Richard Spencer's attempts to regain the spotlight for his flagging “alt-right” neo-fascist movement backfired spectacularly over the weekend, as a planned White House rally against U.S. President Donald Trump's missile strikes against Syria resulted in the would-be leader and his clique being glitter-bombed and chased from the scene for fear of being mauled by anti-fascist counter-protesters.
Chants of “We want walls, not war!” and “Make America great again,” were countered by taunts of “Nazi snowflakes go home!” and “Make America punch Richard again,” as handfuls of Spencer's supporters, surrounded by police, faced a combative group of AntiFa organizers intent on shutting down the white supremacist demonstration.
The demonstration was an attempt to denounce last week's U.S. attack on Syria and to prove the anti-war credentials of Spencer's movement, which sees the bombing as a capitulation to “neo-conservative” and “deep state” figures who backed the failed presidential bid of Hillary Clinton.
Video of the protests appeared to show a crowd comprised of alt-rights — distinguishable by their Hitler Youth-style “fashy” haircuts — an equal number of police officers, and a large crowd of anti-fascists, who soon overwhelmed the neo-fascists before glitter-bombing Spencer. Glitter-bombing is a direct action tactic employed by LGBTQ activists where anti-gay figures are stricken by thousands of shimmering pieces of plastic.
After the glitter assault, Spencer — who claims he was “legitimately scared for (his) life” — fled to a nearby cab, where he told the driver, “They're going to kill us!” According to Antifa reports, Spencer was pulled out of the cab and given a beat-down — reports the alt-right leader denies.
The event came amid media reports that former Breitbart chief and alt-right godfather Steve Bannon, a White House senior advisor, was being increasingly sidelined by Donald Trump. Bannon was stripped of his seat on the National Security Council principals committee last Wednesday in a move that outraged hard-right figures like Spencer.
Richard Spencer shot to fame in November of last year following a videotaped speech before a white nationalist event where he celebrated Trump's election victory with the salute, “Hail Trump, hail our people, hail victory!”
Since then, the racist figure — who calls himself an “identitarian” who favors “peaceful ethnic cleansing” — has become both a literal and a figurative punching-bag for anti-fascists and anti-racists around the U.S., as thousands of memes flooded the internet depicting the Inauguration Day assault on Spencer, when he was punched while giving an interview by an AntiFa protester.