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Behind the Aegis

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More anti-LGBTQ laws have been passed in the last year than any other time in American history

In what are considered some of the most polarizing times in modern American history, one political trend has continued to grow to alarming levels: enacting laws that take away rights or protection of rights from queer and trans people.

With the enactment of two anti-LGBTQ laws this weekend, Montana has officially broken the record for the most anti-LGBTQ legislation enacted in a calendar year in the United States. All it took was four months and nine days to get over the previously recorded threshold made in 2015.

Montana’s Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) signed House Bill 112, which bans transgender youth from participating in sporting events under their gender identity. His signature on May 7 made it the 17th piece of anti-LGBTQ legislation enacted in the United States, surpassing the 16 that were passed in 2015, according to an analysis by the Human Rights Campaign.

“The rights of LGBTQ people — and especially transgender people — across the country are being systematically threatened and undermined by national anti-LGBTQ groups coordinating with anti-equality lawmakers to wage an unprecedented war on the LGBTQ community,” Alphonso David, the President of the Human Rights Campaign, said in a statement.

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed May 12, 2021, 12:29 AM (5 replies)

Oregon Holocaust memorial defaced with swastikas and antisemitic slurs

A Holocaust memorial in Portland, Oregon, was defaced with swastikas and antisemitic slurs.

Police discovered the vandalism over the weekend covering a wall of the memorial in the Washington Park neighborhood and appearing elsewhere near the memorial, the local NBC affiliate KGW reported. There are no suspects.

The memorial was created by Holocaust survivors who lived locally and includes names of their family members who perished in the war, Judy Margles, the director of the Oregon Jewish Museum and Center for Holocaust Education, told the news station.

https://twitter.com/tedwheeler/status/1389276966931423232

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Nazi swastikas scrawled across Oregon Holocaust Memorial in SW Portland

At least one person struck the Oregon Holocaust Memorial in Southwest Portland’s Washington Park, scrawling swastikas across the memorial’s stone wall, city officials said.

The vile vandalism, written in white, also included the numbers “1488,” a symbol popular among neo-Nazis and other white supremacists, a photo reviewed by The Oregonian/OregonLive shows.

Portland and other communities around the U.S. recognize May as Jewish American Heritage Month.

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Happy Jewish American History Month!
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue May 4, 2021, 04:50 PM (0 replies)

Sec. Blinken in Holocaust Day speech recalls past State Department obstruction of bids to save Jews

Holocaust Remembrance Day commemorations are by their nature calls for accountability for atrocities past and present.

Antony Blinken, the U.S. secretary of state, used the occasion to take his own department to task for its neglect of Jews during the Nazi era, and to call for action on behalf of the persecuted today.

Blinklen, delivering the keynote address Thursday at the event organized by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, savaged the World War II-era assistant secretary of state, Breckinridge Long, for blocking the entry into the United States of Jews fleeing Nazi Europe, and for lying to Congress about it.

“He had immense power to help those being persecuted,” Blinken said at the event, this year presented virtually because of the coronavirus. “Yet as the Nazis began to systematically round up and execute Jews, Long made it harder and harder for Jews to be granted refuge in the United States.”

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Apr 9, 2021, 12:09 PM (0 replies)

NJ Teen Admits to Coordinating Neo-Nazi Group's Plot to Deface Synagogues Across U.S.

A New Jersey man admitted Friday to coordinating a neo-Nazi group’s plot to vandalize two Midwestern synagogues and cause other damage across the country.

Richard Tobin, 19, of Brooklawn, pleaded guilty to conspiracy against rights, according to federal prosecutors in New Jersey. He faces up to 10 years in prison when he’s sentenced June 28.

Tobin admitted communicating online in September 2019 with other members of The Base, a neo-Nazi group, and directed them to vandalize synagogues in Michigan and Wisconsin. At the time, he told investigators that he had launched “Operation Kristallnacht,” a reference to the deadly pogrom in 1938 when Nazis looted and burned synagogues and Jewish-owned homes and stores in Germany.

Tobin also told FBI agents that he was “triggered by the state of the country” and recounted a time when he became enraged at seeing large crowds of Black people at a mall in Edison, New Jersey.

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Mon Mar 1, 2021, 01:19 AM (11 replies)

'Jewish ideas poison people,' State Department official writes on Christian nationalist blog

A U.S. State Department employee named Fritz Berggren has been moonlighting as a blogger devoted to attacking Jews and promoting white Christian nationalism.

“Jesus Christ came to save the whole world from the Jews — the founders of the original Anti-Christ religion, they who are the seed of the Serpent, that brood of vipers,” Berggren wrote in an Oct. 4, 2020, post on his website titled “Jews are Not God’s Chosen People. Judeo-Christian is Anti-Christ.”

Later in the post he writes, “Jewish ideas poison people.”

Berggren has been sharing his extremist and anti-Semitic views under his real name for years while working as a mid-level civil servant. Politico first reported the connection on Friday after being tipped off by current and former State Department officials.

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Feb 27, 2021, 01:11 PM (24 replies)

How Buttigieg Could Make Transportation Safer, According to LGBTQ+ Advocacy Groups

When Pete Buttigieg was sworn in as the 19th Secretary of Transportation earlier this month, he became the first openly gay man to be named for this role in U.S. history.

Buttigieg—known for his military service and former role as the mayor of South Bend, Indiana—was chosen for his ability to bring all facets of the Department of Transportation together, according to President Biden. Those facets include improving transportation by rail, air, and road, as well as overseeing the Federal Aviation Administration and Federal Highway Administration.

In this historic moment, advocacy groups are optimistic that Buttigieg's platforms might make all forms of U.S. transportation safer for LGBTQ+ travelers. "Pete Buttigieg's visibility within the past election campaign was necessary because of its symbolism,” says Daina Ruduša of OutRight Action International, a nonprofit that fights for LGBTQ+ rights globally. “The appointment fits into a larger context of this administration being the most LGBTQ+ friendly ever, which, in turn, has great implications beyond the borders of the U.S."

But what does that mean for the community? Policy reforms that community members and allies hope to see range from modernized identification markers for trans and non-binary people to alerts from the government when visiting countries that criminalize those who identify as LGBTQ+.

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Thu Feb 25, 2021, 01:21 AM (1 replies)

Chasten Buttigieg had the shadiest reaction to Rush Limbaugh's death

Chasten Buttigieg had a lowkey brilliant response to news that Rush Limbaugh passed away yesterday.

Limbaugh, who was a far-right radio host since the 1980s, attacked LGBTQ people and was openly disgusted by gay men throughout his career.

One of the more recent targets of Limbaugh’s homophobia was Pete Buttigieg, who kissed his husband Chasten on camera when he announced his 2020 presidential campaign.

On his radio show, Limbaugh became obsessed with that kiss, mentioning it multiple times on several episodes. He said, “America’s still not ready to elect a gay guy kissing his husband on the debate stage president,” asked how parents will explain it “to their children,” and explained that Democrats wanted to nominate Buttigieg so that he could debate Donald Trump and “ram it down Trump’s throat” by kissing Chasten on stage.

https://twitter.com/roscoe_p_ny/status/1362105785556344833

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Thu Feb 18, 2021, 09:32 PM (5 replies)

Anti-Semitism lurks behind modern conspiracy theories

Conspiracy theories are more popular and more widespread in the 21st century than they have ever been. They are powered by the rise of the internet and social media, enabled by the declining influence of traditional gatekeepers of opinion such as newspaper editors, TV executives and book publishers, and encouraged by the spread of the uncertainty about truth and falsehood encapsulated in the perverse concept of “alternative facts” popularised by, among others, former US president Donald Trump and his spokespeople.

Over the centuries conspiracy theories have pointed the finger at many different groups, from the Jesuits to the Freemasons, but it is above all Jews who have been the object of the paranoia they represent.

A minority religious community in an overwhelmingly Christian Europe, the Jews were blamed in the Middle Ages and after for a whole range of seemingly inexplicable events, most notably perhaps the Black Death, the pandemic of bubonic plague that killed half Europe’s population in 1348-1349, and the French Revolution which overthrew the traditional European order in the years after 1789. Massacres and pogroms were the result.

It was in Russia under Tsar Nicholas II that the most notorious of anti-Semitic tracts originated. Known as The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, it purported to be the minutes of a secret meeting of Jewish “wise men” held in 1897 to plot the overthrow of civilization. It’s been described by many historians as a document of immense power, a “warrant for genocide”, inspiring Hitler to carry out the extermination of six million Jews in what he called “the final solution of the Jewish problem in Europe”. It’s been translated into many languages, reprinted many times, and it’s sold millions of copies.

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Feb 16, 2021, 09:41 PM (0 replies)

'The Jew is guilty,' 300 neo-Nazis hear at rare far-right gathering in Spain

Jewish leaders in Spain are calling for an investigation after a far-right event in Madrid featured anti-Semitic speeches and a Nazi salute.

About 300 people attended the event held near a cemetery in the Spanish capital where veterans who fought alongside Hitler’s troops are buried. In one speech, a young woman was filmed saying: “Our duty is to fight for Spain and Europe now weakened by the enemy, which remains the same but wears many masks: the Jew.”

Public expressions of admiration for Nazi Germany, anti-Semitic rhetoric and large far-right gatherings are relatively uncommon in Spain, where many people have bitter memories from the dictatorship of Francisco Franco, who sided with the Nazis during World War II and then ruled Spain until 1975.

But as in many European countries, right-wing populism has seen a massive and sudden rise in popularity in Spain in recent years. In 2019, the Vox populist right-wing party entered parliament for the first time as the country’s third-largest party, with 52 out of 350 seats.


Neo-Nazis giving the Hitler salute at an event near a cemetery in Madrid, Spain on Feb. 13, 2021. (Lamarea.com)

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Tue Feb 16, 2021, 01:25 AM (7 replies)

Portuguese politician suggests that Israel's vaccination success because of Jewish financial power

A Portuguese politician suggested that Jewish financial domination has facilitated Israel’s success in vaccinating for COVID-19.

His tweet prompted an unusual repudiation several days later by the country’s second-largest party.

“The Jews, as they dominate the fiscal world, bought and have the vaccines they wanted,” Rodrigo Sousa e Castro, a former local elections candidate from Lisbon, wrote. “It’s historical revenge of sorts. I won’t say anything else before the Zionist ‘bulldogs’ jump.”

Following protests over his remarks, including by the Israeli Embassy in Lisbon, Sousa e Castro deleted the tweet and said it was “offensive.”

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Posted by Behind the Aegis | Mon Feb 15, 2021, 01:25 AM (3 replies)
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