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Tuesday, August 11, 2020

White Supremacists Made a Database of Jews. Are You In It?

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Ariel Sobelhttps://www.arielsobel.com/
Ariel Sobel is a TED talker, writer and Bluecat Screenplay Competition Winner.

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On July 31, I received an email that stunned me. It read: “Thanks for noticing all the hard work we put into The European Man Archive Project, we appreciate you spreading the word. You can link directly to your profile.” Attached was a hyperlink to a collage of my face along with screenshots of things I had tweeted denouncing racism and white privilege. Statements such as “I’m calling on ignorant white people to face their white fragility” surrounded my acknowledgment that “I’m a gay Jewish woman.”

My face was accompanied by 1,013 additional entries of Jewish people, which once was posted by the Twitter account @TheEuropeanMan1, a white supremacist who had just emailed me to let me know I was personally on his radar. The targets predominantly were Jewish journalists. 

I first sounded the alarm on this movement in March, when journalist Rafaella Gunz was receiving harassment from these white supremacists. Out of nowhere, a swarm of them sent her a collage of her face and tweets. When I reverse-searched the image, I found a Twitter account with more than 5,000 followers who regularly circulated these “profiles” of Jews. 

The downloadable version of the archive includes graphics labeling which journalists at CBS, CNN, NBC, NPR, The New York Times and Fox News are Jewish, have Jewish spouses or are Christian Zionists. In the graphic, leftist Peter Beinart’s photo sits inches away from that of Bush administration darling Judith Miller. There’s even a conspiracy theory claiming Rupert Murdoch “has Jewish ancestry on his maternal line.”

The political divide is obliterated in the anti-Semitic archive. Jared Kushner is plastered next to “Scandal” actor Josh Malina. Lahav Harkov of The Jerusalem Post has her picture beside Jewish Voice for Peace Director Rebecca Vilkomerson. Editors of Jewish Currents are with editors of The Washington Examiner. Also, @TheEuropeanMan1 obsessively mocks Ben Shapiro.

However, many of the profiles of Jews curated are not public figures. College students, therapists and uncles who like to tweet about Israel were flagged by
@TheEuropeanMan1. Simply tweeting “I’m Jewish” on Twitter could mean you’re on the list. The archive is alphabetized by Twitter handle, so to find out if you or someone you care about has been targeted, look yourself up in the hateful directory.

The goal of these profiles? To distort Jewish people’s own words as evidence of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories.

Statements made by left-wing Jews about white privilege are manipulated to “prove” Jews are “posing” as Caucasian to elevate people of color. But the account also was staunchly anti-Zionist; it frequently flags pro-Israel voices to accuse Jews of dual loyalty.

When faced with mass reporting, @TheEuropeanMan1 wasn’t sweating it. “Don’t worry folks. I’ve archived everything, all the hate, all the disdain, all the genocidal rage, all the degeneracy, everything will be preserved,” the account tweeted on March 13.

After its third Twitter account was suspended, The European Man Group created a permanent and downloadable archive of profiles of Jewish people. It has broken us down into different categories, which brings rare insight into what enrages white supremacists. 

It’s true white supremacist groups often exploit press coverage to recruit — but it’s also true America is in virtual denial about the prevalence of this hateful ideology.

The first, with 463 entries, was “fellow white people,” a section where Jews with white skin made calls for other white people to more actively combat racism. “It is a celebration of God’s chosen people. The shapeshifting, the subversion, the anti-white hatred, it’s all here folks,” explains the author, alluding to a ridiculous anti-Semitic concept that Jews are lizard-like people who pose as Caucasian to infiltrate and destroy white society.

The next section, “Noticing Things,” curates absurd “evidence” of conspiracy theories that Jews control civilization. The targets of this section include the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Prager U and anyone who encourages Holocaust remembrance. “The Holocaust guilt industry is one of the greatest racketeering schemes in human history,” said The European Man. This is a common anti-Zionist talking point, which spurred Al Jazeera to suspend two journalists in May for making a video on that theme.

Other sections include “Anti-White”; “Refugees” and “Immigrants,” which highlights Jewish aid to migrants; “bacon haters,” which are bitter posts about Jewish-Muslim solidarity; “LGBTQ”; “Diversity”; “Covington Teens”; “Globalism”; “Learn to Code”; and “EU Brexit Paris.”

While there are plenty of anti-Semitic Twitter accounts, this one carefully is curated to indoctrinate its followers into genocidal violence. “I wish these motherf***ers had been this vocal about their hatred for our race in 1940. Would have saved half a million American lives and Europe would still be white,” wrote one follower under a profile of a Jew. “There will be a day when they can’t safely walk down the street. The evil ones,” commented another.

The archive continues to grow on the chat service Telegram, reports news site Mother Jones. On that platform, The European Man has 2,400 subscribers. The online archives claim the violating images “should not be used to target, threaten, harass, intimidate, or inflict violence towards any institution, group of people or individual person,” but the group is clear in its goal to systemically oppress Jewish Americans.

“What should you do with this information?” The European Group asks in its disclaimer. “Use it to decide who you vote into office. Use it to decide who you support socially, emotionally, physically, with material good and most importantly support monetarily. If someone is working towards goals that work against America, Americans, Christians and most importantly white Americans you should avoid helping them if at all possible.”

The European Man group delights in press coverage. It has used a report from the left-leaning Mother Jones to recruit followers on Telegram. “The more they kvetch, the more our noticing power grows,” posted the account. “+70 subscribers and counting so far today. Thanks to [reporter] Ali Breland and Mother Jones. They’ll never learn folks.”

It’s true white supremacist groups often exploit press coverage to recruit — but it’s also true America is in virtual denial about the prevalence of this hateful ideology.

Reporting on the issue creates bad press for tech companies such as Telegram, which encourages its owners to de-platform hateful users. The fewer mediums white supremacists have to communicate with one another, the harder it becomes for bigots to recruit someone who will carry out their genocidal goals.

If 2019’s marathon of mass shootings taught us anything, it’s that it takes only one armed white supremacist to murder many innocent people. The European Man engineered a lesson plan for teaching white supremacy at its most anti-Semitic.

But another lesson to be learned is that white supremacists don’t care about Jewish infighting.

Ideological rivals are plastered together as The European Man Group’s targets. Any Jewish identity is welcome: IfNotNow activists, Andy Cohen, Jussie Smollett, Ike Barinholtz and ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. The account even chastised conservative commentator Candace Owens for saying Democrats hate Jews.

While we police one another’s politics, practice and Judaism, to anti-Semites, we are all the same.

According to an April 2019 study by The Institute for the Future, Jews face the most vitriolic harassment from other Jews who disagree with them about Israel. The Jewish community is splintered — with each of us lonely trees growing on partisan islands — while our enemies are undivided in their quest to chop us all down.


Ariel Sobel is a screenwriter, filmmaker and activist, and won the 2019 Bluecat Screenplay Competition. 

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