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Fact check: Flyer does not show an Antifa call for riots after Election Day 2020

In days leading up to the 2020 U.S. general election, a fabricated flyer that appears to encourage members of the anti-fascist protest movement known as Antifa to riot on November 4, and pose as Trump supporters, is recirculating on social media. While the flyer traces back to 2017 and has been deemed a hoax before, users sharing it recently appear to believe it is an authentic call to action after Election Day.

Reuters Fact Check. REUTERS

Recent Facebook posts with the flyer are visible  hereherehere ,  here  and  here  . 

A TikTok video with over 61,000 reproductions posted on Nov 1  here  appears to give a warning about the flyer. The description of the video reads: “Be Prepared. Things are going to get bad #patriots #antifaterrorist #trump2020 #mediamanipulation #hatred #chaos #terrorism #scary” . 

The text on the flyer in question reads: “ANTIFA COMRADES! On Nov. 4 don’t forget to disguise yourselves as patriots/Trump supporters: wear MAGA hats, USA flags, 3%ER insignias, a convincing police uniform is even better! This way police and patriots responding to us won’t know their enemies are, and onlookers and the media will think there are Trump supporters rioting so it’s harder to turn popular opinion against us!”

The term “3%ER insignias is a reference to Three Percenters, here  .

The picture on the flyer is an altered version of urban artist Banksy’s Love Is In The Air ( here ), in which the bouquet of flowers is replaced by what appears to be a Molotov cocktail ( here ) .    

A similar illustration was used in another fake flyer debunked by Reuters showing a job listing to become a “professional anarchist”   here  .   

TRACING THE FLYER

According to a CrowdTangle search, the same image has been circulating on public Facebook groups and pages at least since Oct. 27, 2017 ( herehere ). Posts from 2019 are visible  here  and  here  . 

The flyer originated in 2017, when online rumors warned about an alleged “civil war” and that “far-left radicals” would gather in the streets on Nov. 4, 2017. This false claim was reported and debunked by several media outlets ( here ,  herehere ) . 

Some recent iterations feature the screenshot of a post by user Katy Krasnow in a Facebook group named “Hickman County Antifa” ( hereherehere ). According to an article published on Sept. 4, Krasnow told Snopes  here  that the post was meant to be a joke: “ I deleted soon after it got shared because it made a lot of people freak out more than I expected, nobody in the group was really actually connected, we were just sharing dumb antifa memes,” she said.  

Other fact checkers have also debunked the resurgence of this flyer in 2020   here  and  here  . Law Enforcement Today also called it a hoax ( here ) .  

Antifa, short for “anti-fascist,” is an amorphous movement whose adherents oppose people or groups they consider authoritarian or racist, often using aggressive tactics, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which monitors extremists (  here  ) . Horizontal in nature and largely lacking official organization, it is unclear how Antifa is funded, if at all (  here  ) .  

Reuters has debunked other claims about the movement  here  ,  here  ,  here  . 

VERDICT

False. This flyer is not a call to action after 2020 Election Day. It has been circulating since 2017, when it was linked to unfounded rumors of Antifa violence.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our work to fact-check social media posts  here  . 

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