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Neo-Nazis have a new enemy online

Prague, 4.1.2012 18:40, (ROMEA)

The web page www.nazi-leaks.net was launched during the Christmas holidays by the "hacktivist" group Anonymous, which intends to publish information that has been carefully kept secret about those involved in the (neo)Nazi scene. The website is carrying on the movement launched by Wikileaks, which publishes secret information from behind the scenes of international politics and war zones, as well as by the website Pirateleaks, which publishes secret information about corruption in the Czech Republic. Anonymous is determined to be a "merciless, strong enemy" of the (neo)Nazis.

Nazi-leaks.net is publishing information of interest to all opponents of (neo)Nazism, information which is very unpleasant for all Nazis operating under the illusion that they are able to spread the dangerous ideology of National Socialism and hatred anonymously online. For example, Nazi-leaks is publishing the names and home addresses of the members of the militant Nazi organization Blood and Honor, including the addresses of their members in the Czech Republic. The names and addresses of people who have made financial gifts to the German version of the Czech Workers' Party, the NPD, have been published, as have the names and addresses of all the mail-order customers purchasing (neo)Nazi clothing online. Last but not least, the website has published many internal e-mail communications from within the NPD, including the servile e-mails that have been written to the headquarters of the German Nazi movement by admirers from the ranks of the Czech (neo)Nazis. The Anonymous website has also published the real names of the authors of the hate-filled articles on German Nazi websites, the user names and passwords for the social networking site Aryanbook (a kind of Facebook for Nazis) and much more interesting information. New information will be published on the website daily. Anti-fascist groups and intelligence services worldwide have acquired mountains of study material and the Nazi movement has received a knock-out blow.

Who are Anonymous? How is it possible that they have managed to easily overcome all of the protections and security measures installed by the operators of the (neo)Nazi websites? Why have they focused their attention on (neo)Nazis in particular? What are they keeping track of on Nazi-leaks.net? The answers to these questions depend on whom you ask. Some people consider Anonymous to be the most dangerous terrorists around, rendering impossible any effort at censoring, controlling or regulating the internet. Others consider them freedom fighters and heroes of the internet age. Anonymous say that anyone for whom freedom and justice are important, anyone willing to fight for those values, is part of their group.

The group is as famous as its history is brief. Some of their actions (the group itself uses the term "Operations") have been breathtaking. One of their first operations was to remove and shut down a Canadian internet radio station espousing hatred and racism toward immigrants of color.

Anonymous became world-famous for their active defense of Wikileaks, which publishes secret information from behind the scenes of international politics. For the US Government, and primarily for the US military, the publishing of information about the torturing of detainees in US prisons or the killing of civilians in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq was very unpleasant. The USA, therefore, put enormous pressure on the credit card companies MasterCard and VISA not to permit their customers to send money to Wikileaks. Both companies complied with the official request, stating that Wikileaks had allegedly behaved "unethically" by publishing the information it did. That was when Anonymous turned up on the scene, publishing the information that MasterCard and VISA had no problem with permitting their customers to send money to organizations like the Ku Klux Klan or to purchase child pornography. Anonymous then attacked the web servers of both credit card companies, taking them offline in a matter of minutes and causing them enormous financial losses.

In 2011, Anonymous earned the thanks of many in North Africa when it supported the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia, the so-called "Arab Spring". At a critical moment in the revolution, the group shut down the web servers of the secret police and erased their databases. E-mails of orders could not be sent to military bases or police stations faithful to the dictators and computer-controlled telephone exchanges also stopped working. When the dictatorial regime in Tunisia blocked Facebook and Twitter, which the democratic opposition had been using to convene and coordinate anti-regime demonstrations, members of Anonymous distributed the TOR program (widely used by Chinese dissidents, for example) among Tunisians, enabling them to get around all censorship (Operation Tunisia). When the dictatorial regime in Egypt turned off the internet country-wide as a desperate, last-ditch defense measure, Anonymous turned it back on within a matter of hours and made it possible for the opposition to continue the revolution (Operation Egypt).

Anonymous also has decided it cannot just stand by with respect to the sprees of violence being conducted by the drug cartels in Mexico and the inability of a corrupt government and local police forces there to take them on. The group is therefore declaring war against the most powerful cartel and is publishing a list of judges and police officers taking the cartel's money (Operation Zeta).

Any censorship of the internet whatsoever is unacceptable to Anonymous. Governments often use the existence of websites providing child pornography as an excuse to censor the internet. Anonymous recognizes and understands the danger and immorality of child pornography and believes those producing it should be prosecuted, not censored. In the summer of 2010 the group launched Operation Darknet, during which it disconnected and erased the 40 largest websites offering child pornography and published the personal data of the website operators and subscribers. The group delivered a knock-out blow to child pornography on the internet and succeeded in doing what no government or police force anywhere in the world could, essentially getting rid of child pornography online. Anonymous does not compromise and their message is clear: "Our demands are simple. Remove all child pornography from your servers. Refuse to host any web page offering child pornography... . It does not matter who you are. If we determine that you are hosting, promoting or supporting child pornography, you will become our target." The reputation of Anonymous is such that in 2012 it is very difficult to find a hosting firm that would not take their warning seriously.

Anonymous usually communicates with its enemies and the public through short video messages posted to Youtube. Several months ago, Anonymous published a video with a message for (neo)Nazis. The content of the message is very interesting: "Neo-Nazis, your actions are inexcusable, as is your resistance to accepting the fact that all people are equal irrespective of their race or skin color... . [Y]ou are spreading the plague of anti-Semitism and racism... . [In] the Holocaust which your predecessors committed against Jewish people, Romani and Sinti people, and the murder of people living with disabilities, which you called euthanasia... you managed to combine industrial production methods with murder... . [Y]ou attack your political opponents, people who disagree with neo-Nazism, as well as journalists, denying their freedom of speech and their freedom to speak out against your destructive ideology. At the same time you hypocritically demand absolute freedom of speech for yourselves so you can spread hatred....". The message to the (neo)Nazis ends with a clear threat: "We will tolerate your behavior no longer, you have committed many crimes against humanity and drawn the attention of the collective known as Anonymous. That attention means we will take disruptive action against you."

All video messages sent to the enemies of Anonymous end with the following:

We are Anonymous

There are many of us

We never forget

We never forgive

Expect us.

Anonymous has called its operation against the (neo)Nazis "Operation Blitzkrieg", which seems to show they have quite a sense of humor. The term "Blitzkrieg" ("lightning war") was coined by Hitler's generals as the name the tactic with which the Nazi army solidified its successes during the first phase of WWII - the use of total domination in terms of quality of leadership, mobility, training, and weaponry to overwhelm the enemy's defenses and attack the most sensitive targets deep in enemy territory. The tactic resulted in the collapse of an opponent's resistance.

After Anonymous published its message to the (neo)Nazis, anti-fascists who follow the group were tense with anticipation. Anonymous does not make idle threats.

As was noted at the start of this article, the (neo)Nazis now have a powerful, remorseless enemy who will show them no mercy ("We never forget, We never forgive"). The internet is no longer a safe communications channel for (neo)Nazis, and every (neo)Nazi must count on the fact that every word he or she writes in an e-mail, on Facebook, or on Skype can be read, used, and published by Anonymous. Anonymous can publish, at any time, the full name and postal addresses of the content authors and operators of (neo)Nazi websites. All conspiratorial security measures taken by these groups which the most technically skilled of the (neo)Nazis have developed thanks to various handbooks and manuals on computer security and then laboriously explained to their fellow-travelers (encryption of discs and e-mails, the use of anonymizers, etc.), are ridiculous and useless from the perspective of Anonymous. Their message: "Expect us" ;-) .

Gwendolyn Albert, anm, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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