The following article was written by ECAJ Research Officer Julie Nathan, and this version was published on ABC Religion and Ethics. It was originally published on The Times of Israel.
Antipodean Resistance: The Rise and Goals of Australia’s New Nazis
ABC Religion and Ethics
April 20, 2018
Seventy years after the crushing defeat of Nazi Germany, Nazi ideas and groups are re-emerging throughout the West.
Although Nazism remains on the political fringes, adherents are increasingly active and emboldened in propagating the antisemitism, white supremacy, racist hate and homophobia that are intrinsic to Nazi ideology.
In Australia, a new neo-Nazi group, Antipodean Resistance, emerged publicly in October 2016 with their vile propaganda. Antipodean Resistance promotes and incites hatred and violence, as seen through some of its anti-Jewish and anti-homosexual posters, with graphic images of shooting Jews and homosexuals in the head. One poster called to “Legalise the execution of Jews.”
In addition, Antipodean Resistance has connections to groups overseas who have committed terrorist acts and/or are proscribed terrorist organisations. The group also espouses support for literature that calls for guerrilla warfare and terrorism. Antipodean Resistance is a small but highly active group.
Antipodean Resistance (AR) had its incubation on the Iron March website, composed of forums for neo-Nazi hate groups, in February 2016 with a handful of people. The group was initially without a name or logo, but was aimed at “younger NatSocs, 14-25” to be “a new group. One that will take the fight to the enemy” – for example: “a synagogue and intimidate the scum and let them know your [sic] serious,” as recorded by Iron March members “Chud” and “Kehlsteinhaus” (on 29 February 2016).
By 10 October 2016, Antipodean Resistance had a name and logo, and its own sub-forum on Iron March. One of its other members, “Xav” (whose profile marked his “Interests” as “Gassing kikes”), posted the group’s catchphrase: “We’re the Hitlers you’ve been waiting for.”
Ideology and symbology
Antipodean Resistance is a neo-Nazi group. It is antisemitic, white supremacist, anti-homosexual and against non-white immigration. The group expresses veneration for Adolf Hitler and espouses National Socialism (Nazism) as an ideology. It is hostile to all people they consider to be non-Europeans, but Jews are seen as the primary and ultimate enemy.
Nazi ideology espouses belief in antisemitic conspiracy theories. Jews as a group are portrayed as controlling the mechanisms of power in the world – banking, government and media – to the utter detriment of the European races. This old conspiracy theory has been updated to include the more contemporary conviction that “the Jews” are plotting “White Genocide” through mass immigration of non-whites into white majority countries.
In the Nazi racial hierarchy, Jews are at the bottom of humanity (and, indeed, are considered sub-human), underneath all other races, ethnicities and nationalities. This racial hierarchy is based on the Nazi idea of the eternal battle between “the Aryan race” and “the Jewish race” as the protagonists in a cosmic battle between good and evil, and other peoples are mere background scenery in Nazi apocalyptic visions.
Antipodean Resistance ideology is expressed through their symbols, several of which are derived directly from Nazi Germany. The Antipodean Resistance flag is blue and white with a black swastika. Members are photographed wearing the skull mask of the Totenkopf (Death’s Head), which was used as the symbol of Hitler’s SS units, and a white Akubra-style hat. This is reflected in the logo most commonly used, that of the Totenkopf mask and Akubra-style hat perched above a swastika, with the background being the Black Sun (Schwarze Sonne in German) symbol, also known as the Sun Wheel (sonnenrad in German), surrounded by a wreath.
Antipodean Resistance has expressed some of its aims and plans on its website:
- “We National Socialists here, as well as our brothers abroad, are going to take our nations back.” (posted on 28 December 2016)
- “We are not a mass movement. We do not want the masses. We want the fanatics, the people who care and who will fight, both during activism and during their day to day lives to bring about the beauty that is National Socialism. We want quality people who mean what they say and will not back down. We are striving for nothing less than the national rebirth of our people. And we will get there only with those fanatic enough to do something about it.” (posted on 23 April 2017)
In an interview on the Daily Stormer (21 February 2017), a U.S.-based Nazi website, a member of Antipodean Resistance stated that:
“Our immediate goals are to gather all fanatical National Socialist young Australians into one youth movement, and not only be politically active, but also embody our worldview as National Socialists … We’ll continue doing what we’re doing now, which is mainly postering, stickering, and physical activities, but will move on to rallies and demonstrations in the future.”
Banners dropped from bridges over highways by Antipodean Resistance from January 2018 onwards express another aim: “White Revolution is the only Solution.”
Inspirations and international connections
Through online activity and engagement on the Iron March web-forum, Antipodean Resistance members became inspired by and linked with other neo-Nazi groups, such as National Action (NA) in Britain, Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM) in Norway, Sweden and Finland, Atomwaffen Division (AWD) in the United States, and others.
The inspiration for Antipodean Resistance is stated on its website:
“We’re inspired by three main groups, the greatest of all being National Action in the UK, but the Nordic Resistance Movement and of course the National Socialist German Worker’s Party are major inspirations. National Action is the best model for a new group of young men to use in this day and age … The Nordic Resistance Movement would have to be the premier current National Socialist organisation in the world, and their style is what we would hope to transition towards into the future.” (posted on 21 February 2017)
The beliefs and actions of the National Socialist German Worker’s Party – namely, Hitler’s Nazi Party – are a matter of public record, in history books and court cases. However, the other groups and literature that heavily inspires Antipodean Resistance are less well known. A concise description of these formative influences and models for Antipodean Resistance is provided below, showing a glimpse into their beliefs and violence.
Iron March is the neo-Nazi web-forum where Antipodean Resistance was incubated. But Iron March was also the incubator of several other groups, who became associated with each other and with Antipodean Resistance. An investigative article by James Poulter makes the links between various groups on Iron March.
Iron March has as its logo: “GAS THE KIKES, RACE WAR NOW, 1488 BOOTS ON THE GROUND!” The term “Kikes” is a pejorative and intensely derogatory term for Jews; “1488” refers to the 14 words of white supremacy (coined by David Lane: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children”) and the numbers 88 corresponds to the letters H.H. (“Heil Hitler”).
Antipodean Resistance members maintain connections with Iron March, especially through propaganda material. For example, the term used on Antipodean Resistance banners: “White Revolution is the only Solution” was also used on Iron March posters in Toronto, Canada, in November 2017; also on the poster was the logo “Join your local Nazis” and the image of the SS Death’s Head and hat, which are also used by Antipodean Resistance.
Antipodean Resistance is inspired by National Action (NA) in the UK, which was proscribed as a terrorist organisation in December 2016. However, National Action continues to operate under various guises and underground. In September 2017, five members of National Action were arrested for preparation for terrorist acts, and in January 2018, another six members were arrested for preparation for terrorist acts.
National Action members voiced support for the murder of British MP Jo Cox, in June 2016. The convicted murderer, Thomas Mair, was a supporter of extremist right-wing groups, including National Action. The group has also held demonstrations with banners declaring that “Hitler was right.” National Action “has been filmed telling a small group of supporters about “the disease of international Jewry” and that “when the time comes they’ll be in the chambers.” It has also been filmed training supporters in hand-to-hand combat.
NORDIC RESISTANCE MOVEMENT
Antipodean Resistance is also inspired by the Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM) which has affiliates in Norway, Sweden and Finland, and was formed in 2016. Members of the Swedish affiliate were convicted of carrying out three bombing attacks in November 2016 and January 2017. The NRM was banned in Finland in November 2017.
The Nordic Resistance Movement manifesto, “Our Path” (September 2016), in its 52 pages states:
“In order to overcome global Zionism and save our planet in the long run, it is not enough for those of us in the Nordic region, to fight this alone … Our efforts will therefore include allying ourselves with other nations and governments willing to break free from modern global enslavement.”
The NRM seeks alliances with others opposed to the so-called “Zionist world order.” Antipodean Resistance connections with the NRM include AR member “Xav” being interviewed on NRM radio, on the Finnish branch’s Studio 204, in February 2018.
Antipodean Resistance, although not naming AtomWaffen Division (AWD) as a group they are inspired by, has remarkable similarities to various aspects of AWD. This similarity occurs in the images and text in propaganda posters, wording of membership requirements, masks, slogans, martial training and hiking, and other aspects. For example, both groups share the motto: “Join your local Nazis!”
Members of AtomWaffen Division were accused of five murders in 2017 (court cases pending), and a member was convicted in January 2018 of plotting bombing attacks against places including synagogues and a nuclear power plant in Miami. AtomWaffen Division states on its website that “The failure of democracy and capitalism has given way to the Jewish oligarchies and the globalist bankers resulting in the cultural and racial displacement of the white race,” and that as “an ideological band of comrades, we perform both activism and militant training (hand to hand, arms training, and etc.).”
Antipodean Resistance connections with the AWD include support from AWD members – for example, one tweeted: “Heil Hitler, and good luck+best wishes from the Atomwaffen Division!” (October 2017), and other online communications between members from the two groups.
WILLIAM LUTHER PIERCE
Graffiti by Antipodean Resistance on 25 September 2017 in NSW provides further evidence of the aspirations of the group. The graffiti was composed of “WLP” (for William Luther Pierce, neo-Nazi leader of the National Alliance in the United States, and author of The Turner Diaries), a Y-shaped cross (the “Algiz” letter of the runic alphabet, adopted by neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups, including Pierce’s National Alliance), and “The Jews are our misfortune” (the translation of the motto Die Juden sind unser Unglï¿½ck!, coined by Heinrich von Treitschke in the 1880s; this motto always appeared at the bottom of the title page of Der Stuermer, the Nazi newspaper published by Julius Streicher, from 1923 to 1945, and has been adopted by many neo-Nazis).
The Turner Diaries was first published in 1978, and was written by William Luther Pierce under the pen-name “Andrew Macdonald.” It is a novel composed of the diary of Earl Turner, set in 1991-1993. The diary covers the revolution by “The Organization,” a neo-Nazi and white supremacist group, who wage military war against “The System” – that is, the U.S. government. The book discusses military actions, including weaponry and bombings, killing and murder, targets, organisation, communication systems, as well as some analysis of American society, and the anti-Jewish and anti-black basis of the ideology. When the victorious neo-Nazis – “The Organisation” – establishes its first state in part of California, the Jews are rounded up and killed, the blacks and other non-whites are expelled, and the so-called “race-traitors” are hung in the streets in an event known as the “Day of the Rope” (a term still used today, including by Australian far right activists like Blair Cottrell).
The FBI claimed that the book was an inspiration and the blueprint for the bombing of the FBI headquarters in Oklahoma City by Timothy McVeigh, a far-right activist, in 1995, in which 168 people, including 15 children, were killed.
The Turner Diaries provides inspiration and encouragement for taking up arms and waging terror against Jewish targets, state facilities and the government, in order to bring about a National Socialist state devoid of Jews, and other non-European ethnicities.
Antipodean Resistance, on 16 December 2017, posted on their Twitter account “Read SIEGE by James Mason!” The tweet included a photo of the book, which was signed by Mason, who wrote on the inside cover: “To the Antipodean Resistance 88! J Mason 11-19-17”. It was later revealed that members of Antipodean Resistance had met with Mason.
James Mason is an American neo-Nazi. Between 1980 and 1986, Mason wrote a series of newsletters which were eventually compiled into a 400-plus page book titled Siege. The book was available in both hard copy and online as a PDF.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Centre (SPLC):
“Mason and his writings preach the praxis of leaderless, cell-structured terrorism and white revolution … Mason began reconfiguring his own sustained belief in the need for neo-Nazi terror cells willing to strike at American culture under the control of Jewish influences, which he dubs ‘the System’ … Behind Mason is an entire canon of terrorist doctrine.”
According to ProPublica:
“For Mason, the way forward was obvious: He no longer wanted to convince the masses of the rightness of Nazism. They would never get it. Now was the time for true believers to go underground and launch a clandestine guerrilla war aimed at bringing down ‘The System’. ‘Siege’ is essentially a long string of essays celebrating murder and chaos in the name of white supremacy.”
Followers of Mason and Siege are inspired to adopt the tactic of guerrilla warfare and terrorism by cells of highly motivated neo-Nazis in order to attack their enemies, such as Jews, homosexuals, non-white immigrants, left-wing groups, state facilities, and to bring down the power structures and the government.
Membership and geographic spread
Antipodean Resistance began in 2016 with a handful of members. In January 2018, the group claimed to have 300 members around Australia. Members are aged in their late teens and twenties. Members are secretive about their identities, concealing both names and faces. In photos and videos, members’ heads are covered with the Death’s Head SS mask and an Akubra hat. Any identifying marks, such as tattoos, are either non-existent or concealed. Indications are that members, at least the earlier members, are more likely to be private school educated – which is to say, from privileged families rather than of working class background.
Two of the several requirements for membership include: “Race: You must be White to join our organisation. No Blacks, Asians, Jews or mixed abominations”; and “No Poofters: We don’t allow homosexuals or other sexual deviants in our organisation.”
Antipodean Resistance began in Melbourne but has chapters (as they are referred to) in other states. Cities where Antipodean Resistance is active include: Adelaide, Ballarat, Bathurst, Bega, Bendigo, Brisbane, Devonport, Gold Coast, Hobart, Launceston, Melbourne, Newcastle, Perth, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, Toowoomba, Townsville and elsewhere. In February 2018, Antipodean Resistance formed a women’s branch, Antipodean Resistance Women’s Alliance (ARWA).
Antipodean Resistance members are involved in hiking and camping trips into mountain areas in several states for “bonding”, martial arts training, and planning activities. Their favoured mountains and national parks include the Grampians and Wilsons Promontory in Victoria, Brisbane Forest Park, Mount Glorious, Mount Beerburrum, and Gold Coast hinterland, in Queensland, Mount Warning in northern NSW, and elsewhere. In these remote mountain-tops, Antipodean Resistance members also fly the swastika flags of their own group and that of Nazi Germany, and burn left wing posters they have ripped down and taken.
The Antipodean Resistance website, on the homepage, states: “While we engage in other activities not mentioned on the website and elsewhere, the main part of what we do is currently postering, stickering, hiking/camping, martial training, and creating murals.”
To date, public activity by Antipodean Resistance is restricted to putting up posters and stickers in public areas, painting some murals and graffiti in undisclosed venues and, more recently, banners calling for “White Revolution.” The group’s propaganda and recruiting activity mostly come through posters calling for the execution of Jews, demonising Jews as poisoning Australian society, blaming Jews for non-white immigration, vilifying homosexuals, inciting the killing of homosexuals and urging homosexuals to commit suicide. Some posters use revamped Nazi and Hitler images.
Often, dozens of posters are put up in any given night, and sometimes it has been in the hundreds. Universities have been the most favoured venue for posters by Antipodean Resistance. Many of these posters are aimed not only at advertising the group’s existence and propagating its beliefs, but also at recruiting young Australians to the Nazi cause and to the group.
Antipodean Resistance posters fall into three basic categories: anti-Jewish, anti-homosexual and pro-Nazi. In addition, there have been one-off posters targeting Aborigines (in colonial-style chains to celebrate Australia Day in 2018 with the text “Happy Invasion Day”), Chinese students (in Mandarin saying they must report to the university office or be deported from Australia), and Turnbull and Shorten (for allowing non-white immigrants into Australia, after an Afghan ran over people in his car). Another poster “dreamt” of a “White Christmas” with images of a Jew, African and Chinese crossed out.
The first propaganda action by Antipodean Resistance members occurred on 9 October 2016 in Melbourne with posters showing the shooting of a gay man, and the text “Get the Sodomite filth off our streets.” This was incitement to violence. It was soon followed by the first racist poster “Stop the Hordes” on 3 December 2016 in Melbourne, against non-white immigration using the racist terms “duneskins, shitskins, niggers, chinks”; at the top of the poster was the hand that was behind non-white immigration and that hand was identified as “the Jew” by the Star of David. On 13 February 2017, the group was armed with two new posters “Reject Jewish Poison,” with Der Stuermer style image of a stereotypical Jew, and “National Socialism or Nothing.”
To celebrate Hitler’s birthday on 20 April (often designated as “420” by neo-Nazis) in 2017, the group went all out. Two new antisemitic posters reading “Legalise the Execution of Jews” and “420 Blaze It” (referring to the crematorium that burnt the bodies of murdered Jews in the Nazi death camps) and a new pro-Nazi poster reading “420 Raise It” (raise the Nazi salute). The “Execute Jews” poster was composed of a photo taken at Vinnitsa, Ukraine, in July 1941, of a Jew about to be shot by a Nazi. Antipodean Resistance had super-imposed its SS Death’s Head mask and Akubra hat onto the Nazi in the photo, and a cartoon-style image of a stereotypical Jewish head onto the Jew.
Antipodean Resistance has also put up thousands of stickers around the four eastern states and in South Australia. There are five forms of stickers, three with swastikas. Stickers are the easiest propaganda material to put up, and can be done quickly without being noticed, hence stickers being a favoured means of propaganda.
Murals have been produced which are predominantly composed of text, for example, with the words “Adolf Hitler,” “Antipodean Resistance,” “AR” and “Revolt!” One mural created for International Holocaust Remembrance Day in 2018 was composed of the words “Ha Ha Happy Holocaust,” with painted images of Jewish gravestones.
Graffiti is much less utilised. However, graffiti in Sydney in 2017 was composed of the symbol of the Algiz rune, the initials “WLP” (for William Luther Pierce) and the motto “The Jews are our misfortune.” Two other pieces of graffiti were simply of the name of the group. There is also a stencil graffiti of a swastika and the group’s name. In addition, Antipodean Resistance vandalised a tree when members carved a large swastika and the letters “AR” into a tree trunk.
Antipodean Resistance members had a presence and then a sub-forum on the Iron March web-forum from February 2016 until Iron March became defunct in November 2017. This is where Antipodean Resistance members met online with other neo-Nazis based overseas. An example of Antipodean Resistance activity on the Iron March forum, which shows its members’ antisemitism and desire to commit murder, is the posting (on 8 June 2017) of an altered image of a photo taken on 19 April 1945, after the liberation of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, of a British soldier using a bulldozer to push the bodies of the dead into a mass grave. In the photo, Antipodean Resistance replaced the soldier’s head with the iconic Antipodean Resistance SS Death’s Head mask and hat; the words “Antipodean Resistance” are written with an arrow pointing to the soldier, and wrote the words “Australian Jewry” with an arrow pointing to the dead prisoners. The altered image shows that Antipodean Resistance aspire to murdering Australian Jews on a massive scale.
Antipodean Resistance established its website in November 2016. This is used predominantly as the public face of the group, and to post and publicise their monthly Action Reports and other articles. An image posted on the website in the August 2017 Action Report is a photo of Antipodean Resistance members in the mountains with the added text, “It’s not about the Jews you gas, but the friends you make on the way.”
A Twitter account was set up in February 2017 but was closed by Twitter in a crackdown on hate sites in December 2017. Aware of the probability of the ban, Antipodean Resistance set up an account on Gab, a Twitter-like medium, in November 2017. The Twitter and Gab accounts were/are used to parade their posters and stickers, and to link to new items on the website and to Youtube videos. Antipodean Resistance members have made several short videos, mostly of their hiking trips into the mountains, but also of some posters in Brisbane and Ballarat. They have their own Youtube channel, set up in August 2017, but most of their videos are posted elsewhere on Youtube, bitchute, and vidme.
To obtain donations to support its activities, Antipodean Resistance set up an account with Hatreon in November 2017, but when that site became non-functioning, Antipodean Resistance switched to MakerSupport and set up an account in March 2018.
Responses to Antipodean Resistance
The Jewish community, notably through the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ), the peak national body representing the Jewish community in Australia, has closely monitored Antipodean Resistance since October 2016. The annual ECAJ Report on Antisemitism in Australia in 2017 prominently featured Antipodean Resistance in the report’s chapter on organisations.
The mainstream media has shown some interest in Antipodean Resistance activities, especially the homophobic posters, initially and then during the same-sex marriage debate in 2017. The one anti-Chinese student poster received high levels of publicity. Mainstream media coverage of antisemitic propaganda, including the poster demanding to legalise the execution of Jews, has been noticeably minimal. However, in 2018 the antisemitic and homophobic posters were given prominence in several articles and radio interviews, notably in relation to the campaign led by the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies to make Section 20D (incitement to violence) of the NSW Anti-Discrimination Act work effectively.
Governments, federal and state, while not supportive of any aspect of Antipodean Resistance, have been slow to condemn the group and its activities, and slow in recognising the dangers the group poses. Australia’s intelligence and law enforcement agencies are also monitoring Antipodean Resistance very closely, according to media reports. Some left wing and anarchist groups have also been monitoring Antipodean Resistance activities. Andy Fleming has been particularly vigilant in gathering information to expose the members of the group.
At this stage, Antipodean Resistance is a serious concern rather than a solid threat to the safety and security of Jews, homosexuals and non-white immigrants. However, it remains to be seen what direction Antipodean Resistance will take in their future activities. As the membership base and geographic spread of the group has been steadily growing since the group was formed in Melbourne in October 2016, increasing numbers of posters and stickers can be expected.
However, the real danger of Antipodean Resistance is not in its vile and genocidal propaganda, especially against Jews and homosexuals, or its targeting of innocent Australian youth as recruits. The real danger is in its propensity for violence as seen in its propaganda, its connections overseas to proscribed terrorist groups and in the publications it promotes. All of these espouse violence, including murder and terrorism.
It is imperative that those within Antipodean Resistance who incite violence, murder and genocide be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. If existing legislation is inadequate to sustain such prosecutions, then the law urgently needs to be strengthened.
If Antipodean Resistance is allowed to flourish and act, it will not only be Jews, homosexuals and non-white immigrants who are adversely affected. Hatred and violence against targeted groups cannot be neatly isolated or quarantined. All Australians would eventually suffer when our country becomes fractured, bruised and bloody.
Julie Nathan is the Research Officer for the Executive Council of Australian Jewry and the author of its annual Report on Antisemitism in Australia.