IMAGES and videos from a neo-Nazi training camp in the Grampians have been used in an online recruitment campaign.
However, the neo-Nazi group ‘Antipodean Resistance’ that organised the camp and produced the digital material has denied being responsible for the recruitment campaign.
An anonymous user posted more than a dozen times on the 4chan online message board urging young men to join Antipodean Resistance.
“Antipodean Resistance’ are recruiting young like minded individuals,” one of the posts stated.
“We are an elite Aussie youth organisation that has been around for just under a year.
“You will be vetted accordingly before you have the right to join our ranks.’
Grampians training camp images used
Antipodean Resistance, a self-described Nazi group, travelled to the Grampians some time before August 22 for the camp.
Antipodean Resistance documented its camp via pictures posted on social media and a brief YouTube video.
The video shows at least eight young men or teenagers hiking in the Grampians and what appears to be Halls Gap, and marching while carrying a flag bearing the Nazi swastika.
The online recruitment messages, which were published throughout September, used images from the Grampians camp.
On September 20, a new message claimed the online campaign had been a success.
“Hey guys, just wanted to say a big thank you for the huge amount of applications we have received,” the post stated.
“Vetting is of course, a slow but accurate process to weed out the shills. So please be patient.
“If you have artistic skills in photoshop, (sic) you will be bumped ahead of the que (sic).”
Group denies involvement
An Antipodean Resistance spokesperson denied the group was behind the messages.
“None of those threads put up on 4chan were from anyone involved with Antipodean Resistance,” the spokesperson said.
The website where the recruitment messages were posted, 4chan, has a reputation as an online hangout for far-Right extremists, neo-Nazis and white supremacists.
4chan’s users are also notorious for setting up online pranks and spreading false information.
The website was recently used to accuse the wrong man of carrying out the mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 60 people in injured hundreds.
Whoever posted the messages directed people to visit Antipodean Resistance’s official website that contains an application form, potentially creating the same end result as any genuine recruitment campaign.
A Victoria Police spokesperson said there were no public updates on its investigation into Antipodean Resistance and its Grampians training camp.
Links to ‘alt-right’ and extremist online subcultures
Whether the Antipodean Resistance 4chan recruitment campaign was sanctioned by the group’s leaders or not, at least one member appears to be familiar with the website’s subculture.
In the video of the Grampians training camp posted on YouTube by Antipodean Resistance, all the members’ faces were blurred out.
The only face visible is on a t-shirt worn by one of the members as he marches through the Grampians.
The image is of US comedian Sam Hyde, who became an unofficial mascot of the ‘alt-right’ online political extremist movement.
4chan users adopted Mr Hyde after he was accused of inserting references to their subculture into his now-cancelled TV show ‘Million Dollar Extreme presents: World Peace’.
The online fandom took an ever darker turn when it became a hobby for 4chan users to create hoax images of Mr Hyde at the scene of terrorist attacks and claim he was responsible.
The image of Mr Hyde holding an assault rifle, also printed on the shirt of an Antipodean Resistance member, has been used in hoaxes about terror attacks in the US, UK, Germany and Paris since 2015.