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Neo-Nazis Target Jewish Families In White Nationalist Leader's Hometown

An article on a neo-Nazi website released personal contact information of some Jewish residents in Whitefish, home to the parents of white nationalist leader Richard Spencer.

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The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi website, called for a "troll storm" against some Jewish residents of Whitefish, Montana — home to the parents of white nationalist leader Richard Spencer.

The Dec. 16 article was written by Andrew Anglin, the founder of The Daily Stormer, which was described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a neo-Nazi website "dedicated to spreading anti-Semitism, neo-Nazism, and white nationalism, primarily through guttural hyperbole and epithet-laden stories about topics like alleged Jewish world control and black-on-white crime."

The SPLC calls Anglin "a prolific Internet troll and serial harasser."

The article was in response to recent allegations by Spencer's mother, Sherry Spencer, that she was being threatened by some residents of Whitefish to sell her building because of her son's "ideas."

Richard Spencer, who coined the term "alt-right," heads the National Policy Institute, a white nationalist think tank. After Trump's win, he addressed an alt-right conference where people in the crowd were seen making Nazi salutes as Spencer shouted "Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail our victory!"

In a Medium post on Friday, Sherry Spencer wrote that she was forced to consider selling her building in Whitefish — which contains vacation-rental apartments and office spaces — after receiving "terrible threats" from a local realtor, Tanya Gersh, as well as human rights organizations called Love Lives Here and Montana Human Rights Network.

Sherry Spencer alleged that Gersh had told her if she did not sell her building, 200 protesters and the media would protest outside it and "drive down the property value." She said that her son, Richard Spencer, did not own the building or use it for his writing or publishing.

"Whatever you think about my son’s ideas  —  they are, after all, ideas  —  in what moral universe is it right for the 'sins' of the son to be visited upon the mother?" Sherry Spencer wrote.

She also posted screenshots of emails and Facebook posts that appeared to show Gersh asking her to publicly denounce her son in a written statement and to make a donation to the Montana Human Rights Network from the proceeds of the sale.

In a letter published on The Daily Interlake, both Sherry and her husband, Rand Spencer, wrote, "As parents we love our son."

They also wrote, "We are not racists. We have never been racists. We do not endorse the idea of white nationalism."

After Sherry Spencer's allegations appeared in the Medium post and other news sites, the Daily Stormer published its article calling for action against Jewish people, described as "a vicious, evil race of hate-filled psychopaths." It also posted personal details and photos of several of Whitefish's Jewish residents, including children, with the Star of David on them and the word "Jude" (German for Jew).

The article released the addresses, telephone numbers, and social media details of Gersh, her husband, and her children, as well as members of Love Lives Here — which it described as a "Jew terrorist group." It posted pictures of Gersh, calling them "slut pics," as well as photos of her husband and two children, calling them "creepy weirdo kikes."

"Are y’all ready for an old fashioned Troll Storm?" Anglin told his readers in the article, adding a disclaimer for "no violence or threats of violence."

"Just make your opinions known," Anglin wrote in the article. "Tell them you are sickened by their Jew agenda to attack and harm the mother of someone whom they disagree with."

A spokesperson for the Whitefish Police Department, Lt. Bridger Kelch, told BuzzFeed News that they were notified of the article and had provided extra patrol to residents of the small community.

He said that while the article was "rude" and "disturbing," it had posted publicly available information about the residents. While the residents reported receiving "unwarranted" emails after the article, the communication had "not been threatening to life as of yet," according to Kelch.

"We have forwarded the matter to FBI's Salt Lake division and they're also looking into it," Kelch said.

Gersh and her husband did not respond to multiple requests for comment. Their phone mailboxes were full and their social media profiles, as well as Gersh's personal website, appeared to be deleted. Gersh's agent profile at PureWest — the real estate company she worked for — was also removed, although it showed up in a cached version of the website. PureWest did not respond to a request for comment.

In a statement to BuzzFeed News, Love Lives Here said, "We cannot issue a comment at this time as we need to continue to protect the privacy of the families involved."

Richard Spencer wrote a series of tweets on Friday calling Tanya Gersh a "nasty, nasty woman" and linking to her now-deleted profile on PureWest Real Estate site and to her now-deleted Twitter profile.

Twitter: @RichardBSpencer

Responding the the Daily Stormer's article, Richard Spencer told the Washington Post Sunday that he would not have posted people's personal information, saying, "that's not really my style."

"I would not have posted someone’s personal information, it’s not the way I do things," Spencer told the Post. “I think it’s important to call people out.”

However, he said he was shocked by the behavior of some of the residents of Whitefish and called the attacks against his mother "vicious" and "totally unwarranted."

"She’s not a political person,” Spencer told the Post. "I’m sure it’s been terrible to be attacked by these people, she is not political, she is not an activist, she is not an ideologue. These people are trying to vicariously attack me through her."

BuzzFeed News has reached out to Spencer for comment.

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In a Facebook post on Monday, Love Lives Here listed other local establishments in Whitefish that were being targeted with "fake negative reviews by nazis."

The Montana Human Rights Network posted a statement Monday, saying, "we need love and support sent those being targeted by the threats of white supremacists in Whitefish."

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The organization did not respond to a request for comment.

Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at tasneem.nashrulla@buzzfeed.com.

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