Why do white supremacists hate Milo Yiannopoulos?

LOTTA - Antifascist newspaper from North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate and Hesse

With Donald Trump, extreme right-wing media have one of their fans as head of state. Without the preparatory work of the “Tea Party” movement and generous donors, their longed-for “culture war” would not have reached the White House.

When the extreme right-wing agitator Milo Yiannopoulos lost a lucrative book deal with the publishing house Simon & Schuster in February 2017 and was dismissed as a speaker at the important annual conference of the Conservative Political Action Committee - interviews were circulating in which he played down sexual violence against minors - there many hoped that this would end his career for good. Previously, Yiannopoulos, who came from England, had become well-known as the editor of the extreme right-wing news company Breitbart News (BN) and as a speaker and interview partner, his trademark being as a self-titled "dangerous fagot" ("dangerous fagot") against the alleged fagot To incite enemies of the “western civilization” created by “white men” - especially against Islam, against feminism, “cultural Marxism” and the immigration of non-white people. With the founding of his media company Milo Inc. and the publication of his book "Dangerous" made possible by this in June 2017, Yiannopoulos made it onto the bestseller lists; this enabled him to successfully re-enter the US media landscape. His comeback was made possible by two factors: the successful establishment and expansion of extreme right-wing media networks and the associated legitimation of their inhuman propaganda in public discourse since the rise of the Tea Party movement and Donald Trump's presidential candidacy based on it, supported by donors such as the billionaire Robert Mercer was funded.

From the "Tea Party" to "America First!"

A look back at 2009: Barack Obama is the first African American president to be sworn in in US history. At the same time, the most successful reactionary movement in decades is forming against his presidency within the Republican Party. The Tea Party movement believes it is in the tradition of the “patriots” of the US American Revolution and in a “culture war” against the tyranny of the (left-liberal) “establishment”. Led by Fox News presenters like Glenn Beck, columnists like Ann Coulter, radio presenters like Rush Limbaugh, Republican politicians like Sarah Palin, James “Rick” Perry, Michele Bachmann or today's Vice President Michael “Mike” Pence a fight against them begins Establishing a statutory health insurance, against taxes and state social benefits, against secularism, equality and diversity policy, the restriction of gun rights and “illegal” immigration. Important sponsors of the movement have been the billionaires Charles Koch and David Koch, majority owners of the second largest privately owned US corporation, Koch Industries, who pour millions of dollars into the Tea Party movement through their extensive network of lobby organizations and thinkers Tanks like the Cato Institute. Within the movement, especially libertarians, right-wing conservatives and Christian rights allied in order to expand their political power in the Republican Party; in this way they created a political environment that continues to offer diverse points of contact for the extreme right to this day.

Donald Trump was also a supporter of the Tea Party and tweeted in 2013, for example, that their activists were "great Americans". In addition, Trump is still a supporter of the "birther theory", a racist conspiracy fantasy that is widespread in the movement, according to which Obama was not born in the USA, but an Islamist.

Door opener for the extreme right

As with many of the extreme right-wing news sites that are prominent today, BN's beginnings were humble. In 2005, the website began as a news aggregator for right-wing conservative news, before its founders, journalist Andrew Breitbart and lawyer Laurence "Larry" Solov, turned it into a news site with their own content in 2007. Breitbart befriended Stephen "Steve" Bannon, who financed and produced documentaries between 2004 and 2012; these glorify, for example, Ronald Reagan, the “favorite president” of the “Republicans”, or portray Islam as the “embodiment of evil” in the world. One of the films was intended to induce the former governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, to run for president.

Former investment banker Bannon convinced hedge fund manager Robert Mercer to become a co-owner in 2011 with a $ 10 million investment in BN; he entrusted him with a leadership role within the media company. When Breitbart died unexpectedly in 2012, Bannon was named chairman of the board. Under his leadership, the news site developed into a central information and discussion platform for right-wing conservative to extremely right-wing readers.

While the contributions on BN avoid all too open racism, they paint the picture of a nation shaken by a “left opinion dictatorship” that can only be saved by a “hard” right-wing policy. The open agitation is left to the readers in the comment columns. The civil rights organization Southern Poverty Law Center therefore calls BN the "New York Times of the neo-Nazis" and the BN comment column as "safe space for anti-Semitic language". Leaked emails from March 2016 underline that this is a targeted strategy: For his widely cited article "An Establishment Conservative's Guide to the Alt-Right", Milo Yiannopoulos sought advice from Andrew Auernheimer ("Weev"). ), the system administrator of the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer (The daily striker, alluding to the Nazi propaganda magazine Der Stürmer by Julius Streicher); He also received detailed comments on his text from David Saucier ("Henry Wolff"), an editor of the extreme right-wing monthly American Renaissance, before it was published. BN editor-in-chief Alexander “Alex” Marlow instructed Yiannopoulos to disguise connections to the extreme right-wing news sites VDARE around Peter Brimelow and Taki’s Magazine around Taki Theodoracopulos, which he himself dubbed as “racist”. Bannon commented on the post by saying that he would be happy about every text in which the Italian fascist Julius Evola (1898-1974) is mentioned. Thus, one post at a time, extremely right-wing propaganda is disguised as a supposedly legitimate conservative opinion and introduced into the political discourse.

An information warrior in a rage

The majority of Americans heard about Alexander "Alex" Jones for the first time in January 2013, when he was invited to CNN's studio by the English TV presenter Piers Morgan. The reason was that Jones had started a petition for Morgan's deportation. In a frenzy, he yelled at Morgan that there would be a second revolution if new laws to restrict gun rights were passed after the recent rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which had recently killed 28 people. Radio host Jones is arguably the best-known extreme right-wing conspiracy theorist in the United States; He not only sees the aforementioned rampage as a “false flag” operation by the “globalists” who allegedly want to bring about a dictatorial “New World Order”. As a basic work for this worldview, Jones refers to the bestseller "None Dare Call It Conspiracy" (1971) by Gary Allen and Larry Abraham, both members of the anti-communist organization John Birch Society (JBS) founded in 1958 by Robert Welch Jr. According to the ideology of the JBS, the book claims that “international bankers” first financed the Russian revolution and then tried step by step to establish a “new world order” through international cooperation, centralized monetary policy, welfare state benefits and much more. Jones has been spreading his extreme right-wing conspiracy theories since 1999 via the radio broadcast named after him, The Alex Jones Show, the most popular broadcast on the conspiracy-theoretical Genesis Communications Network directed by Ted Anderson. In addition, Jones operates the InfoWars, NewsWars and PrisonPlanet websites. Through the combination of his media offers, he has been reaching millions of Americans every week for several years, as well as supporters all over the world who want to believe his lies. Jones' propaganda not only rewinds the classic conspiracy theories that "dark forces" in the US state are the "pullers" behind every terrorist attack in the country, but also claims, for example, that fluoride in drinking water is used to "make people gay." ". Last but not least, Jones concentrated his propaganda campaigns on the then President Obama, in whom he identified, like many others, a "globalist" and "henchman of the Illuminati" who created a "communist Nazi regime" through the introduction of a statutory health insurance and the "disarming" of the citizens want to introduce in the USA. As a result, Jones found quite a few followers within the Tea Party. In 2011, his colleague Jerome Corsi wrote the main work of the "birther" "- conspiracy theory called" Where’s the Birth Certificate? " Other enemies of the USA (and the world) identified by Jones are feminism, Islam, the Black Lives Matter movement or the "climate change lie". While Jones ’propaganda was dismissed as" crazy "for years, many had to take his activities seriously when he supported Donald Trump in the presidential election campaign and won him over for a half-hour interview on his show in December 2015. Trump used the time to market his book "Crippled America" ​​published by Simon & Schuster in November 2015. As a fan of the moderator, he said to Jones at the end of the interview: "Your reputation is incredible, I will not disappoint you, I hope you will be very, very impressed. Author]. "

The foundation of Trumpism

The enthusiasm of extreme right-wing media makers about Trump's presidential candidacy was unprecedented, as in his first introductory speech in June 2015 he had downgraded undocumented immigrants from Mexico as “drug dealers”, “murderers” and “rapists” and refused to clearly distinguish himself from known “white to distance supremacists ”(supporters of a“ white supremacy ”) like David Duke. Trump benefited from the mobilization of an extreme right-wing electorate through the daily positive reporting in the relevant media, while the very media with Trump's growing success were able to gain more supporters and legitimacy. They also received new legitimacy from Trump's ongoing tirades against leading US media such as the New York Times, which the current US President calls “fake news”. Libertarian, right-wing conservative and extreme right-wing opinions have come very close in recent years. Popular right-wing commentators such as former BN employee Benjamin "Ben" Shapiro, Ann Coulter or Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson from Fox News (FN) avoid the direct use of racist terms, but they share central ideological convictions with the extreme right: All social ones Problems of the USA, it is usually said, are ultimately due to the equality and diversity policy, to the recognition and enforcement of the civil rights of non-heterosexual people, to an alleged "Islamization" of the country and an alleged "left opinion dictatorship", which by Antifa, Black Lives Matter or #MeToo. So it is not surprising that Ann Coulter's columns, for example, are also bought by American Renaissance around the prominent “white supremacist” Jared Taylor and appear on their website alongside the usual extreme right-wing agitation.

Right family ties

In Trump, Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah Mercer, who is among other things chairman of the family-owned Mercer Family Foundation and since 2014 board member of the conservative think tank Heritage Foundation, recognized a presidential candidate to their liking. Initially, the Mercers supported the tea party favorite Rafael "Ted" Cruz; but when he had to admit defeat in May 2016, Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner over lunch convinced Rebekah Mercer to throw their financial and political weight behind their (in-law) father's campaign. The family's "Super-PAC" (lobbying organization in support of an election campaign), to which Robert Mercer alone donated $ 13.5 million, was renamed Make America Number 1 (MAN1) by Keep the Promise, a reference to Trump's election slogan "Make America Great Again "(MAGA).

In addition, the data analytics firm Cambridge Analytica (CA) commissioned by Trump's campaign, in which Robert Mercer had invested $ 15 million as a co-founder, played an important role. The company collected personal data from up to 87 million users of the social network Facebook without their knowledge in order to use the information for targeted election advertising. According to a co-founder, the management team wanted to use the company as a “weapon” for a “culture war” in the US. During the presidential campaign, Bannon, who sold up to a five million dollar stake in the company in April 2017, was a senior executive. BN reported only positively about Trump and attacked its competitors in numerous articles.

With Trump's election victory, not only did his daughter and son-in-law receive posts in the direct vicinity of the US government, but also Steve Bannon and other BN employees such as the alleged “terrorism expert” Sebastian Gorka, a member of the Hungarian Vitézi Rend, who in 2007 gave his support for the neo-Nazi Magyar Gárda, or Kellyanne Conway, previously head of the "Super-PAC" MAN1. Unsurprisingly, BN became the house and court reporter of the new federal government; With its questions, the platform regularly provides templates for inflammatory statements and reports based on them. Even if Gorka and Bannon were expelled from the government environment after six months and Bannon was forced to withdraw from BN in January 2018 in the wake of the power struggle for MAGA's future, the medium for supporting extremely right-wing politics remains.

Conclusion

The upswing in reach and political impact of the extreme right-wing media in the US did not fall from the sky. It grew out of the social shift to the right heralded by the Tea Party movement since 2009, first in the Republican Party and then in the USA as a whole, which is supported by right-wing donors such as the Koch and Mercer families. Strengthened by the Trump presidency, extreme right-wing media will continue their “culture war” in the foreseeable future.