When hacking activist group Anonymous began Operation Blitzkrieg - a mission to take down the white supremacist American Third Party - they were surprised by what they found: a direct connection with GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul.
A document dump currently made public on a site by Anonymous includes private forum messages, emails, and organizational notes by the neo-Nazi A3P. While sifting through this information, the hacktivists uncovered numerous links to Paul. The Republican presidential hopeful met with several A3P members on a regular basis, participated in conference calls with their board of directors, and utilized racists to bolster his presidential campaign.
Anonymous also hacked into the private email account of A3P webmaster Jamie Kelso - a former Scientologist and owner of several German Nazi forums. They found coordinated meetings between Kelso and Paul. One was in the form of a January 2011 email from Kelso to a fellow A3P member, in which Kelso stated, "I'm going to the Conservative Political Action Conference with Bill Johnson. Bill and I will be meeting with Ron and Rand Paul. I have a teleconference call with [them] tonight. Much more, later. Things are starting to happen, thanks to folks like you."
William Johnson, who Kelso mentioned, is a corporate lawyer and chairman of A3P. In 1985, he proposed a constitutional amendment that would revoke the U.S. citizenship of every non-white American.
"According to these messages, Ron Paul has regularly met with many A3P members, even engaging in conference calls with their board of directors," Anonymous declared in a statement. "Ron Paul's racist politics and affiliations are already well-known, being viciously anti-immigrant, anti-abortion, and against gay marriage - not to mention having authored the racist 'Ron Paul Papers,' and receiving financial support from other white power groups."
Though accusation of racist and Nazi ties have come Paul's way over the years, Paul has gone the predictable route in response, by issuing denials and feigning ignorance to any purported neo-Nazi connections.
And another of Paul's unpleasant alliances has come into the public spotlight - according to a report by the Washington Post, Paul has formed a strategic alliance with fellow GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney.
Indeed, while the current GOP candidates are constantly throwing verbal attacks at one another, Paul and Romney haven't really said a bad thing about each other. That's because they've been friends since 2008. But it's more than that.
This alliance is by and large a win-win scenario for either candidate: If Paul's bid for the presidency fails, Romney's presidency would allow for Paul to still have some degree of authoritative control - the ability to play a role in shaping policy, rather than mere opinion. For Romney's part, this would be a chance to gain extra support from the pro-Paul subgroups of the Republican Party, as well as many of Paul's supporters who would approve of this alliance. Essentially, accomodating Paul could unify Republican voters against President Obama.
What Paul will say in response to Anonymous' revelatory discovery about his racist connections is anyone's guess.
Photo: Robert F. Bukaty/AP Photos