The rise of online Nazis

Malaki Lingg, Assistant Web Editor

Political activists on either side of the spectrum tend to flock to social media to spread their message, but some take it to the extreme. In mid-February, the hate group known as the Goyim Defense League (GDL) began to gain traction online through their website and various social media accounts, all under the name GoyimTV.

The GoyimTV website is based on BitChute, a video hosting site similar to YouTube catering to alt-right users. Through their website, members and fans of GDL can comment on and upload videos with barely any community guidelines to follow. Many of the categories for video topics include offensive and bigoted propaganda about the COVID-19 pandemic, the music industry, the pharmaceutical industry and more. Aside from the offensive content and organizational categories, the logo used for the website is blatantly anti-Semitic as well. Their logo includes an emboldened “G” turned on its axis, holding a blatant resemblance to the swastika. 

Aside from the GDL’s digital antics, they have become increasingly known for anti-Semitic public demonstrations. In February 2022, GDL members distributed flyers across the bay area in California with the message, “Every single aspect of the Covid agenda is Jewish.” In October 2022, group members held banners over a California overpass saying, “HONK IF YOU KNOW KANYE IS RIGHT ABOUT THE JEWS.” While most of these incidents were taking place in California, they have now begun to spread south.

In a now-deleted social media post from December, the leader of GDL, Jon Minadeo Jr., announced that he would be moving from California to Florida. In the few months since announcing his move, GDL’s presence in Florida has been made apparent. A video uploaded to Twitter by @RyanShead shows Minadeo hurling derogatory terms at a West Palm Beach Police Officer, while another uploaded by @AviBenlolo depicts Minadeo harassing residents of Orange County, Florida, with anti-Semitic remarks using a megaphone. 

Anti-Semitism is on the rise; there is no doubt about it. According to the Anti-Defamation League, 3,697 incidents of harassment, vandalism and assault targeting the Jewish community happened in 2022 alone. This is a 36% increase since the previous year and the steepest increase since the ADL began keeping track of these incidents in 1979. 

The resurgence of anti-Semitism in the U.S. is atrocious, every step the Jewish community takes toward equality and acceptance leads to an even greater pushback from the rise of white supremacy. The only way to combat the upsurge of white supremacy is to give an equal fight back.