Thursday

13th May 2021

US neo-Nazis linked to Macron hack

  • Trend Micro: "It could even have been some alt-right activist in the US hacking Macron’s team" (Photo: Wikipedia)

The spread of stolen emails designed to harm Emmanuel Macron was linked to US-based neo-Nazis, according to a French investigation.

France’s Le Monde newspaper reported on Thursday (11 May) that a website called nouveaumartel.com, which was named as a go-to place for the purloined emails, shared the same digital infrastructure as dailystormer.com, a website created by the US neo-Nazi activist Andrew Auernheimer.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

The emails were dumped online on 5 May, shortly before Macron won the French presidential election by a landslide.

The dump came two days after an anonymous user of an online message board called 4chan.org published fake documents purporting to show that Macron had an offshore fund.

“The French scene will be at nouveaumartel.com later”, the anonymous 4chan.org user said.

The dailystormer.com’s Auernheimer is a white supremacist convicted of cyber crimes in the US.

His website often popularises the work of Nathan Damigo, another US far-right activist who gained notoriety after physically assaulting an anti-fascist protester.

Auernheimer, in a posting on his site on 4 May, suggested that Damigo was about to publish anti-Macron material.

“The prophet of the white sharia Nathan Damigo is about to release the frogs from pederasty”, he wrote.

Frogs could be a derogatory reference to French people or to a cartoon frog, Pepe, adopted as a symbol by US neo-Nazis.

Pederasty could be a homophobic allusion to unsubstantiated claims, first spread by Russian media, that Macron was gay, or to the fact that he fell in love with an older woman in his adolescence.

The stolen Macron emails were eventually dumped on the website Pastebin and were popularised online by other US-based far-right conspiracy theorists such as William Craddick and Jack Posobiec.

The National Security Agency in the US said earlier this week that the Russian regime stole the Macron emails.

Trend Micro, a Japanese-based cyber security firm, said in April that the Russian regime had previously tried to hack Macron’s team.

But one of the firm’s experts, Loic Guezo, told EUobserver this week that the 5-May dump of stolen Macron emails was more amateurish than the Russian state’s modus operandi.

“It could even have been some alt-right activist in the US hacking Macron’s team. It’s fully open”, he said.

The links between US far-right activists, the Russian state, and the campaign team of US president Donald Trump are the subject of an FBI investigation in the US.

Trump this week caused a furore by firing the FBI chief.

He did it one day before he met the Russian foreign minister in the White House and gave a Russian photographer exclusive access to the event.

Meanwhile, Jack Posobiec, who has previously said that Macron is controlled by telepathy and by drugs, has obtained a White House press badge.

He attended a press briefing on 11 May on the FBI affair and later broadcast a video from the White House grounds praising the FBI chief’s sacking.

Investigation

Lessons for Germany from the Macron hack

The way the Macron team defended itself against hackers contained lessons for other political parties in Europe, but experts do not agree whether Russia did it.

News in Brief

  1. No EUobserver newsletter on Friday 14 May
  2. Germany stops Facebook gathering WhatsApp data
  3. Italy rebuts reports of EU deal with Libya
  4. MEPs demand EU states protect women's reproductive rights
  5. At least nine dead in Russia school shooting
  6. Bulgaria interim government appointed until July election
  7. German priests defy pope to bless same-sex couples
  8. New EU public prosecutor faults Slovenia

Opinion

Why Russia politics threaten European security

Russia could expand hostile operations, such as poisonings, including beyond its borders, if it feels an "existential" threat and there is no European pushback.

Analysis

Ten years on from Tahrir: EU's massive missed opportunity

Investing in the Arab world, in a smart way, is also investing in the European Union's future itself. Let's hope that the disasters of the last decade help to shape the neighbourhood policy of the next 10 years.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council enters into formal relations with European Parliament
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersWomen more active in violent extremist circles than first assumed
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersDigitalisation can help us pick up the green pace
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersCOVID19 is a wake-up call in the fight against antibiotic resistance
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersThe Nordic Region can and should play a leading role in Europe’s digital development
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council to host EU webinars on energy, digitalisation and antibiotic resistance

Latest News

  1. EU aims at 'zero pollution' in air, water and soil by 2050
  2. French police arrest Luxembourg former top spy
  3. Vaccine drives spur better-than-expected EU economic recovery
  4. Slovenia causing headaches for new EU anti-graft office
  5. 'No place to hide' in Gaza, as fighting escalates
  6. EU chases 90m AstraZeneca vaccines in fresh legal battle
  7. Fidesz MEP oversees FOI appeals on disgraced Fidesz MEP
  8. Belgium outlines summer Covid relaxation plans

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us