anti-Semitism » ADL Blogs
Posts Tagged ‘anti-Semitism’
March 28, 2016 4

Hacker Claims Credit for Anti-Semitic Flyer Sent to College Campuses

Col­leges around the coun­try, large and small, pub­lic and pri­vate, con­tinue to receive anti-Semitic fly­ers blam­ing Jews for destroy­ing the coun­try “through mass immi­gra­tion and degen­er­acy” and ask­ing peo­ple to “join us in the strug­gle for global white supremacy.” Hacker Andrew Auern­heimer (also known as Weev) has claimed credit for exploit­ing net­work print­ers at these col­leges to print these flyers.

Andrew Auernheimer in a photo posted on the Daily Stormer in 2014

Andrew Auern­heimer in a photo posted on the Daily Stormer in 2014

Auern­heimer, an unabashed racist and anti-Semite wrote a post­ing on Storify on March 25 about how he used a few lines of code to seek out inse­cure print­ers and then caused those print­ers to auto­mat­i­cally print out the anti-Semitic flyer. Auern­heimer elab­o­rated on his moti­va­tion in his post­ing: “The key to mak­ing impact in the world is not being the smartest or know­ing the most. It’s about oper­at­ing asym­met­ri­cally at scale. Expend the least amount of effort for the most amount of things hap­pen­ing.” Auern­heimer chose his mes­sage because “When you’re print­ing on the scale of tens or hun­dreds of thou­sands of print­ers, every increase in com­plex­ity makes more print­ers reject the mes­sage.” He added, “With scale you should pre­fer ele­gance over com­plex­ity, and what could pos­si­bly be more ele­gant than the inher­ent beauty of the swastika?”

Because Auernheimer’s code is rel­a­tively sim­ple and he posted it online, it seems likely that oth­ers will repro­duce what Auern­heimer describes as his “brief exper­i­ment.” He wrote on Twit­ter that “the copy­cats are already here,” not­ing another round of hate­ful fly­ers were printed at UMass– Amherst.

In a March 27 inter­view with Moth­er­board, Auern­heimer defended his actions, stat­ing “I did not hack any print­ers. I sent them mes­sages because they were con­fig­ured to receive mes­sages from the public.”

Anti-Semitic flyer sent to a number of college campus printers

Anti-Semitic flyer sent to a num­ber of col­lege cam­pus printers

Auern­heimer was sen­tenced to 3.5 years in prison in March 2013, report­edly charged with fed­eral crimes for obtain­ing the per­sonal data of more than 100,000 iPad own­ers from AT&T’s pub­licly acces­si­ble web­site.  In April 2014, accord­ing to Arstech­nica, an appeals court reversed Auernheimer’s con­vic­tion and sen­tence because he was “charged in the wrong fed­eral court.”

A sec­ond flyer that attacked the LGBT com­mu­nity appeared on print­ers at the Uni­ver­sity of Mass­a­chu­setts and UCLA over the week­end of March 26. The flyer, which used homo­pho­bic and racist slurs, indi­cated that the mes­sage “has been brought to you by the Gay Ni– –er Asso­ci­a­tion of Amer­ica [GNAA].” GNAA is a loosely affil­i­ated group of Inter­net trolls who have hacked var­i­ous web­sites.  Though it is unclear if Auern­heimer sent this flyer as well, that is the name of a group that Auern­heimer was asso­ci­ated with when he was involved in hack­ing the AT&T web­site, expos­ing the names of thou­sands of iPad users.

Mr. Auernheimer’s anti-Semitism dates back to at least 2009, when he cre­ated sev­eral videos that con­tained anti-Semitic ram­blings and com­ments.  At the time, mem­bers of the Jew­ish com­mu­nity in Port­land, Ore­gon, con­tacted the ADL with con­cern about Auern­heimer, as threat­en­ing calls were made to an area syn­a­gogue at the same time that Auern­heimer released a video in which he said he was going to Port­land. Law enforce­ment believed that Mr. Auern­heimer might have been the indi­vid­ual who made the calls.  A secu­rity aware­ness alert for Jew­ish insti­tu­tions was cir­cu­lated in the Port­land area.

The FBI located Auern­heimer at a hotel in the San Fran­cisco area and warned him not to go near Jew­ish con­gre­ga­tions or agen­cies. Auern­heimer allegedly told the FBI that he was dis­gusted by Jew­ish teach­ings but not Jews. He later spec­u­lated that some sort of impor­tant “kike event” must have been going on in Port­land.  He was never charged with any crimes related to the inci­dent, nor was it deter­mined that he actu­ally had made the threat­en­ing calls.

Auern­heimer, who describes him­self as a “white nation­al­ist hack­tivist,”  does not try to hide his racism and anti-Semitism. In an Octo­ber 2014 piece on The Daily Dot, he is quoted describ­ing him­self as “a long-time critic of Judaism, black cul­ture, immi­gra­tion to West­ern nations, and the media’s con­stant stream of anti-white pro­pa­ganda.” Accord­ing to the arti­cle, he has a “giant swastika tat­too,” and wants the peo­ple who sup­port him as “some­thing of a folk hero” who beat “a con­tro­ver­sial hack­ing con­vic­tion” to know that he is not just a “troll,” but is “incon­tro­vert­ibly racist.”

In Octo­ber 2014, on the white suprema­cist site the Daily Stormer (ref­er­enced on the flyer) Auern­heimer ranted about “the Jews,” whom he says built “an empire of wicked­ness the likes the world has never seen.” He wrote, “They took con­trol of our sys­tems of finance and law. They hyper­in­flated our cur­rency. They cor­rupted our daugh­ters and demanded they sub­ject them­selves to sex work to feed their fam­i­lies. These are a peo­ple that have made them­selves a prob­lem in every nation they occupy, includ­ing ours.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

March 25, 2016 24

Anti-Semitic Flyer from Neo-Nazi Site Daily Stormer Hits Campuses

Update — 3/28/16: Hacker Andrew Auern­heimer has claimed credit for exploit­ing net­work print­ers at these col­leges to print these fly­ers. More infor­ma­tion avail­able here.

On Thurs­day, March 24, a num­ber of cam­puses around the coun­try received an anti-Semitic flyer that blamed Jews for destroy­ing the coun­try “through mass immi­gra­tion and degen­er­acy.” The flyer asks peo­ple to “join us in the strug­gle for global white supremacy.” While it’s unclear who actu­ally sent the fly­ers to net­work print­ers and fax machines at the schools, it con­tained the address of The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi web­site. The dis­tri­b­u­tion may be the result of a hack­ing effort.

The Daily Stormer openly embraces Hitler and National Social­ism. Every day, the site posts vir­u­lently racist and anti-Semitic arti­cles. Using crude lan­guage, the site dis­par­ages minori­ties and blames Jews for a num­ber of soci­etal ills. The site was cre­ated by Andrew Anglin, a 31-year-old neo-Nazi, in 2013. Anglin said that he started the site “to serve as a hard­core front for the con­ver­sion of masses of peo­ple into a pro-White, Anti­se­mitic ideology.”

Anti-Semitic flyer distributed at campuses

Anti-Semitic flyer dis­trib­uted at campuses

Anglin, based in Ohio, first got involved in the 9/11 “Truther Move­ment”, which pro­motes con­spir­acy the­o­ries about the 9/11 ter­ror­ist attacks. He cre­ated a site called “Total Fas­cism” in 2012 before focus­ing on the Daily Stormer. Anglin has declared that Jews are the “open and pub­lic destroy­ers of soci­ety” and that Jews are the enemy of the white race. In addi­tion to demo­niz­ing Jews, Anglin is an ardent Holo­caust denier, refer­ring to the Holo­caust as a “hoax.”

Anglin has been known to urge sup­port­ers to troll per­ceived ene­mies on Twit­ter. In Novem­ber 2014, Anglin pro­moted a Twit­ter cam­paign to bom­bard Luciana Berger, a British Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment, with an anti-Semitic misog­y­nist tweet. Anglin started his cam­paign against Berger after a British anti-Semite was arrested for send­ing her anti-Semitic mes­sages through Twitter.

Regard­less of whether Anglin or one of his sup­port­ers sent the flyer to cam­puses, the Daily Stormer pro­motes vir­u­lent anti-Semitism on a daily basis and attracts thou­sands of vis­i­tors each day to the site.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

March 22, 2016 3

Intended or Not, SJP’s Actions Have Consequences for LGBTQ People

By Seth M. Marnin, Vice Pres­i­dent for Civil Rights

Recent homo­pho­bic and anti-Semitic inci­dents at Brown Uni­ver­sity came on the heels of the announce­ment that Janet Mock, trans­gen­der author and founder of #Girl­s­LikeUs, a social media project that empow­ers trans women, had can­celled her sched­uled speak­ing engage­ment there. Mock’s talk, Redefin­ing Real­ness, was spon­sored by Moral Voices, the Brown Cen­ter for Stu­dents of Color, Sarah Doyle Women’s Cen­ter, LGBTQ Cen­ter, Sex­ual Assault Peer Edu­ca­tors, Swearer Cen­ter for Pub­lic Ser­vice, Office of the Chap­lains, the Rhode Island School of Design’s Office of Inter­cul­tural Stu­dent Engage­ment, and Brown/RISD Hillel.

React­ing to the fact that Hil­lel was one of the co-sponsors of pro­gram, the Brown Uni­ver­sity chap­ter of Stu­dents for Jus­tice in Pales­tine (SJP) launched a change.org peti­tion urg­ing Ms. Mock to reject Hillel’s invi­ta­tion to speak, say­ing that she should accept “Brown stu­dents’ spon­sor­ship instead of Hillel’s.”  Although they were only able to gain 159 sup­port­ers (of the nearly 9,000 stu­dents who attend Brown), SJP’s divi­sive efforts led to Ms. Mock can­celling her talk.

Photo: Wikipedia Commons

While some may be quick to crit­i­cize Ms. Mock’s deci­sion, con­dem­na­tion should instead be lev­eled against SJP and their efforts to splin­ter a com­mu­nity and use Ms. Mock as a pawn. In their effort to link Hillel’s Moral Voices’ cam­paign — a largely domes­tic ini­tia­tive high­light­ing vio­lence against LGBT+ indi­vid­u­als and com­mu­ni­ties — to vio­lence in the Mid­dle East, SJP forced a trans­gen­der woman of color to choose between silenc­ing her­self or allow­ing her­self to be exploited for their unre­lated cru­sade.  She should never have been put in that position.

The homo­pho­bic and anti-Semitic graf­fiti that appeared on Brown’s cam­pus just days later occurred in an envi­ron­ment that SJP helped cre­ate. Their claim to be sur­prised is unper­sua­sive.   More­over, the graf­fiti is only one vis­i­ble sign of the con­se­quences of SJP’s actions. While SJP’s efforts to alien­ate Jew­ish stu­dents are well doc­u­mented, there are other impli­ca­tions too.

There are far too few vis­i­ble trans­gen­der role mod­els and lead­ers. Efforts that have the effect of quash­ing those scarce voices have far-reaching reper­cus­sions.  For exam­ple, stud­ies have shown that the sui­cide attempt rate among trans­gen­der men and women exceeds 41%, greatly sur­pass­ing the 4.6% of the over­all U.S. pop­u­la­tion who report a sui­cide attempt at some point in their lives. The ele­vated rates of sui­cide attempts are con­nected with sur­vivors’ expe­ri­ences of fam­ily rejec­tion and dis­crim­i­na­tion and vio­lence at school and work. The absence of trans­gen­der voices in main­stream dis­course also plays a role. There few role mod­els for young trans­gen­der peo­ple, and fam­i­lies, co-workers, and friends of trans­gen­der peo­ple have lim­ited oppor­tu­ni­ties to hear from trans­gen­der lead­ers.  Such an expe­ri­ence would bet­ter equip them to be allies in the future. Unfor­tu­nately, SJP’s actions fore­closed that pos­si­bil­ity for the Brown Uni­ver­sity campus.

The impor­tance of pro­vid­ing plat­form for trans­gen­der voices is under­scored by the fact that, accord­ing to the National Coali­tion of Anti-Violence Pro­grams’ most recent report, vio­lence against trans­gen­der women and par­tic­u­larly trans­gen­der women of color remains at an alarm­ingly high rate. At present, only 17 states and the Dis­trict of Colum­bia have hate crime laws that explic­itly cover gen­der iden­tity. Crit­i­cal efforts to address vio­lence against LGBTQ peo­ple, includ­ing advo­cacy for inclu­sive hate crime laws like the 50 States Against Hate cam­paign, are under­mined by orga­ni­za­tions that engage in activism that results in silenc­ing trans­gen­der voices. That too is what SJP did.

SJP encour­aged a speaker – wholly unre­lated to Israel — to reject an invi­ta­tion from a broad coali­tion of stu­dent orga­ni­za­tions solely because one of those orga­ni­za­tions is Jew­ish. Intended or not, SJP harmed the LGBTQ com­mu­nity at Brown and beyond.  It’s well beyond time to reject these divi­sive tactics.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,