One of the most significant websites disabled in February was Stormfront.org, the first and largest white nationalist site in the world with a claimed 240,000 registered members. Run by former Ku Klux Klan leader Don Black, the multi-language, Florida-based forum teems with hateful propaganda about blacks, non-white immigrants, LGBT people and, above all, Jews. LulzFinancial, widely believed to be a spinoff of Anonymous, took credit for the attack on Stormfront.
On the same day Stormfront was attacked, LulzFinancial disabled two websites run by the Topeka, Kan.-based Westboro Baptist Church, GodHatesFags.com and GodHatesAmerica.com. The church is best known for picketing the funerals of U.S. service members killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, with the rationale that their deaths are God’s punishment for America’s failure to sufficiently condemn homosexuality as a sin. Despite a small membership, the Westboro congregation has gained global publicity for its violently anti-gay views. As it did with Stormfront, Anonymous “doxed” church members—hack-speak for “documenting” their names, addresses and other personal information at public websites such as pastebin.com.
In another attack on the hate front this year, Anonymous disabled the websites of the American Third Position (A3P), a California-based white supremacist group that aims to deport non-white immigrants and return the U.S. to white rule. It also hit sites owned by A3P presidential candidate Merlin Miller and James Kelso, the group’s webmaster, including Kelso’s WhiteNewsNow hate site.
Again, the release of private information about people who would generally much prefer to stay anonymous appeared more damaging than the temporary takedowns of sites. Anonymous published several thousand personal E-mails along with personal details of site visitors, their names, addresses and phone numbers, as well as forum messages.
In a mischievous kicker, Anonymous hacked the credit card of Kelso, who once worked for former KKK leader David Duke; under the Banner “Good Night, White Pride,” the group claimed online that it had used Kelso’s card to buy sex toys and make a donation to the anti-racist Anti-Defamation League. The ADL confirmed receipt of the donation. But in an E-mail to the Report, an ADL spokesman added: “While we understand that Anonymous was trying to be ‘thoughtful’ and arguably creative in sending ADL a donation, we do not support or encourage hacking and do not feel comfortable accepting the fruits of their illegal activity. We will return the donation.”