Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas addressed the primary real-life gathering of the pro-Kiev ‘NAFO’ group on Saturday, praising the trolls’ work in “the data battle” in opposition to Russia. Based by an alleged Nazi sympathizer from Poland, NAFO has cheered the deaths of Russian civilians and fundraised for accused battle criminals.
An acronym for the ‘North Atlantic Fellas Group’, ‘NAFO’ is a collective of web customers simply recognized by their use of Shiba Inu avatars and their fanatical help for the Ukrainian navy. Referring to themselves as ‘Fellas’, NAFO trolls might be discovered on social media spreading Kiev’s speaking factors, ganging as much as swarm polls and demand the censorship of pro-Moscow accounts, and soliciting donations for the Georgian Legion, a overseas mercenary group whose chief has admitted to a number of battle crimes in Ukraine.
The group held its first real-life “summit” in Vilnius on Saturday, mirroring the NATO summit starting within the Lithuanian capital on Tuesday.
Kallas, who described herself final yr as one of many “fellas,” addressed the darkened room of keyboard warriors by video hyperlink. NAFO, she mentioned, serves for instance of battle “Russian disinformation and dangerous takes with good humor, intelligence, and enthusiasm.”
“Preserve preventing the great battle,” she advised the group, concluding that “NAFO growth is non-negotiable, and Ukraine will win.”
NAFO has grown into an internet-wide phenomenon during the last yr, counting US Congressman Adam Kinzinger, Ukrainian Protection Minister Aleksey Reznikov, British Protection Minister Ben Wallace, and a number of Western analysts and spies as ‘Fellas.’ This membership roll has fueled hypothesis that the group is tied to Western intelligence businesses.
Nevertheless, some pro-Ukraine commentators have argued that the group’s on-line actions – together with their open mockery of a Russian civilian eaten by a shark in Egypt – are counterproductive to the Ukrainian trigger. Moreover, NAFO’s status was broken when it emerged final yr that its founder, a Polish Twitter consumer named Kamil Dyszewski, has a prolonged historical past of posts praising Nazi Germany, insulting Jews, and denying the Holocaust.
Kallas was not the one NATO politician to handle Saturday’s “summit.” The assembly opened with a speech from Lithuanian International Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis, and its organizers obtained a shoutout on Twitter from the Ukrainian authorities.
In keeping with NAFO’s official Twitter account, the occasion raised $3,000 for numerous Ukrainian navy and civilian organizations.
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