White nationalist fliers discovered in West Seattle
Fliers associated with a white nationalist group were found spread throughout West Seattle over the weekend.
The West Seattle Blog reports that zip-lock plastic bags were found in various neighborhoods with white rocks to weigh them down. The fliers read “Better dead than red,” and feature an arrow through a hammer and sickle symbol, and provide a link to Patriot Front, a known white nationalist group.
Similar fliers were reportedly found in Edmonds and around Tacoma at the same time.
It is not the first time in recent months that West Seattle has been targeted by white supremacist promotions. Neighbors reacted to an incident of hate shortly after a Jewish family found “JEW” painted on their garage. They further found “(expletive) JEW THIEVE” painted on the ground in an alley behind their home in Sunrise Heights.
Patriot Front has left similar fliers elsewhere in Western Washington. It prompted pushback in Tacoma last summer after it posted fliers there, promoting a Blood and Soil website.
Blood and Soil fliers were also found in June 2018 in plastic bags filled with candy — near elementary schools — in Bellevue and Clyde Hill. The presentation was similar to what was found in West Seattle over the weekend.
For those unaware, “blood and soil” was a nationalist mantra for Nazis before and during World War II. White supremacists have since used it to promote a nation for the white race.
There has been both anecdotal and data-driven evidence that white supremacist and hate crime activity is on the rise in Washington state. More recently, white supremacists were linked to an attack at a bar in Lynnwood. Someone spammed students at Glacier Peak High School in Snohomish County with wi-fi signals bearing homophobic and racist titles, including a number of swastikas.
The FBI also noted that hate crimes in Washington went up by 32 percent in 2017, the most recent data available. Per capita, Washington had the third highest reported hate crimes during this time.
Race-related hate crimes far outweighed other reported crimes in the state — 323. There were 88 crimes related to a person’s religion and 79 related to sexual orientation. There were 16 reports related to a person’s gender identity.