Aryan Nations Leaders Richard Butler and August Kreis Work to Keep Christian Identity Movement Alive
In a message to his Posse "Kinsfolk" following the $6.3 million judgment against Aryan Nations and its principals, Kreis called Morris Dees, the Center's chief trial counsel, a "piece of shit," a "parasitic jew bastard," and a "lowlife, scumbag, bottomfeeder," suggesting it was "time for PAYBACK!" Similar comments also preceded the civil suit trial.
That aggressive brand of advocacy has been paying off. Not long before the case was tried, Kreis was asked to be a keynote speaker at the three-day Aryan World Congress held at Aryan Nations in Hayden Lake, Idaho.
It was around this time that he became Aryan Nations webmaster, with Butler convinced that he was the best person to spread the "Aryan message" via the Internet. By August, Kreis was coordinating Aryan Nations activities for seven states as "Regional Ambassador for the Northeast."
One question that looms large with the expected loss of the Hayden Lake compound is the status of future Aryan World Congresses. For some time, the annual event has not been what it was in its 1980s heyday, as many leading figures — scared off, in part, by reports of rampant infiltration by police and watchdog groups — have stopped attending.
Still, it remains important symbolically, usually providing the main venue each year for white supremacists to put aside their internecine conflicts and rally around the common cause.
Kreis was ecstatic when he reported last fall that Butler had asked him to accommodate the 2001 congress. "I have been asked if I would continue to host the yearly National Congress and my answer was, of course, an astounding YES! I guarantee that, if it becomes necessary, that [sic] 'Aryan Nations National Congress 2001' WILL be held here at 'The LastOutpost' [sic]."
War and Peace
Kreis does have experience hosting a large event. Some 350 neo-Nazi Skinheads and hard-core white supremacist bands descended upon the Kreis homestead for the 1993 Aryan Summerfest, "moshing" to the music of several leading hard-core racist bands.
The National Socialist Vanguard reported at the time that several fights broke out among different racist Skinhead factions. But today, Kreis apparently wants to ensure that tensions are quelled at future gatherings on his compound, replaced by a sense of fellowship. "Our people," he writes, "will always have a place to gather in peace with their families and kinsfolk."
That may be. But it is far from clear that Kreis will manage to become anything more than what he has been — a particularly crude hatemonger with a taste for rough talk. There are other contenders for the power that once was Butler's, and still other players who would like to see Aryan Nations fade into history as other white supremacist revolutionary groups take its place.
In any event, Kries' notions of peace and kinship extend only so far. Like most of his ideological cohorts, Kreis speaks constantly of being in a state of war. Consider, for example, his advice that sympathizers "give [Jews] the holocaust that they so often talk about."
His ultimate objective was elucidated recently as he inveighed against then-candidate Al Gore and his Jewish running mate, Joseph Lieberman — and then went on to attack the Republican presidential ticket as well.
"[E]ven if Bush/Cheney get into office they will surround themselves with jews, blacks and homosexuals in their cabinet," Kreis lamented. "There really is no voting for the lesser of two evils anymore. This whole satanic system MUST be flushed and a new government of HIS children placed into power!"