The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
A little over 22 years ago, shooting broke out on a lonely Idaho mountaintop known as Ruby Ridge. The violence left a U.S. marshal and a 14-year-old boy dead, led to the death of the boy’s mother in the 11-day standoff that followed, and became, in the end, a seminal lesson in how law enforcement should not act in such situations.
Earlier this week, Retro Report, a critically acclaimed video documentary series that is distributed by The New York Times, released a thoughtful piece re-examining the 1992 FBI siege of a cabin inhabited by white supremacist Randy Weaver and his family. In the aftermath of that siege, which helped spark the militia movement of the 1990s, Weaver and another man who was in the cabin were acquitted of the murder of Marshal William Degan, and the federal government ultimately paid the surviving Weavers $3.1 million to settle their countervailing legal claims.
The film features Mark Potok, senior fellow at the Southern Poverty Law Center and editor of its investigative magazine, Intelligence Report. “The Ruby Ridge standoff became a kind of founding myth of the radical right,” Potok says in the film. “It not only made the government look bad, it was bad. People, whatever views they had, whatever illegal activities they had [engaged in], should not be shot down by government snipers when they are not actively threatening the life of somebody.”
Over the past couple of weeks, the so-called “academic” racists of the white nationalist movement have set academics aside and instead devolved into an online battle in the style of the Hatfields and McCoys.
In the wake of several recent events, including the arrest and deportation of Richard Spencer from Hungary and the state senatorial campaign of Kentucky neo-Nazi Robert Ransdell, some of the biggest names in white nationalist circles are taking sides and taking turns publicly skewering each other on their respective websites.
White nationalist and neo-Confederate Brad Griffin (aka Hunter Wallace) compiled a list of “beefs” among white nationalists and posted them recently to his Occidental Dissent site. One commenter noted, “The easier list to compile would have been who isn’t fighting whom.” And indeed, from the length of the list Griffin posted, the commenter may be right.
The long list includes familiar and ongoing feuds, such as those between longtime white supremacist Harold Covington, and well, everyone, as well as those involving Vanguard News Network (VNN) site founder Alex Linder (also with pretty much everyone). However, there are many new and unexpected conflicts within the movement that, ironically, calls for the need for solidarity in its mission.
In particular, unexpected spats have surfaced between several well-known white nationalists including Greg Johnson of Counter-Currents and Richard Spencer of the National Policy Institute (NPI). Both are hailed as “academics” by their peers.
Andrew Anglin of the increasingly popular neo-Nazi site Daily Stormer, meanwhile, has been engaged in a war of words with Colin Liddell of the white nationalist Alternative Right, a site that was originally founded by Richard Spencer. The site was abruptly shut down by Spencer in 2013 until Liddell, who is based in the UK, took its reins.
The Johnson-Spencer conflict emerged in the wake of the near-collapse of NPI’s conference in Budapest. Johnson cancelled his plans to attend and requested a refund of registration fees from NPI when the Hungarian government threatened arrests and deportations for attendees.
Despite the fact that several of the event’s most noteworthy names, among them representatives from Jobbik, the hard-right, Hungarian nationalist party, and Aleksandr Dugin, a pro-Russian favorite of traditionalists and the European new right, had withdrawn, Spencer and others journeyed into Hungary to be met by police at the event. Spencer was rewarded with several nights in prison before being deported and banned from returning for several years.
None of this sat well with Johnson. “The final straw for me,” he commented at Occidental Dissent, “was Richard’s disastrous mishandling of the Budapest conference. When a foreign government tells you that your conference is banned and that the police will take the necessary steps to make sure it does not take place, you do not vow defiance.” He got personal in another comment when he said, “Richard is basically being dominated by Nina Nogoodnik, his Russian-Georgian wife.”
Johnson also penned a post and multiple comments at his own website, Counter-Currents, and attacked Spencer for his handling of the controversy – particularly his failure to adequately warn attendees of the risks involved with entering Hungary.
Another feud erupted about the same time over Robert Ransdell’s campaign for state Senate in Kentucky. Ransdell, a neo-Nazi, has been posting signs that state, “With Jews, We Lose.” White nationalist “comedian” RamZPaul took exception to Ransdell and openly condemned his campaign.
RamZPaul (Paul Ramsey) has other supporters in his opposition to Ransdell. One writer at white nationalist Robert Whitaker’s BUGS site snarked that Ransdell’s “borderline comatose ‘With Juice you lose’ is the latest drooling from COMIC Book Pro-Whites.”
In the same article, Whitaker attacked Stormfront, the world’s largest online white supremacist forum, calling it a vacuum for pro-white energy that is spent arguing on the internet, and said that he and his followers (known as “BUGSERS” who bombard various websites with variations of “the mantra,” a white supremacist statement that claims “anti-racism is anti-white”) are the only ones who work for the cause and have “VISIBLY destroyed anti-white memes that would be there forever if it had been left to tens of thousands of Stormfronters.”
And then neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin entered the fray of “beefs” with a massive round-up post at his Daily Stormer site, titled “Infinite DramaQuest” in which he adds extra snark by representing each feuding party as a different anime character from the series Dragon Ball Z.
To Anglin, all the battling about what’s best for the movement is ridiculous, because his approach is the best: “You cannot preserve the White race without addressing the Jews. You cannot address the Jews without addressing their hoax. You cannot address their hoax without addressing Adolf Hitler.” That statement opened yet another “beef” with Colin Liddell at Alternative Right.
“What Anglin is unequivocally saying here,” writes Lidell, “is that before you can do anything at all about preserving and protecting the White race – stopping mass immigration, say, or encouraging White women to have at least 2.1 babies – you must first get everyone to love Hitler and hate the Jews, and if you can’t accomplish these supposed preconditions then you had best forget the whole shebang, So what he is really saying is simply: ‘You cannot preserve the White race.’”
Like a tennis match, Anglin hit back, calling Lidell “Mr. Supersmartintellectualguy,” and claiming that he could turn Lidell’s arguments around on him, but “wouldn’t ever do that, because [he has] this thing in [his] back called a ‘vertebral column’ which physically prevents me from being capable of engaging in such base intellectual dishonesty.”
And not one to avoid controversy (or attention), white nationalist Matt Parrott of the Traditionalist Youth Network was willing to throw some more gas on the fire. According to Parrott, who normally shies away from comparisons to Nazism, “The flaw in Anglin’s model is that Nazism isn’t radical enough.”
Meanwhile, over in the vortex that is VNN Forum, Alex Linder is so worked up that he’s posting 1,000-word screeds at a rate that is almost unprecedented for him, even though he’s known for long diatribes. Among these are attacks on almost every major figure, including Johnson and Spencer, involved in a “beef” listed on Occidental Dissent.
“Everybody fails Greggy,” writes Linder in the #1 Infighting, Beefs, Etc. Thread” on VNN Forum. “Then piously he lifts his eyes heavenward, shakes his head nobly and sadly, and earnestly swears to soldier on and do better next time. So sodo-jesusy.”
“Spencer is simply a nebbish. I think of him as a Strom lite. Less brains, less character, even.”
Like some kind of surreal white supremacist version of a telenovela, the drama continues to unfurl. As Brad Griffin suggested at Occidental Dissent, some popcorn might be in order.
Matthias “Matt” Koehl, 79, a longtime neo-Nazi who worked alongside George Lincoln Rockwell in the American Nazi Party (ANP), has died, the neo-Nazi site New Order is reporting. Koehl, according to the brief statement, died in his sleep sometime between October 9 and 10.
Koehl’s activism began sometime in the 1950s, when he joined the National Renaissance Party (a neo-fascist group), the United White Party and the National States Rights Party (NSRP), before he eventually joined the American Nazi Party in 1960.
It was there, in the NSRP, that Koehl met George Lincoln Rockwell. The pair worked on the campaign of segregationist and anti-Semitic candidate for Alabama governor John Crommelin. In 1963, Koehl relocated to the national office in Virginia, where he worked as the party’s national secretary.
Rockwell renamed the ANP the National Socialist White People’s Party (NSWPP) prior to his assassination in 1967, at which point Koehl was the ranking officer of the group. He became the commander, a post he retained for over a decade, and he worked at “re-branding” the NSWPP by stopping the group’s negative attacks against racial minorities. Instead, he tried to focus on the “positive” aspects of National Socialism and the glories of an all-white race.
The NSWPP experienced ideological divisions in the 1970s and split, with one faction forming the National Socialist Party of America. Others followed William Pierce to form the National Alliance.
Koehl, meanwhile, continued with the NSWPP and renamed the group “New Order” in 1983, which reflected his beliefs in esoteric Nazism (Nazi mysticism) and an influence by the writings of Savitri Devi Mukherji, the pseudonym for Greek-French writer Maximiani Portas, an advocate for deep ecology, animal rights, and Nazism.
Koehl began to suggest that National Socialism was more a religious movement than a political one, and he espoused the belief that Hitler had been sent by some divine providence to save the white race from decadence and extinction caused by miscegenation.
Koehl dispersed New Order to Wisconsin and Michigan in the mid-1980s because of membership decline, trouble with the IRS and the high cost of living in Washington, D.C. The group still maintains a website and a post office box in Milwaukee.
Two members of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT) have been charged in the kidnapping and murder of another member of that violent, racist gang.
Lisa Gibby, 41, and Dalton Clayton, 21, were indicted on capital murder by terroristic threat in Grayson County, Texas, and may face the death penalty if convicted, KTEN-TV in Denison reported over the weekend.
The two are charged in the death Albert Duane Parker, also an ABT member, whose body was found on May 21 in a field east of Sherman, Texas. The indictment alleges Gibby and Clayton killed Parker by “stabbing him with a knife or sharp bladed object.” There is no mention of motive in the charging document.
“The victim was kidnapped before he was killed,” Joe Brown, Grayson County District Attorney, told the television station. “We’re working through the evidence, but we certainly know the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas is involved in this case.”
Brown said investigators are exploring several possible motives for the killing. “Significantly, we don’t have to prove motive. We don’t have to prove why it happened.”
When the murder indictment was filed on Friday, Gibby and Dalton were already jailed on drug and weapons charges. Their previous criminal history, combined with allegedly kidnapping Parker before killing him, make them candidates for the death penalty.
Before his death, Parker lived in what neighbors described as a known “drug house” in Denison that is now boarded up, KTEN reported.
“Given his lifestyle, I don’t know that it’s a surprise, but it is absolutely tragic,” Amy Timberlake, a neighbor of Parker’s, told the station.
It is the latest in a string of murders and other violent crimes attributed to the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas—labeled one of the nation’s most violent, racist gangs, operating in and outside of Texas prisons. ABT has been blamed for multiple murders, robberies, arsons and kidnappings, along with extensive narcotics trafficking and other crimes.
In late September, Nicholas Ryan Acree, 33, and Charles James Garrett Jr., 30, both of Fort Worth and both members of ABT, were charged in Mansfield, Texas, with murdering a fellow gang member, Bryan A. Childers, 39, also of Fort Worth. He has not been seen since May 29 when he was reported missing by his family.
Authorities aren’t saying if the new murder cases have any connection with a massive federal prosecution brought two years ago, resulting in guilty pleas and convictions of 73 ranking ABT members in five federal jurisdictions. In federal court in Houston, 36 ABT leaders have pleaded guilty this year.
The Traditionalist Youth Network (TYN), a white nationalist group that works to promote “white identity,” filed another amicus brief two weeks ago. This time, they’ve filed in a Maryland lawsuit in which several gun advocates and a sporting goods store are battling a 2013 state law that bans the possession or sale of assault weapons. The case is currently on appeal.
Matt Parrott of TYN wrote that the “brilliant and dedicated legal team” of the organization filed the brief in the Fourth Circuit court to support the Second Amendment because, without that, we’re all apparently lost as a result of “this government’s ongoing campaign to reduce us to disarmed, brainwashed, and godless homo economicus drones.”
This isn’t the first time the Traditionalist Youth Network has filed an amicus brief in a lawsuit. Earlier this year, the group filed one in a federal case in Michigan that dealt with marriage equality. In that brief, TYN wanted to defend the “sanctity of marriage” from “culture distorters.”
In the four-page Maryland brief, TYN claims it has “become one of the fiercest defenders of traditional values in the United States of America” and that it is “an extremely active pro-European socio-political identity movement that was founded and is controlled by well-informed young activists.” The group strongly opposes, the brief says, “any attempt by governmental actors to infringe upon the traditional right of our people to keep and bear arms.”
Toward the conclusion, the brief veers off into a rant about “Culture Distorters” who are “stretching the Constitution to invent rights that don’t exist,” like the right to have an abortion, to engage in sodomy, or view pornography. Therefore, TYN is submitting this brief because “shots are being fired in America’s Culture War and the organization has the enemy of freedom—the Culture Distorter—in its sights and wishes to shoot down unconstitutional legislation that disarms our people.”
The brief lists attorneys Kyle Bristow as lead counsel and Jason Van Dyke as co-counsel. Bristow was the attorney who filed the first TYN amicus brief in March. He has a law practice in Michigan, and rose to notoriety as a student at Michigan State University, where he led a chapter of Young Americans for Freedom. While in that role, Bristow invited prominent white nationalists to speak at the campus, and spearheaded anti-immigrant and anti-LGBT campaigns that were so virulent that the SPLC took the unusual step of naming the chapter a hate group. While in law school, Bristow published his novel White Apocalypse, which plays out white supremacist revenge fantasies against Jewish professors, Latino and American Indian activists and staffers of a group modeled on the SPLC.
In a strange twist, Bristow has also taken cases in so-called “revenge porn,” claiming that it’s a product of liberalism and that the majority of the victims—whose nude photos are posted online by vindictive exes—are white blonde women.
Van Dyke is a neo-Confederate lawyer and long-time associate of Bristow, whose website bills his firm as “the meanest lawyers in Texas” (Van Dyke is the only attorney listed at the firm). He once attended Michigan State but transferred to the University of Dallas. While still at Michigan State in 2000, he was charged with domestic assault, possession of a banned weapon, and firearm safety violations. The case was dismissed and in 2007, Van Dyke attempted to have the records sealed, but a judge ruled otherwise in 2008.
Like Bristow, Van Dyke has taken on revenge porn sites, but in July, he sued the Tor Project, which is encryption software, alleging a “conspiracy” between Tor and Pinkmeth, a revenge porn site. The lawsuit drew ridicule to Van Dyke, who didn’t appear to understand what Tor is, and then it drew the attention of 4chan and Anonymous. Van Dyke eventually dropped the lawsuit against Tor, but not before he engaged in Twitter wars with Pinkmeth in which he issued thinly veiled threats (screenshots here).
On October 6, attorneys for the appellants in the Maryland lawsuit filed a response and motion to TYN’s brief, requesting that it be opposed and that the court deny TYN’s motion. “TYN,” the response argues, “appears to be using its brief to advocate positions that are far beyond the scope of this appeal,” and “TYN’s proposed brief adds nothing relevant for the Court’s consideration.”
Seems about right.
James Sapp, the 48-year-old man accused of shooting a police officer during a traffic stop in Vancouver, Wash., on June 30, has died in what authorities are describing as a suicide in the local jail.
Sapp allegedly shot Vancouver officer Dustin Goudschall seven times after being pulled over for a traffic violation, then fled the scene, wrecked his vehicle, and then assaulted an elderly man and carjacked his vehicle before finally being caught by police and arrested. Goudschall survived his critical injuries and was able to help identify his assailant. He is currently recovering from the wounds.
On Sunday morning, deputies found Sapp in his cell attempting to commit suicide and intervened. He was rushed to an area hospital but was pronounced dead at 12:45 p.m.
Sapp had a long history of claiming membership in the Aryan Brotherhood, dating back to previous arrests for other crimes. He was also involved in a 2012 case in Clark County involving an assault on a 12-year-old Latino boy and a relative.
Sapp’s family told the Vancouver Columbian through a spokesperson that even though Sapp “had a checkered background … he loved his family and wife.”
Rev. Michael Baca, the pastor of the church Sapp’s family attends, told the Columbian that Sapp’s issues seemed to have been triggered by a head injury he suffered a few years ago. Earlier this week, Sapp reportedly expressed remorse for what he had done. ( continue to full post… )
The last time we heard from Matthew Heimbach, head of the white nationalist Traditionalist Youth Network, he was one step away from saying goodbye to racist activism. His pastor at a Christian Orthodox church in Indiana had asked him to be silent on his racist views and spend time being the contemplative steward of his own soul.
But Southern nationalism dies hard, it seems.
Last weekend, Heimbach attended the League of the South’s (LOS) national conference at its headquarters in Wetumpka, Ala. While there, he was photographed standing on the roadside, holding a sign that read, “Immigration Hurts Southern Workers: League of the South,” and holding another (this time inside) that read, “We Will Not Be Silent So You Can Be Comfortable.”
So much for silence and contemplation!
When contacted by Hatewatch on Wednesday for comment, Heimbach said he was still adhering to his “sabbatical” from racist activism, and that he was trying to focus on his faith –– a claim he has made for months since being baptized at an Orthodox Christian church. But, he promised, he is back in the League, paying dues, and convinced that the LOS message is right.
“If you look at the entire South, the South is not entirely southern now,” Heimbach told Hatewatch. “We live in a modern context and we face modern problems unique to this time. And there’s a modern solution. The solution that the League has been advocating is secession.” ( continue to full post… )
White supremacist Craig Cobb hasn’t stopped buying property in North Dakota, where last year he unsuccessfully tried to build an all-white racist enclave by quietly purchasing more than a dozen lots in the town of Leith. Hatewatch exposed the effort last August.
According to news reports, Renville County Auditor LeAnn Pollman said Cobb paid two years’ worth of property, totally $1,084, for an empty two-story house in Sherwood, population 242, about 180 miles north of Leith. The seller is Floyd Randall of Elk Grove, Calif.
While there is no indication that Cobb, who is on probation after pleading guilty to one count of felony terrorizing and five counts of misdemeanor menacing, intends to replicate his plans for Leith, there already appear to be efforts to roll up the welcome mat.
Renville County Sheriff Barry Vannatta said he was notified that Cobb was moving to Sherwood after Missouri denied Cobb’s request to move there, ostensibly to care for his ailing mother. Vannatta said he wasn’t sure of Cobb’s plans “for a little town up north in the middle of nowhere,” and he fears Cobb’s followers may be the next to move to Sherwood.
Sherwood Police Chief Ross Carter –– who is the town’s only police officer –– told The Bismarck Tribune that the house Cobb bought has been a blight for some time. Its residents have been mostly stray dogs and cats, and the last time Carter visited the house, he said it smelled overwhelmingly of dog and cat urine and feces.
North Dakota Parole and Probation spokesman Tim Tausend, who in May confirmed that Cobb was under investigation for his Internet activities on the white supremacist website WhiteNations.com, also told the paper that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had recently confiscated Cobb’s laptop computer because of complaints about his Internet activities.
A federal judge in Arizona today handed down the maximum 10-year sentence to the patriarch of a family of white supremacists who have had run-ins with the law in various states over the past three decades.
Kirby K. Kehoe, 65, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge G. Murray Snow in Phoenix after pleading guilty in February to being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. His son, Cheyne C. Kehoe, 35, was sentenced to 41 months in prison after pleading to being a felon in possession of firearms.
The father-son team struck plea bargains with federal prosecutors instead of going to trial on additional charges that were dismissed as part of the deal. Upon completion of their prison sentences, both will serve three years of supervised release.
The pair’s latest encounter with law enforcement came last October when heavily armed agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives raided what was described as an “off-the-grid compound” 140 miles north of Phoenix, near Ash Fork, Ariz.
There, agents found what they described as a commercial-grade marijuana growing operation and an arsenal: 17 firearms and 16,891 rounds of ammunition, body armor and explosive powder.
The marijuana was being grown, processed and stored in various large, metal shipping containers that had been moved onto the property and concealed with camouflage netting.
Kirby Kehoe’s court-appointed attorney argued that federal prosecutors had failed to make a connection between the firearms and the marijuana growing operation, while federal prosecutors contended the weapons were to be used to defend the illegal operation. Nonetheless, Kirby Kehoe couldn’t legally possess firearms because of his prior convictions in the Eastern District of Washington for possessing homemade hand grenades and a modified, fully automatic assault rifle.
Kirby Kehoe agreed to forfeit ownership of a long list of firearms and ammunition to the government as part of his guilty plea.
Agents seized 15 pounds of marijuana but haven’t disclosed if they learned where Kirby Kehoe was selling the drug.
Cheyne Kehoe and his brother Chevie, who were introduced to the racist religion known as Christian Identity by their parents, were involved in a shootout with police in 1997 in Ohio, captured on a dashboard camera. Both fugitives were arrested and sent to prison after a nationwide manhunt.
Chevie Kehoe, who is serving life in prison for involvement with a terrorist cell called the Aryan Republic Army, was convicted in the torture-murder of an Arkansas gun dealer, his wife and their 8-year-old girl who was smothered after being shocked with a cattle prod. Chevie Kehoe also was implicated but never charged in connection with a pipe-bombing at Spokane’s City Hall.
Federal investigators determined that firearms and other militia supplies stolen from the gun dealer were sold at various gun shows by Kirby and Chevie Kehoe.
Prosecutors in Tennessee say they will seek enhanced prison sentences for five Aryan Nations members who have been arrested on attempted murder and other charges in the severe beating of a fellow white supremacist.
The tougher sentences will be sought, prosecutors say, because the five suspects are suspected gang members who carried out the alleged crimes as part of the group’s activity.
Arrested last week were Leonard Lionel Kilgore, 36, of Knoxville, Tenn., and Jacob Eli Campbell, 33, and Michael James O’Conner, Jr., 32, both of Sevierville, Tenn.
David Lee Dozard II, 32, who currently is in a Tennessee state prison on unrelated charges, was served there with charging documents, Anderson County Sheriff Paul N. White said in a news release.
The fifth suspect and the last to be arrested, Crystal Lynnette McGuire, 37, of Powell, Tenn., was taken into custody on Wednesday following a traffic stop in Louisiana, WATE-TV in Knoxville reported.
Prosecutors took their case in the “severe beating” of a 31-year-old Briceville, Tenn., man in December to an Anderson County grand jury last week, and the panel returned indictments against the five suspects, the sheriff said.
“All five persons charged in this case are members of the Aryan Nations gang,” said Sheriff White.
The five suspects face charges of attempted first degree murder, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated assault and criminal conspiracy.
Kilgore, Campbell and O’Conner are being held in the Anderson County Jail in Clinton, Tenn., on $100,000 bond each. Dozard is in state prison and McGuire is expected to be extradited from Louisiana to Tennessee.
According to Anderson County Assistant District Attorney Ryan Spitzer, the victim was also an Aryan Nations member. Authorities didn’t disclose the victim’s identity or why he was the target of the attack.
“The attack was believed to be a part of the business of the organization –essentially a punishment of one of [its] own members,” Anderson County Assistant District Attorney Ryan Spitzer told the Knoxville television station. He didn’t immediately return a call when Hatewatch attempted to reach him today for comment.Spitzer said that the suspected gang members are not solely driven by matters of race but instead focus on organized crime to make money.