Amid demonstrations, former Trump advisor’s speech is closed to the media
"Nazis are not welcome here!" Anti-racism activists in Hong Kong protest against the arrival of ex-Trump aide Steve Bannon pic.twitter.com/QoajpiyQx0
— AFP news agency (@AFP) September 12, 2017
Following his tenure on the Trump campaign and at the White House, Bannon is the executive chairman of Breitbart News, the far-right website that he has called “the platform for the alt-right.” Bannon led the website before working for President Donald Trump as well.
Bannon oversaw the website when it included a section of articles titled “Black Crime” and published an article heralding white supremacists including Richard Spencer, an organizer of last month’s deadly neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. He has openly admired other racist and xenophobic works including the French anti-immigration novel The Camp of the Saints, and has denounced the left’s attention to “identity politics” focused on acknowledging the disparate struggles of minorities—while promoting a xenophobic and white nationalist worldview that has now found a comfortable home in the Republican Party.
Bannon’s extremist views are said to have influenced the nationalistic tone of Trump’s 2016 campaign and his executive order banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S.
CLSA, the state-backed financial institution that hosted the forum, announced this week that Bannon’s speech would be closed to media, reversing an earlier decision. As of Tuesday, Bannon’s name was also not included in the online schedule of events for the forum.
In addition to the protesters, journalists and critics denounced the inclusion of Bannon’s talk at the forum, and the last-minute secrecy surrounding his appearance.
Alt-Right/Nazi Steve Bannon speech leaflet at CLSA Investors Forum in Hong Kong.
Why did CLSA just provide a platform for an actual Nazi?! pic.twitter.com/Sz4GRWwu0t
— Wang Feng (@ulywang) September 7, 2017
CLSA was hinting up til last minute that press could watch live feed in media room. I'm guessing Bannon changed his mind… https://t.co/sT79i7Jlh2
— Kelvin Chan (@chanman) September 12, 2017
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