Neo-Nazi Posts Application for Armed March Against Montana Jews on MLK Day

The neo-Nazi website organizing an armed march against Jews in Whitefish, Montana is firming up details about the much-discussed event — setting a date, time and location for the rally of white supremacists.

“As promised, we have filed our paperwork for the March on Whitefish, which is scheduled for January 16th,” Andrew Anglin, who runs the website the Daily Stormer, wrote in a January 5 post.

Anglin had previously announced to a FOX ABC station in Montana that the march would be held at January 15, but has now scheduled the march for the afternoon of the following day, which is also Martin Luther King Day.

Anglin posted a scanned image of a permit he claims was filed to the City of Whitefish and dated January 2. The City Clerk’s Office, however, says it has not received any application.

The image of an application posted to the Daily Stormer site, also, did not appear to include necessary components of an application, Michelle Howke, the Whitefish city clerk, said. A complete application would also include proof of insurance from the applicant as well as signatures from property owners along the march route.

The proposed route runs along mostly residential plots.

Once a complete application is received by the clerk’s office, it is then submitted to local police, public works, fire and parks departments for review. If there are no objections from these departments, the application is then sent to the city manager of Whitefish, who makes the final decision about whether to grant the permit.

Anglin is dramatically titling his march the “James Earl Ray Day Extravaganza,” after the assassin who killed King in 1968.

The neo-Nazi march is in support of “alt-right” figurehead Richard Spencer who lives part-time in Whitefish. Local human rights activists, including prominent Jewish leaders, have pushed back against Spencer’s brand of white supremacy for years.

Spencer’s mother, who owns property in the small town, was also pressured by some locals to denounce her son’s ideology and sell a building she owns downtown.

White supremacists see a Jewish plot and have mounted this march against Jews in Whitefish in defense of Spencer and his family, who they cast as the true victims.

Researchers with the Anti-Defamation League are in touch with families in Whitefish, but also said it still remains unclear whether the march will go ahead. Anglin, who the Southern Poverty Law Center has written is “infamous for the crudity of his language and his thinking,” has mounted numerous online campaigns in recent years — but has never organized a rally of this scale.

The Thursday post provides a screen shot of a Google Map, showing the proposed march route. “We will … march through the center of town, ending at a Memorial Park where several speakers will speak,” Anglin wrote.

In Montana, citizens only need a permit to carry a concealed weapon in certain circumstances; they do not need a permit to buy one, or carry it openly, according to the National Rifle Association.

Email Sam Kestenbaum at kestenbaum@forward.com and follow him on Twitter at @skestenbaum

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Sam Kestenbaum

Sam Kestenbaum

Sam Kestenbaum is a staff writer for the Forward. Before this, he worked for The New York Times and newsrooms in Sana, Ramallah and Beijing. Contact him at kestenbaum@forward.com and follow him on Twitter at @skestenbaum and on Instagram at @skestenbaum.

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Neo-Nazi Posts Application for Armed March Against Montana Jews on MLK Day

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