The Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville last month was the largest, most violent assembly of white supremacists in decades, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), and now Identity Evropa, one of the most influential white supremacist groups operating in the U.S., has launched a yearlong campaign targeting college students with a sophisticated breed of racist fliers.
In the first weeks of the 2017-18 school year, Identity Evropa has posted fliers on 13 campuses in seven states, according to new data from the ADL. And starting on September 3, the group hit at least one campus every day for six days in a row, including Lynchburg and Liberty colleges, both in Virginia, Eastern Michigan University (twice), the University of California Irvine, and Bristol Community College in Massachusetts. The hate fliers also appeared at the University of Virginia, where just weeks before, tiki torch-toting, Nazi slur-slinging white nationalists clashed with counterprotesters over the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee. A day of violence broke out, ending in one death and injuries to at least 19 people.
“Charlottesville emboldened and energized white supremacists,” says Marilyn Mayo, senior research fellow at the ADL’s Center on Extremism. “Even though they didn’t get to speak, they see it as a success on some level because they could bring together so many strains of the white supremacist movement. You had a lot of young people who went, and they’re going to double-down on their efforts to grow by reaching out to campuses.”
Since September 2016, the ADL has identified 192 incidents of white supremacist campus fliering on 131 college campuses, in 37 states. The inauguration of Donald Trump, a man elected president on a platform of hatred, bigotry and anti-immigrant sentiments, marked a significant shift in this effort. From January to April 2016, there were nine incidents of white supremacist propaganda on U.S. campuses, but during that same four-month period in 2017, the ADL catalogued 115 incidents.
In January, American Renaissance, Jared Taylor’s white nationalist…