Canadian Anti-Hate Network
Recently, an American blog has claimed that the Canadian Anti-Hate Network fabricated evidence to help the Canadian government invoke the Emergencies Act.
The blog post has been cited by Rebel News. Elon Musk, the owner of X, formerly Twitter, replied “Wow.” It was also retweeted by Jordan Peterson. Now, it’s being cited by the New York Post, a conservative tabloid owned by Rupert Murdoch. This is how disinformation spreads.
Let’s set the record straight.
We understood the pain that Ottawa residents were going through as a result of the occupation by the so-called Freedom Convoy, but were concerned about the precedent that could be set by invoking the Emergencies Act. We never took a position on the Emergencies Act for that reason. This is reflected in our comment that, had we been asked to participate in the Public Order Emergency Commission proceedings, we would not have argued for or against the invocation of the Emergencies Act.
Supporters of the far-right (and now this American blog post) frequently accuse us of taking direction from the federal government, or deciding on a course of action because it’s beneficial to the government. They need this to be true for their conspiracy theories about Diagolon, Coutts, and the Emergencies Act to hold together.
It’s not true.
The Canadian Anti-Hate Network isn’t compromised because it’s been ‘government funded’ any more than any of the thousands of other nonprofits in this country that have ever received a government grant, or the National Post, for cashing corporate welfare cheques, or the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, because the government gives their supporters charitable tax receipts, which helps their fundraising.
We are a completely independent organization. We won’t accept a grant or donation that comes with strings attached that jeopardizes that independence. You can read my sworn testimony to that effect.
Jeremy MacKenzie is the de facto leader of Diagolon, a community of livestreamers, content creators, and their audience. They have embraced and become more overtly antisemitic over time. A few of their content creators have now joined and/or promoted whites-only workout groups linked to the Hammerskins, a racist skinhead gang with a decades-long history of violence.
Diagolon supporters are among the four men accused of plotting to kill law enforcement officers in Coutts, Alberta, during a blockade intended to put more pressure on the government to give up COVID-19 health measures at the same time as the so-called freedom convoy and its occupation of Ottawa, Ontario.
The American blog post has repeated the claim by Jeremy MacKenzie that documents he obtained by an access to information request show that the government’s information about Diagolon was fabricated, implying that the Canadian Anti-Hate Network had lied in its reporting. It’s suggested that we did this to create a justification for the Emergencies Act.
This is also not true.
MacKenzie’s claim that he and his community have been misrepresented hinges on a single report by a RCMP officer who shares their concern that a lot of information on Diagolon seems to come from a single source – us.
This one officer’s report is critical in that it questions how our analysis leads us to consider Diagolon a type of accelerationist movement, based on publicly available information, before concluding that “operational information would be needed to supplement the profile.”
We believe there is plenty of publicly available information to provide a solid foundation for considering Diagolon a type of accelerationist movement. Our analysis, co-authored with Matt Kriner, accelerationism scholar and Managing Director of the Accelerationism Research Consortium, can be found here.
Nowhere in the thousands of pages of documents obtained by MacKenzie does it suggest that we fabricated any evidence or any of our reporting on him or Diagolon.
All of our reporting can be independently verified by reviewing the public posts and videos made by Jeremy MacKenzie, Alex Vriend, and the other Diagolon content creators.
We don’t know why this one RCMP officer didn’t interview us if they had concerns about our analysis of Diagolon; the Canadian Anti-Hate Network was never contacted.
We publish ethical and factual journalism. We fact-check. In the rare instance of an error, we issue a correction. We stand by our reporting on Diagolon one hundred per cent.
We believe that what’s in the documents is being misrepresented by MacKenzie, among others, to try to undermine our reporting so that they can avoid the consequences of their actions.
Serious people won’t fall for it.
Our work is the target of disinformation because it makes an impact. Help us shine a light on anti-democratic movements that deal in mis-/disinformation and harbour racism and other forms of hatred by visiting antihate.ca/donate. Thank you!