The neo-Nazi American Nationalist Party produced only four members for a planned march on Washington, D.C. However, hundreds of counter-demonstrators gathered to protest the march.
The neo-Nazi American Nationalist Party (ANP) — which until recently called itself the Knights of Freedom — had long planned for its Aug. 7 march on Washington, D.C.
Yet as the drama unfolded — with more than 2,500 local and federal law enforcement officers lining Pennsylvania Avenue and hundreds of counter-demonstrators gathering to protest — the featured attraction failed, for the most part, to show.
The four ANP members who did make it to the nation's capital, perhaps feeling a little lonely, opted to call the whole affair off. They left without marching a step.
It appears that the group's leader, Wofford College (in Spartanburg, S.C.) senior Davis Wolfgang Hawke, was among the many no-shows — which came as no surprise to his anguished mother.
"He's a chicken," Peggy Greenbaum told The Washington Post. "I don't like to say that about my own son, but he is a chicken."
Just hours after the ANP fiasco, the would-be American führer abdicated. In an E-mail to his followers — many of whom refer to Hawke as "the Chosen One" — he shrugged off the obvious conclusions: that he was a weak leader, or that he had been hurt in the movement by the Southern Poverty Law Center's revelation of his name at birth, Andy Greenbaum, and of the fact that one of his grandparents was Jewish.
Instead, he said he was keeping his own promise to step down as leader "after one year if our goals had not been achieved." Frustrated by lazy followers and those people "much more interested in purchasing a pretty, shiny pendant with a swastika on it than participating in a National Socialist political Movement," Hawke fumed in his message to some 100 followers that he had "reached the end of the line in toleration."
Upon resigning, Hawke named his deputy, Jeff Kay, as successor. Kay, calling for "leaderless resistance" instead of group action, didn't stick around long. "As my only act as Party President," he told his flock, "I am now completely dissolving the Party."