Hacktivist collective Anonymous has declared war on Donald Trump after his public statements against Muslim immigration this month.
The vigilante group, which has no organisation or hierarchy, is comprised of multiple independent sub-sects, and have been in the spotlight recently for their digital war on the Islamic State after the Paris attacks. The declaration of war against Trump was made in a video posted by a YouTube channel called ‘Anonymous Operations’ on Wednesday.
“Donald Trump. It has come to our attention that you want to ban all Muslims to enter the United States. This policy is going to have a huge impact. This is what ISIS wants. The more Muslims feel sad, the more ISIS feel they can recruit them,” states a cloaked figure in the video wearing a Guy Fawkes mask.
“The more United States appears to be targeting Muslims, not just radical Muslims. You can be sure that ISIS would put that up on their social media campaign. Donald Trump, think twice before you speak anything. You have been warned Mr Donald Trump.”
The video is shoddily constructed, with sound problems throughout and poor spelling and grammar, suggesting that this is one of the more amateurish Anonymous sects, but nonetheless the threat has been picked up by mainstream media and other Anonymous-affiliated figures and organisations who have endorsed the warning.
Anonymous have attempted to counter ISIS’s online presence recently by taking down mediocre Jihadi websites, and organising a troll ISIS day, but fellow freedom-fighter and well-established hacktivist The Jester (th3j35t3r) claims the group are doing it the wrong way.
There have been frequent feuds between Anonymous and the Jester in the past few years, and he has been known to ruthlessly criticise Anonymous’ lack of organisation and hierarchy, which allows any ‘m4d h4xer’ on the internet to associate with the organisation. Recently Jester has specifically been criticising the group’s attacks against ISIS.
“Nearly 6 years ago, as many of you know I started taking down jihadist recruiting, propaganda websites and forums. At that time they were often self-hosted servers, or offshore hosting providers, they were not prevalent on US social media like they are today.” Jester writes in a recent blog post on his website, Jesters Court. “My strategy then was really simple […] I figured I’d herd or funnel them into a smaller space, because smaller spaces are easier to watch […] Now we have them right where we want them[…]
‘Anonymous’. As you *may* have heard the ‘hacking’ group <snicker> are currently trying to get 1000’s of what they decide are ISIS accounts suspended. Even though by their own admission they are actually just looking for Arabic language accounts many of which are not affiliated to ISIS. They are also targeting (unsuccessfully) supposed ISIS websites, many of which are not actually ISIS run operations[…] many of their targets *may* in fact be either honeypots or have US intelligence ‘assets’ inside collecting the goods.
Since declaring war on Donald Trump, a handful of Anonymous hackers managed to take down the Trump Tower NY website for a few hours on Friday using Denial of Service attacks (DDoS). The website was quickly restored, and there have been no more significant public attacks by the group against Trump since.
Charlie Nash is a libertarian writer, memeologist, and child prodigy. When he is not writing, he can usually be found chilling at the Korova Milk Bar, mingling with the infamous. You can follow him on Twitter at @MrNashington.