White Nationalists Plan To Join Right-Wing ‘Free Speech’ Rally in D.C. This Weekend

People carrying Identity Europa flags (and one Ohio flag) march in front of clergy as they arrive at Emancipation Park at the Unite the Right 2017 rally. (Photo: Anthony Crider via WikiMedia Commons)

Right Wing Watch has learned that white nationalist hate group Identity Evropa, which now calls itself American Identity Movement (AIM), is planning a small retreat in the Washington, D.C., area coinciding with President Trump’s plans to address the nation on the National Mall over the holiday weekend. Participants of the white nationalist group plan to descend on Washington this weekend for activism events, including plans to attend a rally that will host far-right figures in the pro-Trump movement.

Identity Evropa (now calling itself AIM) is a white nationalist group that operated under a veil of secrecy until Unicorn Riot began publishing records of its internal chat logs to the public in March, leading to the identification of numerous members of the organization. The group’s members appeared at the Charlottesville, Virginia, Unite the Right white supremacist gathering in 2017, and its members frequently express white supremacist and anti-Semitic sentiments. The group’s membership rolls and day-to-day operations were closely guarded, shrouded in mystery until its chat logs were published by Unicorn Riot.

AIM has relocated its headquarters to the Washington, D.C., area where a small band of its activists will join group leader Patrick Casey for a July 4 members’ retreat whose participants have discussed plans to head to a rally at Freedom Plaza in D.C., where far-right activists and personalities including Milo Yiannopoulos, Laura Loomer, and Gavin McInnes are scheduled to speak. Organizers of the rally, which is called “Demand Free Speech,” told the National Park Service on a permit application that they expect up to 1,000 people to attend their event during the same holiday weekend that Trump will address the nation from the Lincoln Memorial, and review a military display featuring tanks and fireworks.

Right Wing Watch emailed Adrienna DiCioccio, who is listed as the lead event coordinator for the Demand Free Speech rally, to inquire whether Casey and his members would be welcome to attend her event but did not receive a response prior to publication.

In a chat log post unearthed by Unicorn Riot, Casey says participants will begin to arrive at a location in the Washington area beginning today and will travel into D.C. over the weekend. The street-activism events, Casey wrote, are not mandatory for participants. Casey also claimed that the AIM retreat will feature “speeches from a few movement figures” but does not specify who will be speaking.

In one of his weekly addresses, delivered via Discord and unearthed by Unicorn Riot today, Casey told AIM members on June 26, 2019, he discussed a “main event” planned for Saturday in Washington, according to a transcript from Unicorn Riot, in the form of some sort of display—in lieu of a “proper” demonstration, for which Casey said that AIM wouldn’t have enough members present in the nation’s capital.

“[T]he main event is going to take place on Saturday in DC. It’s going to be a more of a, shall we say, an installation, you know, kind of something displayed that we create and is kind of interactive with the public,” Casey said, according to a Unicorn Riot transcript of the address. “It’s not going to be a demonstration proper. No, I don’t think we have the people for the action to do a demonstration proper.”

During the chat, Casey encouraged members to get involved in local Proud Boys chapters and MAGA Meetups. Casey also suggested that members create watered-down “front groups” to siphon off people who are sympathetic to the cause but would otherwise join more establishment organizations, such as Turning Point USA, which has had its own problems with its members making racist comments. Proud Boys members are expected to be present during Saturday’s rally.

“You know here in the DC area there’s a wide array of people who are sympathetic or totally on board and it’s just, it’s awfully good to have kind of a lay of the land in whatever city you’re in, networking, you know networking is a very, very important thing to do and half the time it’s as long as you’re not like totally insufferable person, it’s really just getting yourself out there, shaking hands, meeting people, going to events,” Casey said.

During the weekly address, Casey also praised D.C. Police for “keeping the peace” during rallies and claimed that he knew people who worked in the White House.

Earlier this year, Identity Evropa members disrupted a book talk at a Washington bookstore.

Right Wing Watch has learned that AIM is also planning what it is calling a national action in Texas during the first half of August.

(Updated: 1:30 p.m.)