The Westboro Baptist Church — known for its hate speech — is vowing to picket the funerals of the Charleston, South Carolina, shooting victims, but the hacker group, Anonymous, threatened to counter attempts to disrupt the services.
As if the tragedy of last week’s Charleston shooting wasn’t enough for the families of the nine victims slain by self-confessed killer Dylan Roof, the notorious Westboro Baptist Church threatens to show up and picket the funerals. However, they will have to contend with the hacking activist group, Anonymous, which is vowing to surround them and target them online if they go ahead with their plans.
Both groups are controversial ones: the Westboro Baptist Church for unfeelingly disrupting funerals of fallen military personnel, as families bury their loved ones, among other things, and Anonymous, for hacking into corporate websites to make their anti-government stance, are not popular.
The Westoboro Baptist Church posted a disgusting tweet criticizing the nine dead victims of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church shooting, which garnered almost no reaction on Twitter. Anonymous said they will build a “human wall barrier” if the activists disrupt the funerals, PBS reports.
— Glen (@chavezglen1755) June 24, 2015
In a statement on the website established to publicize their plans against the Westboro Baptist Church, Anonymous — an anti-government activist group — said they have several angles of attack against the hate speech group.
“The WBC maintains a rather large cyber infrastructure, and we will destroy this entirely by various means. On the ground, Anonymous will deploy operatives who will initiate our standard operating procedure for dealing with funeral pickets by the Westboro Baptist Church.”
On the day of the shooting, Westboro Baptist Church activists displayed disturbing signs blaming former Secretary of State and Democratic Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton for the mass shooting.
Anonymous condemned the Westboro Baptist Church’s plans and vows to continue their offensive against it with the line “TARGET: WBC via Operation Shield: Initiating Phase III” on their Twitter bio description.
It’s an all out war between the two controversial groups, the Westboro Baptist Church and Anonymous, who will come face to face when the victims of the Charleston shooting are laid to rest. Anonymous claims to have “decimated” Westboro’s membership and cost the group “tens of thousands of dollars” in previous actions, the New York Daily News reports.
For its part, countering the planned Westboro Baptist Church promise to picket the funerals, the city of Charleston has banned any kind of protests within 300-feet of a funeral for the next 60-days, as determined by the City Council, according to the Post and Courier.
[Photos by Scott Olson, Rahman Roslan / Getty Images]