After the Jewish heritage of the neo-Nazi Knights of Freedom's leader is uncovered, Davis Wolfgang Hawke and his group encounter scorn across the extremist right.
In the wake of revelations about his Jewish ancestry, the young leader of the neo-Nazi Knights of Freedom (KOF) has come under widespread attack from others on the radical right. But even as the man once named Andy Greenbaum is vilified on hate groups' Web pages and publications, he continues to see himself as America's next führer.
Almost immediately after the Southern Poverty Law Center exposed Davis Wolfgang Hawke's former name — and the fact that one of his grandfathers was Jewish — other extremists began mocking the student at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C.
He has been called everything from a "Hollywood Nazi" to "White Redneck Trailer Trash" within the white supremacist world, and his angry responses have burned many bridges.
An E-mail that was apparently signed by William Pierce, leader of the neo-Nazi National Alliance, describes Hawke as a "low-grade teenage hobbyist" whose "racial quality looks marginal." Although it's not clear if the E-mail addressed to Pierce associate Will Williams is authentic, Hawke responded with fury, attacking Pierce and his followers as "people who perform great heroics with words but not with actions."
A Web site of the neo-Nazi World Church of the Creator (see The Great Creator) — a group which Hawke reportedly had been earlier seeking an alliance with — denounces KOF as a "fake" and urges its members to leave the group.
Addressing Hawke, the site shouts: "Quit now! Leave! Disappear from the scene completely! ... [T]hen change your name again, and never show your face to the White Racialist scene again." Many other sites carry the KOF acronym with a line through it, and one ridicules the "Kosher Knights of Freedom."
Hawke, 20, has kept his chin up.
After renaming KOF the American Nationalist Party this summer in a bid to "create a receptive first-impression" that "will provide me legitimacy in the eyes of the average white American," Hawke went public with plans for an August Washington, D.C., march.
Indeed, the attacks seem only to have fueled his view of himself as the white man's savior, Hawke, a man who describes his own mother as a "race traitor," puts it like this: "The responsibility for the life of a people falls squarely on our shoulders alone."