Tree of Liberty — the website behind the organization and promotion of the “Refused to be Silent” event, has been offline for the past several hours. A search of the Internet WhoIS internet directory indicates that the website may no longer be affiliated with a hosting provider. The group’s Twitter account has been suspended. The far-right extremist group made local waves when flyers began circulating on social media advertising an event location as the Dimond Center —specifically noting 800 E. Dimond Blvd. in Anchorage.
According to various local news reports on the controversy, Tree of Liberty indicated that listing the Dimond Center as the location for the event was a “mistake” and that the intended venue for the event was Juneau. In an interview with the Anchorage Daily News, the general manager of the Dimond Center said he believed the listing was not a mistake. He told ADN that he thought organizers, who he had not been in contact with, assumed many protesters would be unable to fly to Juneau, with no roads to Alaska’s capital city and that the mall’s large parking lot was also a factor in organizer’s decision making.
Some Anchorage residents have wondered how such a “mistake” could be made by event organizers and have questioned whether the representative for the far-right group had been candid in their conversations with the media. The address listed for the location of the Phoenix, Arizona event is Biltmore Mall, according to the group’s event material.
Other U.S. cities have their own concerns about the event. Vermont authorities say flyers are being circulated about the armed rally on Sunday, Jan. 17, three days ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
North Carolina has also seen flyers for the event spread, alarming authorities. The Governor of Michigan has been asked to activate the National Guard in anticipation of armed demonstrations that are expected to take place in the coming days at the state Capitol.
The Dimond Center Mall will be closed January 17th, 2021 out of an abundance of caution.
The website for the Tree of Liberty — the group behind the “Refuse to be Silenced event,” now redirects to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” Youtube Video. The website, which was created on 7/24/2020, offered people three different ways to donate to the website — Crypto, CashApp and Paypal in addition to selling “Boogaloo” merchandise. The website published literature about their political beliefs as well as videos and podcasts related to far-right viewpoints.