Extremist Content Online: White Supremacist Street Fighting Gang Creates Telegram Channel Promoting Anti-Immigrant & Anti-Semitic Content

May 12, 2020 | Studies & Reports, Uncategorized

European Centre for Counterterrorism and Intelligence Studies-Germany and Netherlands

By CEP- The Counter Extremism Project

The Counter Extremism Project (CEP) reports weekly on the methods used by extremists to exploit the Internet and social media platforms to recruit followers and incite violence. Last week, the white supremacist street fighting gang, Rise Above Movement (RAM), launched a Telegram channel featuring their extreme right wing, anti-immigrant and anti-Semitic content. The Maldivian pro-ISIS Haqqu Media Center released a new video praising a Maldivian ISIS fighter killed in Syria, while ISIS released an Amaq News propaganda video showing an alleged attack on a Nigerien military facility. Also, CEP researchers located two pro-ISIS propaganda websites that use Cloudflare as their name server.

Additionally, a neo-Nazi accelerationist Telegram channel celebrated 5,500 subscribers by calling for mass shootings and other acts of violence to spread fear and terror, and users of a white supremacist chan imageboard on the dark web celebrated the alleged Norwegian mass shooter, Philip Manshaus, as his trial began last week. Finally, an anti-civilization neo-Nazi started a community board on an 8chan successor website.

White Supremacist Gang Starts Telegram Channel

The white supremacist street fighting gang Rise Above Movement (RAM) launched a Telegram channel on May 5. The channel features the group’s extreme right wing, anti-immigration, and anti-Semitic content, as well as a link to an article on a website affiliated with the group, which advises that all “activism” be committed while wearing masks to preserve the anonymity of its membership. The U.S. Department of Justice has stated that RAM members have previously “documented and promoted their white supremacy ideology through postings on various internet platforms.” The channel had over 250 members within two days of being created.

“RAM propaganda has also been previously found on YouTube and on Instagram – where it operated a clothing store that was taken down for being a hate organization only after it was flagged by a news organization,” said CEP researcher Joshua Fisher-Birch. “RAM’s move to Telegram will further their ability to coordinate real-world violence and spread white supremacist, anti-immigrant, and anti-Semitic bigotry. Based on their track record, Telegram should not allow them to operate on their platform.”

RAM is a group from southern California whose members have attacked counter-protestors in California and Charlottesville, Virginia. Some members have traveled to Europe to participate in far-right festivals and meet ups.

In July 2019, three RAM members were given prison sentences of 27, 33, and 37 months respectively, after pleading guilty to charges related to attacking counter-protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017. RAM’s founder, Robert Rundo served 20 months in a New York state prison for stabbing a rival gang member in 2009.

Maldivian Pro-ISIS Group Releases Video

The Maldivian pro-ISIS Haqqu Media Center released a new video on May 2 glorifying a Maldivian ISIS fighter killed in Syria. The video praised the fighter for leaving the Maldives, engaging in social media propaganda work, and fighting. Five days after the video was uploaded it was still available on the Internet Archive and Mega.Nz. Recently released pro-ISIS propaganda has sought to appeal to people in the Maldives. CEP reported legacy pro-ISIS Maldivian blogs on the WordPress platform in mid-February, which were removed.

Two Pro-ISIS Propaganda Websites Located, Both Use Cloudflare Services

CEP researchers located two pro-ISIS propaganda websites the week of May 2 to May 8, both of which use Cloudflare services. The first website contains ISIS propaganda videos with Russian subtitles, including the most recently released ISIS propaganda video, “To Be Absolved Before Your Lord.” On May 7, the site had 21 videos with Russian subtitles. The website uses Cloudflare as its name server and Public Domain Registry as its registrar.

The second website, on the .xyz domain, has previously been removed from the .win.in, and .ru domains. The website contains violent ISIS propaganda videos, weekly newsletters, and daily Amaq News updates. Videos on the website include recent ISIS releases, as well as notorious execution videos. The website uses Cloudflare anti-DDOS protection services. The previous versions of the website used Cloudflare as its name server.

ISIS Amaq Video Released On Multiple Websites

On May 4, ISIS released an Amaq News propaganda video on multiple websites that allegedly shows an attack on a Nigerien military facility. The video shows combat and an execution of a wounded soldier. In addition to being posted on Telegram and RocketChat, the video was released on at least eight websites: Pcloud, File.Fm, Streamable, Ok.Ru, Yadi.Sk, Top4top, Mail.Ru, and Mega.Nz. Three days later, the video was still available on Telegram, RocketChat, and Ok.Ru.

Neo-Nazi Accelerationist Telegram Channel Celebrates 5,500 Subscribers By Calling For Mass Shootings

A neo-Nazi accelerationist Telegram channel celebrated reaching 5,500 subscribers on May 7 by calling for mass shootings and other acts of violence with the intention of spreading fear and terror. The channel encouraged their subscribers to commit random acts of violence against people, including with firearms, as well as committing mass shootings in large public places in order to spread terror. The channel also encouraged shooting at cell phone towers.

The channel has previously praised the actions of terrorists such as Brenton Tarrant and Anders Breivik, has posted propaganda from and supported the Atomwaffen Division and The Base, and has called for mass violence.

White Supremacist Chan Site On The Dark Web Celebrates Norwegian Would-Be Mass Shooter

On May 7, users of a white supremacist chan imageboard on the dark web celebrated Philip Manshaus as his trial began in Norway. Manshaus is facing murder and terrorism charges for allegedly killing his 17-year-old adopted Chinese born step-sister and then opening fire on the Al-Noor Islamic Center near Oslo. Manshaus was tackled and overpowered by a 70-year-old man praying at the mosque. Manshaus praised Brenton Tarrant and Patrick Crusius in online posts. In over a dozen messages, users of the imageboard glorified Manshaus’ alleged attack and called for additional violence.

Anti-Civilization Neo-Nazi Starts Chan Community

A vagrant anti-civilization neo-Nazi started a community board on an 8chan successor website. The link was advertised on his Telegram page which has over 1,100 subscribers. The chan imageboard contains videos of the individual boxing with another white supremacist. The same individual also has an Instagram account where he promotes a violent form of white supremacism steeped in misogyny.