The identities of thousands of anonymous commenters to the leading right-wing Swedish website Avpixlat have been leaked, revealing that a number of politicians have written hateful comments.
It was previously disclosed that parliamentarian Kent Ekeroth of the Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna) has played a central role in funding the site. Ekeroth is also known for his connections to the so-called counterjihadist movement. The site, which has gained a wide readership, has a reputation for containing many anonymous reader comments bordering on the hateful, or even crossing that line.
Now, the Swedish newspaper Expressen has gained access to data showing the identity of a large number of Avpixlat’s anonymous commenters. The data, including email addresses, reveal that a number of politicians in the Sweden Democrat party, Sweden’s radical right-wing populist party, are amongst the authors of crass, extremist commentaries published on the site.
Marie Stensby, who has resigned from her positions as regional leader in north-west Jämtland and as a vice member of the national board of the party after the revelations, wrote under the name “folkkultur” (i.e. folk culture), and has described immigrants as “invading forces”, “rabble” and “swarms of locusts”, according to Expressen. The newspaper said Stensby, who has been mentioned as a possible candidate for parliament, also wrote that the Third World War is approaching, and asked whether “native Europeans” will realise that they need to “arm themselves”.
Gerd Wall, a local politician in the party, was identified as another commenter with thoughts on the coming civil war. Identified as “bilbobagger”, Wall is said to have written: “Soon, our politicians will force Swedes into tent camps, in order for the ‘refugees’ to take our apartments. I believe they’ve lost control entirely, and that they do not have an inkling of an idea on how to solve this, so they will go on until we have a civil war.”
The local and regional politician Bertil Malmberg, reportedly writing under the name “Nils Dacke”, posted scathing attacks on Islam and Muslims. Malmberg has also been lecturing on Islam at Sweden Democrat meetings, according to Expressen. In one comment, the newspaper says, he wrote that “‘regular Muslims’ may not be an individual threat per se” but they pose a collective threat because they “seldom or never oppose the leading ideologists”. The commenter continued: “‘regular Muslims’ pose a threat due to their very numbers, as part of the total Islamic threat against the freedom and rights of the Western world”.
According to Expressen, the local politician Anders Dahlberg – identified as “Malmoman64” – goes further, repeatedly writing that ethnic Swedes should arm themselves, and even recommending Glock 17 for men and Glock 19 for women: “Thus we can protect ourselves against the enrichers.” On a different blog, Sweden Confidential, the same commenter argued that a revolution was necessary: “Violence is probably the only way to retrieve Sweden. A revolution, quite simply, where we distance ourselves from and remove the multicultural society. Using weapons. Then, we can possibly throw out all the cave people.” Confronted with these comments by Expressen, he first admitted that he was Malmoman64, then noted that his wife and his daughter also were using his computer, and may have written the comments.
Tommy Jonsson, a local politician in Ystad, in the Sweden Democrat stronghold of Skåne, was identified as the commenter who wrote that you can take “the negro out of the jungle”, but never “the jungle out of the negro”. (He used the Swedish word neger.) He has also posted that “hate speech in my eyes is one of the best things you can have on your CV”. When confronted, he said that this was a joke, a reaction to all the “hysteria about racism”. It was reportedly he, writing on the radical right-wing site Fria Tider, who asked: “The question becomes more relevant by the day. Was Adolf really that wrong?”
In a comment on Avpixlat, the same commenter also noted: “There was a delicing facility in south-west Poland during the 1940s. It has since been shut down. Could this be the problem?”
The revelations in Expressen are likely to cause renewed debate on the nature of the Sweden Democrats. The party, which has its roots in 1980s right-wing extremism, has undergone a moderation process since its current leader, Jimmie Åkesson, took over in 2005.
Officially, it has a “zero tolerance policy” towards racism. However, revelations of racism inside the party have been frequent. There is also an ongoing conflict inside the party between Åkesson’s “Malmö phalanx”, which is steering the party in the direction of the relatively moderate Danish People’s Party (Dansk Folkeparti), and the “concrete phalanx”, which seeks a more hardline profile.