Home Resistance News The FOI investigates “racism in digital environments” – and the Resistance Movement

The FOI investigates “racism in digital environments” – and the Resistance Movement


RESISTANCE MOVEMENT. The FOI, which has a history of trying to defame the Resistance Movement, has been tasked with investigating “racism in digital environments”. “Anti-Semitism” is first on the list of types of racism it will investigate.

Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI) sign
“The Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI)”

Almost four years have passed since the Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI) presented its report “White Hatred: Radical Nationalism in Digital Environments”. As described later in this article, the study is largely devoted to presenting a distorted depiction of the Nordic Resistance Movement. The new report, which the government has instructed the FOI to write, will focus on “racism” in various “Sweden-related digital environments”. In the project, the FOI will collaborate with the Jewish interest organisation, the Forum for Living History, among others.

The contractors of the report – the government – believe there is a need for an overview of “the various expressions of racism in people’s use of the internet in their everyday lives”. They therefore want to investigate which mechanisms are at work when people “suffer from racism in their digital activities”. In addition to “radical nationalist environments”, the Swedish National Defence Institute has previously investigated “digital hatred of journalists”. Several of the people behind those studies have connections to the political left and asylum seeker activist groups.

The new investigation is planned to consist of two main sections:

  • Racism: a measure of the degree of its existence
  • An analysis of how the identified racism is expressed in various Swedish digital contexts
White Lives Matter banner in Vallensbæk, Denmark
An expression of racism?

All forms of “racism” are not worth equal investigation

The list of types of racism the government feels it is most important to address guarantees that this report will also be largely dedicated to the Nordic Resistance Movement.

In the study, special focus will be placed on the following types of racism:

  • Anti-Semitism
  • Anti-gypsyism
  • Afrophobia
  • Islamophobia
  • Racism against Samis

According to the government, a “gender equality and child rights perspective” must be adopted for each type examined.

Auschwitz Birkenau
Is it anti-Semitic not to believe the official version of history? Photo: Wikipedia, Oleg Yunakov CC BY-SA 3.0.

The FOI’s assignment includes collaboration with “other relevant actors” such as the Forum for Living History, the police authorities and the Swedish Media Council. They state that an important reason for this requirement is to achieve maximum dissemination of the investigation’s data and conclusions.

In the same press release, the Minister for Gender Equality Märta Stenevi (MP) comments on the assignment for the FOI as follows:

“Digital environments are an important part of our everyday lives, and we therefore require knowledge about the extent of racism on platforms that many of us use every day. We also need better tools to prevent and counter racism online…”

The FOI will present the study by 1 November 2022, at the latest.

The FOI’s previous description of the Resistance Movement

This is not the first time the FOI has investigated racism on the internet. In November 2017, it presented the study “White Hatred: Radical Nationalism in Digital Environments”, which largely focuses on “racism”. In this report, a highly distorted description of the Nordic Resistance Movement, as well as an attack on the organisation, plays a central role. The sections of the report that deal with the Resistance Movement focus extensively on Nordfront and its written contents. At the time, motstandsrörelsen.se and nordicresistancemovement.org did not exist, and Nordfront was the official website of the Nordic Resistance Movement.

In order to achieve the most negative possible image of the Resistance Movement, the study’s authors employ various techniques, such as the following:

  • Negative bias – for example, using what they call “dispute markers”; i.e., scare quotes, around words or phrases, or by using terms like “so-called” and “what they call”.
  • Distorting facts – the reproduction of a person’s unfounded accusations against the Resistance Movement, without any explanatory analysis of them.
  • Outright lies.

After applying these techniques in their report, the authors then accuse the Resistance Movement of using the same techniques in its propaganda.

Negative bias

In the report, scare quotes are mostly placed around words such as mass immigration, population replacement, racial alien and traitors. They are also used for phrases that express an evaluation that the FOI does not share. However, the use of scare quotes is not acceptable if they are used by “Nazis”. On page 34, under the heading “Nordfront and the Holocaust”, it reads:

“On the Nordic Resistance Movement’s website Nordfront, dispute markers are chiefly used with terms relating to the Holocaust, Nazism and democracy.

“Putting the term Holocaust in dispute markers is a way of showing disagreement with the existence of the Holocaust – that is, the genocide, primarily of Jews, that occurred during the Second World War.”

They note here that even though “Holocaust denial” is not illegal in Sweden, the EU considers it to be a crime:

“In 1994, the European Parliament adopted a resolution (B4-0261/94) on xenophobia, racism and anti-Semitism. In the resolution, the European Parliament declares its position: that denial of the Holocaust within the EU must be considered a crime, and that it calls on the member states of the European Union to adapt their legislation so it also covers this form of racist propaganda.”

Distortion of facts and outright lies

Page 38 explains that the activities of the NRM and its predecessor the SRM (the Swedish Resistance Movement) are characterised by “peaceful demonstrations and leaflet distribution, combined with violent attacks on anti-racist meetings”. No examples of such attacks are given in the text – because none exist.

NRM public action
A leaflet distribution without a “violent attack”…

They also write that the Nordic Resistance Movement has been “accused of threatening politicians with violence” and cite the unproven and absurd accusations that the Resistance Movement was behind a firebomb attack on the Social Democrat politician Pierre Esbjörnsson in Skurup, stating that a Tyr rune was painted on his house during the incident. Here, they add that the Resistance Movement “distanced itself from the attack via its editorial staff on its official website Nordfront”.

Considering the way the FOI treated the Nordic Resistance Movement in its report on “radical nationalism in digital environments”, and the Council of Legislation’s current proposal to ban “participation in, or support for, racist organisations” – which shows signs of being geared towards our organisation – it is reasonable to expect that the forthcoming report on “racism” and “anti-Semitism” will also detail the threat we pose to the system. In November next year, we will receive the answer in black and white.