Families at a beautiful national park in Victoria are left horrified by group of ‘Neo-Nazi skinheads’ singing Waltzing Matilda, performing Nazi salutes and getting drunk while shouting ‘white power’
- Hikers came across a group of 30 extremists wearing white supremacists logos
- They started terrorising a small town, and one said ‘we are the Ku Klux Klan’
- A local cyclist said he was greeted by a group member with the Nazi salute
Families have been left horrified after a group of far-right activists descended on a small town, performing the Nazi salute and screaming ‘white power’.
Nate Hart was hiking in the Grampians National Park in western Victoria with a friend on Saturday when he passed about 30 young men gathered in a cave singing ‘Waltzing Matilda’.
The avid hiker thought the behaviour was strange, but didn’t see it as too out of place because it was the weekend before Australia Day.
It wasn’t until he saw a younger member ‘proudly throw up the Sieg Heil’ that he realised the group was more than singing patriots.
Pictured: A group of white supremacists at the Grampians National Park, performing the Seig Heil
Upon closer inspection, Mr Hart realised most of the men were wearing black shirts with the Celtic Cross – a symbol commonly used by white supremacists.
As he walked away, the men ‘aggressively yelled ‘power of the white man!’,’ Mr Hart wrote on Facebook.
‘It was clear we were in the presence of a group of actual fascists, indeed Nazis, out for a training camp and bonding exercise,’ he said.
‘Young blokes coming together over their shared hatred of others.’
Other hikers and locals in the nearby town of Halls Gap saw the same group marching through the town on Sunday and Monday, The Age reported.
They gathered around a barbecue area – some shirtless and showing Nazi tattoos – and drank coffee outside a cafe run by a local Indian family.
‘They looked like Nazis from a Hitler movie,’ a cafe owner said. ‘And they were.’
One resident told the publication a group member said, ‘we are the Ku Klux Klan’.
Someone else heard the group drunkenly chanting racist slogans while camping illegally at Lake Bellfield – an idyllic spot with panoramic views of the national park.
A local known only as James said he was greeted with the Nazi salute as he rode through Halls Gap on his mountain bike.
‘There were 40 white males, many with skinheads, some chanting ‘white power’. That is intimidating for anyone, let alone the young Asian families sharing the barbecue space,’ he said.
He was one of many residents who called the police, who asked him to take photos of the group.
When James started using his bike helmet camera to document the scene, he caught the attention of two ‘big burly guys’.
Pictured: A man wearing a black t-shirt with a Celtic logo, symbolising white supremacy
Terrified, the cyclist was forced to tell them he was just a tourist who was not filming them.
Another local was afraid the group would confront Indigenous children and teenagers in the town.
Six officers from nearby Stawell confronted the group on Monday.
The following day, they collected CCTV footage from stores in Halls Gap.
Victoria Police would not comment specifically on the activity in Halls Gap, but told Daily Mail Australia it monitors the behaviour of far-right groups closely.
‘Victoria Police works closely with its state and Federal partners and our Joint Counter Terrorist Team has undertaken a number of investigations covering extremism,’ a spokeswoman said.
‘We encourage anyone who has been a victim of a prejudice-related crime to reach out to police for assistance. Every Victorian has the right to feel safe and secure in the community and in pursuing their values, beliefs and interests.’
On Wednesday, federal treasurer Josh Frydenberg – who is Jewish – said far-right groups that attended Invasion Day rallies was ‘frightening for us all’.