The suspect in the New Zealand mass shooting is a self-styled fascist and racist who calls himself an “ordinary white man” prepared to die in the attacks.
The suspect, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, posted a video on social media live-streaming his actions as he approached his targets and carried out his attacks.
In it, the blond-haired man, dressed in tactical gear, talks to the camera. Images uploaded to Twitter show the arsenal of weapons apparently used in the attack.
Scrawled on those weapons in white pen are the dates of historic Christian battles and the men who fought in them, names of well-known far right extremists and phrases, including “here’s your migration compact!” – an apparent reference to the Global Compact for Migration, an agreement for safe and orderly migration.
Neo-Nazi symbols are attached to an armoured vest.
Tarrant also posted online a 74-page manifesto called The Great Replacement. Sky News has chosen not to publish it.
In it he says, among other things:
:: He is not part of any political groups or movements
:: He was prepared to die during his attack
:: He spent three months planning this attack, but had wanted to do it for two years
:: He was radicalised after reading about terror attacks in Europe
:: Although he is born in Australia, he sees himself as European and highlights his British and Irish heritage
:: He wants America to return to racial segregation
:: He compares himself to Nelson Mandela and says he expects the Nobel Peace prize.
Any quotes from the manifesto below retain the spelling and grammar of the original text.
The three-section, almost 17,000-word document opens with Dylan Thomas poem Do Not Go Gentle Into The Good Night – a poem written for Thomas’ father, begging him not to die.
Tarrant then goes on to write about how he believes a white genocide is happening and cites terror attacks in Europe as the cause of his radicalisation.
He says he made the decision to attack by himself, describing his actions as “anti-ethnic replacement” and “anti-cultural replacement”.
There is a 17-page section where he interviews himself and talks about who he is and what his beliefs are, including the statement: “I am a racist.”
At one point, he makes clear he is addressing his “people/supporters”, all the while professing to be humble.
He describes himself as “just a ordinary White man, 28 years. Born in Australia to a working class,low income family”.
Tarrant claims his ancestors are Scottish, Irish and English and says he had a “regular childhood”.
On his political beliefs, he says he is pro-Brexit and admits to being a fascist, saying he feels an affinity with Oswald Mosley, the leader of the British Union of Fascists who died in 1980.
He denies being a xenophobe – citing his extensive holidays abroad – Islamophobe, homophobe or conservative. He rejects the label of Nazi, saying “actual Nazis do not exist” and adds that he doesn’t believe he is a neo-Nazi as “the definition is fuzzy”.
He says he’s not an antisemite, but adds that “a jew living in israel is no enemy of mine” – possibly implying that a Jewish person who does not live in Israel would be.
He says he supports Donald Trump “as a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose” but disagrees with the US president’s policies and leadership style.
He makes claims of “brief contact” with far-right terrorist and Norway mass-killer Anders Breivik, and says he supports other violent far-right men.
A Turkish official told Sky News he is also believed to have spent time in Turkey.
They said: “Our initial assessment is that the perpetrator of today’s heinous terror attack in Christchurch, New Zealand travelled to Turkey multiple times and spent an extended period of time in the country.
“We believe that the suspect may have travelled to third countries in Europe, Asia and Africa.
“We are currently investigating the suspect’s movements and contacts within the country.”
One of his aims, he said, was to “create conflict” in the US debate over gun ownership and lead to civil war in America – ultimately causing racial separation and stopping Americans from fighting wars alongside Muslims.
The country he feels he has the “closest political and social values” to is China.
When it comes to religion, he says that whether he is a Christian “is complicated”.
At one point, he asks himself “if you survived, did you intend to go to trial?” (Answer: yes, and to plead not guilty… “I am a lawful, uniformed combatant”).
He writes that he does not expect to be released from prison, but adds: “I also expect an eventual Nobel Peace prize”.
He repeatedly says his attack is revenge for what he perceives as threats to Europeans.
Throughout the manifesto he makes “joking” references to all manner of topics, often tropes of far-right extremists, such as the ethnic cleansing of Muslims in Bosnia or being radicalised by playing children’s game Sypro. He talks about learning to do the dance move “the floss” over the dead as featured in the survival video game Fortnite.
He also repeats a response seen on online forums, including 4Chan and Reddit, where a poster fabricates an elaborate and supposedly intimidating backstory, writing: “I’ll have you know I graduated top of my class in the Navy Seals, and I’ve been involved in numerous secret raids on Al-Quaeda, and I have over 300 confirmed kills.”
In this final section, he makes a number of threats on named European politicians and unnamed non-white business leaders.
He ends his paper with a page of pictures pulled from the internet of smiling white women and children, men sitting among nature and with armed soldiers. On top of the images are two neo-Nazi symbols.