An armed demonstration by neo-Nazis against the Jewish community of Whitefish, Montana is planned for Monday, January 16, between 4-7 p.m. on Martin Luther King Day, according to ABC Fox Montana News. The neo-Nazis are planning to carry high powered rifles on the march, in a gratuitous attempt to intimidate the Jewish community.
Andrew Anglin, 32, a neo-Nazi from Worthington, Ohio, who owns the popular neo-Nazi website, The Daily Stormer, is organizing the march. The protest is in “defence” of local Whitefish resident, Sherry Spencer, the mother of white nationalist, Richard Spencer, who is a part-time Whitefish resident.
Spencer, who is credited with coining the controversial term, “alt-right”, believes in “peaceful ethnic cleansing”. In November, at the annual convention of Spencer’s “think tank”, The National Policy Institute, a media firestorm was ignited when his followers responded to Spencer’s remark, “Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail victory!” with Nazi salutes.
Sherry Spencer told the press that public criticism of her son, Richard, whose toxic political rhetoric she and her husband, Rand, a doctor, “unequivocally” reject, has damaged her real estate business.
This was enough ammunition for Anglin to mount an attack on the Jews of Whitefish, since many prominent Jews have argued that Whitefish should not be associated with white supremacy. Public records in Virginia state that the official address of Spencer’s National Policy Institute is located in a building in Whitefish that his mother owns.
Top elected Montana officials, including Montana governor, Steve Bullock, have condemned the march: “We say to those few who seek to publicize antisemitic views that they shall have no safe haven here”.
This warning has clearly been ignored by Anglin. The march is being held against “Jews, Jewish businesses, and everyone who supports either”. Despite Anglin’s belief that Jews are a “vicious, evil race of hate-filled psychopaths”, he claims that violence will not be tolerated
ABC Fox Montana News reported that Chuck Stearns, the Whitefish City Manager, received an incomplete application for the march from Anglin on January 9. The application must be completed before the city can respond.
Whitefish is a ski resort town located in northwestern Montana near the Canadian border. The population of 6,000 people includes 100 families and individuals who are Jewish. The town has one rabbi, who heads an independent synagogue without walls. Whitefish police, in cooperation with the FBI, have stepped up patrols due to threats against the Jewish community that were generated by Anglin’s campaign.
Anglin urged followers to mount an attack against the Whitefish Jewish community. And while Anglin recommended that followers hang up Nazi flags and hold storybook hours, where neighborhood kids are read Hitler’s, Mein Kampf, Rachel Caroll-Rivas, a co-director of the Montana Human Rights Network, told Slate that she received online and telephone death threats. She quoted an example: “All of you deserve a bullet through your skull. Choke on a shotgun and die.”
Anglin is calling the demonstration the “James Earl Ray Day Extravaganza”, On April 4, 1968, James Earl Ray murdered 39 year old Martin Luther King Jr. while he was standing on the second-floor balcony of The Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.
The fact that Anglin, a known racist, deliberately set the march to coincide with Martin Luther King Day is no surprise. A comment posted by Anglin on the Washington Post explains what he wishes to accomplish as “Alt-Right neo-Nazi”: “The goal is to ethnically cleanse white nations of non-whites and set up an authoritarian government. Many people also believe that the Jews should be exterminated“. This leaves the obvious question: how many of those marching through the streets with riles, in a deliberate attempt to intimidate the Jewish community, can be counted among the “many people” who believe that “the Jews should be exterminated”.
ABC Fox Montana News reports that, due to a large donation, Anglin says that he now has the financial clout to bring in “nationalists groups from the UK, Sweden, France and Greece” and maybe even “someone from Hamas”.
Hamas has declared in their charter that they aim to murder every Jew in Israel. And, in order to intimidate the Jewish community, Anglin intends to bring Hamas’s celebration of murder to Whitefish. He states: “they [the Jews] will rue the day, as they see two hundred skinhead Alt-Right Nazis marching with a guy from Hamas carrying machine guns through the center of their town.”
According to The Missoulian, the Whitefish police chief, Bill Dial, has told the understandably anxious Jewish community, that while Anglin has the legal right to protest, the law also gives him the right to demand that the rifles are unloaded.
Dial, who along with the FBI, believes that the march will never happen is still not taking any chances. Dial told the press that he’s “hoping for the best and planning for the worst.”