Shock report reveals Jews and Nazis marched under same banner at Capitol riot
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Shock report reveals Jews and Nazis marched under same banner at Capitol riot

Study from King’s College focusing on radicalisation outlines how activists were 'united around common narratives of anti-government and anti-Covid conspiracies'

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Protestors, some of whom were QAnon believers, storm Capitol Hill
Protestors, some of whom were QAnon believers, storm Capitol Hill

Orthodox Jews and neo-Nazis marched under the same banner during January’s US Capitol Hill protests “united around common narratives of anti-government and anti-COVID conspiracies,” a new report has said.

Despite clear antisemitic undertones to the conspiracy theories that underpinned the insurrection, pro-Israel and Jewish participants were present on the demonstration, the study added.

The report published by the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation at King’s College London, said there was now a need to reassess understandings of antisemitism amongst ideologically motivated violent extremists (IMVE).

Published on Friday, the report looked at the key narratives and motivations of the January 6 insurrectionists, and how they have evolved in the first 100 days of the administration of President Joe Biden.

It states: “The appearance of neo-Nazis and religious Jews under the same banner demands researchers to reassess contemporary understandings of IMVE antisemitism and the extent to which far-right groups may choose to accommodate and work with Jewish extremists in order to achieve common goals. ”

Overtly national socialist and antisemitic elements were certainly present among insurrectionists, says the study, whose author’s include former Union of Jewish Students President Hannah Rose.

Hannah Rose

It makes reference to a photo of a man, later identified as Robert Packer, wearing a “Camp Auschwitz; work brings freedom” T-shirt which was widely shared on social media.

Video footage and photos of the insurrection also show individuals making Nazi salutes, and confirmed the presence of known antisemitic actors, such as Nick Fuentes’ Groyper Army and social media personality Tim Gionet, known as Baked Alaska

But the report adds: “Narratives about Jewish people and Judaism were not monolithic in the insurrection, with the recorded presence of neo-Nazis, antisemitic conspiracy theorists, philosemitic far-right actors and Jewish people themselves.”

While antisemitism is “not a primary motivating narrative” for the majority at the protests, the report says “various conspiracy theories that were key to the insurrection are reminiscent of old antisemitic tropes.”

The appearance of neo-Nazis and religious Jews under the same banner demands researchers to reassess contemporary understandings of IMVE antisemitism and the extent to which far-right groups may choose to accommodate and work with Jewish extremists in order to achieve common goals

It adds that marchers might not have held anti-Jewish views but “their complicity in its proliferation and their failure effectively to oppose antisemitism speaks to the rising normalisation of anti-Jewish narratives.

“While mainstream media coverage has focused on purely neo-Nazi symbols, such as Packer’s Auschwitz hoodie, it has neglected a threat of a different nature: a broader crowd that projects subtler, but no less dangerous antisemitic tropes.”

T-shirt of protestor says ‘Camp Auschwitz’, worn by Robert Keith Packer (Screenshot from video by ITV News)

The study – Far from Gone: The Evolution of Extremism in the First 100 Days of the Biden Administration – warns of a move amongst those who attended the protests towards a “big tent” conspiracy which has generated a “big tent” enemy, often “seen as the Jew. ”

“This is likely to continue to grow antisemitism among American IMVE actors,” it adds.

It makes stark warnings about the consistent and growing threat of domestic extremism in the US and says while many insurrectionist groups have been pushed underground through mass condemnation and deplatforming, they continue to be a present and growing violent extremist threat.

Insurrectionist groups, including Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, who took direct inspiration from Donald Trump, continue to mobilise despite the change in administration, it is suggested.

Don’t Tread On Me logos with the Proud Boys

And previously distinct narratives have begun to converge, including anti-government ideologies, COVID conspiracy theories, election misinformation, anti-Asian racism, antisemitism, misogyny and transphobia.

Disenfranchised QAnon adherents are also being recruited to further radicalise and mobilise them to action both in the US and transnationally.

“Since the 6 January insurrection, the nature and prioritisation of antisemitism within the American far right has evolved, in line with the merging of distinct conspiracy theories,” it says.

Hannah Rose’s report into the radicalism which united some Orthodox Jews and the far-right

An analysis of far-right social media platforms reveals how a peak in mentions of the term “globalist” can be seen on 20 January, the day of Joe Biden’s inauguration.

“Globalist” is often a dog-whistle term for Jew amongst far-right activists.

It is also suggested that among the groups most prominently identified at the insurrection, such as the Proud Boys and Boogaloo Bois, “attitudes towards Jewish people and Judaism are not as straightforward.”

The report concludes: ” In order to gain acceptance and mainstream support, some IMVE ideologies attempt to move away from an overtly antisemitic image, which is recognised to be unpopular among the public and any potential pool of recruits.”

READ MORE:

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments