone, Warren Broadhead, Blair Cottrell, Neil Erikson, Kris0 Richardson, Chris Shortis, Thomas Sewell and Linden Watson.
Since then, the UPF has staged a number of other media stunts, harassed left-wing activists and institutions, and organised a number of rallies. While the group’s Facebook page has a relatively large number of likes (as of this date, over 83,000), in terms of its mobilising capacity it seems to have peaked in late 2015, when two anti-Muslim rallies in Bendigo in August and October attracted many hundreds of supporters. In February 2016, the UPF embarked upon a tour of Toowoomba (QLD), Orange (NSW) and Bendigo (VIC) in order to recruit members to its political party, ‘Fortitude’. The tour failed to attract sufficient interest and members and the party remains stillborn.
Subject to many ups and downs over the course of its existence, the UPF in Melbourne is now largely reduced to its neo-Nazi leader, Blair Cottrell, his sidekick, Thomas Sewell, and a small number of hangers-on. It also has a presence in Perth, where Dennis Huts and Kevin Coombes (AKA ‘Elijah Jacobson’) constitute its leadership. Formerly prominent UPF members Shermon Burgess, Neil Erikson and Chris Shortis have all left the organisation, Burgess and Erikson currently constituting the ASR with Shortis joining the Australia First Party in mid-2016. Cottrell, Erikson and Shortis are all due in court in March 2017, charged with a number of offences including racial and religious vilification. The charges were laid as a result of a stunt in Bendigo to promote a UPF rally.
*United Nationalists Australia (UNA)
A blog and Facebook page that has taken on the functions of the defunct AAA and WLT blog and Facebook pages. Closely-aligned to AFP, it features the writings of AFP member and Daily Stormer writer Nathan Sykes (AKA ‘Hamish Patton’) and a handful of others.
VF is (was) another neo-Nazi skinhead organisation, a US import which was active for several years. Its parent body in the US was declared dissolved after the massacre at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin by VF associate Wade Michael Page. Its principal activist is (was) Chris Smith (Anti-Antifa Australia) and while active VF worked closely with the NR (Welf Herfurth). As of December 2016, VF remains defunct.
White Pride Coalition of Australia (WPCA)
Chiefly of historical interest, the WPCA was established in the early 2000s as a coalition of neo-Nazi and White supremacist groups. It was eventually disbanded but briefly re-emerged in 2014 as a Facebook page before disappearing again. Prominent members include(d) neo-Nazis Peter Campbell (Sydney) and Jim Perren (Brisbane). Both men were responsible for the ‘Whitelaw Towers’ blog.
Women for Aryan Unity (WAU)
In Australia, WAU is a tiny group very closely associated with the SCHS. Recently, it raised funds to support the Azov battalion in the Ukraine, to which many neo-Nazis and other fascists across Europe have been drawn.
*Whitelaw Towers (WLT)
A long-running blog that shut up shop at the beginning of 2016, shortly after wrognly declaring that this blog was authored by a Monash academic, Rob Sparrow. Its two principal authors were Peter Campbell and Jim Perren, later supplemented by the efforts of Nathan Sykes. Campbell died a few years ago while Perren had a brief association with the UPF and Fortitude, helping them to organise a rally in Toowoomba and even being assigned a role by the UPF in Queensland: Perren has since repudiated the UPF.
Established in May 2015, XYZ is a website posing as a news organisation and is explicitly pitched against the ABC, which is understood to be a purveyor of ‘Cultural Marxism’. Its contributors are young Tories who share similar concerns with the altright and partisans of ‘Traditionalism’.
The Age article contains a Channel 7 News report which states that Galea attended the May 31, 2015 United Patriots Front (UPF) anti-leftist rally in Richmond armed with a 25cm kitchen knife; ‘according to Federal police that was just the beginning of his violent plan’. (Incidentally, the protest was a bizarre attempt to remove Yarra councillor and socialist Stephen Jolly from office. Happily enough, Jolly was re-elected to his position on the weekend.)
Galea is scheduled to be back in court on December 19.
A few points:
In addition to being linked to Reclaim Australia (Galea attended their protests and claimed to have been an admin on one of their Facebook pages; he also appears to have helped establish the RA Media website and ‘RA media newsgroupe’ Facebook page), the True Blue Crew (TBC) and UPF (Galea attended various of their functions, both public rallies and more private meetings), it’s alleged that he had an association with neo-Nazi grouplet ‘Combat 18’, which has maintained a shadowy presence in STRAYA for some years. A few years ago (2010), several C18 members were convicted of having shot at a mosque in Perth, while in Melbourne it’s more closely associated with Creatard bonehead Patrick O’Sullivan, though others have also claimed an association and have attended various public protests organised by the TBC and UPF, including in Coburg in May and the ‘Blue Lives Matter’ demonstration in the CBD in July. Note that Galea also attended a farcical anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant rally in Melbourne organised by the ‘Australian Defence League’ back in April 2010.
Above : Galea with comrades at the United Patriots Front rally in Bendigo, October 10, 2015. L to R : Galea, Chris Shortis, Linden Watson and Ralph Cerminara.
Above: Galea chillin’ like a gangster with the True Blue Crew.
The True Blue Crew will be hopping on a bus from Bendigo and Melton to Eltham on November 5 in order to attend a protest organised by the Sydney-based Party for Freedom (PFF). The PFF maintain that the decision by St Vincent’s Care Services to temporarily house 100 or so refugees from Iraq and Syria at its site is tantamount to rape and murder. Then again, the PFF has also floated the idea that peoples in the Third World require sterilisation, so we’re not really talking about rational political actors. The boys from Sydney, Bendigo and Melton will be joined by the Soldiers of Odin, who were the subject of a recent column by Jason Wilson: Fear and loathing on the streets: the Soldiers of Odin and the rise of anti-refugee vigilantes (The Guardian, October 28, 2016): ‘Far right groups are gaining a global foothold because they echo mainstream discourse which has shrunk the political horizon to issues of border paranoia, terror, and security.’
On Thursday night in Newtown an altercation occurred outside of Black Rose anarchist infoshop involving Ralph Cerminara (Australian Defence League/Left Wing Bigots & Extremists Exposed Facebook page) and Dan Evans (Reclaim Australia and principal organiser of the February 6 PEGIDA rally in Canberra) on the one hand and two or three people at the infoshop on the other.
Charges laid following brawl – Newtown
NSW Police Force Media Release
January 29, 2016
Four men have been charged following an alleged brawl in Newtown last night.
Just after 8pm (Thursday 28 January 2016), emergency services were called to a service station on Enmore Road, following reports of a brawl nearby involving men armed with poles, bottles and fluorescent light tubes.
On arrival, officers attached to Newtown Local Area Command located a 37-year-old man [Ralph Cerminara] and a 36-year-old man [Daniel Evans] suffering minor injuries.
They were assisted at the scene by Ambulance Paramedics, before being taken to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in a stable condition.
Both men were arrested this morning (Friday 29 January 2016) after leaving hospital, and taken to Newtown Police Station.
Police also arrested two men, 21 and 23, at the scene.
They were also taken to Newtown Police Station.
The 23-year-old man was charged with affray, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and being armed with intent to commit actual bodily harm.
The 21-year-old man was charged with affray and being armed with intent to assault.
The two younger men were refused bail, to appear in Newtown Local Court today.
Both the 37-year-old and the 36-year-old were charged with affray; with the younger man also charged with being armed with intent to commit an indictable offence.
They were both granted strict conditional bail, to appear before Newtown Local Court on 18 February 2016.
Cerminara — a valour thief and close comrade of Shermon Burgess (‘The Great Aussie Patriot’), has previously been arrested for trying to provoke a fight in Lakemba in December 2014 and generally tries to make mischief by filming himself harassing Muslims and leftists on the streets; videos which are later uploaded to his Facebook page. In recent months, Black Rose has become the focus of his ire. He published this video on November 14, 2015:
Otherwise, the incident has provoked the usual response from ‘patriotik’ folk — and anarchists and other anti-fascists should expect further attacks.
In February the UPF is embarking upon a promotional tour for its yet-to-be-registered political party, ‘Fortitude’. They’re planning on holding public rallies in Toowoomba, Queensland on February 13; Orange, NSW on February 20; and Bendigo on February 27. Chris ‘The United Nations is attempting to install the Pope as leader of a new world government!’ Shortis has been announced as the party’s candidate for the Senate in Victoria at the next federal election.
Det Sgt Tierney said Mr Galea met anti-immigration activist “Farmer John” Wilkinson, as well as other UPF members, across the road from a UPF barbecue at Sandringham Beach on January 3.
The court heard that Mr Wilkinson told police on January 7 that he had bought up to 22 stun guns, and that police were still searching for seven of these.
Previously, Wilkinson gave the following stirring address at a Reclaim Australia rally in Melton in November alongside Casey councillor (and deputy president of the Rise Up Australia Party) Rosalie Crestani. According to the Herald Sun:
Farmer John, from United Patriots, spoke to the crowd while it chanted “No Muslims in Melton”, and threatened more violent action. “We’re going to burn every mosque down if they build them … Let’s stick it up them,” he said.
… in Bendigo
On Australia/Invasion/Survival Day, the UPF paid a visit to Bendigo. Among other things, they went to the house of a man, Jason Godwell, they believed had registered ‘United Patriots Front’ as an ABN. The home visit was filmed and uploaded to the UPF Facebook page, and as well as being named and having his address published, Godwell was denounced to the UPF’s 30,000+ followers. (Subsequently, the video was deleted.) Godwell himself later stated that he had not registered UPF and was a victim of identity theft. Having been publicly named by the UPF as a Bad man, Godwell further claims that he was forced to abandon his home and the care of his child.
Maajid Nawaz /// PEGIDA /// Tommy Robinson/Stephen Yaxley-Lennon
Former Islamist Maajid Nawaz is currently undertaking a brief tour of Australia. You can listen to an interview with him on ABC radio here (January 27), while a critical account of his political evolution has been published in New Republic (What Does Maajid Nawaz Really Believe?, Nathan Lean, January 27, 2016).
Curiously, Nawaz makes explicit reference to the role of neo-Nazi grouplet ‘Combat 18’ in ‘radicalising’ him as a teenager; in Melbourne, there have been numerous reports of ‘Combat 18’ stickers popping up around town in the last few months, meaning former Creatard Patrick O’Sullivan and his nazi chums have been more active than usual. Coincidentally, some wanker stuck a sticker up in Chapel Street Prahran reading “Cure AIDS, kick a poofter to death”.
Nawaz is also famed for helping to establish the Quilliam Foundation, a UK-based project which claims to attempt to ‘de-radicalise’ Islamists and other ‘extremists’. Its most famous success story is (was) Stephen Yaxley-Lennon (‘Tommy Robinson’), the former leader of the English Defence League (EDL), who announced (in conjunction with the Foundation) his resignation from the group and the anti-Muslim movement in October 2013. The mouthy little gobshite claims that the Foundation paid him thousands of pounds to resign in a move that many saw as a bribe: Robinson stepped down, and Quilliam took credit for bringing about his departure. The money, Robinson said, went to pay “my wife’s rent and help with basic bills, [and] in return Tommy Robinson would be their poster boy.”
Fast-forward a year or two and Yaxley-Lennon is back, baby, this time as the spokesperson for PEGIDA UK, and will be addressing a rally in Birmingham on February 6. On the same date, another dozen or so anti-Muslim protests are planned, while in Australia, neo-Nazis, fascists, racists and a motley assortment of other bigots will be converging on Parliament House in Canberra. See : Pegida meets with European allies in the Czech Republic, Deutsche Welle, January 23, 2016.