I appreciate that Ross got so many quotes from others at the fair, including organizers, and that he highlighted the involvement of some well known white supremacists like William Fears and Robert Warren Ray, a.k.a. Azzmador:
The group call itself Patriot Front and is loosely affiliated with Vanguard Front, a fascist organization that includes Heather Heyer’s murderer, James Alex Fields, as one of its members. They rushed the door of a multicultural community center, igniting a pair of smoke bombs. Witnesses say the assault was led by construction worker and area neo-Nazi, William Fears.
Fears, 30, has made a name for himself in recent weeks. After returning from the Charlottesville demonstration, he began camping out at the Robert E. Lee statue in Dallas before its eventual removal. Activists allege Fears also pulled a knife on unarmed protesters with the local migrant justice group, Indivisible Houston, at a rally at George Bush Intercontinental Airport earlier this year.
“[The Patriot Front] were being really irresponsible,” a member of the San Antonio chapter of the Black Rose/Rosa Negra Anarchist Federation who witnessed the altercation told AlterNet. “There were children inside of that building, and they were outside with smoke bombs.”
Ross also briefly quotes me in the article:
“They were personally calling me out, which was pretty unpleasant. I don’t like my name on Nazis’ lips,” Austin-based organizer Kit O’Connell told AlterNet. After helping to shut down an ACT for America “March Against Sharia” rally in Austin on June 10, O’Connell has been targeted on social media by fascists calling him an “antifascist terrorist.”
“My educational collective, Oh Shit! What Now? make ourselves available to almost anyone because we want it to be easy to get involved with activism,” O’Connell said. “We teach public classes. We don’t hide who we are in general, so I recognize that this is a risk, but it’s still unpleasant.”
Witnesses recall smoke bombs, Nazi salutes and chants of “blood and soil.” Together, they raised their arms in a salute of “Sieg hiel.” On Sunday, September 24, about 25 men in masks and balaclavas descended on an anarchist book fair in Houston.