On Wednesday, a judge ruled that the publisher of the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer must pay American Muslim comedian Dean Obeidallah $4.1 million for falsely portraying him as a terrorist.
In 2017, Obeidallah, a Daily Beast contributor, wrote an article for the site questioning President Trump’s response to white supremacist violence.
The following day, Daily Stormer founder Andrew Anglin smeared Obeidallah in a post casting him as the “mastermind” behind the Manchester Arena bombing that killed 22 people.
“He fabricated tweets that made it look like I was tweeting — that I was the mastermind of the bombing, I was cheering for it and I did it the name of Allah in my faith as a Muslim,” Obeidallah told NPR’s Michel Martin. “They looked exactly real with retweets and likes and then [he] directed his readership at the The Daily Stormer to ‘confront’ me was the exact term.”
Commenters responded with graphic death threats against Obeidallah. “They clearly thought I was a terrorist,” he said.
The Daily Stormer site, named after the Nazi propaganda newspaper Der Stürmer, spreads messages of anti-Semitism and white nationalism, including “the coming race war,” and is known to stoke violence from its audience.