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Charlottesville: Trump ignores most hateful facts

The neo-Nazis, white supremacists and alt-right protestors carried torches, Tiki torches, through the streets of Charlottesville Friday night. These torches were symbolic of what Nazis in Germany used in a prelude to World War II, and of course, they were used by the Ku Klux Klan.

The following is an editorial from the Mankato Free Press.

President Donald Trump said he wanted facts before making a statement about the white supremacist Charlottesville riot that left one dead.

But so far, Trump has not considered the relevant facts.

Trump blamed “many sides” for the violence on Saturday, Aug. 12. He changed his statement Monday and laid blame on the white surpremacists. Tuesday, he went back to his statement of Saturday, claiming counterprotestors were just as guilty as the white nationalists, neo-Nazis and the KKK.

As a result, Trump’s credibility continues to crumble with his own party, his military generals and his own staff.

Trump’s focus on facts of who threw the first punch shows his lack of understanding of the larger situation. In a protest, both sides will “throw the first punch” depending on where you are. The New York Times has reported counterprotesters were seen attacking the white supremacists. But there was also clear video of white surpremacists doing the same.

After nearly a week of analysis there are very few facts that suggest, as Trump did, there were “nice people” involved in the protest on the white supremacist side. Even Breitbart News, the conservative news site that Steve Bannon proudly championed as the site that gave voice to the white nationalist movement, could not come up with one “fact” that innocent, nice protesters were involved on the white nationalist side.

The facts the president should pay attention to are more serious.

The LA Times analyzed the flags and symbols carried by the neo-Nazis, fascist, and alt-right groups based on their historical significance.

There’s nothing fake about this analysis as it details the symbols long etched in historical records. Trump failed to consider these relevant facts.

The neo-Nazis, white supremacists and alt-right protestors carried torches, Tiki torches, through the streets of Charlottesville Friday night. These torches were symbolic of what Nazis in Germany used in a prelude to World War II, and of course, they were used by the Ku Klux Klan.

Their only purpose is to incite fear and rekindle images of a white-powered America. Any child, white or black, seeing those torches and those angry men take over their park, would be terrified. That’s a fact Trump doesn’t seem to want to consider.

White nationalist leader Richard Spencer has called the torches mystical and a way to “keep the parasites at bay.”

The alt-right, Nazi and white supremacists shouted anti-semitic chants during the march. They carried flags that not only had swastikas, but several other symbols that represent violence and oppression through history.

These are not white guys asking for a hearing before the Affirmative Action Committee at the University of Virginia.

Their leaders are on record, on their own websites in many cases, proselytizing that whites be given their rights above all others in America.

They used flags with depictions of the fasces, an ancient roman ax and a symbol of authority in fascist Italy, which is used in the logo of the group Vanguard America. The group’s manifesto says “America is to be a nation exclusively for the White American peoples.”

Vanguard America took top billing in the Charlottesville riot when James Alex Fields Jr. of Ohio drove his car into the crowd and killed a counter protester. He was photographed carrying one of their shields, though the group denied he was a member.

Neo-Nazi and neo-fascist groups carried flags with the symbol of the Othala rune, a symbol from a pre-roman alphabet that was used by the Nazis and Hitler’s SS and others who support white supremacy.

The symbol of the black sun was also displayed by the neo-Nazis, an ancient symbol top Nazi Heinrich Himmler had engraved on the floor of the SS headquarters of the Third Reich.

Documentary maker C.J. Hunt, working for GQ magazine, relates this account of the white supremacist protest on Friday night.

“I saw them beat a man bloody at the base of the University of Virginia’s Thomas Jefferson statue, a wave of matching white polos and splintering tiki torches crashing down on their enemy. I watched them cheer through it all.”

Those are some of the facts, Mr. President.

Republished with permission.


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Comments (10)

  1. Submitted by John Edwards on 08/22/2017 - 12:29 pm.

    An alternative view

    This is one view. For an alternative view of “the facts” visit that does an excellent job of documenting with photographs all of the extensive far-left violence that has been perpetrated by those who still refuse to accept the outcome of the election.

    John Hinderaker of the Minnesota-based website who landmark researching exposed the shoddy journalism of Dan Rather, shows photos of one of the cars set afire by the co-called antifa during the inauguration; the antifa burning an American flag; setting fires at Berkley to protest a speaker; beating an unconscious man at Berkley; trashing a Starbucks store; and trashing a store in Seattle; and others.

    It is revealing to see the national media’s disparate coverage of the Bernie Sanders supporter who mowed down Republican lawmakers with a gun (fatally if there had not been protection available) compared to the right winger who did that with his car into the left-wing agitators, killing one.

    • Submitted by David LaPorte on 08/22/2017 - 01:55 pm.

      His name was James T Hodgkinson

      “It is revealing to see the national media’s disparate coverage of the Bernie Sanders supporter who mowed down Republican lawmakers with a gun (fatally if there had not been protection available) compared to the right winger who did that with his car into the left-wing agitators, killing one.”

      Referring to Hodgkinson simply as a “Sanders supporter” implies that Sanders was somehow involved in the attack, which is outrageous. While Hodgkinson may have supported Bernie Sanders, Sanders condemned his attack. So did the entire country, including the media.

      In contrast, the Neo-Nazi leadership encouraged violence against the counter protesters, resulting in the murder of Heather Heyer by James Fields. Heyer was protesting against racism. In my view, that makes her a hero, not a “left-wing agitator”.

      The “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville was organized by the Neo-Nazi website the Daily Stormer as part of their “Summer of Hate” campaign. While most Republicans condemned “Unite the Right” participants, Trump equivocated, eliciting criticism from his own party:

      When your own party is criticizing you, you really ought to rethink your position.

    • Submitted by RB Holbrook on 08/22/2017 - 02:44 pm.

      How to Lose Credibility, and Lose it Fast

      If you want people to disregard everything you say, try saying that powerline does “an excellent job” of anything other than looking like a bunch of partisan hacks coasting on a decade-old reputation.

      A researcher at the Cato Institute compared terrorism databases covering the past 25 years. He foud that right-wing groups (White nationalists,; militia members, anti-Muslim, I.R.S. building and abortion clinic bombers, etc.) were responsible for 12 times more fatalities and 36 times as many injuries as left-wing groups (communists, socialists, animal rights and environmental activists, anti-white- and Black Lives Matter-inspired attackers, etc.).

      Of course, that’s one view, based on an analysis of data. It can’t compare to a very opinionated guy putting photos on his blog.

    • Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 08/22/2017 - 03:00 pm.

      Extensive far left violence

      Powerline blog is entitled to credit for helping expose the Killian writings as forgeries. Dan Rather and really his CBS news team slipped up in their reliance on these writings in trying to prove favoritism for GW Bush’s does not make Dan Rather a “shoddy journalist.” Any more than getting one thing right in its entire history makes the powerline blog “journalism.” Hindraker and powerline are sources of right wing propaganda that make no pretense about trying to objectively inform the public about facts or the truth. Dan Rather may have failed at times but he cannot be faulted for his integrity and a lifetime commitment to seeking out the truth.

      What the right calls “left wing violence” has included any peaceful march or rally in which extremists or hotheads (some of them agents provocateurs) engage in vandalism. If the same conduct occurs during spring break or after sporting events, it’s people “letting off steam.”

      But nothing compares to the militaristic marches of the “alt-right”- neo-Nazis, white supremecists, KKK- whose marches are seething with hostility clearly aimed at intimidation and provocation to violence, if not violence. The article doesn’t mention the firearms and other weapons carried by a number of these alt-right marchers. These people symbolize evil. The President is not entitled to a pass for mincing words about good and evil, right or wrong. It’s shocking and depressing to know that so many people in this country of all countries are even unclear unclear about this.

    • Submitted by Dennis Ringstad on 08/22/2017 - 11:42 pm.

      More deflection and justification

      Why pick sides? Can’t you recognize violence when you see it? White supremacy, the confederate state, slavery, Nazism all are synonyms for violence. Violence is a noun not a verb. It isn’t about attacking people and justifying hate. It’s about attacking bad ideas and breaking the spell of those manipulated by bad ideas. People should rightly stand up for themselves in the face of ideas that come from hate to show this isn’t healthy for civilised society and the masses will rise up against it.

  2. Submitted by Charles Holtman on 08/22/2017 - 04:28 pm.

    Mssrs. Laporte and Kingstad

    You are quite right in rejecting the ridiculous attempt to equate the occasional violence of those who resist and the systemic violence of those who march with guns and torches specifically to terrorize. But, respectfully, you and many others overlook the much deeper objection by focusing only on the immediate setting. The program of those who march is, at best, to replace democracy with authoritarianism and seize the power to dispossess others at will and, at worst, genocide. The goal of those who resist is to protect themselves, their families, their neighbors and the society at large against this profound existential threat. That the resistance overwhelmingly is non-violent does not mean that morality would not justify resistance by nearly any means necessary.

    As to Mr Hodgkinson, his views may have aligned with those of Mr Sanders, but his actions were purely the product of the NRA and others whose cause is to cultivate pathology in our society.

  3. Submitted by Jeff Michaels on 08/22/2017 - 07:00 pm.

    The violent left

    NBC Evening News Tuesday night ran a revealing video of “white nationalist” leader Richard Spencer being sucker-punched earlier this year while talking to a television news reporter. That sneaky hitter was an a not a neo-Nazis or KKK member.

    Additionally, it is revealing how quickly the establishment news media “forgot” about Sanders-backer and would-be killer of Republican congressmen James Hodgkinson when focusing on recent violence.

    • Submitted by Steve Sundberg on 08/23/2017 - 12:30 pm.

      The violent left

      Bernie Sanders has never endorsed violence, unlike some other prominent presidential candidate did … multiple times.

      Tolerance does not mean intolerance must be tolerated.

    • Submitted by Bill Willy on 08/23/2017 - 03:29 pm.

      Richard Spencer

      You might find this (Atlantic) article interesting.

      “His Kampf

      “Richard Spencer is a troll and an icon for white supremacists. He was also my high-school classmate”

      One of the things I like about MinnPost, its coverage of these things and the people who comment on them is, as much as the lazy me isn’t wild about it, the things people say sometimes make me curious enough to dig around more than I normally would.

      Your comment is an example of that . . . It made me ask myself, “Why WOULD a stranger sucker-punch him?”

      I have a general understanding of what Richard Spencer and his “alt right” thing is all about (he’s the guy that came up with the term) but because of your comment I decided to look around for a little more detail and better understanding of what he’s about and MAYbe an answer to that question.

      Among many other interesting things his ex-classmate discusses with Spencer, they went over that sucker-punch incident, what Spencer thinks about it and how it seems to have impacted his view of things.

      Like I say, I think you might find the article interesting.

      And, I feel compelled to add, although you may not be meaning to defend him (I suspect your were just using him and that incident to make your point about the wild and dangerous radical dogs of the left), you might want to consider that you do seem to be siding or agreeing with Richard Spencer and what he stands for when you do that.

      If you don’t already have it, the article will give you a better understanding of what it is you’re standing up for and defending if, in fact, that’s what you’re doing.

      (I know it gave me that, anyway.)

  4. Submitted by Cameron Parkhurst on 08/23/2017 - 12:31 am.

    Anyone who doubts the intent of the Nazis in Charlottesville

    Should pay a visit to the Daily Stormer website. That website is representative of the marchers that Trump refused to condemn. And if after reading the bile and hatred found at the Daily Stormer you find yourself still sympathetic to the Nazi marchers, then you are without shame.

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