Charlottesville: Twitter users name and shame white supremacists at far-right rally

White supremacists and protesters clash in Charlottesville, Virginia (PA)
White supremacists and protesters clash in Charlottesville, Virginia (PA)

A Californian restaurant has fired an employee who was identified online as taking part in a far-right rally in Virginia, where one person was killed after a car was driven into anti-fascist protestors.

Management at Top Dog in Berkeley confirmed in an email on Sunday that Cole White, who was pictured holding a torch at the rally, no longer works for the company.

He was outed on Twitter by the @yesyoureracist account, which has been identifying participants in the Charlottesville rally, where protestors waved Confederate and Nazi flags and gave Hitler salutes.

Groups of white nationalists — including neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klan members and elements of the so-called “alt-right” — descended on the city for the Unite the Right rally.

The account has been asking followers to help name and shame those who appeared at the rally.

The account posted images of Richard Spencer, a well-known white supremacist and figurehead of the “alt-right” movement, being arrested, as well as Peter Cvjetanovic, a 20-year-old studying at the University of Nevada.

Cvjetanovic, who was pictured holding a torch at the rally, released a statement saying he is “not a racist” and “cares for all people”.

Pictures of other people at the rally, including Cole White, could not be independently verified at this time.

A car rammed into a group of people peacefully protesting against the gathering, killing one person, Heather Heyer, 32, and injuring 19.

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Ahead of the protest, Heyer, a paralegal and campaigner, posted to Facebook: “If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention.”

Police confirmed that 20-year-old James Fields, of Ohio, had been arrested following the attack on Saturday.

Photographer Pat Jarrett, who witnessed the incident, said: “A grey Dodge Charger plowed into a sedan and then into a minivan. Bodies flew. People were terrified and screaming.

“Those closest to it said it was definitely a violent attack. The driver, who people later described as a skinny white guy with a straggly beard, reversed out of there and drove off, the front end of his car all smashed up.”

The governor of Virginia, Terry McAuliffe, told the white supremacists: “Go home … Shame on you. You pretend you are patriots, but you are anything but a patriot.”

In the wake of the attack, Donald Trump condemned the “violence on many sides”, but was widely criticised after he failed to directly denounce the far-right.

“Hate and the division must stop, and must stop right now,” he said. “We have to come together as Americans with love for our nation and… true affection for each other.”

On Sunday, the White House issued a statement attempting to expand on the president’s remarks.

It said: “The president said very strongly in his statement yesterday that he condemns all forms of violence, bigotry and hatred and of course that includes white supremacists, KKK, neo-Nazi and all extremist groups.

“He called for national unity and bringing all Americans together.”

Cory Gardner, a Republican senator, tweeted: “Mr. President — we must call evil by its name. These were white supremacists and this was domestic terrorism.”

Another Republican senator, Marco Rubio, also tweeted that Trump should describe the event as a “terror attack by white supremacists”.