Facebook's Leaked Blacklist Features 9 Pro-Trump Militia Groups

A secret list of people and organizations which Facebook considers "dangerous" contains several groups which reference former President Donald Trump in their name.

The Intercept has published the apparent full list of the social network's "Dangerous Individuals and Organizations" (DIO) which they ban their users from discussing in order to combat violence on the platform.

The list of 4,000-plus names fall under five categories: Hate, Crime, Terrorism, Militarized Social Movements, and Violent Non-State Actors, with a majority of the names linked to terrorist cells such as Al-Qaeda, the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) and Boko Haram.

Among the DIO are a large number of white supremacist hate groups, neo-Nazi music bands and crime organizations.

There are also nine fringe groups with "Trump" in their title which are listed under the category of "Militarized Social Movement." Seven of these are described by Facebook as armed militia groups.

These are:

  • Anti-Trump Militia
  • Citizens Militia For Trump
  • Italian Militia For President Trump
  • Militia For Trump
  • Morgan County American Warriors For Trump
  • President Trump's Militia
  • The Trump Militia
  • Trump's Militia
  • Trumps Tennessee Militia

After being categorized, The Intercept reported that Facebook organizes the groups and names in the DIO into three tiers. Those in Tier 1 face the most severe restrictions, meaning that users cannot praise or support them at all, even for nonviolent activities.

A vast majority of people and groups in Tier 1 are Middle Eastern and South Asian terrorist groups.

While there are close to 500 hate groups in Tier 1, including more than 250 white supremacist organizations, Faiza Patel, co-director of the Brennan Center for Justice's liberty and national security program, accused Facebook of applying the stricter restrictions to Muslim terrorist groups while white supremacists organizations, hate groups, or armed militias are "treated with a light touch" and placed in Tier 3.

Tier 3, where the Trump militia groups are placed, is for groups who are "not violent but repeatedly engage in hate speech, seem poised to become violent soon, or repeatedly violate the DIO policies themselves," reported The Intercept.

The list also includes far-right groups such as the Three Percenters and Oath Keepers. As these extremist groups, as well as the Trump-themed militia groups, are in Tier 3, users are free to discuss them on Facebook without severe penalty.

"The lists seem to create two disparate systems, with the heaviest penalties applied to heavily Muslim regions and communities," Patel told The Intercept.

Brian Fishman, Facebook's policy director for counter-terrorism and dangerous organizations, tweeted out a lengthy rebuttal of the report, describing it as "misleading" in suggesting that Facebook doesn't take white supremacist groups seriously as "wrong."

"More than 250 white supremacist entities are designated under our most restrictive policy as hate groups. Tier 1. That means no 'praise, support and representation,'" Fishman wrote.

"In 2020 we expanded our DOI policy to include 'Militarized Social Movements,' including militias. As far as we know, this is also the most comprehensive list of its kind and reflects the legitimate concern we had regarding potential political violence in 2020.

"But if a would-be 'MSM' meets the bar to be designated under our most restrictive policies they are. For example, the Proud Boys were listed as a hate org in 2018.

"I don't want to suggest that FB's Dangerous Orgs list, or its enforcement, is perfect. It isn't. We don't get to every organization as quickly as we'd like and the policy, as we've long stated, is blunt," he added. "Enforcement is not perfect, in part because groups are adversarial."

Facebook have been contacted for further comment.

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(File photo) Armed members of the Boogaloo militia stand with their flags in front of the State Capital in Concord, New Hampshire on January 17, 2021. A secret list of people and organizations which Facebook considers "dangerous" contains several groups with reference to former president Donald Trump in their name. Getty Images