Members see themselves as “soldiers at war with a hostile, Jewish-controlled system that is deliberately plotting the extinction of the white race.”
A neo-Nazi group was seen at Boston’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade, prompting concern from local officials and Jewish community members.
The group of around 20 men were photographed at the South Boston parade with a sign saying “Keep Boston Irish.” They wore green clothing and baseball caps, and concealed their faces with masks and sunglasses.
A Boston Globe report identified them as belonging to the Nationalist Social Club, a neo-Nazi group founded in 2019 in Eastern Massachusetts whose tactics include public demonstrations and disseminating white supremacist propaganda.
Members see themselves as “soldiers at war with a hostile, Jewish-controlled system that is deliberately plotting the extinction of the white race,” according to the Anti-Defamation League, which last year reported that the group was focusing on a six-state area in New England.
The protesters wore masks bearing the number 131, which is a symbol for “Anti-Communist Action,” and a black flag with a stylized cross commonly used as a logo by white supremacist groups.
The St. Patrick’s Day parade is an institution in Boston due to the city’s large Irish-American population. It regularly draws thousands of spectators and attendance by numerous politicians, municipal officials, and other luminaries.
Official condemnations of the group’s attendance were quick in coming.
“As a Jewish American, it hits especially close to home for me,” Dave Falvey, commander of South Boston Allied Veterans Council, told the Globe. “Unfortunately, we only have control over who can participate in the parade and cannot control who attends. Such groups will never be welcome in any capacity.”
Michelle Wu, the Mayor of Boston, commented on the neo-Nazi group’s attendance.
“It was deeply disturbing to see this display at a local celebration of culture and heritage, as we work to heal and build community through our recovery,” she said.
“With the growing intensity of white supremacist groups nationally, we are working closely with law enforcement at all levels — Boston will not tolerate hate crimes, and we will not be intimidated in our work to build a city for everyone.”
City Council President Ed Flynn, Councilor Michael Flaherty, state Senator Nick Collins, state Representative David Biele, US Representative Stephen Lynch, and Clerk Michael Donovan issued a joint statement that said they were “disgusted” by the group’s appearance and called the group’s ideology “repugnant and contrary to an event that celebrates our proud immigrant history and is enjoyed by children, families, and people of all ethnicities and backgrounds.”