June 13, 2020
from the Editorial Board of RefuseFascism.org
on the video released by “Project Veritas” on June 10, 2020
I. The massive uprising and protest of people of all nationalities to stop the killing of Black people by police and the institutionalized racism has struck hard at the core of the white supremacist fascist agenda of the Trump/Pence regime. Trump has responded with threats and actions that if fully carried out would represent a serious escalation of a fascist police state rule, including against RefuseFascism.org.
II. Against this backdrop, on June 10, 2020, the organization “Project Veritas” released a video of an illegally and surreptitiously recorded conversation in California in 2018 with Andy Zee, a co-initiator of RefuseFascism.org (RF) and member of RF’s Editorial Board. This video, which has gone viral in right wing circles, maliciously and falsely claims that RefuseFascism.org has advocated and trained people in violence. This was done through crudely edited juxtaposed footage of another organization’s martial arts training which itself may have been taken out of context. RefuseFascism.org, since its formation in December 2016, has put forth its principle of non-violence in every public statement – including its first which appeared as full-page advertisements in the New York Times and The Washington Post; in its Mission Statement; as well as on its website: www.refusefascism.org:
RefuseFascism.org is a movement of people coming from diverse perspectives, united in our recognition that the Trump/Pence Regime poses a catastrophic danger to humanity and the planet, and that it is our responsibility to drive them from power through non-violent protests that grow every day until our demand is met. This means working and organizing with all our creativity and determination to bring thousands, eventually millions of people into the streets of cities and towns, to demand: This Nightmare Must End: The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! (underlining added for this statement).
The malicious and slanderous attempts to paint RefuseFascism.org as advocating violence is part and parcel of – and could serve as a pretext for – pronouncements by President Trump to declare the loose knit diverse groups in the U.S. and internationally referred to as Antifa as a “terrorist” organization, which would be an unprecedented and dangerous escalation of fascist rule in the U.S. We note that also on May 31, not only did Trump tweet this, but Attorney General William P. Barr said in a statement: “The violence instigated and carried out by Antifa and other similar groups in connection with the rioting is domestic terrorism and will be treated accordingly.” That this is an outright lie is no barrier for the Trump/Pence regime seizing on this as a pretext for investigation and far worse in their pursuit to crush dissent.
James O’Keefe, the founder of “Project Veritas”, appeared on Sean Hannity’s radio program on June 5 saying: “This one Sean, is something called ‘RefuseFa’ New York City, Refuse Fascism, part of Antifa.” After which he and Hannity discuss their desire for the Attorney General and the Justice Department to see this video. Meanwhile, rightwing/fascist forces have been flooding the Justice Department, the FBI, Secret Service, etc. with calls for action against RefuseFascism.org and worse.
Two facts: O’Keefe has made up the name ‘RefuseFA’ – to sow confusion. This is not a name that we or anyone have used before. Second, while RefuseFascism.org and the Antifa movement have very different strategies and approaches to thwarting fascism, with RefuseFascism.org focused on the political objectives of building a broad-based political movement to remove the Trump/Pence regime from power, RefuseFascism.org insisted in a statement issued on September 9, 2017 which included the following:
“There is NO moral ‘equivalence’ between those seeking to impose white supremacy and fascism, and those fighting against this nightmare…”
“To stand against injustice at this moment requires firmly understanding that the attacks against ‘Antifa’ are designed to intimidate, suppress, and divide all opposition to fascism. The threats and attacks on Antifa and anyone else standing up against fascism, especially attempts by the state to brand them as ‘terrorist’ or put them on watchlists, must be opposed.”
People concerned about justice must recognize that “Project Veritas” and James O’Keefe’s slanders against RefuseFascism.org in this video, in their media appearances, and in their social media campaign are blatant attempts to provide pretext for harmful action against RefuseFascism.org and one of its key leaders, Andy Zee.
We note, too, that the rightwing nutjob, author and film maker Dinesh D’Souza has in the last two weeks accused RefuseFascism.org, Black Lives Matter, and Antifa of creating “a left-wing ‘paramilitary force’.” These inaccurate accusations are now ricocheting around right wing media and are finding support if not direction from the Trump/Pence regime. This too is ominous, with potential repercussions.
III. The “Project Veritas” video also is a serious attempt to suggest that George Soros and Tom Steyer are funders of RefuseFascism.org. While neither have donated to RefuseFascism.org, there would be nothing wrong with their doing so or supporting other progressive organizations.
In regard to their supposed “scoop” on fundraising, Veritas’s surreptitious video is packed with lies. “Project Veritas’” Christian Hartsock dishonestly posed as a representative of wealthy people interested in making substantial donations to RefuseFascism.org. The video included an RF organizer in Atlanta saying she helped secure a grant for an abortion rights group from the Soros foundation two decades ago (time frame omitted by Veritas) and then edited the video to make it appear as if this grant was to RefuseFascism.org. Then, they took parts of a conversation from RF co-initiator Andy Zee where the Veritas imposter was pushing to find out if RefuseFascism.org was getting and/or would try to get financial support from Tom Steyer. Zee’s answer to this was to say instead that RF was trying to dialogue with Tom Steyer, who was at that time in the early stages of launching a mass campaign to impeach Trump.
The nefarious objective of the fascist regime and its wanna-be operatives like Hartsock and O’Keefe is to go after not just RefuseFascism.org and other political and social movements who are mobilizing masses of people to resolutely oppose the Trump’s agenda of imposing a white supremacist, xenophobic, patriarchal theocratic fascist regime on this country, but to also intimidate, demonize, destroy and/or neutralize their political opposition in government – the Democrats and their funders. This BS attempt to stigmatize funders and those seeking funds should intimidate no one and be given no quarter.
IV. RefuseFascism.org has recognized from its inception that this is a regime that is attempting to establish a fascist form of rule in this country at great cost to humanity. We have never wavered from this analysis even in the face of progressive forces that thought this was alarmist and who counseled a wait-and-see approach. We have argued that history shows it can become too late to stop fascism and every fascist escalation must be opposed with increased unity and action.
We recognized that the fascist movements that have grown over the last four decades in this country have seen in Trump’s election their “last chance” to achieve their remaking of the country. This has been especially the case with the Christian fascist theocratic element – represented by VP Mike Pence in the regime. As such, we are not deterred by attacks against us.
WE CALL ON EVERYONE WHO CARES ABOUT JUSTICE AND HUMANITY TO STAND AGAINST THESE ATTACKS… WITH REFUSEFASCISM.ORG
AND WITH ALL WHO COME UNDER ATTACK FROM THIS REGIME.
And last, in October 2017 we called on all principled organizations, media, and individuals to reject, repudiate, and to stop repeating the distortions and lies of these attacks on RefuseFascism.org and the nonviolent protest mobilizations it was planning, and issued this statement:
Don’t allow the ruling forces, or any other force, to divide us or pit us against each other. Don’t fall for “divide and conquer” schemes and divisive actions, reject and rise above petty disputes and sectarian squabbles—reach out BROADLY to UNITE ALL WHO CAN BE UNITED, from different perspectives and viewpoints, around the great unifying objective of driving out, through massive, sustained political mobilization, this regime which has already done such great harm and which poses a grave threat to humanity.
In the Name of Humanity, We Refuse to Accept a Fascist America!
 California Law Penal Code § 632, enacted under the California Invasion of Privacy Act, makes it illegal for an individual to monitor or record a “confidential communication” whether the communication is carried on among the parties in the presence of one another or by means of a telegraph, telephone, or other device. California is known as a “two-party” state, which means that recordings are not allowed unless all parties to the conversation consent to the recording. back
 Trump tweet on 05/31 after saying on 05/30, “The violence and vandalism is being led by antifa and other radical left-wing groups:”
 “Project Veritas” and James O’Keefe have a sordid history of infiltrating, secretly recording and sending spies into liberal and progressive organizations. This has had, at times, devastating impact, destroying the community organization ACORN, and seriously disrupting Planned Parenthood. Although discredited by much of the media, O’Keefe and his outfit are quoted favorably by Trump and Trump Jr. and are a part of the fascist movement. The pathetic nature of the video they released against Refusefascism.org should not dissuade anyone from the real harm it could do. back