Natasha Lennard: Facebook’s Ban on Far-Left Pages Is an Extension of Trump Propaganda

The Intercept, August 20, 2020

On Wednesday, Facebook announced an expansion of its “Dangerous Individuals and Organizations policy,” removing or restricting hundreds of pages associated with groups that it claims promote violence. Nearly 800 QAnon groups, committed to pernicious disinformation and potentially deadly conspiracy theories, have been removed. Facebook also shut down the pages of far-right militias, like the New Mexico Civil Guard, an armed vigilante organization, whose leaders sport swastika tattoos.

Alongside groups openly committed to genocidal white supremacy, which constitute a very real threat to Black and Indigenous communities, as well as other people of color, Facebook also shut down the pages of numerous antifascist, anti-capitalist news, organizing, and information sites. The move follows a pattern now well-established by the Trump administration — and unchallenged by most every mainstream media outlet — that draws indefensible false equivalences between organized, racist fascists, and the antifascists who vigorously oppose them.

Among the pages removed were those of antifascist news and research site, It’s Going Down, a media platform that publishes news, analysis, and reports on social struggles, as well as investigative work to expose white supremacist and neo-Nazi networks. Crimethinc, a bastion of left-wing, anarchist publishing and thought since the 1990s, saw its Facebook page removed too. The pages of groups organizing around the ongoing and potent antiracist uprisings were also shut down, including the PNW Youth Liberation Front, a network of youth collectives in the Northwest committed to direct action protest.

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