The Trump campaign used a symbol in a recent round of Facebook ads that was also used by the Nazi regime, and Facebook has now removed the ads. The symbol in question is an upside-down red triangle; it’s a symbol that Nazi authorities used to identify political opponents, and in the Trump ads, it was used in reference to imaginary “dangerous MOBS of far-left groups,” which President Donald Trump and his allies have consistently tried to fearmonger about. Trump, for instance, has sounded an alarm about “Antifa,” but the term just means “anti-fascist,” and while a strong anti-fascist political movement has existed at least since the Allies took on the Nazis in World War II, “Antifa” is not some kind of nationally centralized organization.
The President of the United States is campaigning for reelection using a Nazi concentration camp symbol.
Nazis used the red triangle to mark political prisoners and people who rescued Jews.
Trump & the RNC are using it to smear millions of protestors.
Their masks are off. pic.twitter.com/UzmzDaRBup
— Bend the Arc: Jewish Action (@jewishaction) June 18, 2020
In this case, Axios reports:
‘Facebook has taken down an ad from the Trump campaign that went after antifa and leftist groups with a prominent display of an inverted red triangle in a black outline, a symbol the Nazis used for political dissenters.’
Was just made away of this, but on Facebook Trump posted an upside down red triangle alongside his latest unhinged antifa tirade… the symbol has one major historical reference: it was used by Nazis in concentration camps to classify political prisoners inc. communists. pic.twitter.com/NTDJB1PXia
— Natasha Lennard (@natashalennard) June 18, 2020
In a statement, Facebook explained:
‘We removed these posts and ads for violating our policy against organized hate. Our policy prohibits using a banned hate group’s symbol to identify political prisoners without the context that condemns or discusses the symbol.’
It is staggering, of course, that it’s the re-election campaign for the president of the United States who was using a “banned hate group’s symbol to identify political prisoners.”
Trump's new online campaign to label people opposed to fascism and white supremacy as terrorists involves a downward red triangle, the same symbol used by the Nazis in concentration camps to label communists, trade unionists, and political dissidents. pic.twitter.com/ro82090nGR
— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) June 18, 2020
The Trump campaign has claimed as part of their attempted defense of the ad that the upside down red triangle is actually used by “Antifa” — which again, is not some kind of nationally centralized organization — to identify themselves. In fact, anti-fascist activists actually frequently use a symbol displaying two flags alongside each other, one of which is red and one of which is black. As Axios explains, “antifa supporters tend to instead use a different symbol — two flags surrounded by a circle — that dates back to opponents of the Nazis in 1930s Germany.”
Besides — even if there is some “Antifa” supporter out there who’s used the upside-down red triangle to identify themselves, why would the Trump team pick that symbol out of the many available? Why not something that wasn’t a way that the Nazis identified their political opponents?
Trump campaign spokesperson Tim Murtaugh claimed:
‘The inverted red triangle is a symbol used by Antifa, so it was included in an ad about Antifa. We would note that Facebook still has an inverted red triangle emoji in use, which looks exactly the same, so it’s curious that they would target only this ad. The image is also not included in the Anti-Defamation League’s database of symbols of hate. But it is ironic that it took a Trump ad to force the media to implicitly concede that Antifa is a hate group.’
This statement is a completely bad faith assessment of the situation. Inverted red triangles are not some kind of obvious symbol of Antifa, and it’s the Trump campaign that used the symbol. The Trump campaign wages a consistent war on facts.