antifa notes (february 11, 2018) : The Radical Right in Australia / Aryan Nations On Trial in Perth &tc

1) ‘The Radical Right in Australia’

OUP has published an essay on ‘The Radical Right in Australia’ by myself and Aurelien Mondon which you can read online or download for free here. The chapter is one of many in The Oxford Handbook of the Radical Right (edited by Jens Rydgren) which will be published in hard-copy in a few months and which is intended to provide the reader with ‘an authoritative state-of-the-art overview of the scholarship on the contemporary radical right’.

Compared to its European counterparts, Australia was for the most part spared the rise of powerful extreme right movements, and at times appeared immune to their appeal. However, rather than immunity, the absence of extreme right politics can be explained by the ability and willingness of mainstream politics to readily, openly, and officially absorb such values. This chapter discusses how, for most of the country’s history, Australian mainstream politicians suffocated the extreme right, not merely by borrowing some key ideas of the extreme right, but by negating entirely its ability to appear as an alternative to the power in place. It then turns to the 1990s and explores the rise of Hansonism and its impact on mainstream politics. The final part of the chapter is dedicated to the current state of radical right politics in Australia.

2) Aryan Fortitude

Members of the Perth-based neo-Nazi groupuscule ‘Aryan Nations’ were in court last week, charged with murder: ‘Robert Wayne Edhouse, 22, Melony Jane Attwood, 36, and Corey Joshua Dymock, 21, are on trial in WA’s Supreme Court accused of murdering Ms Atwood’s partner, 42-year-old Alan Taylor, at their Girrawheen home in April 2016’ (Aryan Nations white supremacist ‘death squad’ murdered man for insurance claim, court told, Joanna Menagh, ABC, February 8, 2018). See also : Aryan Nations Perth: FIFO worker Alan Taylor allegedly killed by Nazi ‘death squad’, Tim Clarke, PerthNow, February 8, 2018 | ‘Death squad’ on trial for brutal murder of Perth man, Tegan Sapwell, 9News, February 9, 2018.

Leaving to one side the horrific nature of the alleged crime, it’s worth noting that the Aryan Nations played host to members of the United Patriots Front (now known as ‘The Lads Society’) when they visited Perth in November 2015 in order to both attend a Reclaim Australia anti-Muslim rally as well as to announce the formation of their political party, ‘Fortitude’. Indeed, the announcement by Blair Cottrell — in the company of Melbourne-based UPF members Neil Erikson, Chris Shortis, Tom Sewell and Linden Watson and Perth-based members Kevin Coombes (‘Elijah Jacobson’) and Dennis Huts — would appear to have taken place in the same property which, just a few months later, was the site of the grisly murder by their Perth neo-Nazi kameraden.

3) Vigilantes R Us

Closer to home, local superhero Daniel Jones has been in the news, touting his business and the virtues of vigilantism.

Founder of Epping ‘community response group’ says they’re not vigilantes
Paul Shapiro
Whittlesea Leader
February 5, 2018

WHITTLESEA’s top cop has poured cold water on a crime-fighting “community response group” led by a martial-arts expert.

Daniel Jones, the owner of martial-arts school Tactical Force Combatives, is in the early stages of setting up a “community response group” to deal with thugs and criminals despite police discouraging the plan.

Mr Jones said he had no fear of being harmed physically while confronting offenders.

He denied the group would act as vigilantes but rather said it would provide a community service where people in “distress” could contact “interested parties in the local area that would be able to rush to their assistance”.

“We’re not vigilantes because we don’t want to hurt people, we just want to help people who are in danger,” Mr Jones said.

“I’d prefer to handle any situation verbally but it wouldn’t concern me if it did get physical because I’m more than capable [of] dealing with aggressive behaviour.”

Mr Jones specialises in Krav Maga, an Israeli military self-defence system, and has experience as a security guard.

He said anyone “smashing in a front door” would most likely flee when his team arrived.

However, Victoria Police were quick to discourage the plan …

Daniel certainly gets around the traps, sticking his face in at Reclaim rallies in 2015, acting as bodyguard to Avi Yemini at his rally against crimens in September and at the MILO stoopid in December 2017 and more recently palling around and conspiring with neo-Nazi Blair Cottrell at the nü neo-Nazi clubhouse in Cheltenham (at a meeting to talk about taking on #AfricanGangs).

4) On other islands …

In the United States, billionaires and their right-wing foot-soldiers on college campuses are stepping up attacks on academics and higher education.

Far-right attacks on faculty hurt us all, Jessie Daniels, Clarion, February 2018: ‘The increasing attacks on faculty are part of a well-funded and orchestrated campaign by the far right. Their strategy is to use social media to discredit academics and thereby devalue higher education.’
No Re-Turning Point, U.S.A., The Baffler, Maximillian Alvarez, January 26, 2018: ‘From the “Professor Watchlist” to Tariq Khan, TPUSA’s campaign to silence opposition.’
The Eye of the Troll Storm: Tariq Khan Interview with It’s Going Down, Black Rose/Rosa Negra, February 10, 2018:

In November, PhD student of history in Illinois, father, and Air Force veteran Tariq Khan, found himself in the center of a whirlwind of controversy, and a punching bag for a variety of Alt-Right and Alt-Lite blowhards – from InfoWars, to Gavin McInnes, to Anthony Scaramucci. Tariq stood accused of getting into a verbal argument with other students following a Trump protest, and the video of the argument, which shows people yelling at each other and ends in a phone being dropped on the ground, surfaced on the website, Campus Reform, the media wing of Turning Point USA. TPUSA is a growing collection of paleoconservative and Alt-Lite Libertarian students on campuses across the US, is financially backed by massive foundations and billionaires like the Koch Brothers, and is most known for harassing professors and students, often leading to individuals receiving massive amounts of death threats.

• Neo-Nazi organiser Elliott Kline (‘Eli Mosley’) was the go-to guy for JJJ’s Hack current affairs program back in August, called upon to explain to The Kids what happened in Charlottesville; he’s now been featured in an article for The New York Times (How Our Reporter Uncovered a Lie That Propelled an Alt-Right Extremist’s Rise, Emma Cott, February 5, 2018) which calls into question a number of aspects of his biography. Fingers xed, JJJ will have him back on to explain How Jews Control The Media. Oh, and in California, police have been collaborating with neo-Nazis in order to bring about prosecutions of anTEEfa (and otherwise being a nanny-state to fascists). See : California police worked with neo-Nazis to pursue ‘anti-racist’ activists, documents show, Same Levin, The Guardian, February 9, 2018.

• Finally, in the birthplace of Fascism, things are once again looking promising for the movement as a recent fascist terrorist attack ‘has highlighted the growing threat of Italy’s far right in the lead-up to the March 4 elections’ (Italy’s New Racist Storm, Richard Brodie, Jacobin, February 9, 2018).

antifa notes (march 14, 2017) : One Nation Party too sophisticated for WA; UPF Go To Court; boneheads

sophistication

The One Nation Party proved to be a bit too sophisticated for the electorate in Western Australia on Saturday, March 11, averaging just under 5% of the vote in the legislative assembly (about 8% in the seats the party ran candidates in). While vote-counting is ongoing, of the 30+ candidates ONP ran, the best performing (10%+) were in Central Wheatbelt, Kalgoorlie, Mandurah, Moore, Murray-Wellington, North West Central*, Pilbara, Swan Hills and Warnbro (*Dane Sorensen was kicked outta ONP after his nomination). The party fared much better in the legislative council, however, where it appears that Our Pauline will have anywhere from one to three allies once the final votes have been tallied. (Note that the gerrymander in WA means that the 3/4 of the WA population what live in the Perth area elect 18 MLCs, while the other 1/4 what live outside Perth elect the same number, giving the Nationals and rural constituencies a disproportionate influence in the legislative council.)

Despite these rather meagre results (preceded by a shambolic election campaign), ‘Liberal puppet’ and party ‘dictator’ Pauline Hanson has declared that the election results ‘fantastic’, and Malcolm Turnbull has refused to rule out the Tories once again directing preferences to their parliamentary allies in ONP.

legislation

On Monday, March 6, Blair Cottrell, Neil Erikson and Chris Shortis appeared in Melbourne Magistrates’ Court for a mentions hearing. While all three were members of the United Patriots Front (UPF) at the time of their alleged offences (October 2015), in late 2015/early 2016 Erikson departed the UPF (but continued to be a Facebook warrior under various labels) while Shortis joined the Australia First Party in early- to mid-2016. Currently, the UPF is reduced to Cottrell and Thomas (Tom) Sewell in Melbourne and Dennis Huts and Kevin Coombes (‘Elijah Jacobson’) in Perth, along with a smattering of fanboys and fangirls across the country and a small army of Facebook fans.

The Campaign Against Racism & Fascism organised a small rally outside the court, which Erikson attended dressed in Muslim drag alongside George Jameson of the Party For Freedom. The boys were joined by several dozen supporters of AFP and UPF; the next scheduled court hearing has been set for May 23. Also attending court were the Million Flag Patriots, the most prestigious, unbashable & patrioty neo-patriot group in Australia. (See : United Patriots Front members’ court appearance sparks rally in Melbourne, Cameron Best, ABC, March 6, 2017.)

This week, the Victorian government has announced the introduction of a bill meaning that Rioters who wear face coverings while taking part in violent protests could face up to 15 years behind bars (ABC, March 13, 2017).

The proposal follows State Government talks with Victoria Police after violent clashes between anti-racism and anti-Islamic activists in Coburg last year.

Attorney-General Martin Pakula said the legislation, which will introduce a new offence of violent disorder, will be introduced to Parliament next week.

“Too often we see at these events people turning up with masks and face coverings to try and hide their identity or to shield themselves from the effects of capsicum spray,” he said.

So: protecting your identity and shielding yourself from capsicum spray are now to be criminal offences.

bonehead

This bonehead was spotted in Ballarat Daylesford on the weekend: chill out, bro.


The “UPF” Goes To Dimboola

tl;dr : A handful of radical right-wingers, including the United Patriot Front’s John Wilkinson (‘Farma john’), organised an event in Dimboola on Australia/Invasion/Survival Day in order, inter alia, to promote a new right-wing party, the ‘Australian Country Party’. This article — Utes, BBQ, local pub and right wing politics, The Dimboola Banner, February 1, 2017 — provides details. Otherwise:

On Australia/Invasion/Survival Day, a fund-raising event was held at the Victoria Hotel in Dimboola. The event included a ute muster and a performance by a comedian, Dave Ivkovic, and was promoted by an organisation called the Australian Horizons Foundation (AHF).

The marketing and fundraising chairperson for AHF is a woman called Anita Donlon.

Donlon has been involved in a range of fund-raising activities over the last few years, on behalf and in the name of numerous other projects, including ‘Friends of Small Towns’ and ‘Shout A Mate’, but is perhaps best known for her roles in a community campaign to halt the construction of a mosque in Bendigo and as one of the organisers of the ‘convoy of no confidence’ in the Gillard Labor government. [1]

According to the Banner, among those who attended the Dimboola event was ‘Farma john’ Wilkinson.

‘Farma john’ is best known for his participation in the Melbourne-based fascist groupuscule ‘United Patriots Front’ (UPF). [2] In May 2016, for example, he joined the UPF contingent and spoke at a dairy farmers’ rally on the steps of the Victorian State Parliament. [3]

The leader of the UPF is neo-Nazi from Frankston called Blair Cottrell. Cottrell has expressed a desire to see a portrait of Adolf Hitler hung in Australian classrooms and for copies of Mein Kampf to be issued annually to students. [4] He also has criminal convictions for arson, drug trafficking, stalking and other offences. [5] Cottrell, along with others, is currently facing charges of religious vilification as a result of a promotional stunt by the UPF in Bendigo in October 2015. [6] While Farma john also took part in the stunt, he is not one of those being charged.

Apart from fundraising, the AHF event was also used to help promote the Australian Country Party, with its propaganda being distributed among those who attended. Attendees, including ‘Farma john’, also flew UPF flags.


[Above : ‘Farma john’ Wilkinson in Bendigo with UPF supporter Nicholas Edward Abbott; in December 2016, Abbott got a slap on the wrist for being naughty at the ‘True Blue Crew’ anti-leftist and anti-Muslim rally in Coburg in May 2016.]

NOTES

[1] Donlon’s participation in the ‘convoy of no confidence’ is noted in The number of drivers joining the ‘convoy of no-confidence’ has failed to meet organisers’ expectations, James Massola, The Australian, August 22, 2011. A former Liberal Party candidate for Bendigo West, Donlon was also ‘the spokeswoman for the Australian Consumers and Taxpayers Association, a group that is leading a vocal campaign against the carbon tax’ (Three Liberals seek Bendigo pre-selection, Brett Worthington, The Bendigo Advertiser, June 26, 2012). In March 2013, an article in The Advertiser states that ‘Deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop inadvertently posed for photos with CATA organiser Anita Donlon outside Parliament House after the group were ejected’; the same article notes that CATA ‘is the group responsible for the “Ditch the Witch” and “Bob Brown’s bitch” protests at Parliament House in 2011’ (Day one and the insults resume for Julia Gillard, Lanai Scarr and Tory Shepherd, The Advertiser, March 12, 2013).

At the 2013 federal election, Donlon ran as a candidate for the Palmer United Party, gaining 2,336 votes (2.5%). In 2016 she had another tilt at the seat as an independent, receiving 1,922 votes (2.0%). In 2016, Donlon was also busy ‘shouting a mate’ (Crowd-funding project aims to supply grain to Tasmanian farmers, Roger Hanson, The Mercury, January 20, 2016); according to The Weekly Times (Farm charities are helping landholders in need, Sarah Hudson, March 30, 2016): ‘Bendigo’s Anita Donlon started Shout A Mate in 2011, educating about rural issues through its online radio show (shoutamate.com), as well as campaigns such as the current Grains for Tassie Farmers, which aims to buy 10 container loads of grain, at $10,000 per container, to send to drought-affected Tasmanian farmers. The campaign is crowd-funding through OzCrowd but will also see a series of music events which included their first at the Bush Pig Inn in Bendigo on Easter Saturday.’ The Bush Pig Inn was also the venue for a UPF event in June 2016.

[2] When formed in early 2015, membership of the UPF was a loose network of radical right-wing activists with a largely informal membership. After Blair Cottrell declared himself to be its leader, in late 2015 and early 2016 — and especially after the group published a website — nominated members (have) included Cottrell, Shermon Burgess, Kevin Coombes (‘Elijah Jacobson’), Neil Erikson, Dennis Huts, Kris0 Richardson, Thomas Sewell and Chris Shortis. ‘Farma john’ has been an active participant in most if not all of the events organised by the UPF.

In November 2015, Wilkinson was a speaker at the Reclaim Australia/UPF rally in Melton. According to Shakira Hussein (Anti-Muslim rally reveals a racism both shocking and commonplace, Crikey, November 23, 2015):

… the next speaker, “Farmer John”, deviated from the approved script by telling the crowd at his anger with “dirty Arabs” who think they’re entitled to get priority over our disabled children. “Do we want an Islamic school? NO! Stick it up your arse!”

[Rosalie] Crestani moved hastily to cover up that faux pas once she took back the microphone. “I do know a few Arabs and there’s a few good ones out there, so I just thought I’d clear that one up. This isn’t about ethnicity.”

Yeah, right. Some of your best friends are Arabs. Stick it up your arse, as Farmer John would say.

According to another report (Anti-Islam, anti-racism protesters clash at violent Melton rallies, Cassie Zervos, Andrew Jefferson, Kara Irving, Herald Sun, November 23, 2015): ‘Farmer John, from United Patriots [Front], 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.’

Wilkinson also had a close relationship with alleged ‘terrorist’ Phillip Galea. In January 2016, the Herald Sun (Police on the hunt for missing stun guns amid fears of use by extremists, Angus Thompson, January 13, 2016) reported that:

POLICE are on the hunt for several missing stun guns they fear will be used by anti-Islamic extremists in increasingly ­violent rallies.

United Patriots Front member Phillip Galea has been bailed for the second time in weeks, despite the Arson Squad’s concerns that he is providing weapons to other Right-wing activists.

Explosives and Arson Squad Detective Sergeant Paul Tierney this week told a magistrate that detectives began monitoring Mr Galea after his involvement in a public clash over the proposed Bendigo Mosque last August.

“He’s been at most rallies that have resulted in violence.

“Our concern is that Mr Galea is bringing violence to these meetings and weapons to these meetings,” Det Sgt Tierney told Bendigo Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

Mr Galea was found with five stun guns, a jar full of mercury and bomb-making guides on his computer when investigators searched his Braybrook home in November.

He was jailed for a month and fined $5000 but was bailed on November 24 after appealing against his sentence.

He was rearrested this month when police accused him of breaching the terms of his bail by associating with UPF associates at a Sandringham pub.

Det Sgt Tierney said Mr Galea met anti-immigration ­activist “[Farma 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.

The court also heard that police had arrested Mr Galea on October 10, after receiving intelligence that he intended to use flares in clashes with anti-racism activists.

But defence lawyer Bill Grimshaw said Mr Galea had arrived at the Sandringham pub under the impression that the UPF event had concluded, and that he had “stuck to the letter” of his bail conditions.

Despite this, Mr Grimshaw said his client “should have been more prudent.”

Magistrate John Murphy granted Mr Galea bail after raising concerns that he would serve the term of the original sentence he was appealing against while on remand.

The matter has been ­adjourned to January 27.

In February 2016, another Herald Sun report stated that ‘Galea said “[Farma john]” Wilkinson, a man alleged to have supplied him with cattle prods, had since turned himself in to police’ (Accused anti-Islam stun gun extremist granted social media access, Angus Thompson, February 19, 2016).

[3] In May 2016, a handful of UPF members, including Wilkinson and UPF leader Blair Cottrell, attended a rally by dairy farmers in Melbourne (Cottrell was booed off stage).

[4] On Cottrell, Hitler and Mein Kampf, see : Blair Cottrell, rising anti-Islam movement leader, wanted Hitler in the classroom, Michael Bachelard, Luke McMahon, The Sydney Morning Herald, October 17 2015.

[5] Cottrell’s criminal record is detailed in a report by Geir O’Rourke and Angus Thompson in the Herald Sun (June 11, 2016). Of his offending, they write: ‘Cottrell, 26, was sentenced to four months in prison in May 2012 after being convicted of 13 charges, including seven counts of intentionally damaging property. County Court Judge Michael Tinney convicted the then-22-year-old of throwing a missile, stalking, failing to comply with a community-based order, and two counts of recklessly causing serious injury. In December 2013 he was fined $1000 and sentenced to seven days in jail by a County Court judge for aggravated burglary, property damage, arson, trafficking testosterone, possessing a controlled weapon and breaching court orders.’ Cottrell, as ‘Bruce’, appeared in a documentary about youth in the maximum-security Youth Unit at Port Phillip Prison in Truganina, in which he describes how he abused steroids, stalked his former partner and her boyfriend, tried to kill him, set fire to their house, and eventually got arrested, convicted, and sent to prison.

[6] Charges, including religious vilification, have been laid against Cottrell and former UPF members Neil Erikson and Chris Shortis. Their first court hearing is scheduled for March 6, 2017.

antifa notes (june 23, 2016) : nazis, patriots, islamophobes, bigots, elections …

ala

Briefly:

• There’s been a few line-up changes in the various party’s tickets for the July 2 federal election, with John Bolton making way for Wanda Marsh in the ALA (you may remember Wanda from such puff pieces as Sunday‘s TV program on Reclaim Australia from last October), while Nick Folkes (Party for Freedom) has decided not to run at all.

• Speaking of Reclaim Australia, it organised a small rally in Perth on the weekend (June 18). Somewhere around 1-200 supporters attended while a ‘Reclaim Australia from Reclaim Australia’ counter-rally attracted about half that number. The United Patriots Front (UPF) leadership — Blair Cottrell, Thomas Sewell and Chris Shortis — attended, as did several local flunkeys (Dennis Huts and Elijah Jacobson/Kevin Coombes) and dozens of men sporting True Blue Crew and UPF merch. The Aryan Nations failed to show because they’re on trial for murder, while the MUA issued a statement condemning Reclaim:

The MUA condemns the actions and hatred spread by the group Reclaim Australia and fully supports and endorses the anti-Reclaim movement.
Whilst we cannot speak on behalf of every single union member, we can speak to one of the core values of unionism: equality.
The union movement stands for equality.
No matter race, gender, religion, sexual preference or what country you come from, we are all equal. This equality is the foundation of a strong union movement and a strong society.
The Eureka flag is a powerful symbol and emblem of equality; maybe someone should tell Reclaim Australia that…
Keep up the struggle against racism.
In unity,
Danny C.

Otherwise, see : Reclaim Australia protesters descend on Perth for Parliament Place rally, Joel Kelly, PerthNow, June 18, 2016.

• The violent criminal history of UPF fuehrer Blair Cottrell, and his appearance in a recent documentary on youth in prison, has finally been picked up by media (four months later).

United Patriots Front leader Blair Cottrell details violent criminal past in video
Geir O’Rourke, Angus Thompson
Herald Sun
June 11, 2016

THE leader of anti-Islam group United Patriots responsible for the violent Coburg riot has detailed his criminal past in an educational video distributed to Victorian schools.

Blair Cottrell, who has convictions for violent assaults and trafficking testosterone, details his jealous rage in the film that is meant to discourage youth crime.

Cottrell, who is called “Bruce” in the film, details how he chased his ex-girlfriend’s new partner with a tomahawk and torched his garage.

“I started damaging his house, throwing things at it, through the windows and, I made a couple of molotov cocktails, and lit his garage up with those,” he said.

“I had this little tomahawk that I put it inside my jacket and in the middle of the night, at one and two o’clock in the morning, I would go out the front of his house and hover around.

“As soon as the door would open, my heart would skip and I would stand up and be holding a knife because I’d be ready to go round there and be ready to kill him because I was pretty determined.”

The film, titled Stories From The Inside, was produced by inmates from Port Phillip Prison in 2013, with funding from British billionaire Sir Richard Branson, to build their self esteem and discourage youth crime.

Port Phillip Prison youth development officer Anne Hooker defended Cottrell’s involvement in the project despite the UPF leader’s radical views.

“We deliberately didn’t use real names in the documentary to allow him and the others to express themselves honestly,” she said.

Cottrell, 26, was sentenced to four months in prison in May 2012 after being convicted of 13 charges, including seven counts of intentionally damaging property.

County Court Judge Michael Tinney convicted the then-22-year-old of throwing a missile, stalking, failing to comply with a community-based order, and two counts of recklessly causing serious injury.

In December 2013 he was fined $1000 and sentenced to seven days in jail by a County Court judge for aggravated burglary, property damage, arson, trafficking testosterone, possessing a controlled weapon and breaching court orders.

Cottrell has also been fined almost $3000 for driving offences, including speeding 25km/h over the limit and failing to obey a traffic sign.

The matter was dealt with by a magistrate in October 2012.

The Sunday Herald Sun spoke to Cottrell about the video, but he said: “I’ve got nothing to say about any of that stuff, mate.”

“I’d appreciate it if you didn’t come to my house.”

blairc

• On Sunday June 26, TBC, UPF & Co will be holding a flag-waving ceremony and march. The flag-waving is set to commence at 11.30am outside Parliament House in Melbourne. The Campaign Against Racism & Fascism has organised a counter-rally.

• The events of May 28 in Coburg has inspired local folk-pop group The Bon Scotts to record a single. Titled ‘Main Street’, the video for the song features footage from the protests on May 28 and intones against confronting fascists. The band has come in for some criticism on their Facebook page, while another musician has been inspired by The Bon Scotts to do a little re-mixing of their own:

• A handful of ‘patriots’ heckled a Grandmothers Against Detention Of Refugee Children – Bendigo event on the weekend; in Newcastle, ‘A support centre for refugee women in Newcastle has come under attack by vandals just days before it was set to open.’ Today (June 23), UPF fuehrer Cottrell and sidekick Thomas Sewell harassed a gathering in the city of Friends Families and Feminists Against Detention — furthering confirming the boys’ already well-established reputation as brave soldiers. (Folks should bear in mind the possibility of disruption at future ‘left’ events, especially those addressing racism and refugees.)

• The (alleged) murder of British Labour MP Jo Cox by Thomas Mair is examined by Tom in Racism, far-right ideology & hatred of refugees: the toxic mix that killed Jo Cox (June 17, 2016); the mass murder of nightclubbers in Orlando by Angela in Mi existir es resistir. Estamos aqui (June 13, 2016). See also : Why ‘Tolerating’ Your Queer Loved Ones Is Dangerous (Bianka Bell, The Establishment, June 14, 2016) and Alleged killer of British MP was a longtime supporter of the neo-Nazi National Alliance (Hatewatch/SPLC, June 16, 2016).

• On the weekend, news.com.au published the following article by Paul Toohey on ‘Extremism taking us to dark places’:

AT THE Bush Pig Inn, a rustic Aussie-themed drinking hole in bush just out of Bendigo, the inner-circle of the United Patriots Front, the public face of Australia’s most far-Right “racialists”, are holding court.

Some 40 people, mostly men decked out in black with nationalist insignia, have come from around the state and beyond to hear today’s seminar on the white genocide facing Australia.

The UPF claim to be great patriots, who feel a deeper love and concern for this country than the general population. Pink Floyd’s “Comfortably Numb” plays in the background, summing up their view of Australia.

THE MAIN PLAYERS

The main man is Blair Cottrell, 27, leader of the UPF and its so-called political wing, Fortitude. He was sentenced to four months jail in 2012 for torching a man’s garage in a jealous rage, and has convictions for burglary and trafficking testosterone.

Tall, well-built and V-shaped, bringing to mind the guy from Despicable Me, Cottrell talks with scrupulously controlled diction, to provide the impression that he is intelligent — which he is.

Even Cottrell’s most furious detractors admit he has charisma. He offers tea, because even though the bar is open and some guests have started drinking, this is not meant to be a piss-up: frivolity is frowned upon by these intense men.

At his side is Chris Shortis, 45, who like Cottrell has short, chiselled hair. Of English-Irish descent, Seventh-Day Adventist by faith, Shortis says he found an outlet for his thoughts when he finally discovered like-minded people on Facebook, in late 2014. Prior to that, he thought he was alone.

He will address the crowd on how white Australia is being overrun.

And there’s Thomas Sewell, early 20s, taciturn, watchful and mildly seething. The best guess is that he’s an adviser and tactician.

A former Australian soldier, he’s the one who decides after two minutes that enough photos have been taken. Sewell can be seen on video, brawling at a UPF rally last year.

The UPF rejects Islam, but also Christianity. They especially despise multiculturalism. “We’re modern-day heretics,” says Cottrell, who once said a portrait of Hitler should hang in every Australian classroom.

It is likely, according to a reformed white supremacist source who once planned to hit the streets of Sydney with a small army to gun down Asians, but these days assists authorities in infiltrating Right-wing extremist groups, that someone in this crowd is reporting back to federal agents.

Far-Right groups are now everywhere on social media, mostly using Facebook sites with no links to web sites or organisers. Unchecked, the fear is they could attract exactly the same sort of disaffected young man who, on the extremist scale, is no different from those they despise most: the loose-wheeled young Muslim.

I. SURGE IN ONLINE EXTREMISM

The concern is that the UPF, which six months ago broke away to take a harder line from the more mainstream “mums and dads” anti-Islamic group, Reclaim Australia, has begun engaging some angry young minds.

There is an unnamed young white extremist on remand for weapons charges, but News Corp understands he was plotting actions that were far more organised than anything Man Haron Monis planned for the Lindt Café.

Andre Oboler, who leads Australia’s only monitoring site for online extremism, the Online Hate Prevention Institute, says interest in patriotic groups is surging, with 200,000 Australians now actively following hate sites.

He reveals that neo-Nazis out of the US have been using pro-Islamic State forums in Australia “to incite them to attack targets within Australia”.

“We’re seeing the internet being used as a way of creating strange coalitions across borders, and through anonymity people are able to use others,” says Oboler. He will not publicly name the targets, which are now heavily guarded.

He says his organisation, in conjunction with ASIO and the AFP, monitored “the content, the conversations and the planning right through to the final tweets from ISIS”. Neither ASIO nor the AFP will comment.

“ISIS certainly would not have known they were being manipulated by neo-Nazis,” he says.

II. DIVISIONS IN THE FAR-RIGHT

UP IN Sydney, Ralph Cerminara, who encourages people to take and post video of lone Muslims to show “how out of place they look”, warns: “There will be another Cronulla II. There will be a backlash, eventually.

“The police are aiding by not arresting the violent left wing, while scores of Muslims are getting slapped on the wrist with the coward-punch law. They get good behaviour bonds.”

He says he’s currently on a court order that prevents him badmouthing Muslims after a dust-up in Lakemba. None of it slows him down. “I should be able to walk down here in a bikini and [eat] a bacon sandwich and not be attacked,” he says.

Cerminara has also been savaging the current UPF leadership accusing it associating [of] with skinheads [sic], which he says damages the anti-Islam brand. “There is no such thing as a moderate Muslim, just as there is no such thing as a moderate neo-Nazi,” says Cerminara, 37, an IT worker.

This is a divisive distraction from the rolling battles with the far-Right’s most hated enemy, Antifa, the masked anti-fascist movement of the extreme Left.

Cerminara, who was allegedly slashed while shooting video of an anarchist bookstore in Newtown earlier this year, says anti-fascists have published his address and made home visits — where he lives with an Asian wife.

He has a machine-gun response for every question, pausing only when pressed on what his wife thinks of his 24/7 obsession: Muslims and the extreme Left.

Cerminara says she has received death threats and became dismayed when Nathan Abela, once a Cerminara lieutenant, had his home in Sydney sprayed with bullets in 2014. Abela has since then kept a very low profile.

“My wife saw that and she got upset,” says Cerminara. “She wants me to stop it. She knows it’s right, but she wants someone else to do it.”

On the UPF Facebook page, inviting people to the Bush Pig Inn, someone has urged Cerminara be attacked if he shows, due to his criticisms of the UPF’s skinhead [sic] element (Cerminara did not attend, and says he did not see the post).

‘IT’S APPEALING TO JOIN SOMETHING LIKE THAT’

Melbourne man Neil Erikson, 31, was one of the founders of UPF who has since left the organisation for what he sees as a shift towards neo-Nazism.

Talking on the steps of Federation Square in Melbourne, he tells how his mother-in-law recently received a cut-up photo of a foetus in the mail, which he thinks was meant to represent his young son.

That letter came from within the far-Right, he guesses, but two weeks earlier he’d been bashed by Antifa activists who’d spotted him while attending a meeting of the Australian Liberty Alliance, which is fielding anti-Islam candidates in the federal election. Erikson, whose facial scars are only starting to fade, doesn’t feel too comfortable in public spaces.

It’s tough out there being anti-Muslim.

“I originally started out in the neo-Nazi movement when I was about 16, until about four years ago,” says Erikson, who in 2014 was sentenced to a community work order, and a visit to the psychologist, for phone threats to a rabbi. “If you wanted to show pride in Australia, there was no other place to go.

“In hindsight, it’s appealing to join something like that. But there are darker sides to neo-Nazis — lost kids, lost people. Until this patriotic rise of Reclaim last year, there was no one to hang out with apart from neo-Nazis.”

The neo-Nazis Erikson associated with were “in and out of prison all the time, for bashing some random Asian on the street.” Like the 21-year-old Vietnamese student from Pascoe Vale, severely beaten in an unprovoked attack by skinheads [sic] while walking home from work, in Moonee Ponds, in 2012.

“I was there that night, just before,” says Erikson, who saw young neo-Nazis shaving their heads earlier in the day in anticipation of a random attack.

“That’s when I started turning off that Nazi stuff. It’s not his fault he’s here,” says Erikson of the Vietnamese man. “He’s come here for a better life. It’s our government’s fault for letting him in.”

He wants the public to march against Islam, but people are too scared after the first Reclaim Australia rally at Federation Square, in April last year, fell to violence, with a grandma — among others — getting hurt.

Scenes of screaming, masked anarchists — whose contribution to the federal election campaign is street posters of party leaders dangling from nooses — and skinheads [sic] marching on the frontlines with the UPF has seen the public retreating from rallies, but not from its views.

The Reclaim movement “woke everyone up and got them out of their houses,” says Erikson.

“It’s now lost support. The neo-Nazi movement has scared people away. If Reclaim were to hold a rally now, they’d be lucky to get 20 people. It’s all gone online. They’re safer at home.”

III. UNPLEASANT TRUTHS

WORLDWIDE, says Andre Oboler, Australia ranks third or fourth for supporters of anti-Islam, anti-Semitic and pro-white sites.

“When we consider the size of Australia’s population we see that a far larger portion of Australian Facebook users are actively joining such hate groups online than occurs in other countries,” he says.

As a Jewish organisation, OHPI, which attracts no federal funding, has not been able ignore what has happened in the last 18 months: anti-Semitism has been replaced with anti-Islam. They are bound to report hate, whatever its flavour.

“There’s an element of bigotry and racism that has [been] brought into the political sphere in the last few years at a much higher level than we’ve seen since World War II,” says Oboler.

In Australia, online bigotry “has risen steeply over the past year”, and especially in the last six months with “a shift with more Australians starting to engage in a small number of significant Australian specific (hate/patriotic) groups.”

Oboler tracks the rise of hate in Australia to the English Defence League, which began in 2009 with football supporters fighting anti-war Islamists on the streets of Luton. It eventually became controlled by white supremacists.

The EDL’s argument was original and appealed to many: they weren’t racists because Islam is a religion, not a race.

Oboler says the distinction is not legitimate. “No. It’s like saying, ‘I’m not racist, I’m just homophobic.’ Well, you’re still a bigot.”

It was nonetheless a powerful argument that took the far Right a lot further than it had under the founding anti-Islam matriarch, Pauline Hanson, who first appeared in 1996 with her anti-multicultural agenda.

It caught on with the Australian Defence League, “Fuck Off We’re Full” bumper stickers, anti-Halal and anti-Sharia movements, and then Reclaim Australia — formed partly in response a belief that the Lindt siege was created by favourable immigration policies to Muslims.

Then came the extremist groups and the street clashes.

There are up to 50 anti-Islam Senate candidates standing on July 2, but most — possibly with the exception of Hanson, who is running in Queensland — will have trouble under the new ballot system gaining preferences.

Daniel Nalliah’s Rise-Up Australia has 11 Senate candidates. The Sri Lankan-born Victorian developed his antipathy for Islam while living with his Asian wife in Saudi Arabia, before coming to Australia as a migrant in 1997.

Nalliah wants a 10-year moratorium on all Islamic migration to Australia.

He says the concept of multiculturalism should be replaced by “multi-ethnicity”, meaning people retain their culture while complying and integrating with Australian life and law. Which is how it already is for the Muslim majority who reject militant Islam.

“They can’t call me a racist because I’m black,” says Nalliah. “People laugh. It’s taken a blackfella to stand up for Australian culture.”

At a Saturday morning Rise-Up election campaign in Bendigo, the town that has become the nation’s unwanted anti-Islam focal point for its no-mosque campaign, Nalliah’s group are shooed away from the Bendigo Marketplace, as they hand out leaflets.

The security guard is at a loss when asked whether she would also order Malcolm Turnbull or Bill Shorten to leave. The Rise-Up people then congregate downtown outside a cafe, where the owner tells them to get lost or she’ll call the cops. They move, again.

Oboler says anti-Islam political groups should be allowed their voice. Australia has limited constitutional free-speech rights, but the High Court says we have the right to open political communication to enable the democratic process.

“There should be leeway for political parties,” says Oboler. “If you force them to code what they’re saying, people might vote for them accidentally.”

The Bendigo mosque was last week cleared to be built, but Cerminara tells me plans are afoot to block it: “It will not be built. The Greens tie themselves to trees. We will do it as well.”

IV. THE LANGUAGE OF HATE

THE UPF leadership group sticks close to each other at the Bush Pig Inn, scanning faces, not sure of who is who among those who have arrived in response to its open Facebook invitation.

They won’t let us take crowd photos, because “some of these people have jobs”.

They nevertheless extend politeness to two members of News Corp. The UPF expects bad press, so doesn’t have much to lose.

Asked to explain core beliefs, Cottrell says: “It is essentially racialism, but it’s not what you think it is. It’s not supremacist. We actually advocate for an exclusive existence for all the races of the world — not this blending, multiculturalism, egalitarianism nonsense.

“We want to encourage different cultures to stay who they are to remain as they have always been. Every culture, every race, must have exclusive existence. Anyone who tries to take that away is an enemy.”

Cottrell’s language sounds like one of white supremacy. He proposes that one race — the white one — controls Australia.

The problem, says the former neo-Nazi source, is that UPF leadership — even if they are not themselves advocating terror — will attract kids, just as ISIS does.

“If you’re an ISIS guy, the majority are not even believers in Islam,” he says. “Most of it is attachment problems, being bullied at school and mental illness. They get disaffected and have got to find somewhere where they belong.

“It’s the same with white extremists. They don’t really believe in racial segregation, but they go along with it because they need something.”

This man, himself a master indoctrinator, building a far-Right army of 150 people to attack Asians (whom he later went back to and tried to de-radicalise), explains how it works.

“You say to the guy, ‘Come here, we’re your mates. Who was it who bashed you? We’ll get them.’” Then they’re hooked. But the real threat comes from those who are too unmanageable even for the white extremists.

“The danger is the people on the fringes who might get rejected,” he says. “They’re going to be your lone wolves.”

He says of the far-Right groups: “They want chaos in order to rebuild the nation. And they’re inviting everyone to join them. If Muslim kids look at this, how will they feel?”

He says that the feds and state police are watching closely.

‘OUR FREEDOMS HAVE DIMINISHED’

When the UPF are asked if they can channel patriotism into love of sport, they sneer. Asked about the first Australians, they trip up, because they are outranked. Questions become futile, because they have it all figured out.

Shortis makes the extraordinary claim that Australia’s constitution is a “nationalist” document, which sets out a formula for a nation to be ruled on separatist lines. This is news. The Australian constitution does not use the words “nation”, “national” and especially not “nationalist”.

The constitution creates a federation. Nothing in the document mentions race or exclusion. That is why Aborigines are fighting to get a brief mention in the preamble.

“Israel has laws to preserve Israel as a Jewish state,” says Shortis. “Because they want to preserve their racial and cultural identity. I ask the question to the far-Left: why are we called white supremacists?

“It’s far from the case. If anything, the white race is the most disgusting, self-loathing race on the face of the earth. How long does the white man have to pay for the perceived evils of our colonial history?”

There is nostalgia here for a time before they were born. “Our freedoms have diminished in the last 40 years,” says Shortis. But do you diminish the freedoms of others? “This lie that we go out looking for Muslims to seek them out, I don’t know who invented that.”

We take our leave. There’s a game on back in Melbourne at Etihad I’d like to see. Shortis says something about my “poor priorities”. But I’m not so sure.

Later that day, departing the stadium with 28,000 people, mostly white but a whole lot more, you can’t help look at the little Asian and Indian kids at the game with mum and dad.

Do they want to hear bad things about who they are, or where they come from? Do we want to make them [feel] hated? We do not. That is why most of us refuse to do it.

Most who leave this stadium wear the tribal insignia of their teams. But all who leave the stadium pass untroubled, in peace.

See also : Australia Dodges Populist Lurch as Brexit, Trump Hit Markets, Jason Scott, Bloomberg, June 18, 2016.

antifa notes (june 9, 2016) : australian far right + #ausvotes

[Updated June 30, 2016]

With the federal election rolling around soon, I thought I may as well take note of the electoral efforts of the far right. A mixed bunch, common themes are opposition to Islam, denial of anthropogenic global warming, and a mAd love of flag-waving (‘Australia for Australians’).

(Dr Jim Saleam’s) Australia First Party : AFP is standing several candidates, including party leader Dr Jim Saleam in Lindsay (NSW), Susan Jakobi in Lalor (VIC), ex-ONP candidate John Kearney in Solomon (NT) and Victor Waterson in McMahon (NSW). Saleam will be running against ex-Tory and Penrith councilor Marcus Cornish and Stephen Roddick of the Australian Liberty Alliance. One Nation in WA — ie, that faction not aligned with Pauline Hanson — appears to have merged with AFP for the purposes of running two losing candidates (Lyn Vickery and Brian McRea) for the Senate under the AFP banner. (The WA branch was chucked out of One Nation a few years ago.)

(Debbie Robinson’s) Australian Liberty Alliance : The ALA, the political project of ‘The Q Society’, is standing Senate candidates in every state, several lower house seats in NSW (Peter Kelly in Bradfield, Ron Pike in Farrer, Stephen Roddick in Lindsay, Carl Halley in Macquarie) and QLD (Tony Duncan in Bowman, John Spellman in Fisher, Shaun Spain in Forde, Matt Darragh in Griffith, Rob Windred in Hinkler, Caleb Wells in Longman) and one in WA (David Archibald in Curtin). They will be battling AFP leader Saleam in Lindsay and One Nation in Longman. Note that John Bolton (SA) was dropped from the ALA team and is now standing as an independent in Wakefield, while its most famous face is Gary ‘Angry’ Anderson (NSW). Along with Pauline Hanson, an ALA candidate seems the next most likely to win a Senate seat.

(Lyndon La Rouche’s) Citizens Electoral Council : The CEC is the Strayan expression of the LaRouchite kvlt (see : Lyndon LaRouche: Fascist Demagogue, PublicEye.org), deeply committed to stopping The Royal Family from selling drugs to The Kids. And stuff. They’re running losing candidates in the Senate (NSW, NT, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA) and also several Lower House seats (Michael Gough, Cowper, NSW; Lindsay Cosgrove, Hume, NSW; Peter Davis, Paterson, NSW; Peter Flynn, Lingiari, NT; Brigid McCullough, Solomon, NT; Chris Lahy, Mallee, VIC and; Jeff Davy, Murray, VIC). See also : The CEC Report on Channel 31.

(Blair Cottrell’s) Fortitude (United Patriots Front) : Despite gaining a good deal of media and public attention over the last 12 months, staging an ‘East Coast’ Tour earlier this year, and having conducted several successful media/publicity stunts, the UPF has seemingly failed to attract sufficient support to register with the Australian Electoral Commission. It’s unknown if any of the small clutch of fascists and ultra-nationalists who form the UPF’s inner core will bother sticking their hand up for the election — a ‘seminar’ conducted at The Bush Pig Inn in Jackass Flat on June 5 attracted around 20 or so participants. In January, internal UPF discussion acknowledged that party fuehrer Cottrell was unable to run for public office because of his violent criminal record, while UPF Perth lackey Dennis Huts also worried that his own imprisonment for an unspecified crime might bar him from running. The stench the UPF carries around with it was confirmed by the hostile reception party fuehrer Cottrell received when he tried to jump on board the dairy farmers protest in Melbourne in May. See : Watch: Far-Right Leader’s Effort To Hijack Dairy Farmer Protest Backfires, New Matilda, May 25, 2016.

kimnkev
Above : Kim Vuga with UPF Perth lackey Kevin Coombes (aka Eljah Jacobson).

(Kim Vuga’s) Love Australia Or Leave Party : Like UPF/Fortitude, LAOL appears to have failed to register for the election. Vuga, whose main claim to fame is appearing on a TV show, will be running as an independent for the Senate in QLD and is joined by Karen Street in Tasmania (in April, Street replicated, with a whole lot less fanfare, the UPF stunt at a match in Hobart), Elizabeth Power and Tony Robinson in NSW and Ian Felton and Jeffrey Simmons in VIC.

*Just as Vuga’s party failed to register, so Karen Street, Elizabeth Power, Tony Robinson, Ian Felton and Jeffrey Simmons do not appear on the ballot; another Tony Robinson is an ALA candidate in TAS (along with Susan Horwood).

(Nick Folkes’) Party for Freedom : On June 4, the PFF staged another desultory rally in Sydney, this time in the suburb of Blacktown. The Big Idea being celebrated on this occasion was Getting Rid Of All The African And Muslim Immigrants To Australia. Ho hum. (A crowd several times larger than the roughly 20 or so individuals the PFF gathered told the racist meatheads to shoo.) As he’s done on numerous previous occasions, Folkes will be losing badly in whatever ring he throws his hat into.

*Folkes has abandoned his campaign.

(Pauline Hanson’s) One Nation Party : Perennial chancer Hanson has good prospects of being elected to the Senate according to pundits. In the intervening two decades since Hanson made her maiden speech in Parliament, the party’s rhetoric has changed from Australia being in danger of being ‘swamped by Asians’ to being ‘swamped by Muslims’. (Note that the party itself is apparently in danger of being swamped by ‘Asian wives’.) The party’s main competitor for the bigot vote would appear to be the ALA. Joining Hanson in her quest for a seat in the Senate in QLD is Malcolm Roberts, Fraser Anning and Judy Smith; the party is also running Senate candidates in NSW, SA, TAS, VIC and WA. In QLD, candidates for lower house seats are Troy Aggett (Blair), Brenden Ball (Fadden), Robert Pasquali (Fairfax), Phil Baker (Flynn), Geoff Virgo (Herbert), Damian Huxham (Hinkler), Peter Rogers (Leichhardt), Michelle Pedersen (Longman), Lynette Keehn (Maranoa), Brad Trussell (Oxley), Elise Cottam (Wide Bay) and Rod Smith (Wright): in Longman, ONP will be pitted against ALA. In NSW, Carter Edwards will be standing in Dobell, Graham Burston in Paterson, while Neil Smith is running in Richmond.

(Danny Nalliah’s) Rise Up Australia Party : God has told the Reverend that he’s gonna win BIG this time. Presumably. The party — which has formed an informal alliance over the last year with the UPF — is a fundamentalist, multi-ethnic Christian project opposed to multiculturalism and Islam and wants Australia to remain Australian (as opposed to Austrian, presumably). Pastor Danny Nalliah and deputy leader Rosalie Crestani will take a break from talking on God’s behalf in an attempt to address the Australian Senate from VIC, while Brian Tucker and Maree Nichols in NSW, Anthony Hardwick and Sheila Mundy in WA, Paul Taylor and Neroli Mooney in QLD, Jan Pile and Jimmy Gimini in the NT and Sandie O’Connor and Jess Wyatt in the ACT will be losing elsewhere. The party will also be praying to Jesus to ensure that the following all go to Parliament (and/or Heaven):

VIC : Tran Tran (Ballarat), Sandy Caddy (Bendigo), Angela Dorian (Casey), Melanie Vassiliou (Chisholm), Nicholas Steel (Corangamite), Ash Puvimanasinghe (Corio), Lin Tregenza (Dunkley), Yvonne Gentle (Flinders), Peter Dorian (Gippsland), Colin Robertson (Holt), Peter Vassiliou (Hotham), Vincent Ferrando (Indi), Margaret Quinn (LaTrobe), Marion Vale (Lalor), Tim Middleton (Mallee), Jeff Truscott (McEwen), Norman Baker (McMillan), Yasmin Gunasekera (Murray);

WA : Philip Scott (Brand), Mitchell Sambell (Durack), Jennifer Whately (Forrest), Henry Barnard (Hasluck), Stephen Carson (O’Connor), Taffy Samuriwo-Vuntarde (Pearce), Alison Rowe (Stirling);

NSW : Brian Clare (Paterson), Tracey Bell-Henselin (Fisher), John Kelly (Leichhardt), Sherrilyn Church (Maranoa);

NT : Regina McCarthy (Lingiari), Silvija Majetic (Solomon).

Oddly, Nicholas Steel (Corangamite) has stood for both the Australian Protectionist (2013) and One Nation parties (2007) previously.

See also : Election 2016: How far-right politics crashed and burned in Australia, Daniel Flitton, The Sydney Morning Herald, June 5, 2016 | Psephos: Adam Carr’s Election Archive: Australian federal election, 2 July 2016 | Cate Speaks blog provides a nifty guide to all the micro-parties (there’s dozens) here.