/ 25 November 2021

Australian neo-Nazis in the crosshairs

Image source: AAP
Image source: AAP

As previewed by security agencies earlier this year, Australian-based white supremacists are being targeted by police. Yesterday, counter-terrorism police in NSW arrested Wade John Homewood over a “very real fear” that his prolific social media posts would inspire someone to carry out violence. Homewood has been charged with urging violence and advocating terrorism against “several political leaders”. In his posts, the 37yo identified groups that should be targeted based on their race and political viewpoints. He appeared in a local court, where he was refused bail. In April, Mike Burgess, the boss of domestic intelligence agency ASIO, said given the growth in nationalist and racist violent extremism, he expected there “will be a terrorist attack in this country in the next 12 months.”

Sure is. An investigation into Homewood, who lives in Tamworth, NSW, was launched a couple of months back. Federal Police said it was the vast number of his online posts and their violent content that made them so concerned. The arrest comes the day after Federal Police said it’s taking threats against specific politicians “very seriously”. Yesterday, WA Police charged 2 Perth men over a series of threatening phone calls to Premier Mark McGowan, including an alleged threat to behead him and his family. And in Victoria, Premier Daniel Andrew condemned attacks on him and his family, and authorities said neo-Nazi extremists had infiltrated the Victorian anti-pandemic-law movement. One man was charged with encouraging people to bring guns to the protests.

So the Federal Government is having a crack. It listed white supremacists ’The Base’ as a terrorist group which means it’s a criminal offence to be a member. It was originally founded in the US in 2018, and reports say it’s “prepping” for a race war to establish a white-only state. It’s also targeting people who contradict their views and religious sites like Jewish synagogues. It’s the 2nd extreme right-wing organisation to be listed as a terror group by the government. ASIO says groups like The Base now account for a 3rd of its investigations.

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