Why Are Moscow and Beijing Happy to Host the U.S. Far-Right Online?

Byeongshin

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The founder of neo-Nazi rag the Daily Stormer had some advice for the people who ran Parler, after the app was purged from the internet last week: Ask China or Russia for help.

Parler, which had become a refuge for those supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump and conspiracy theorists deemed too extreme for Twitter and Facebook, became inaccessible after it was banned from Google and Apple’s app stores and then by Amazon’s hosting services for failing to curb violent and threatening content on its platform during the insurrectionist riots at the U.S. Capitol earlier this month.

“I just want to make this 100% clear,” Andrew Anglin wrote on the Daily Stormer soon after Parler was taken down. “There is no internet company that will support your freedom of speech if the media says you shouldn’t have freedom of speech that is not either Chinese or Russian.”

Both China and Russia are highly adept at censoring any information they deem unacceptable. China, in particular, operates the most extensive and sophisticated censorship apparatus the world has ever seen. That both have seemingly become safe harbors for extremist Western content reflects a disturbing and growing alliance between the far-right and authoritarian governments.

Anglin would know. His noxious website was hounded off the web in the aftermath of the deadly 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Anglin had used the website to praise the death of counterprotester Heather Heyer, prompting a number of organizations including website infrastructure provider Cloudflare to terminate its services, taking it (briefly) offline.

Keeping a website online requires the cooperation of a long list of often invisible services including transit providers, web hosting and content delivery networks, authoritative and recursive domain name system (DNS) providers, domain registrars, registries, and internet service providers. The role of platforms at the top of this technical “stack” such as Facebook and Twitter in failing to moderate speech is well established, but it’s only recently that some of these subterranean services have been forced to recognize that keeping toxic websites afloat is not a neutral act.

The Daily Stormer, as well as other extremist, white nationalist platforms, have forged a path back onto the internet that relies on a dwindling number of holdouts—free speech absolutists in the West but also, crucially, shady opportunists in China and Russia. Their ultimate aim is to create websites that are not dependent on services from mainstream web hosting and website protection companies, making it difficult for them to be knocked offline. It’s a path that Parler is starting to head down now, courtesy of the Russian-owned website protection company DDoS-Guard.

A key part of the Daily Stormer’s strategy has been to get its DNS service from China. A DNS is a service that maps the string of numbers that make up an IP address into human-friendly domain names like foreignpolicy.com (kind of like a phonebook for the internet). The Daily Stormer’s DNS has been, as Ars Technica first noted in 2019, “spread over a large number of individual IP addresses, all of which are served from China.”

A Whois search shows that the domain name used by the Daily Stormer was registered through the company Eranet International Limited, a Guangdong-based company that was established in 2000 and incorporated in Hong Kong in 2005 under Todaynic.com, Inc. The company is an accredited registrar with both the California-registered Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers and the China Internet Network information Center, China’s top internet administrator.

“Finding new hosts isn’t that big of a deal,” Anglin claimed in his advice to Parler, adding that it was “easy enough for me,” because “I’ve always been relatively pro-PRC [People’s Republic of China], or at least not anti-PRC.” But, he stressed any right-wing sites that continue to criticize Beijing “are going to be met with a lot less friendliness than I was.”

An audit of the Daily Stormer’s archives attests to Anglin’s claim. He writes frequently about his support for Beijing’s policies against Uighur Muslims and argues that China enjoys more freedom of speech than in the United States. Anglin has even advocated for a Chinese occupation of the West as an alternative to supposed “Jewish rule” and has called on right-wingers to use the Chinese messaging app WeChat as a “more secure” alternative to other instant messaging apps.

While far-right groups often claim to be opposed to the Chinese Communist Party, the pro-Beijing stance has been reflected in Daily Stormer readers like the Christchurch terrorist, an Australian white supremacist, who donated to the publication three times in 2018, a year before he murdered 51 Muslim worshippers at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The terrorist traveled to China six times between 2014 and 2015 and wrote in his manifesto that China was “the nation with the closest political and social values” to his own, and that he admired “non-diverse” nations. The Chinese Communist Party’s ideological moorings in Marxism-Leninism have given way to an assertive ethnonationalism, especially under Xi Jinping. The posture is most chillingly apparent in Beijing’s repression and subjugation of millions of Uighurs.

Russian internet services companies present another option for extremist websites like the Daily Stormer.Russian internet services companies present another option for extremist websites like the Daily Stormer. After using a DNS hosted in China, the website switched to a .su address—the top-level domain for what used to be the Soviet Union. Until Saturday, Russian-owned DDoS-Guard was providing distributed denial-of-service attack protection to the Washington state-based hosting company VanwaTech, which, in turn, was providing hosting services to the Daily Stormer and 8kun, the forum formerly known as 8chan, which has been linked to white supremacism, neo-Nazism, anti-Semitism, multiple mass shootings, and child exploitation material. DDoS-Guard cut ties with VanwaTech following an investigation by the Guardian.
According to the Guardian, DDoS-Guard “was registered under a limited partnership, a financial structure in Scotland that allows non-residents to create companies with little scrutiny, on 24 November 2017 by Aleksei Likhachev and Evgeniy Marchenko—two Russian businessmen who remain owners of the company.” The partnership under which DDoS-Guard is registered is called Cognitive Cloud and is listed at an address in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Among DDoS-Guard’s reported rogue’s gallery of a client list compiled by cybersecurity expert Brian Krebs are HK Leaks, a website dedicated to doxxing Hong Kong protesters and journalists—an activity that has been promoted by groups linked to China’s Communist Party. Other clients, according to Vice, include the Russian Ministry of Defense, the FSB (the Kremlin’s secret service), and, as Krebs reported, the official website of Hamas, the Palestinian group labeled a terrorist organization by the U.S. government.

So far, the process of hounding toxic websites off the internet has only been done in an ad hoc way and usually only ever following a violent event linked to online activity on such sites. Even then, their banishment requires that a long list of services making up the technical “stack” to jointly decide to do so. Any of these services “could regulate content online,” Matthew Prince, the CEO of Cloudflare, wrote in a blog post explaining his company’s decision to stop providing proxy and DNS services to the Daily Stormer in 2017. “The question is: which of them should?”

In that post, and in another that the Cloudflare CEO wrote in 2019 explaining the company’s decision to terminate service for 8chan after a series of mass shootings in El Paso, Texas; Dayton, Ohio; Poway, California; and Christchurch, New Zealand that were inspired by the forum, Prince practically begged governments to step in and provide regulatory guidance.

Hopefully regulatory guidance is on its way under the new Biden administration in the United States. But even if it does arrive, it’s likely that fringe and extremist websites will continue to seek refuge in other jurisdictions like Russia and China where they can more readily withstand diplomatic, political, and legal pressure.

For the Daily Stormer’s Anglin, the writing is on the wall. “My only advice is this,” Anglin wrote on his website the other day. “Go talk to the Chinese. Maybe they won’t look at your content, and maybe they will support you either way, even if you’re anti-Chinese, because you’re standing against the US government. I don’t know. But you don’t have any other options.”
 

Dr Livci

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Guys I know you can’t pay your rent because of the government, your business has been shut down by the government, you are developing an opioid problem because of actions taken by your government, you can’t get a job anywhere because you said you don’t think trannies should be be Boy Scout leaders and the FBI might kick in your door because you made pro capital stormer comments on the internet. Yeah that’s all tough but you know what you should really care about?

The fact that the authorian dictatorships in China and Russia that censor too much stuff aren’t banning enough people from the internet.
 

JR_Rustler_III

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From the official PR organ of the Council on Foreign Relations, no less.
No, that's "Foreign Affairs".

Foreign Policy magazine is owned and operated by Slate, which is owned by WaPo, which is owned by Amazon. Which is why they took a direct and immediate interest in the subject matter. Amazon is at the center of the cabal that is making censorship its primary concern, right after wiping out all small businesses and the entire middle class, of course.
 

JR_Rustler_III

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I was surprised to find an actual nugget of truth in this festering screed chock-a-block with lies and propaganda:

The Chinese Communist Party’s ideological moorings in Marxism-Leninism have given way to an assertive ethnonationalism, especially under Xi Jinping.
FACT CHECK: Mostly true

Apparently the Jews are getting upset that the Chinese aren't doing their Marxisms anymore and are starting to complain about it amongst themselves.
 
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Brotaku

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No, that's "Foreign Affairs".

Foreign Policy magazine is owned and operated by Slate, which is owned by WaPo, which is owned by Amazon. Which is why they took a direct and immediate interest in the subject matter. Amazon is at the center of the cabal that is making censorship its primary concern, right after wiping out all small businesses and the entire middle class, of course.
You're right--thanks for correcting my pre-caffeine shitpost.
 

drallod

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From the official PR organ of the Council on Foreign Relations, no less.
Yeah, out with the big guns on this one because all their other goals hinge on this China narrative. The CFR needs the Trump Republicans to hate China so it can get caught up in a big diversion (instead of fighting Jews at home) and folded back into the Republicuck mainstream. Sadly, we are always right.

We're not so much of an issue. One false flag and they can meme us into traitors. However, they really need most of those 75 million who voted for Trump to believe China is worse than the Biden regime (come the false flag) and we stand in the way of that.
 
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HairMoccasins

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In that post, and in another that the Cloudflare CEO wrote in 2019 explaining the company’s decision to terminate service for 8chan after a series of mass shootings in El Paso, Texas; Dayton, Ohio; Poway, California; and Christchurch, New Zealand that were inspired by the forum, Prince practically begged governments to step in and provide regulatory guidance
Oh yea, that one. How did that go again?

Soon after the attack, police identified the gunman as Connor Stephen Betts,[28] a 24-year-old who lived in Bellbrook, Ohio.[18][29]According to police, he had minor traffic offenses on his record.[30][31]

Betts made online references about Satanand described himself as a leftist and antifasympathizer.[32][33][34] In the hours before he opened fire in Dayton, he "liked" a post in favor of gun control, and several concerning the El Paso shooting, including a tweet that called the El Paso shooter a "terrorist" and a "white supremacist".[34] On August 10, ABC Newsquoted officials as stating that the gunman had misogynist views which were much more extreme than his political views.[35] Betts was also known to have been in support of presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.
How was that connected to DS or 8chan exactly?
 

sing1876

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It's a subtle challenge to the hegemony of the US. China and Russia know that there is soft cold war against them now. Disenchanted right wing people who are mad over the last election might be open to helping those governments, especially since the US government and media have been busy demoralizing and pissing those people off. No matter how powerful you think your machine is, it's not a wise idea to piss off large numbers of your citizens.

The actions that the system has taken to get rid of Trump will ensure the system's downfall. They should have just let Trump win, and I think what we are seeing is the fear that they have made a mistake, and are going to pay for it. The Jews had better keep the Chinese happy, though, because the Chinese possess none of the white man's empathy.
 

Postuma

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I recall when DS first started getting banned, they made a stop in China and one in Russia, and got kicked out. Am I remembering correctly? I don't know how they finally achieved some stability, with the .name and the .su, or where they are physically. If there is a quick explanation or one already posted somewhere I'd appreciate the help.
 

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I think one great counterattack on jews is to inform foreign nations like Russia and China on the threat of jews. They don't have the same psychological blocks to accepting that the West is run by bloodthirsty anti-white jews.
 

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Fantastic free publicity.
This isn't publicity, because no one reads this other than other think tanks and autists on far-right forums, and it isn't fantastic, because it is a direct statement that they're going to attempt to pull my infrastructure and claim that I'm an agent of the Chinese government.
 

Andrew Anglin

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Oh yea, that one. How did that go again?



How was that connected to DS or 8chan exactly?
Yeah, that's a bit like when the media and government went out and said that the black people rioting where secret white supremacists in rubber masks.
 
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