Alongside the racism, nativism and xenophobia on display at Unite the Right, the event was also an expression of the animating power of anti-Semitism.
Marchers threw Nazi salutes as they waved swastika flags, proudly wore swastika pins and shirts, and shouted “sieg heil!” A sign carried by rally-goers warned that the “Jewish media is going down;” another declared that “Jews are Satan’s children.” A white supremacist told a reporter that “the fucking Jew-lovers are gassing us,” and another one called a Jewish counter-protestor a kike. “Blood and soil,” which the white supremacists chanted several times, is the translation of the Nazi slogan, “Blut und Boden.” And at least once, white supremacists changed their refrain, “You will not replace us” to “Jews will not replace us.”
But these were only the external trappings of anti-Semitism. The entire Unite the Right rally was built on racial and conspiratorial anti-Semitism.
Here are some examples of anti-Semitism that infected the Charlottesville event:
Vanguard America: A large number of rally-goers (including James Alex Fields, who has been charged in the crash that killed one person and injured 19) are adherents of Vanguard America, a group that blames Jews for, among other things, Communism, “the modern pornography industry and the corruption of the mass media” and the deaths of millions of Ukrainians during the 1930s. Vanguard America’s manifesto calls for eliminating the purported dominance of “a rootless group of international Jews” over the US economy. In July 2017, VA tweeted, “Those behind the subversive elements eroding our culture often have something in common. Jewish influence is prevalent, invasive, dangerous.” The group also disseminates graphic anti-Jewish fliers, which have appeared in recent months at synagogues and on campuses in Texas, Louisiana, and New Jersey.
Traditionalist Worker Party: Members of this neo-Nazi group attended the rally with their leader, Matthew Heimbach. In an interview, Heimbach claimed that opposition to the rally “proves” that “the radical left, the corporations, and the State” are on the “Jewish side” in the conflict between Jews and white supremacists. TWP members propagate the classic “double loyalty” claim – that the true loyalty of many American Jews is to Israel, not America. Its platform states that “the organized Jewish community’s record of deceit, duplicity, and double-standards in lobbying against American interests within the American political system is unmatched.” On TWP’s Twitter feed, they claim that Jews control Hollywood and committed genocide against white Europeans; they applaud the xenophobic and anti-Semitic Greek political party “Golden Dawn,” and defame Jewish holy books. Its leader, Matt Heimbach, has said on the record that he thinks Hitler was “a good person.”
League of the South: Describes “the Jew” as “an ancient and implacable enemy of our people and civilization.” Claims that Jews, in the guise of early 20th century Bolsheviks, were “the world’s greatest mass murderers,” and that the Jews’ pernicious influence persists today in the form of the leadership of “numerous leftist organizations active in the streets of America.” The LoS warns that the US faces a “civil war” between “the forces of Western Civilization…and the forces of Judeo-Marxism.” Describes the Holocaust as “a dubious story” recounted “to induce Christian guilt.”
David Duke: A one-man engine of hate and racism, former Klansman David Duke attended the Charlottesville rally, where he led other white supremacists in chants of “The goyim know” – a reference to the belief, common among anti-Semites, that Jews have a plan for domination and control that they are keeping secret from non-Jews. On his first post-rally radio show, Duke also blamed the “Zio-establishment for Charlottesville” for the “antifa terrorist attacks.” He continued: “There is no future for white children, that there is no future for America, that there is no future for the west unless we overthrow this Zio-garchy that is ruling over us. In the media they dominate the international globalist media, they dominate the Zio-fed Federal Reserve and the banking institutions, they dominate politics….If we don’t overthrow this Zio-garchy over us then we have no future.” He continued: “It’s ultimately Jewish racism, it’s tribalism and supremacy. They’re the supremacists. They want to not only have their Zionist ethno-state of Israel, but they want to have supremacy over our media, over what we discuss, over our banking system, and over our political system. They’re the most powerful force in campaign financing and campaign organization in America, in the world.”
National Socialist Movement: Members of the National Socialist Movement were also on the ground in Charlottesville. The neo-Nazi group, led by “commander” Jeff Schoep, venerates Adolf Hitler. Schoep’s messages to his followers about Jews are fairly straightforward; in the Summer/Fall 2017 issue of NSM magazine, he wrote: “My advice is never ever remove the bright shining light off of the Jew, for it is the Jew that is the true enemy of all humanity on this planet! All the other races and racial problems we have go back to the Jew, and the focus should never be removed from them.” Schoep used similarly over-the-top language in the Winter/Spring 2016 issue: “All of mankind should be fighting for National Socialism against our common foes which are the International Zionists, communists, and their allies. They say communism is dead, but International Jewry has played both sides, capitalism and communism, and they are in the thick of the evil that plagues us to this day.”