Justin Peek: Metro Atlanta Racist is National “Director of Activism” for Identity Evropa

Introduction / Overview

Justin Wayne Peek is the current Georgia coordinator for Identity Evropa (IE), a nationwide racist organization. Peek also serves as IE’s Director of Activism and organizes their protests across the United States, often personally traveling to participate in them.

Justin Wayne Peek speaking at Identity Evropa’s 2018 conference

Justin Peek became involved in the “Alt-Right” and white nationalism in early 2017. After the violence of the August 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, VA and the Alt-Right’s subsequent reversal of fortune, IE saw a need to alter its activist strategy. Peek was named as IE’s “activism coordinator” in late 2017 during the leadership of Elliot Kline AKA “Eli Mosley,” but his role only began in earnest under IE’s third and current leader, Patrick Casey. IE now deploys flash protests with just their own members, so that the organization can carefully stage-manage these events and maintain the correct “optics.” By orchestrating IE’s protests of 2018, Peek has played a key role in the organization’s efforts to attract new members and rebrand.

Identity Evropa “die in” at South African embassy, Washington DC, April 2018, organized by Peek.

On his old Twitter account, Peek claimed that “Jew [sic] and arabs are disease to this planet” and that “black lives don’t matter.” Peek also circulated pro-Hitler propaganda. IE remains a white power organization, even if it now uses carefully-crafted language of wanting a “European-American super-majority” instead of publicly demanding a whites-only homeland.

Justin Peek: 2012 Fulton County arrest

Since “Unite the Right,” Identity Evropa has tried to portray itself as having high moral standards for its members, in contrast to other racist groups. Peek’s personal history gives reason to doubt this. In 2012 Justin Peek was arrested in Fulton County for sexual battery. The initial accusation charged Peek with “intentionally […] touching the genital area” of a woman without her consent. Peek eventually accepted a plea deal for the lower charge of simple battery, which involves intentional “physical contact of an insulting or provoking nature.” Court documents from this case are included as an appendix to our article.

Peek currently lives with his fiancée Amber Michele Wojcik in the Edgewater at Sandy Springs apartment complex. The couple are due to marry this September, with a ceremony scheduled at the River Dream Lodge in Blue Ridge, Georgia. To coincide with the publication of this article, we mailed flyers to residents at Peek’s apartment complex, warning them of the racist organizer in their midst. Continue reading “Justin Peek: Metro Atlanta Racist is National “Director of Activism” for Identity Evropa”

Analysis: Leaked Information Details Atlanta’s “Alt-Right” White Nationalist Scene

Introduction

Recently, screen-captured messages from Atlanta-area white nationalist leader Casey Cooper were published on Its Going Down, an anarchist and anti-racist website. This leak of white nationalist communications also included an email invitation list for the Atlanta Forum, a white power gathering in our region earlier this year. Taken together, the leaked materials show Casey Cooper’s transition from an “Alt-Right” sympathizer in the beginning of 2016 to a prospective state leader for the white power movement by the end of that year. The information from Casey Cooper’s accounts reveal how “Alt-Right” racists organize regionally, especially how the white nationalist organization Identity Evropa operates. The screen-captures establish that Cooper was a member of Identity Evropa, and engaged in activity on their behalf.

The newly-public online conversations also provide detail on how “Alt-Right” racists coordinated to hit multiple Georgia campuses with white power propaganda in the immediate aftermath of Trump’s electoral victory. In our analysis of the leaked white nationalist communications, we first discuss what the leak reveals about specific white nationalist figures; we then discuss the mid-November 2016 white power propaganda run coordinated by Casey Cooper; and we conclude with some notes about what this new information reveals about “Alt-Right” organizing more generally.

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Atlanta-area white nationalist leaders Casey Cooper (standing on left) and Patrick Sharp (right), November 2016

Continue reading “Analysis: Leaked Information Details Atlanta’s “Alt-Right” White Nationalist Scene”

Meet Zac Johnson: Hitler-Loving “Alt-Right” Propagandist in Alpharetta, Georgia

Summary

For years, Zachary Johnson of Alpharetta has quietly but constantly worked for the white nationalist cause. Zac Johnson is mostly active in writing, social media, and especially graphic design for the racist movement. He also travels to white nationalist conferences and organizes with “Alt-Right” circles regionally. Using an online alias, Johnson is clear that he admires Adolf Hitler, who he refers to as “uncle.” When promoting his custom bird house business or trying to rent his vacation cabin in the North Georgia mountains, Johnson is less upfront about his beliefs. We believe that key players in the white power scene deserve public scrutiny. Zachary Van Johnson is one such figure.

Zac Johnson portrait
Zachary Van Johnson

Continue reading “Meet Zac Johnson: Hitler-Loving “Alt-Right” Propagandist in Alpharetta, Georgia”

Meet Casey Jordan Cooper: “Alt-Right” White Power Organizer and Atlanta Law Student

Summary

Casey Jordan Cooper, a student at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, is the white power organizer behind the “Alt-Right” Twitter account @BigButternutJoe. Over the last year, Cooper participated in white nationalist events in the metro Atlanta area and posted racist propaganda on local campuses.  Until recently, Casey Cooper’s Twitter account issued a stream of racist and homophobic slurs, some of them about his fellow students at John Marshall. He was recorded as part of a white nationalist group jeering a Stone Mountain Park visitor with sexist and antisemitic remarks. Cooper is responsible for a death threat against a prominent Black activist in Atlanta.

The Death Threat

In July 2016, a series of large protests raged in Atlanta after police shot and killed Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota. While protests disrupted business-as-usual in response to these high-profile police killings of Black men, Georgia white supremacists tried to counter-mobilize.

The Atlanta-area Twitter user @BigButternutJoe wrote on July 12 that “Whites […] are arming ourselves to the teeth” and that the Black Lives Matter movement will lead to a “massive wave of anti-black action in it’s [sic] wake.” This Twitter user earlier sent a private message to a local Black activist, which simply contained a picture of a noose. (The activist was also tagged in the “arming […] to the teeth” post by BigButternutJoe.)

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Death threat from BigButternutJoe account (at the time this account used the name “Phoenix on the Right” and had a profile picture of Sam Hyde)

When this Black activist publicly drew attention to the Twitter death threat, BigButternutJoe retweeted the post speaking out about the threat. BigButternutJoe followed with another statement, suggesting that the activist was exaggerating the death threat problem to “rent seek” (i.e. profit).  BigButternutJoe clarified: “This is why you hang.”

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BigButternutJoe repeats death threat

The person responsible for this online death threat has had a busy year, participating in Atlanta-area Alt-Right organizing, placing white power propaganda, and harassing enemies. For much of the same time, “BigButternutJoe” AKA Atlanta resident Casey Jordan Cooper has also been working towards a law degree at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, where he began as a 1L in August 2016. Atlanta’s John Marshall, a private law school in midtown Atlanta, states that almost 70% of its student body are of a “minority” population; more women than men also attend. Unsurprisingly, Cooper/”BigButternutJoe” doesn’t have pleasant things to say about fellow AJMLS students.

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Casey Jordan Cooper at Atlanta’s John Marshall new student orientation, August 2016

Continue reading “Meet Casey Jordan Cooper: “Alt-Right” White Power Organizer and Atlanta Law Student”

The Problem that Didn’t Go Away: White Nationalist Activity on Georgia State University Campus, November 2015 to December 2016

Introduction

On Sunday, February 19th of this year, anti-racists removed nine white power stickers which had recently been placed around Georgia State University (GSU) campus in Atlanta. With one exception — propaganda for the white nationalist Traditionalist Worker Party being spotted for the first time — it was a typical evening, since removing racist propaganda from GSU as well as Georgia Tech and Kennesaw State University campuses had become almost routine by this stage. Indeed, anti-racists had become so efficient at removing white supremacist materials that many GSU students only noticed anti-racist messages around campus, without realizing that some of these had been placed in direct response to far-Right and racist “white pride” materials.

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White power sticker removed from GSU campus, February 19, 2017

This article provides context about recent organized bigotry on GSU campus, by discussing its precursors: white nationalist efforts at Georgia State University from late 2015 until the end of last year. Our focus is racist agitation by Patrick Nelson Sharp, who made headlines when he tried to form a White Student Union at GSU when he began there in 2013. Sharp graduated GSU with a bachelor’s degree at the end of 2016. White nationalist activism at GSU during this time was not limited to Patrick Sharp’s efforts, but Sharp was at the center of plenty of it, enough that by telling his individual story we can also tell the larger story of racist campus activism.

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Patrick Nelson Sharp

We believe it is important to write about Sharp’s activities, even months after Sharp has left Georgia State campus. Although Sharp himself has left, his playbook is in use by racist organizers still a part of the student body. Just as Patrick Sharp’s 2013 White Student Union at GSU (later the “Atlanta Area White Student Union”) first tried to mimic Matthew Heimbach’s White Student Union at Towson University in Maryland, current far-Right racist organizers at Georgia State University may be improvising around themes played earlier by Sharp.

We are skipping Sharp’s 2013 “White Student Union” effort, since this was covered extensively by media outlets and bloggers. We take up the story a couple of years later, when many assumed that Sharp had settled into typical student life, or gone quiet. Continue reading “The Problem that Didn’t Go Away: White Nationalist Activity on Georgia State University Campus, November 2015 to December 2016”

Alert: “Atlanta Forum” Alt-Right Conference Scheduled for January 28

Overview

On January 28th, 2017, white power activists intend to host an “Atlanta Forum” conference to bring together regional members of the Alt-Right and other white nationalists. In an attempt to head them off and disrupt their ability to organize in our city, anti-racists request that venues and event spaces in and around Atlanta be vigilant about bookings for this date.

atlanta-forum-imageOriginal “Atlanta Forum” logo with Confederate and Southern nationalist flags as well as “black sun” far-Right symbol.

The “Atlanta Forum” event was first mentioned on a Southern white nationalist podcast called The Rebel Yell, which is affiliated with The Right Stuff website. “Atlanta Forum” planning seems to have begun in early September of 2016. The organizers claim they have secured a number of speakers. However, they have not listed the event speakers or the venue where the conference will take place.  The event website does provide the following:

  • Date of conference (January 28, 2017)
  • Time of event (9:00AM – 4:00PM)
  • Cost of admission ($20 or $14.88 for students)
  • An email address for “TRS Confederates” (who host “The Rebel Yell” podcast)

We ask that anyone who can obtain additional information about the Atlanta Forum, or who has knowledge of suspicious bookings in or near Atlanta on Jan. 28th, contact Atlanta Antifascists:

email: afainatl [at] riseup [dot] net

phone: (470) 344 – 4868 (voicemail only)

Further Details / Context