Arizona ties emerge in leak of posts on white supremacist forum

Patriot Front members helped plan D.C. march, express admiration and disdain for state Republicans

By: - January 24, 2022 5:19 pm
Patriot Front leaked photo

Members of the Patriot Front, pictured in a leaked trove of online discussions.

Note: This story contains descriptions of videos and images of a racially charged nature, as do some of the links. 

Leaked online chat logs show that Arizona members of a white supremacist group participated in training for and planning a march in Washington. D.C, and distributed fliers and stickers in a number of cities. They also expressed admiration and disdain for prominent Republican officials in the state.

Patriot Front, a white supremacist fascist organization, had 500 gigabytes of its chat logs and other information leaked by Distributed Denial of Secrets and non-profit news outlet Unicorn Riot.

The Arizona Mirror looked into the Arizona connections in the leaked data to see what Arizona members of the extremist organization were saying and doing. We found that members attended “training” in Utah as well as the recent headline grabbing march in Washington D.C.

Patriot Front split off from the neo-Nazi organization Vanguard America after the violent Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, and has since continued to attempt to recruit young men into its ranks, which in 2019 were estimated to be around 300.

The leaked chat logs come from the application RocketChat. Far-right groups moved to the application after high profile leaks and hacks of Discord, which had been a popular place for them to organize and discuss tactics.

The leaked videos and chats lay bare the outright racist and antisemitic beliefs of the group’s members, with one video showing members doing Nazi salutes and saying “sieg f**king heil! Lets f***ing go!” after they believed the recording was over.

Prospective members

Members also conducted interviews with would-be inductees, who openly shared their racist and antisemitic views as well as their views on politics. Some admired Arizona politicians.

“From what he can tell the nationalist movement is doing as good as it can. Some senators like Paul Gosar have joined the movement,” notes on an interviewee from Alabama who described himself as “generally conservative” with “fascist tendencies” read. Gosar serves in the U.S House of Representatives, not the Senate.

The Prescott Republican Congressman was also mentioned by another interviewee.

“From what he can tell the nationalist movement is doing as good as it can. Some (lawmakers) like Paul Gosar have joined the movement,”

– Notes from leaked white supremacist chat logs

“America first republicans (like Gosar) need to get in and change the party,” the notes on an interviewee from Texas said. The same interviewee also claimed that the world’s problems are mostly due to the “Jews” who are “globalists,” a common antisemitic trope.

The interview process also shone a light into new members coming into Arizona, like a 28-year-old Tempe resident with highly extreme views. The man believes that Jews should be exiled, they are inherently evil and admires the Unabomber, Ted Kaczynski. He also stated his intent to run the Arizona chapter of Patriot Front.

The Tempe resident is also an avid follower of people like Alex Jones and white nationalist Nick Fuentes.

Gosar has appeared alongside Fuentes and appeared at Fuentes’ America First Political Action Committee Conference, where Fuentes called the Jan. 6 pro-Trump riots “awesome” and demanded Gosar enact legislation to protect the “white demographic core.”

Fuentes recently also used a racial slur used to describe Black people on his show, saying “that one slipped out,” after using the racial epithet.

All the interviewed members mentioned were accepted into the organization, according to the documents.

The Mirror was unable to confirm the identities of any people associated with the group in the leaks.

Trips to D.C., Utah and more

Prior to attending the December march in Washington D.C., members of the Arizona chapter of Patriot Front attended a training session in Utah with members of the Patriot Front chapter there.

Members took boxing gloves and mouthguards along with their camping gear, presumably to practice fighting.

However, when the time came to go to the march in D.C., only one member from the Arizona chapter was able to attend due to COVID-19.

The march in D.C. was clearly planned ahead of time, according to what is found in the leaked logs, showing the planned routes as well as showing how they secured a police escort for the march by placing a fake emergency call from a burner phone ahead of the march.

Members across the country took various trips to different locations to meet up and train in person to practice fighting techniques and drilling, according to the leaks.

The Arizona chapter also took various trips to other states, including California and Washington state, the latter of which led to one member being allegedly doxxed when an “antifa infiltrator” shared information from a hiking trip the group took.

The Mirror was also able to find what appear to be previously unreported instances of flyering by the group in a number of Arizona cities. In the “editingphoto” section of the server, which was named “bloodandsoil,” a reference to Nazi Germany, users posted photos of where they had posted stickers and flyers for the organization.

In October and November 2021, the group posted about “activism” in Tucson, Paradise Valley, Marana and Phoenix. One of the group members also urged its members to do this sort of activity at least four times a month.

Arizona is no stranger to seeing these types of stickers and flyers, with stickers appearing at college campuses across the Valley in 2019. The Mirror checked the Anti-Defamation League’s HEAT Map tracker and found that the incidents mentioned by the group had not yet been reported.

One of the Arizona members also expressed interest in handing out flyers at an event that took place across the street from the recent Turning Point USA event, which also drew a number of far-right extremists.

Conspiracy theories

Since the December march in Washington D.C., Patriot Front has become the target of a number of conspiracy theories claiming the group are “feds.” Comedian Joe Rogan on his podcast said that he felt the group were possibly federal agents, a claim that has been echoed by others.

Arizona State Sen. Wendy Rogers, R-Flagstaff, has also echoed those sentiments on Twitter multiple times. The group has not taken too keenly to these accusations, the leaks show.

“[D]o people on the right promoting that idea….realize how dumb and discrediting that arguement is?” a Patriot Front member who goes by Rex VT on the server said. “They just opened themselves for mockery and one would think like some one like Joe Rogan or Wendy Rogers probably know better or easily be able to research accurate information.”

(Do) people on the right promoting that idea…realize how dumb and discrediting that arguement is? ... They just opened themselves for mockery and one would think like some one like Joe Rogan or Wendy Rogers probably know better or easily be able to research accurate information.

– Rex VT from leaked chat logs

Multiple members also shared memes mocking those who called them federal agents online and many posts in the leaks also showed members actively trying to avoid detection from law enforcement and federal agencies.

New applicants have to agree to empty their pockets and be checked for wires before an interview can begin and at meetups there are full pat downs where cell phones are not allowed. When vetting new members, members are ordered to “clandestinely record the license plate information or obtain a picture of that new member’s face.”

Members have also been arrested and investigated for a number of federal crimes, such as Joffre James Cross III who was found to be creating “ghost guns” and previously spent five years in federal prison for distribution of controlled substances.

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Jerod MacDonald-Evoy
Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Reporter Jerod MacDonald-Evoy joined the Arizona Mirror from the Arizona Republic, where he spent 4 years covering everything from dark money in politics to Catholic priest sexual abuse scandals. He brings strong watchdog sensibilities and creative storytelling skills to the Arizona Mirror.