DATA RELEASE: Discord Chats Planned Armed Neo-Nazi Militia Operations In Charlottesville

Charlottesville, VA – After an anonymous source provided Unicorn Riot with access to Discord chat servers being used to plan white supremacist events in Charlottesville, we began publishing leaks of the materials online. Today, we begin a series of Data Release publications documenting many of the contents of the “Charlottesville 2.0” Discord server operated by Jason Kessler, Eli Mosley, and others. The full slideshow of 295 slides can be launched or downloaded as a zip file below.

Discord’s group chat platform achieved popularity as a tool for gamers to organize group play in multiplayer games like World of Warcraft, but quickly became widely adopted by the emerging internet-based neofascist movement.

Participants in the Charlottesville planning chat were often identified by their group affiliation. Over Discord, neo-Nazi groups including Identity Europa, the Traditionalist Worker Party, and Vanguard America coordinated together on a daily basis.

They collaborated with other white supremacist groups such as League of the South to coordinate carpools, security, intelligence operations, discuss potential use of weapons, share talking points, and exchange racist comments.

The chat rooms whose contents we are releasing in our first batch of ‘Charlottesville 2.0’ Discord server screenshots are from the channels #announcements, #dixie-lyrics, #mod_help, #confirmed_participants, #shuttle_service_information, #code_of_conduct, and #questions_for_coordinators.

The #announcements channel featured organizers sharing logistics about who came from what state, assigning state coordinators to help plan travel to Charlottesville. Planners also discussed bringing dual-purpose objects, such as sign poles, that could then be used as weapons to attack counter-demonstrators.

Eli Mosley also used the channel to share updates to the “operational document” he made for Unite The Right. (PDF)

We contacted Eli Mosley via Twitter direct message to ask whether he supported the racist postings and calls for murder being shared on his Discord server. Mr, Mosley responded by accusing us of conducting a smear campaign against him, and also told us “you can plainly see that I told people the deal with violence and how I felt about it.”

We then asked Mr. Mosley why he allowed people who posted messages calling for running people over with cars to remain on the Discord server, and he did not respond. Earlier messages made by Mosley in the ‘Charlottesville 2.0’ Discord server make it clear that he had the power to remove users from the server at his discretion.

The Tuesday before the Aug 12, 2017 rally, Jason Kessler posted about how attendees should plan on using the bathroom before arriving, as they would likely not have places pee or poop safely after their porta-potty provider canceled on them.

Elsewhere in the Discord chat, users discussed potential improvised bathroom plans for those who felt nature’s call while attending the white supremacist/neo-nazi demonstration.

Logs of the #confirmed_participants channel shows a roll call of white supremacist individuals and cadres sounding off their commitment to come to Charlottesville as well as how many people they would be bringing. Chat users self-identified as traveling to Unite The Right from Virginia, North Carolina, Michigan, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Texas, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Georgia, Ohio, Maryland, Louisiana, Illinois, California, South Carolina, Arizona, Tennessee, Alabama, Wisconsin, New Jersey, New York, West Virginia, North Dakota, Florida, Washington, Connecticut, Missouri, and Washington, DC.

The channel #shuttle_service_information talked about organizers’ plans to rent a number of 15-person passenger vans to safely shuttle rally participants through town. They also discussed that they felt a need to park all their vehicles in one place and leave them under armed militia guard to protect against vandalism or sabotage by antifascists.

At points, the shuttle organizers seemed to relish the potential of using deadly force to defend their vehicles against perceived threats by counter-demonstrators.

The #shuttle_service_information chat thread also contained messages advocating for white supremacists to drive vehicles into crowds of counter-demonstrators – a hint of what was to come on Saturday, August 12 when 20 year old neo-Nazi James Alex Fields, Jr. drove his car into an anti-racist march, killing 32-year-old paralegal and Charlottesville local Heather Heyer.

In the #questions_for_coordinators channel, several Unite The Right attendees posed questions directly to local Charlottesville organizer Jason Kessler. One Discord user asked him if they could invite members from their local meet-up group based on the neo-Nazi website Daily Stormer. Kessler replied that Stormer book club members were welcome in his Discord server so long as they planned to attend his event.

Organizers also discussed organizing personal security detachments for high-profile white supremacists such as Nathan Damigo and famed multiple-punchee Richard Spencer. Another topic included uniforms and optics to be used at the event, such as the “khakis and button up” dress code; as well as purchase links for “official” helmets and shields approved for use by Identity Europa. They also discussed how local laws impacted their potential ability to claim self-defense in the event they decided to shoot antifascists.

Unicorn Riot has logged what we believe to be the majority of the contents of the Charlottesville 2.0 Discord server available to vetted users before it was shut down, and will continue publications to enter these records into the public domain.

Here is a slideshow of the 299 images:

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