During an appearance on a Neo-Nazi podcast, Robert Rundo — a leader in the Rise Above Movement (RAM), a white power fight club — announced the creation of a new media outlet. Rundo claimed the goal was to sanitize the group’s image and force the mainstream press to use only photos and videos crafted to make RAM look better to potential recruits.
Robert Rundo and three other RAM members had been charged in 2018 with violations of 1968’s Anti-Riot Act for their violent assaults against journalists and counterprotesters in California. In June 2019 a federal judge dismissed the charges, ruling that the Act was unconstitutionally overbroad. The case is currently being appealed by federal prosecutors.
Four other RAM members were similarly charged in connection with their actions in Charlottesville, VA during the deadly “Unite the Right” rally in 2017. The convictions of two of the men — Benjamin Drake Daley and Michael Miselis — were upheld by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in August.
During an episode of Surviving Weimerika, Rundo — who has since fled to Eastern Europe — told host “Patrick Bateman” that his current goal is the creation of a media outlet that could produce their own documentaries and “counter VICE News.” (Rundo specifically criticized VICE News’ negative coverage of far-right groups in Poland.) He said he was tired of everything being viewed through “their lens.”
Rundo also said that, with their own media outlet, they could put out a stream of photos and videos of RAM members that depicted them as “clean-cut” and fit. “We put out tons and tons of photos all the time,” Rundo said. “We put out videos and stuff, but we made sure it was through our lens. So when the media talks about us, they have to show us through our photos.”
He complained that whenever RAM is covered by the mainstream media, they are often depicted with the most unflattering photos.
“You know, they really don’t wanna show our true photos,” he said. “If you go to Google images and stuff and look, I mean they show the one photo that we took as a joke with all the skull masks on. But that’s pretty much the only photo they’ll show.” He added that, when it comes to photos of himself, they mostly use “two blurry pictures of me punching a guy on the beach.”
“I think the power of the image is extremely important,” Rundo told Bateman. “I think we need to really pay attention and control our image, and what we put out there.”
After Rundo said he wanted to focus on putting out short videos, Bateman said this was “what white people definitely need.” “We need our own production studios to tell our stories, and we have [a] great, great amount of stories which we can tell,” he said. “Not only from this modern era, as in you guys’ case, but epics from the past.”
Bateman added that white people need to “start embodying that sort of heroicism that is in the Indo-European spirit.”
Citing the example of CasaPound — an Italian neo-fascist movement — which created its own pubs and restaurants for extremists to gather, Rundo said that white nationalists need to have their own establishments and products. “Everything we can do that’s outside of the mainstream, outside of their poison, we need to do,” Rundo said.
Bateman agreed, saying that all of their institutions needed to be free of “semitic influence.”
[The following clips are from a two hour and nine minute episode of Surviving Weimerika.]
Rundo also advised other white supremacists to follow his lead and take up a “combat sport” in what was simultaneously the strangest and least surprising way: invoking Hitler.
“Think of it as your life depends on it,” Rundo said. “You know if you’re a guy that’s posting things about our ancestors, if you’re posting pictures of the SS and all that stuff, I mean even Adolf [Hitler] said it, literally like — I can’t remember what chapter it is in Mein Kampf but he talks about, he says we need more people that take up boxing than intellectuals.”
Bateman said he remembered Hitler talking about the “finesse of boxing.”
Rundo told listeners they should not “think of it as a brutish or thuggish thing.” He claimed that in Eastern Europe for a person to be a nationalist “you pretty much have to train,” and estimated that “70% of the nationalists in Eastern Europe train.” He went on to say that Poland had its “independence march” because far-right individuals there “set up the groundwork” and created their own gyms.