11/20/2013

SPLC Intelligence Report: major neo-Nazi group on brink of collapse

One of the most violent neo-Nazi skinhead groups in the country, Volksfront, may be on the brink of collapse after revelations of its activities in the United Kingdom and other countries appear to have brought its international network to a screeching halt, according to the latest issue of the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Intelligence Report, released today.

The group’s possible demise comes as the National Alliance, another once-dominant neo-Nazi group, teeters on the verge of collapse as well. The state of both groups is examined in the Winter 2013 issue of the SPLC’s quarterly investigative journal.

“Volksfront’s troubles are symptomatic of a larger problem within the neo-Nazi movement,” said Mark Potok, senior fellow at the SPLC and editor of the Intelligence Report. “The last dozen years have seen many of the country’s leading neo-Nazi organizations collapse under the weight of their legal troubles, exposure of their activities or the lack of effective leadership.

“Despite these developments, hate groups remain a serious threat, and studies show that terrorism linked to the domestic radical right is growing, even as the threat from foreign jihadists diminishes.”

Volksfront, formed nearly 20 years ago in Portland, Ore., shut down all 17 U.S. chapters last year. Its founder also retired. Now, its European and Australian chapters may have crashed as a consequence of the SPLC’s exposure of its personnel and operations.

The National Alliance has fallen on hard times as well, recently announcing that it is no longer a membership organization, eschewing dues-paying members for donors to their cause. The group once boasted some 1,400 members, 17 full-time salaried national staffers and $1 million in annual income from dues and its white-power music label.

Die Auserwählten, a neo-Nazi skinhead crew that was virtually unknown in the racist skinhead world until a rush of bloody violence in two states left a South Carolina couple dead in their home, is also profiled.

The law enforcement edition of this Intelligence Report includes a training DVD –Understanding the Threat: Aryan Prison Gangsthat provides officers with information to protect themselves and their communities from white supremacist prison gangs that operate inside and outside prison walls. Earlier this year, the head of Colorado’s prison system apparently was assassinated by a member of one such gang.

Also in this issue of the Intelligence Report:

  • “Conspiracy Act” examines how Richard Belzer, an actor known to millions of Americans as television detective John Munch, has become an increasingly florid conspiracy theorist and author who recently described the United States as a “fascist” country ruled by “sociopaths.”
  • “Village of the Damned” investigates how an aging anti-Semite has attempted a hostile takeover of the tiny North Dakota town of Leith in an effort to create an all-white community.
  • “The Velvet Glove” looks at how the League of the South, a neo-Confederate group that has grown more radical over the years, is now attempting to present a kinder, gentler face in a bid to push its message into the mainstream.