Page 16


eral officials, law enforcement officers, civil rights leaders and key business figures. When he was indicted on seditious conspiracy charges in 1987, he fled the country and was placed on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List. Captured in Mexico, Beam later was acquitted of the charges. Klanwatch lists Beam as one of the leaders in the white supremacist movement today, producing some of its most militant writings in his newspaper, The Seditionist. Others pursued political strategies. Duke, who in 1975 became the grand wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, made the talk-show circuit as he attempted to distance the Klan from its violent image while he maintained the racist ideology. According to Klanwatch’s December 1991 Intelligence Report, “[Duke] steered the group away from secrecy, violence and extremism and toward public disclosure, political activism and moderation, hallmarks of what he christened ‘the new Klan.’ In the new rhetoric, hatred of minorities became “white pride.” Racists became “racialists,” a term Duke uses to refer to people who believe there are biological differences between races. Duke opened membership in the Knights of the KKK to Catholics, who traditionally had been targets of Klan bigotry, as well as to women and children, whose presence enhanced the Knights’ family-oriented image. But behind the facade, Klanwatch contended, the group “was still unified by a common obses-sion white, Christian, heterosexual supremacy and, within the inner circle, Duke continued to advocate radical, violent racism.” A new start Duke left the Knights abruptly in 1980 after Bill Wilkinson, leader of a rival Klan group, arranged for reporters to secretly videotape Duke trying to sell Wilkinson the Knights’ secret membership lists for $35,000. Duke said he was leaving the Klan to form the National Association for the Advancement of White People, which he described as a white civil rights movement. Duke’s NAAWP had the organizational support of the Liberty Lobby, a right-wing group founded by Willis Carto in 1955. Duke used the 100,000-name mailing list from Carto’s Spotlight newsletter to help raise funds for his 1988 presidential campaign, Newsweek reported, and Duke attended meetings of the Institute for Historical Review, a Carto-funded operation that underwrites scholarship designed to disprove the occurrence of the Holocaust. Duke’s successor as leader of the Knights of the KKK was Stephen Donald Black, who moved the group’s headquarters from Metairie, La., to Birmingham, Ala. Black had worked on Duke’s 1979 state senate campaign and he was an articulate spokesman for the “new Klan” until his return to covert activities. On April 27, 1981, Black was one of 10 men arrested by federal authorities on charges that they plotted to overthrow the democratic government of the Caribbean island of Dominica. Nine of the plotters were convicted of violating the Neutrality Act and were sentenced to terms of up to three years. Duke at first denied involvement, but two years later, after the U.S. invasion of Grenada, he told the Vicksburg, Miss., Evening Post he had played a role in the coup, which he said was conceived as a prelude to a Klan operation to liberate Grenada from communist rule. He also told the Associated Press of his involvement, which he later denied. When Black entered federal prison, he entrusted the KKK to Stanley McCollum of Tuscumbia, Ala., and Thom Robb of Harrison, Ark., but while Black was serving time, Klanwatch reported, the lieutenants wrested control of the group from Black. When McCollum quit the group in 1989, he named Robb as his successor. ‘New Klan’ revived Robb, formerly the self-appointed chaplain and editor of the White Patriot, the Knights’ newsletter, revived the “new Klan” philosophy. Membership has grown under Robb, Klanwatch said, although the Invisible Empire, based in Shelton, Conn., is believed to remain the largest Klan group. Total Klan membership in the United States is estimated at 5,000, but another 17,000 persons belong to other racist organizations. And Robb has said Duke’s agenda, which he follows, is no longer simply to get Varieties of Hate: A Primer on the Far Right In studying the exploits of white-supremacist figures like David Duke, readers are confronted with a bewildering array of groups and beliefs on the extreme right wing of the American political spectrum. It can be difficUlt to sort out just who represents what in this netherworld, so we have provided this superficial guide to some of the more prominent far-right philosophies in the United States. These are just some of the most active of many far-right groups in this country. Though none can claim a large number of followers, they do exist all across the U.S. Many of these hate groups overlap membership and belief, and gatherings of one often draw members of others. Members of identifiable groups such as the Posse Comitatus and the more of these beliefs. The following information comes from Klan watch Intelligence Report No 47, December, 1989. Identity. A religious movement that holds that Jews descend from Satan and that white AngloSaxons are God’s true chosen people who will be the sole survivors of an impending worldwide race war. The Identity movement, which lists churches in at least 33 states, provides a theological basis for unity among diverse groups such as the Klan and neo-Nazis. Offshoots include Creationism and Dualism. Separatists or Nationalists. Advocates of separate nations for whites and other races. Some would expel minorities from the old Confederacy, some from the Northwest, reserving those enclaves for whites only Many Klan members and neo-Nazis advocate some form of separatism. Third Position or Aryan Socialism. A political philosophy, espoused by White Aryan Resistance leader Tom Metzger and aimed at the white working class, which rejects liberalism and conservatism in favor of radical racism. Believers insist that existing political parties are a facade and the U.S. government is run by race traitors. They advocate violence against Asian and Hispanic immigrants as well as blacks. Neo-Nazi Skinheads. A group of these youths gained prominence in Dallas a few years ago. Not really an organization \(though some subscribe to tense ideology of hatred and resentment of non whites, who they believe are turning the U.S. into a “banana republic.” Racial Survivalists. Adopting the Identity belief on forthcoming race war, they live in communes and study survival techniques, especially weapons and even paramilitary training. Fifth Era. A KKK offshoot that contends the Klan should abandon its public activities and revert to a secret, militant group of hard-core believers in the violent preservation of white supremacy. Posse Comitatus. Especially active in rural areas, Posse members reject all government authority other than county sheriff and so have run afoul of the IRS and federal government Many are Identity believers or survivalists and engage in paramilitary training. They target economically distressed fanners for recruiting. Populists. Not the Torn Harkin/Jim Hightower variety, this anti-Semitic party thinks that Jews run the media and government and oppose U.S. ties with Israel. Populists often run for local office, seldom successfully. David Duke made his first run for the Presidency with this party in 1988. BRETr CAMPBELL THE TEXAS OBSERVER 39