tv Lectures in History CSPAN October 9, 2016 11:30am-12:21pm EDT
debate is tonight at washington university in st. louis, missouri. watch our live coverage at 7:30 p.m. eastern for a preview of the debate and then a predebate preview for the audience. then your reaction, calls, tweets, and comments. the second presidential debate. watch live on c-span. watch live on demand. listen to live coverage with the free c-span radio at available on the app store or google play. >> on luxury -- lectures in history, westfield state university professor george michael talked about white supremacist groups in the mid to late-twentieth century. he described the difference between white supremacist and white separatist groups and looked at events that attracted media attention to the topic. he also discussed the relationship between the extreme right subculture and contemporary politics. his class is about 50 minutes. ok, good michael:
evening. today, we are going to take a of the whiteistory separatist movement in the united states. time, whitent separatism is a very marginal political movement. however, in light of very important demographic and political trends, the movement could become more salient in years. that are also white separatists. separatist denotes different long-term objectives then supremacist. separatists want an exclusive ethnic or racial mono state.
now supremacist might also be segregationist. that is, they advocate separating different racial troops, but within the same state. examples would include the jim crow system of racial segregation in the american south or the system of apartheid in south africa. who claim that white separatism is little more than a façade to make goals seem and byblicly acceptable, claiming to be separatists white nationalists can present their goals not unlike other movements around the world today. while cloaking their language, white separatists can be seen as more legitimate.
let me give you background on the white separatist movement. the 1960's was a time of great social upheaval. the vietnam war spurred the counterculture. the civil rights movement reached its zenith. there were vigilante groups like klan that resisted civil rights, but they failed. and there were some people in the white supremacist movement who thought the country might actually implode under the weight of racial strife. they thought it would be impossible for blacks and whites to occupy the same country in any kind of amicable way. longer accepting subordinate status. in the 1960's there were instances in which both white separatist and black separatists
established a dialogue, coming racial sort of separate states. on a number of occasions, george lincoln rockwell and members of met withcan nazi party the nation of islam, led by elijah mohammed at that time. because whites were a numerical earlyty of that time white separatists assumed the vast amount of territory would be reserved for the white population. blacks would be given a small amount of territory, perhaps the american south, to build a so-called new africa. other racial minorities because negligibleumerically -- it grew out of the failure of
the white white supremacist movement. for one thing, white supremacist to establish anything resembling a mass movement in america. the 1960's, rockwell believed that race riots would lead to mayhem and favorable conditions for his party to take power. he entertained the idea that his party could win national power. fell by anl assassin's bullet in 1967 and with his departure, some elements of the extreme what -- extreme right became disillusioned with the conservative approach. furthermore, the immigration and national -- nationality act of 1965 really ushered in a sea change in policy.
consequence, the population in america became more ethnically and racially diverse. so the white separatist movement really emerged around the 1970's. there were white supremacist groups that began to reformulate strategies. instead of trying to take over the whole country, they believed it would be more feasible to establish a relatively small, separate white nation in which only like-minded whites would reside. there is an obscure religious screed known as religious identity. that became a vehicle for white separatists. christian identity has its origin in something known as british israel is him. that first gained popularity in the 19th century in england.
that the people of northwest europe are the true descendents of the tribes of israel. according to this narrative, -- through the criteria, they made their way through the caucuses mountains and eventually settled in western europe. so this sect found its way to america and metamorphosed into something known as christian identity, and leslie swift was thought to be the most important figure in the christian identity heement and in the 1960's recruited someone into the creed. created the area nations to serve as kind of a political arm of religious group
he had previously founded, which was called the church of jesus christ christians. so, it was really butler who proposed the establishment of an exclusively white republic in the pacific northwest, and he called this the butler plan. to that and, he created a compound in idaho which served as the headquarters of the aryan nation. , they the early 1980's compound had really become an important venue for right-wing extremists. there were annual conferences at the compound where people would meet. nation was not involved in comparison. however, it's compound was the focal point where the ideas for creating a clandestine
right-wing terrorist group really crystallized. the silent brotherhood, sometimes referred to as the order form in 1973, right about the time federal marshals killed a tax protester during a confrontation in arkansas. belonged to its you and ask your right-wing group known as the puffy, taught us. they advocated an extreme form of localism. members of the group believed that the county sheriff should be the highest level of political authority. at the conference, someone by the name of robert j matthews came up with the idea of creating an underground resistance group, and so the group conducted a campaign of terror in the pacific northwest.
that included bombings and even an armored car heist. amountok in a whopping that set the record for the most amount of money ever stolen in a robbery. they hoped to found the weight separatist movement in the united states. finally, the fbi caught up with matthews in washington state in december 19 84. matthews hunkered down in a cabin. he refused to surrender, a firefight ensued. eventually the swat team which had surrounded the cabin lost its patients and lost a pyrotechnic device. the cabin burned down and matthews was killed. all the other members were captured and received long present -- prison sentences. the order did not accomplish much, however, its campaign thely crystallized
revolutionary orientation of the american extreme right. now the u.s. government was seen enemy. the extreme right began to take on more of the revolutionary posture. no longer did it seek to preserve the status quo. rather, it sought to overthrow the u.s. government, which it it was underow zog, and background for sinus occupation government. white aryan resistance lionized the incarcerated members of the order as prisoners of war. readers of his newspaper were write letters, send money to family members, and show support. the idea of separatism began to gain more and more popularity in the extreme right subculture.
the order was inspired by a book called "the turner diaries." it was published in 1970 eight and it went on to become an underground bestseller. according to some estimates, it sold about 450,000 copies. the internetle on probably. you can probably find it in pdf format. it has been translated in a number of european languages. late dr.itten i the william l pierce, under the nom de guerre andrew mcdonald. pierce was a professor who would go on to found and lead a neo-nazi organization called the national alliance. so, the turner diaries is the story of a race war that convulses in america in the late 1990's. in the story, the protagonist of aturner, is a member
group called the organization. they fight the u.s. government. in the novel, the government is controlled by a jewish conspiracy that seeks to destroy the white race. . new law takes effect federal agents begin to round up people's firearms, and so that act serves as a catalyst for the rebellion. the organization catalyzes attacks against the government. the story is a lot of violent episodes interspersed with ideological digressions. there is one particular grisly episode called the day of the rope in which so-called race traitors are hanged by lampposts . will turner is inducted into the inner circle of the organization, and for his final supposed to fly a crop duster plainly with a nuclear weapon into the
pentagon. succeeds, and doing so, the organization creates this new order. out of all of this destruction, a new order emerges. onlyworth mentioning, not with the turner diaries inspire a number of right-wing terrorists, but the novel established a genre of literature in the extreme right subculture. over the years, numerous authors expressed their aspirations in double, which might be interpreted as blueprints for revolution. besides the aryan nations, there was another white separatist group that operated in northern arkansas in the late 1970's. another christian identity minister by the names of james ellison. attended the
organization, he attended meetings, and allison declared himself the dean, the white resistance leader of the american homeland. he provided sanctuary to fugitive members of the order when authorities were pursuing them. they were linked to several episodes of terrorism, including the firebombing of a jewish bloomington,ter at indiana and the bombing of a gay church and sprinkled, missouri -- in springfield, missouri. once the authorities had fbiicated the csa, the elite anti-terrorism unit the floyd and surrounded the compound. it was the first time the hostage rescue team was deployed. negotiation, ellison
surrounded -- surrendered without incident. demise of the order and the csa, the white forratist movement linguist a while. but there was a highly charged incident in august 1992 brought renewed attention to the movement. a few years before, someone by the name of randy weaver a reclusive -- randy weaver, a soldsive white separatist, to shotguns to an atf informant. hadon occasion, weaver visited the aryan nations compound. the atf essentially offered weaver deal if he would agree to inform on the people in the compound at the area nations. in exchange, he would receive a light penalty for his alleged
offenses. for his part, weaver risk used -- refused the offer and that began a per costed -- a very protected and costly investigation. 21st, 1992, 6t u.s. marshals drove out to ruby ridge to conduct reconnaissance of weaver's policy. during the answering, a martial shot and killed the family's pet dog, and that set off an exchange of gunfire and a deputy marshal was shot and killed by kevin harris. kevin harris was a friend of the and had been living on their property at that time. so, other marshals fired back, and sammy, randy weaver's son, was killed. agent was killed, automatically the fbi assumes responsibility of the situation. so, once again, the hostage rescue team was deployed.
in fbi sniper shot and killed whitney weaver, randy's wife, as daughter.heir infant at the trial, randy weaver and kevin harris were acquitted of the most serious charges. weaver was convicted of a minor weapons offense. the federal government eventually paid $3.1 million to the weavers' children. six months later after the ruby ridge fiasco, there was another siege in waco, texas. although it really wasn't a right-wing group, the people in the extreme right subculture interpreted the raid against the branch davidians as a message from the federal government it would have no compunctions about repressing dissident groups. and so, these incidents really galvanized the extreme right culture in america. moreover, there were numerous white separatist project that
began to emerge around this time. for example, the so-called neo-confederates. they seek to secede from the union and create a new, independent southern nation. and this movement really crystallized around the mid-1990's. brothers published a book -- teedo brothers published a book called "the south was which they championed the so-called lost cause of the confederacy. around the time their book was released. -- the book was released, they were founded in tuscaloosa, alabama. now, there is a multitude of organizations that compose the southern nationalist movement. fromovement is far
monolithic. some organizations are divided on particular issues, securely with respect to race. there are two competing camps in the movement. one is racialist and refers to the subornation of anglo celtic in character. the other is strictly territorial and favors, if you will, a diverse dixie in which seven culture can flourish without regard to race. a few years ago, gregory k -- 4 -- hisr novels revolution series. it tells the story of a movement in the south that secedes from the united states and establishes a new independent southern nation. recent controversies surrounding the display of the confederate battle flag has had a polarizing effect in the south between it's mostly white defenders who view the flag as part of the regional identity and african americans who view the flag as a blatant
insult, a symbol of past servitude. on the other side of the country, harold covington has advocated for the creation of an all white homeland. the organization is called the northwest front. it expands over four decades. and the original european army left a deep impression on him. he saw the ira as exemplar of a revolutionary movement. its goals of always been unrealistic. in a country that is estimated
to be nonwhite by the seeks to return america to a white majority population. the white separatist goals are more likely to be realized -- have a better likelihood of success. publishedin 2003, he a series of novels. set in the not-too-distant the novels extolled the exploits of the northwest and america has been in long terminal decline and other trends have decimated the white working class. worse, the u.s.
military was overstretched and all of that really put the federal government in a terrible fiscal predicament. and they create a racially exclusive homeland for whites. they mount a war of attrition that eventually persuades the u.s. government to relinquish a limited amount of territory. president chelsea clinton agrees to an armistice if the rebel cede territory to them. itsngton began broadcasting program called radio free northwest. in the program, he exhorts go to a community of like-minded activists.
but even carving out a territory would still be a tall order. as the native cell african explains,rthur kemp they begin to take over local governments and as numbers higher tiers of government, under the control. inset as examples of colony postapartheid south africa and -- a zionist project in zionist project.
but such seem farcical as examined by an attempt to establish a whites only town in north dakota in 2011. the project did not find many of protest instead from area residents and derision in the media. , met chaim beck has been the most articulate voice of this movement in the united states -- matt heinebch. sounded a group called the traditionalist youth network. he believes that the united intos should be divided ethnically homogeneous states.
he thinks the most fair and practical way of dividing america would be establishing states -- not unlike native american tribal groups have their own regions to control for their respective tribes. in an interview, he told me that most of his followers in latinos.a are separation is the most appropriate course for the country. at the present time he sees the appalachian area as the most fertile ground for his separatist aspirations.
where the things that is most significant about him is his energy. indefatigable. he's in his mid-20's. he is a cobbler's order. he gives speeches at rallies. he appears on television news programs. in a recent interview, i asked him, what form of white separatist foreign policy might take? he has traveled to europe on numerous occasions and met with leaders. his proposal would be to unite with various nations around the world better flow -- that oppose globalism. that would mean treaties with russia, iran, syria, even socialist countries like venezuela. identifies himself as the leader of the eurasian movement in america.
alexander dugan is a political theorist in russia. he calls on them to resist global hegemony. much of his anti-americanism stems from his strident oppose -- opposition to liberalism. he says that when taken to its extreme, liberalism ultimately abolishes all forms of collective identity and is therefore a disruptive force. there has been quite a bit written, but it is not clear how in russia.nce he has according to some observers, his vision has become
the lodestar for russian 'sesident vladimir putin foreign policy. there are some who take issue with white separatism. some see these as retreats and defeatist and argue that whites should not settle for a lump state in the style of the northwest front. point outetractors that if whites congregated in one region they would be sitting ducks for a hostile federal government. in his part, dylan roof -- the alleged massive shooter of the church in charleston last summer rejectedegorically this idea of a local state. to roof, this was analogous to whites fleeing to the suburbs to avoid blacks. instead, he urged whites to stand up and fight.
a trend in to be which the broader white nationalist movement seems a more amenable to this idea of separatism. in a recent lecture mentioned because there seems to be such strongly held irreconcilable views on race, some in addition to internal critics, the white separatist movement faces very strong opposition from the media, the government, and private monitoring groups. the two most important monitoring groups are the anti-defamation league and the southern poverty law center. they keep a very close watch on the white separatist movement. they share information with law enforcement and intelligence
agencies, including the fbi and the department of homeland security. moreover, these monitoring groups have done much to discredit the white separatist movement in the media. for these and other reasons, it is quite difficult for the white separatist movement to mobilize in the united states. however, recent events seem to have galvanized the white nationalist movement. i would be remiss if i did not say anything about the presidential campaign of donald trump and the reception to it in the white nationalist movement. in this campaign, donald trump has been outspoken in his advocacy of building a wall on the southern border of the united states. and of course, this resonated with many americans -- not just members of the white nationalist movement. many people are understandably
worried about the effects of widespread immigration on issues such as the economy, infrastructure, schools, and health care, to name a few. but people in the white nationalist movement in particular are concerned about massive immigration from latin america because they fear it might reduce whites to minority status. as a result, their existence as a separate race would be in peril. so some representatives of the white nationalist movement has spoken out in favor of donald trump. the most notable of whom is david duke, a long-standing white nationalist activist. although he did not formally endorsed donald trump, because he agreed with some of his other positions such as trump's support for israel, duke nevertheless urged his followers to get involved in the trump campaign. -- disagreed with some of his other positions. trump drew criticism in the media because he did not immediately disavow dukes support. at first, trump said he did not know enough about duke to categorically reject his support, the later he formally
disavowed any support from duke and related parties. be that as it may, that has not stopped the media from caricaturing trump and his supporters as racist and biggest -- bigots, as was depicted in a segment on "saturday night live." another contemporary issue worth noting is the idea of white privilege, which has gained currency in recent years. the term was coined back in 1988 by peggy mcintosh, and the idea has been promoted by other antiracist activists, including tim wise. they may even go so far as calling for abolishing the white race. essentially, white privilege means that people identified as white enjoy certain advantages that nonwhites do not experience, solely because the color of their skin. but for white privilege to
really have any meaning, by definition white people would have to live with nonwhites in the same nationstate. as jerry taylor of american renaissance pointed out, in a racially exclusive nationstate composed solely of whites, white privilege would not be operative. so the issue of white privilege presents somewhat of a conundrum for critics of white separatism. it would be hard to accuse white separatists of having white privilege if, after all, they are trying to form an exclusively white nation. on the other hand, the establishment of such a political entity presupposes ethnic cleansing writ large.
it is hard to see how the goals of white separatists could be attained without resorting to widespread violence. although the mainstream media condemns overt forms of white separatism, arguably it is still practiced on an individual level by many people when they decide where to live. take, for example, bill clinton. back in 1988, toni morrison, the great african-american novelist went so far as to characterize bill clinton as the nation's first black president. however, after leaving the white house, bill and hillary clinton purchased a home in chappaqua in new york state. the population there is less than 1% african-american. it is not a very diverse community. over the past several years, the department of housing and urban development has been putting pressure on the county where chappaqua is located to open up the place for more minority residents. the county doesn't seem to be very enthusiastic about this. so there are some significant demographic trends that will make the issues of segregation and separatism more acute in this century.
back in 1967, president lyndon b. johnson commissioned a panel of civic leaders to investigate the underlying causes of racial unrest in america. the commission's findings criticized whites for fleeing the cities and moving to the suburbs. the report issued the famous conclusion -- "our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white, separate and unequal." but since then, there have been great gains for african-americans in many areas of american life, including sports, entertainment, business, and politics. despite these gains, racial segregation has remained largely
in place. it is true that in the aggregate, many metropolitan areas have become more ethnically and racially diverse. however, according to a recent study, people in these metropolitan areas still usually live in neighborhoods that are either mostly white or mostly black. and there is evidence that people in america are taking into consideration is use such as race -- into consideration issues such as race when moving from one part of the country to another. one scholar observed the demographic changes have affected the population of all major groups in america. she pointed out that census figures show whites are moving away from high immigration metropolitan areas. those states that have undergone an immigration inflow have experienced a native outflow. self-segregation is evident as whites tend to flee the areas that become more diverse. although overt expressions of white separatism are still taboo in america, white separatism should be viewed in light of
current political and demographic trends in america that could really have far-reaching effects. for instance, according to census bureau projections, by the year 2042, whites will no longer comprise a majority of the american population, due in large part to increases in both the hispanic and asian segments of the population. this development is viewed in nearly apocalyptic terms in the white nationalist movement. more and more people in that movement seem to believe that some form of separatism will be necessary to ensure, as they put it, white racial survival. even among ordinary people, people who consider themselves to be mainstream but not extremist, they might feel a sense of unease when it they are demographically reduced to minority status. furthermore, the last few years have witnessed a return of urban
unrest in america. these disturbances were precipitated by some high-profile confrontations between the police and african-american men, including eric garner, michael brown, protest movements such as black lives matter have gained many supporters across the country. so it is conceivable that there could be a counter mobilization among some whites who feel threatened. white flight is nothing new, but it becomes increasingly untenable as the population of the country gets larger and becomes more racially and ethnically diverse. of course, it goes without saying that the geography of the country is fixed, so it makes it increasingly difficult to flee to the suburbs ad infinitum. so although overt white separatism is really still taboo in america, white separatism is
a very marginal political movement, there could be more people who join if they feel and harold -- imperliediled in the increasingly diverse america. anybody have any questions? somebody? heidi, you must have a question for me. >> the projections for 2050, right? prof. michael: originally, but it has been revised to 2042 when the nation will no longer have a white majority. there will be no majority, every group will be a minority. this can get a little murky, too, because there are many interracial marriages today, so it becomes increasingly difficult to classify people by race, as there is more and more intermarriage.
>> the previous slide, potentially trying to get individuals to move in that are minorities. isn't that also them discriminating by saying it is only minority or only african americans that are considered individuals that would not be able to live there? prof. michael: the idea is there would be low-cost housing built their. it is a very exclusive, expensive neighborhood. i forget how much the clintons paid for their home, it was very expensive. the idea is there would be low-cost housing, so it would be open to minority residents.
african americans, but i assume other minorities, perhaps latinos, might be included as well. >> has there been another type of report that has been done by the government? prof. michael: not to my knowledge. there are central figures, but there hasn't really been anything comparable to the kerner report in recent years. i know president barack obama has talked about race relations in america, and some people have talked about america entering a post-racial era after the election of barack obama in 2008. we still see quite a bit of occasional racial tension that emerges. to the best of my knowledge, the government has not really released a new kerner report. christopher, what you got for me? >> i guess the turner diaries. do you think that has had any influence on any current
nationalist -- or not nationalist, but current movements toward terrorism within? prof. michael: it has been a big influence, primarily on the extreme right subculture. it has presumably influenced a number of terrorists, the most important of whom was timothy mcveigh, who was responsible for bombing the oklahoma city federal building in april 1995, which killed 168 people. he was enamored of the turner diaries, he bought many copies and sold them at gun shows. he was a right-wing -- there was a right-wing bomber who bombed some places in london in 1999. there is people in the extreme right subculture who think the turner diaries is kind of misguided to follow that blueprint for revolution, this idea that the federal government is going to disintegrate and there is going to be revolution. some people think, no, that is not really a viable strategy, so there is some debate within the extreme right subculture whether the turner diaries is good, whether that is really a prophecy for future events.
other people would say no, this is fantasyland and we should get back -- get into the idea of doing hard work, activism, recruiting people into the movement, rather than expecting the federal government to implode. jonathan, what do you have for me? >> do you see any contemporary -- you said rockwell i believe in and not the party -- nazi party. do you know anything that is contemporary? prof. michael: to reiterate what i said before, matthew heimbach has been reaching out to people from groups. he said a lot of his supporters in california are latinos. as he put it, he supports white power, black power, and brown power. the notion that whites are not necessarily superior, but they should have their own separate state, self-determination. he has reached out to people
like that, people of other ethnic and racial groups. as far as how much success he has had, i can't really say. on the surface, i don't really see much success. it is a work in progress from his point of view. any further questions? >> [inaudible] it has things like health care, free health care for everyone, and the fact it is so accepting towards not just whites but all different types. do you think that has the potential for significant growth? because his thought process -- but little by little, that movement has been growing. do you think it is going to be significant?
michael: by his own admission, covington says this movement is very small. i think he said he has around maybe 3000 or 5000 internet listeners that listen to the shw each week, so his success has been limited. some people think that would be a good place to create an all-white nation. the campaign of the order was active there. there is a tradition of white separatism in that area. other people think that it is bad, because although it is mostly white, the pacific northwest, a lot of the people there are politically liberal, for example seattle. covington, i would say, has really put the most thought into it for separatism. he has even come up with a constitution for his north west republic. there are some socialistic
elements. he talks about providing health care. at the present time, it is still a very marginal movement. whether it will take off, that is to be seen. covington is getting kind of advanced in age, well into his 60's right now. i don't know if there will be somebody to take over the reins when he decides to retire. it has been one of the more endearing separatist projects, but to date, there is not really much to show for it. -- one of the more unduring separatist projects, but today, there is not really much to show for it. >> the ferguson riots, there was a sign that said isis was here. do you think it could be argued they are exploiting civil unrest in america right now? prof. michael: some islamist groups, isis and al qaeda, they have commented on the urban unrest that has engulfed america. al qaeda has an online english-language magazine called inspire. isis has a very robust social media presence as well. some things, like giving advice to protesters, palestinian
activists have given advice to protesters, talked about their struggle and palestine and how it is relatable to ferguson. so yes, there have been instances where radical islam islamists -- >> if covington has socialist views, wouldn't it be difficult to appeal to the far right? prof. michael: because we think of socialism as being on the far left. sometimes it can be hard to pigeonhole groups like that. hitler's movement, the formal name of his party was the national socialist german workers party. even that is considered the extreme of the extreme light also had elements of socialism as well. sometimes we will see that. oftentimes with these nationalistic movements because they champion a cohesive nation, oftentimes there are socialistic elements in their political programs.
anything else? ok. that concludes this evening's lecture. for next week, make sure you read chapter 10 and the race talk about that. see you folks later, have a good rest of the week. >> you are watching american history tv, all weekend, every week and on c-span3. to join the conversation, like us on facebook. >> as the nation elects a new president in november, will america have the first
sincen-born first lady luisa adams or will we have the first first man? now available in paperback, "first ladies" gives the history and impact of every first lady in american history. it features interviews from the leading first lady historians. each chapter also offers brief biographies of 45 presidential fromes and archival photos their lives. published by public affairs, it is now available at your favorite bookseller and also as an e-book. historian paul andrew hutton talks about the prolonged conflict between the apaches and the u.s. government. he describes thesouthwest as a volatile mix of conflicting interests among mexicans, american settlers, civil war soldiers, apache, and other native groups.