Extremism, Terrorism & Bigotry

Coronavirus Crisis Escalates Antisemitic, Racist Tropes; Is Atomwaffen Disbanding?

  • March 19, 2020
ADL Headlines newsletter


A new report from ADL finds that as the coronavirus continues to surge globally, antisemitic, xenophobic, and hateful messages and conspiracy theories surrounding the pandemic are proliferating rapidly online. Lawmakers were condemned for repeatedly referring to the coronavirus as the “Chinese virus”, a term deemed by many as bigoted and scientifically inaccurate. And the thought-leader behind the violent neo-Nazi group Atomwaffen Division claims the group is disbanding in light of recent high-profile arrests of members.

Read on for more on these headlines, news you can use to fight hate and the latest info about ADL from around the country.

  1. Coronavirus Crisis Elevates Antisemitic, Racist Tropes

“These messages spread hate and misinformation, making it more difficult to access accurate information while elevating fear and anxiety. While some of these messages are new, many are simply old tropes repackaged for a modern pandemic…” ADL: READ MORE

+ The Rise in Coronavirus Hate Crimes – The New Yorker

+ Conspiracy theory that Jews created virus spreads on social media, ADL says – The Times of Israel

  1. Lawmakers Condemned for Using ‘Chinese Virus’ Slur

“’Using this term furthers discrimination, scapegoating and xenophobia,’” said Jonathan Greenblatt of the Anti-Defamation League. “’Rhetoric can take on a life of its own and using non-scientific terms only sows confusion.'” New York Daily News:


+ Jonathan Greenblatt tweet: “@POTUS must condemn this virulent racism coming from his White House, and he has to stop repeatedly using racist terms himself when referring to coronavirus…”

  1. Leader: Atomwaffen Division Disbanding

“James Mason's announcement, which just hit the Internet via an audio recording, comes as federal law enforcement, Congress and the U.S. State Department ramp up the pressure on neo-Nazi groups that take up arms, such as Atomwaffen. Because of the timing, though, some critics believe that the move is designed to give members breathing room rather than actually end their militant activities.” Westword: FULL STORY

+ ADL Resource: Atomwaffen Division (AWD)

+ ADL Resource: American White Supremacist Groups Exploiting International Connections




Extremism, Terrorism & Bigotry