As far-right rioters stormed Capitol Hill, neo-Nazi accelerationists are celebrating the current moment as the beginning of the end of the U.S. and the start of a “Second Civil War.”
“This is a moment that has been in the waiting for a long, long time…” said one post shared and seen close to 600 times on Telegram, an encrypted chat app favoured by neo-Nazis and other members of the far right. “Today is better than Christmas,” said another.
Many of the online accelerationists, who believe acts of terror can lead to the collapse of Western governments, see today’s actions by Trump supporters as the moment violence will be accepted by mainstream conservatives.
That lust for chaos and violence was seen on several publicly facing accelerationist channels on Telegram Wednesday afternoon.
“Always focus on pushing extremism,” advises one well known account that has pushed far-right news throughout the pandemic. “This is what liberalism fights the hardest because it is the only force that can defeat it… Accelerate!”
The terroristic side of the neo-Nazi community, which has included groups like the Base and Atomwaffen Division (both under an FBI crackdown), has long wanted a revolutionary moment to tie their ambitious plans for a ‘race war.’ Previously, they have declared events such as the storming of the Michigan state capitol in the spring as a potential spark. However, that event was minor compared to the dramatic images of swaths of right-wing rioters fighting police at the Senate steps Wednesday afternoon.
“PATRIOTS, DO WHAT YOU DID IN MICHIGAN AND BRING YOUR WEAPONS,” advised one accelerationist, whose post was viewed hundreds of times. “YOU HAVE THE WILL, NOW USE YOUR SECOND AMENDMENT RIGHT… THIS IS WHAT ITS MADE FOR.”
One account, with thousands of followers, offered a sober and sinister reading of the rioters in D.C.
“Remember they don't need to praise Hitler or our Saints,” reads one of its posts, seen over 4,000 times. “They just need to become thoroughly and brutally anti-system and supportive of Direct Action against the Beast-System.”
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Joshua Fisher-Birch, a terrorism researcher with the Counter Extremism Project who specializes on the far-right told VICE News that “Neo-Nazis and white supremacist propagandists on Telegram are hoping that the seditionists escalate, leading to more violence in Washington D.C.,”
“The chaos benefits the accelerationist narrative that violent force can achieve what electoral politics cannot,” said Fisher-Birch. “It is extremely likely that in the coming days and months, propagandists will seek to capitalize on disorder and encourage acts of terrorism to further inflame the situation.”
Other accounts are just posting memes and gifs celebrating the violence. More are using images they believe to be of a woman who was shot in the Capitol for propaganda.
All believe this is a historic moment for their cause.