Leadership Shakeup at Neo-Nazi National Alliance Leads to Formation Of New Group
New York, NY, May 3, 2005 … Internal squabbling among leaders of the neo-Nazi National Alliance, once the nation's foremost hate group, has led to the departure of a number of well-established, activist members and to the formation of a new hate group called the "National Vanguard."
The developments may signal the beginning of the end of the National Alliance (NA), a leading purveyor of anti-Semitism and racism that has for many years anchored the white supremacist movement in the United States, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which monitors, exposes and reports on the activities and rhetoric of far-right extremist groups.
The NA once provided influence and support to a number of haters and domestic extremists, including Timothy McVeigh, and for many years set the agenda for white supremacy in the U.S. and inspired extremists abroad.
"This is a major development and we are watching to see how it plays out," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "Certainly, any leadership change within the hate movement is cause for concern because it creates instability and competition among would-be leaders, and that can lead to an increase in racist activity in the near term."
Virulently anti-Semitic and racist, the National Alliance's strength has long resided in its local units around the country, which have continued to carry out numerous distributions of white supremacist propaganda even as the group's national leadership has been ineffective.
In some cases, the West Virginia-based group has turned to other bolder methods to gain publicity and recruits, such as purchasing billboard advertising designed to raise the profile of the group and highlight its hateful ideology. The group also maintains a strong presence on the Internet.
A series of decisions has shaken the NA leadership in recent weeks:
- During the weekend of April 16-17, Erich Gliebe, the then-Chairman of the National Alliance, and Shaun Walker, then-chief operating officer, purged a number of well-established, activist members, including Kevin Strom, a member for more than 20 years who delivered the group's weekly American Dissident Voices radio broadcasts.
- The purged members of the NA created a new group called "National Vanguard" and a number of local units have aligned themselves under the banner of this group. National Vanguard is based in Charlottesville, Virginia, where Strom lives. National Vanguard is the name of the magazine and news-oriented Web site run by Strom while he was with the NA. The new group has appointed a board of directors, but has not tapped a "leader" thus far.
- Since the split was announced, Walker has taken over the leadership of the National Alliance, while Gliebe has assumed the role of CEO of Resistance Records, the white power music company owned by the NA.
- The NA and National Vanguard factions are currently battling over which one is the "true" group to carry on the anti-Semitic and racist legacy of William Pierce, the longtime leader of the group who died in July 2002. The stated goal of the National Vanguard is to supplant the NA.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.