Self-Proclaimed Neo-Nazis March Through Nashville, Spark Condemnation By State Leaders, Speculation Online

A group of self-proclaimed neo-Nazis marched through downtown Nashville on Saturday with large black flags with swastikas, prompting condemnations from city and state officials as well as widespread speculation regarding the identity and intent of the group.

Dozens of people calling themselves the “Blood Tribe” marched through Broadway, a major street in downtown Nashville, wearing black masks and waving flags with swastikas.

The marchers were vocally condemned by at least one individual in the area, who filmed their demonstration and called them cowards for covering their faces. “Your grandparents would be ashamed of you!” the person yelled at the group.

Local media reported that a fight broke out on Broadway on Saturday involving at least one member of the group, though the Metro Nashville Police Department has yet to provide any details on any arrests pertaining to the altercation.

A Democrat state representative posted a picture of the group marching past the Davidson County Courthouse, declaring that “these groups once relegated to the dark corners now feel empowered to spew their noxious ideology out in the open due to our state’s leadership REFUSING to condemn their speech and actions.”

But the group was quickly rebuked by state leadership, with Tennessee’s Republican Governor Bill Lee writing, “Nazism and antisemitism should never be tolerated in any form. As Jewish people around the world continue to face persecution, Tennessee remains unwavering in our support for the nation of Israel and her people.”

Tennessee Attorney General Johnathan Skrmetti, also a Republican, similarly issued a statement following the march, expressing solidarity with Lee’s condemnation and denouncing antisemitism more broadly.

“Our Jewish brothers and sisters across Tennessee and around the world will always have this Office’s unwavering support against antisemitism,” Skrmetti wrote.

Republican State Representative William Lamberth wrote that the group of “Nazi thugs” was not welcome in Tennessee, casting doubt about whether they were actually from the state.

His Republican colleague Jody Barrett also suggested that the group could be “paid performers.”

“This is a made-for-clicks, fake clown show. These idiots are either paid performers or low IQ low-lifes who need to go back home to their mothers’ basements. Either way they are worthy of all the ridicule and scorn we can muster,” Rep. Barret wrote.

The same group was previously seen in September in Orlando, Florida, where 15 people with the group assembled outside the entrance to a shopping center affiliated with Disney World.

The apparent leader of the group previously praised President Joe Biden when he was asked by a reporter who he would be voting for in the upcoming presidential election, citing Biden’s policies in support of Ukraine.

“I think Biden’s better than Trump because he sends rockets to Ukraine,” he said when asked who he planned to support in the 2024 presidential election. He ended his statement to the reporter by adding “hail Azov,” a reference to a paramilitary group in Ukraine that flies flags with symbols previously used by Nazi military units that the United States Congress has considered designating a foreign terrorist organization.

Blood Tribe was similarly condemned by local officials when they assembled in Florida, with the Altamonte Springs Police Department releasing a statement saying, “Their message of hate and discrimination was disgraceful and does not align with the values and beliefs of our City, nor does it represent the residents of the Altamonte Springs community.”

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