Charlottesville Was a Massive 4GW Failure

In this post I’d like to do something a little different than what I usually do with this blog.  I’d like to talk about strategy, and how those on the alt-Right need to get much, much better at it.  After seeing the debacle which occurred in Charlottesville this past Saturday, I think some sound advice may be desperately in order.

I’m sure that a lot of folks in the alt-Right, of whatever stripe, are feeling pretty black-pilled right at this moment. As well they should, because the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville was a disaster.  There’s no way to get around that. Don’t take what I’m about to say in the post below as “punching right.” Rather, understand it as me giving some well-meaning, and I believe much needed, counsel.

What everyone who is interested in this needs to understand is that the reason the Unite the Right rally was a failure was because it completely neglected to take into account 4GW (Fourth-Generation Warfare) principles which can very easily be applied to civilian situations remaining at conflict levels below outright armed conflict.  In fact the leadership at UTR and during the subsequent chain of events once the rally got started broke just about every rule of 4GW that could have been broken.

My advice for any serious alt-Righter of any stripe who wishes to avoid future debacles like UTR would be to first, first, FIRST read Victoria by William Lind, and then familiarize yourself with Lind’s other materials on this subject.  If you haven’t done this yet, then stop what you’re doing, alt-Right involvement-wise.  You’re only going to hurt, not help your cause.

However in the meantime until you can do this, I’ll provide a few pointers as overview.

One of the cardinal principles of 4GW is that before you ever set foot on the battlefield you should already be tilting the battlefield in your favor.  Don’t fight the kind of battle the enemy wants in the place that the enemy wants to do so. So my first piece of (probably unheeded) advice would be to stop having rallies in the first place, at least of the kind that are likely to degenerate into brawls with antifa and BLM.

The fact of the matter is that right-wing activism always fails.  You’re not going to be able to steal a page from their playbook and turn the Left’s game against them.  This is because the Right does not have the institutional support of the politicians, bureaucracies, and other elements of the state apparatus. As a result, antifa can get away with beating you because the police will arrest you when you fight back.  In fact, the police may openly side with the antifas, as they did in Charlottesville.  Is it fair? Of course not. But life isn’t fair, so get a helmet.  Earlier this year, I thought there might be a chance that the legal climate for legitimate self-defence against antifas might be changing, but I have since revised that opinion in the negative direction. So the question is, why show up armed with sticks and shields if you’re not going to be allowed to use them without getting a criminal record?  Why give unsympathetic news media the opportunity to tar you dishonestly to millions of viewers across the country?  There are other means by which antifa and BLM can be countered (more on this below).

However, if alt-Righters are bound and determined to continue to hold rallies, then they need to make some changes to how they operate.

First, your organisation needs to be decentralised.  When you’re the 4GW non-state actor in a conflict, it is not in your interest to give the hegemonic state enemy (in this case antifas, BLM, academia, the news media, and in many instances, the actual state) one or a few figureheads against which to strike.  Stop organising these very-publicly advertised rallies to be headlined by a few “big names” like Richard Spencer.  Instead, develop a heterarchic organisation based around small, local groups of trusted men (like, say, a männerbund).  Each group should have a leader who coordinates with other group leaders.  Be a distributed network rather than relying on a small number of centralised nodes.

Next, your organisation needs to maintain tight control on attendance and the activities of those attending.  Grow the organisation by vetting and integrating trusted individuals, not by throwing the gates open to large numbers of people who just “show up” for rallies.  Having a mentally unstable individual like James Fields just show up, be handed equipment with your group’s logo on it, and then turn around and run somebody over, giving the Left a massive photo-op, was a completely unforced error.  Additionally, this may also help you to avoid infiltration by law enforcement agencies, who will try to encourage violence and other lawbreaking.

Third, you need to plan what you’re going to do, and have contingencies in place, before you ever step into your cars to drive to the intended location.  This planning needs to go beyond the “show up here, walk here” level.  Group leaders need to have the layout of the entire area to be invested before they ever go in.  If the police show up “here” and try to bulldoze you into the arms of waiting antifa, then an escape route is “there.”  The area also needs to be “prepped” – teams of undercover spotters should be in place the day before to mark signs of antifa or other Left activity.  Find out where the ones with cars are parking and get license numbers and other info.  Perhaps even be on hand to photograph them before they “mask up.”  These spotters can double as “outrunners” immediately prior to and during the event.  Use unobtrusive, easily hidden two-way radios (or earbud-based systems like Spy Ear, if you can afford them) to keep in contact with those inside the action, warning of antifa and police movements.  As a 4GW actor at a force disadvantage, you can never have too much current information.

Speaking of information, you must, must, MUST control the flow of information into, out of, and about your rally.  We already know that all mainstream media outlets will be hostile to you and are going to present a distorted, one-sided view of the event.  It is imperative to have your own sources of information production and dissemination ready.  Do everything you can to counter the propaganda prior to your rally.  During the rally, be sure that you have multiple, disparately-placed sources recording the event and (this is important) streaming all photos and pictures to a secure server offsite, since antifas want to take away phones that could be used as cameras to record their activities.  Even better, use “spy” cameras which can be hidden on your person and record events without having to hold up a video camera or smartphone.  Have some of the spotters mentioned above embed near MSM journalists and try to blend in, thus allowing you to record events from the same angles as the media themselves.  The more of this information, the better.  Be creative.

Now, to move on to some other areas.

If you want to be successful in opposing the Left and advancing the alt-Right agenda, then you must be willing to operate within a realpolitik framework.  And rule #1 for realpolitik is this – you deal with the situation you’re in as it is, not as you’d like for it to be.  Relatedly, you need to understand the difference between social media and the real world.  The things you might do or say and think are funny on Twitter are often times not things you want to do or say in front of MSM television cameras.  We need to be ruthlessly pragmatic here.

This brings up an important point, which is that optics are everything.  I know a lot of folks in the alt-Right don’t like the term “optics” and think it is “compromise,” or even “cucking.”  However, to paraphrase James Carville, there’s a term for people who don’t care about optics, which is “loser.”  Frankly, people who aren’t serious about optics aren’t serious about winning.  Optics determines what millions of people – the people you’re hoping to sway if you’re smart and serious – will see, regardless of whatever the MSM and leftie outlets might say.  What do I mean?  I mean stop waving Nazi flags around and wearing t-shirts with quotes from Adolf Hitler and doing Nazi salutes.  Even if you mean it entirely ironically or non-seriously, nobody watching TV at home knows that.  If you’re actually a genuine National Socialist, well, understand that you are NOT, under any conceivable circumstances, ever going to rehabilitate the image of Nazism in the United States or other Anglospheric countries.  It will not happen.  You can cry about it, call people “cucks” for pointing out the obvious, or whatever else.  But people that we beat in a war that they declared on us first are not going to garner any sympathy outside your own circle.  Very, very few people whose Grandpa Bob fought the Nazis on Omaha Beach are going to side with you or want to be associated with any movement that even has a whiff of you around.  That is reality.

We know the radical Left is going to call us “Nazis,” regardless that it (most of the time) is not true.  They call everyone Nazis.  They call mainstream Republicans Nazis.  They call the NRA and gun owners Nazis.  They call all white people Nazis.  What’s not important is trying to virtue signal your way out of being called this by actually punching right.  What is important is making your case, while demonstrating via your optics that the accusation isn’t true.  Let folks see that it’s not “Nazi” to oppose white genocide and stand for the rights of whites, but that it’s merely what any right thinking, reasonable person would do.  Giving people the impression that you actually are a Nazi negates this entirely.

This illustrates two somewhat overlapping principles of 4GW, which are to maintain the moral high ground and to not harm the “civilian” population whose support you need and from whom you should be trying to draw resources.  In the United States and other Western nations today, if people perceive you to be an actual Nazi, you will not have the moral high ground.  If, on the other hand, they perceive that you are being falsely and unfairly accused of such by obvious liars, then you will have the moral high ground.

Hence, the next point is this – whether you like it or not, if you intend to get anywhere, you need the normies.  So don’t scare them.  There’s a reason they’re called “normies,” and this is because they are the norm.  They’re the mainstream.  Where they are at represents where the Overton Window is presently at.  And you have to be able to move the Overton Window before you can open it in your own house.

Hence, as much as it might pain some folks to do, the alt-Right – if it is to actually sway large numbers of people, which is still important in our technically-though-not-really democratic system – must seek out areas of common ground with the broader Right – the alt-Lite, the free speech libertarians, the paleos, and so forth.  Identify areas of commonality such as opposition to antifa/BLM violence, opposition to one-sided application of laws, opposition to leftist attacks on free speech, etc.  Find things that normiecons will care about and focus on those things when dealing with normiecons.  Most normie conservatives won’t care that a white nationalist got de-platformed during a press conference.  They will, on the other hand, care that antifas are burning US flags and beating up cops in Seattle.  Meet the alt-Lite where they’re at and use the Cernoviches and Posobiecs for the things they’re good for.  Instead of isolating ourselves, isolate the neo-Cons and the GOP cucks instead.

“But,” you might be saying, “I don’t like normiecons because they’re dumb and easily led herd animals!”

True.  They are.  But they can be woke with the right kind of red-pilling.  It took me a few years, but I transited from normiedom to NRx, and there are many others out there who can potentially make the jump to genuinely alternative Right circles as well.

The trick with most of the FReeper-style normiecons will be to reach them the right way.  We’ve already established that most normiecons are easily led.  So lead them.  Put the rope around their harness and draw them, step by step, out of the corral and into the real world.  One good way to do this is to understand the distinction between dialectic (argument) and rhetoric (appeal to emotion), extensively discussed by Vox Day (example here).  While normies may not be swayed by intellectual arguments presented in forums such as Social Matter (which are generally reserved for higher-level woke individuals), they may well be swayed by intellectual arguments disguised as emotional appeals which present dialectical facts and truths in a rhetorical way (which is why good memes are so effective).  Hence, what they “feel” in their heart will match what they “know” in their head and “see” with their eyes.  I cannot emphasise enough the importance of combining these two facets every time you deal with normies in any arena, whether online or in real life.

Further, activities of the alt-Right designed to counter antifa/BLM more robustly than just through words on an internet forum must be geared towards gaining and keeping the moral high ground. Say you want to get back at the radical Left for pulling down Confederate statues by knocking over one of theirs.  Quick: make a decision – do you knock over a statue of Martin Luther King Jr. in Montgomery or a statue of Lenin in Seattle?  The right answer is Lenin in Seattle.  Even though they may do so wrongly, most normiecons still lionise King and think he was “a force for good.”  On the other hand, they all hate Lenin.  So if you knock over Lenin’s statue, not only did you do something many normiecons wish would happen anywise, but the Left doubly condemns themselves through their subsequent efforts to defend the statue and to criticise its toppling.  The optics on that will be radical Left fruitcakes defending an anti-American Communist who, directly or indirectly, murdered millions.  The wokeness would move from just a relative few folks on the alt-Right to millions of normiecons.

On the other hand, if you topple the statue of MLK, you just handed the Left and the MSM the opportunity to saturate the airwaves for weeks with racist, white supremacist destruction of the statue of an “America hero of the civil rights movement.”  That would be stupid.  Don’t do stuff like that.

In closing, it ought to be obvious that the sclerotic, predictable strategies currently employed by the alt-Right are not working anymore.  The Left has obviously adapted to them, and failing to anticipate this and to understand the ground they were on led to the shellacking the UTR ralliers received last Saturday.  The key is to develop more decentralised, more agile methodologies drawn from the principles of 4GW.  Knowing these principles, however, is only half the battle.  The other half is applying them intelligently in a way that maintains and keeps the leftist enemy always reacting while never able to act independently.  How individuals and small groups do this is, of course, up to them.  A final concept which is often applied by Lind when talking about 4GW is the use of auftragstaktik, roughly “mission orders.”  This principle essentially amounts to a unit being given an order to achieve a goal, while being left with the flexibility to determine the means of going about doing so.  This principle avoids the rigidity of top-down control that can hinder and even paralyse efforts to obtain the desired end.  In other words, alt-Righters who want to fight the Left can do better than to simply repeat what’s already been done.  Use 4GW principles, apply auktragstaktik, and be innovative.


21 thoughts on “Charlottesville Was a Massive 4GW Failure

  1. Excellent.


    1) Fight the battles you can win. Keeping up confederate monuments in liberal cities is a lost cause. Let em go. Its bad hill to die on. A token rally at best. Instead save your energies for the coming time when they start purging your founding fathers.

    2) Take the high ground. Our cadres should focus on blending in with normies at normal rightwing rallies, supporting them and defending them from aggression. Dress well, look good, but blend in or cloak yourselves in humour.

    3) Work on a local level. Local politics, schoolboards, churches, clubs. Stay cloaked. Win the victories you can, but accept your range action is constrained. Any and all action rightwards is a victory. Without a local base, a national movement is impossible.

    4) Emphasize the positive. Make your rallies in support of something people can get behind.

    5) Build alliances. You cant do it alone. And this means building alliances with non-whites who sympathise with right wing viewpoints.

    6) be aspirational. Look good. talk good. make sure people know that you are doing will actually improve their lives.

    7) Photogenic flashmob rallies, pranksterism and dispruption operatiosn designed for consumption on social should be the modis operandi for now.

    8) And arent the majority and the authorities would prefer if you died. Plan accordingly.

    The Right took a huge blow in Charlotte. It blew away all the momentum we have built since Berkeley, and then some. This will be our long march, and we must reflect and rebuild.

    Our one great ally is the left itself. It will doubledown on the antiwhite, the antimale and black entitlement. The gains they make in the institutions from this will be more than balanced by them further alienating whites.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’ve essentially reproduced most of the same points that the folks at MPC raised in response to this fiasco, of which I am in agreement with.

    Problem is, I suspect all this advice will fall on dead ears. Many of the hardline alt-right publications are adopting positions that are a combination of self-congratulation for raising the profile of THE MOOVMUNT, and of indignation at the completely predictable mistreatment at the hands of the civil authorities. Both of these will be treated as excuses not to improve, but to keep on doing the same, because the normies are all a bunch of sheeple and Trump is a cuck who has sold us out to (((them))), or whatever.

    All in all, it appears that the same mistakes are being made as in White Nationalism 1.0, which to me indicates a pattern that identitarian movements attract pathological individuals.

    Focusing on issues that let one build bridges with the “normiecons” as you call them seems key. Berkeley had brawling and funny outfits (though, importantly, not NS memorabilia) but the optics were still different b/c the narrative of “Supporting free speech makes you a Nazi” looks patently absurd to most observers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. As a gaggle of conservatives, everyone at MPC is retarded and wrong about nearly everything. The event can only be judged by the extent to which it furthered polarization and normalized violence, which is the goal. In the end it was a success because of this. The key strategy for us is to provoke the left into attacking normies, thereby putting them on the defense and driving them to our side as the only option. Conservatives (who are intrinsically effeminate) don’t understand these sorts of strategies because they only think along the lines of dialogue and convincing rather than forcing circumstances.


      1. Juvenile keyboard warriorism like Dart’s is why the Alt Right is not effective offline. He believes – or pretends to believe – that the gaggle of internet trolls can force the left’s hand, the left will then attack “normie conservatives” and then normie conservatives will have no place to go but … what? Follow Andrew Anglin’s Army?

        It’s the kind of “strategy” one creates when playing video games, or trying to “infiltrate” an online message board. You’ll notice too his castigates conservatives as “feminine” which is of course just a way of calling them fags, or girly-men. This from the culture that is obsessed with Japanese cartoon porn and don’t have wives or children.

        But the smart people – and the people who have lives in the real world – are afraid to “counter-signal” the trolls because they think there is some great mass of internet warriors that they can organize.

        NRx already tried that with the GamerGate thing, and found that the people on GamerGate were “the real Social Justice Warriors” while the SJWs were the “real Nazis.” So you’ll find that these internet trolls are literally – and we all know this – just teenage boys sitting around in their mom’s basement fantasizing about a war because they played a video game.

        For them, victory is getting Oprah Winfrey to say one of their memes – “9,000 penises” – on TV.

        Yet the adults and cooler heads continue to coddle these teenage boys instead of – I don’t know, drafting their lazy asses into the boy scouts or a church youth group/vounteer labor crew where they belong.

        All the fancy NRx stuff is just the “political” equivalent to porn for these boys and you’re just facilitating a form of masturbation for them.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Dart – I don’t think you understand the point to 4GW. The object is to win the support of the population at large so you develop relationships with patrons and improve your supply/resource position. Encouraging the enemy to start harming civilians won’t do this, *especially* if it gets out that this is purposefully your strategy.


    2. Hi NTSS,

      Yes, I suspect you’re right. Ultimately, explicitly racially-oriented identitarian movements attract individuals who reject Christianity, and thus have no real rudder with which to direct their movement. Christian-based movements such as Kinism seem quite a bit more grounded, but have only recently gotten really serious about doing anything more than fellowship within their own circles.

      Ultimately, reaching out to normies is simply a recognition that there is a level on which *social* legitimacy derives from the populous (though not, obviously, specific legitimacy to govern, etc.). In other words, if you antagonise 90% of the population, your movement is going nowhere.

      Thanks for the comments!


  3. I will abide by your request and not read the balance of your article until I’ve had time to read Lind. But q. – would you acknowledge different standards for “failure” for bread-and-butter operations vs. for reconnaissance in force?

    Because it is possible to get confused when analyzing strategic choices if you leave out the *goal* you are pursuing. You can observe that your tactics were terrible, that you were massively outnumbered, that your manpower is poorly disciplined and easily demoralized (whatever); and then you might say, “Okay, *we failed*, this didn’t work, so don’t ever do this again, this was a bad choice, it was a mistake.”

    But was it? What was the choice you were making? The simplest way to figure out whether your tactics are good or bad is to intervene in a Spain and see if they work in practice. If the tactics are great, yay, you win, Viva Franco; but if you *lose*, that doesn’t make the intervention a mistake. Rather, that’s the case in which a proof-of-concept is *most* helpful. The whole point of making sure your tactics are battle-tested is to gather information about which ones are shitty, *so that you can drop them*.

    Ditto for other kinds of nerve-wracking discovery. Wow, we’re outnumbered, we’ve got to withdraw; wow, they’ve got way more air cover, this is a death trap; holy shit, where did they find these clowns; what you’ve discovered is “we failed” or “we’re going to lose this engagement”, but that’s only a problem *if* you already have perfect information about the entire conflict. If you’re fighting in the dark, an critical part of *every* encounter is what you learn about the enemy’s capabilities and plans, and a critical fraction of total encounters will be *primarily* about information… which I tend to assume is more important in nºGW, rather than less.

    Since I am not going to engage in the main debate until I look at Lind, this obviously doesn’t speak to *your* interpretation in particular… but it’s a systematic problem I’ve noticed in how people react to trivial failures (and especially to strings of trivial failures).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ideally, these sorts of contingencies would have been planned out. Spencer et al. shouldn’t need to be Bill Lind to figure this out.

      Even if UTR had “won” in Charlottesville, I’d still criticise their overall tactics as being poor attempts at 4GW. Perhaps the tenor of the article would have been “you got real lucky this time, don’t expect it to happen again.” The torch rally the night before – great optics, and it had the lefties running scared. Refusing to do quality control and suppress Nazi flag wavers (whether they were Feds or not is irrelevant)? Not a good idea, belies a failure on their part to think outside of the bubble of their own ideological circle.

      Thanks for the comments QL!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. The following passages are particularly perceptive:

    “We know the radical Left is going to call us “Nazis,” regardless that it (most of the time) is not true. They call everyone Nazis. They call mainstream Republicans Nazis. They call the NRA and gun owners Nazis. They call all white people Nazis. What’s not important is trying to virtue signal your way out of being called this by actually punching right. What is important is making your case, while demonstrating via your optics that the accusation isn’t true. Let folks see that it’s not “Nazi” to oppose white genocide and stand for the rights of whites, but that it’s merely what any right thinking, reasonable person would do. Giving people the impression that you actually are a Nazi negates this entirely.

    This illustrates two somewhat overlapping principles of 4GW, which are to maintain the moral high ground and to not harm the “civilian” population whose support you need and from whom you should be trying to draw resources. In the United States and other Western nations today, if people perceive you to be an actual Nazi, you will not have the moral high ground. If, on the other hand, they perceive that you are being falsely and unfairly accused of such by obvious liars, then you will have the moral high ground.”

    From any sober point of view “Nazi” is not a word to just toss around even at people who richly deserve any and every insult they get. Nazism, like Communism, is a real historical, political ideology, with a specific content and specific criteria for who is one. It is National Socialism,
    the philosophy of the National Socialist German Workers Party.
    It is important to be precise about this, for the simple reason that attacking the alt right for being “Nazis,” will backfire massively on the radical Left if the alt right can prove they’re not.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. During the Vietnam war, the Rand Corp. did a study on the effectiveness of the Vietmin (aka Vietcong) squads. These were 5 man groups that chose their leader, and he organized the tactics for their actions. After each was carried out, they had a criticism session. If it was successful by group consensus, the leader stayed in place. If the action was determined to be a failure up to a certain point, the group would chose a new leader and carry on. This is the opposite of the way American military structures are organized, where leaders are imposed by some higher authority. Just look at the latest two ship collisions if you want to see examples of failure.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. True – but flexibility seems to be an inherent weakness in state-organised armies, which is why they do so poorly against 4GW-utilising guerrilla groups. The US army seems to be the French Army per-1939 – planning for the last war, and refusing to listen to the guys telling them they need to be more flexible and consider some new tactics.

      Thanks for the comment BZ!


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