American Nazi Party
|“||We must have an all-White National Socialist America; an America in which our children and our grandchildren will play and go to school with other White children; an America in which they will date and marry other young people of our own race; an America in which all their offspring will be beautiful, healthy White babies. We must have an America in which our cultural, social, business and political life is free of alien, Jewish influence; an America in which White people are the sole masters of our own destiny.||„|
|~ Excerpt from the American Nazi Party's official website.|
The American Nazi Party is an extreme right-wing organization from North America that champions the concepts of neo-Nazism and white supremacy: like most Nazi Party groups, they are also antisemitic and extremely controversial due to their volatile beliefs, which many have come to see as racist. It is mainly against immigration currently.
Founded by George Lincoln Rockwell in 1959, the party is based largely upon the ideals and policies of Adolf Hitler's Nazi Party in Germany during the Nazi era, and embraced its uniforms and iconography. Shortly after Rockwell's assassination in 1967, the organization appointed Rockwell's second in command, Deputy Commander Matt Koehl as the new leader. The American Nazi Party, now under Koehl's command, was subject to ideological disagreements between members in the 1970s and 1980s.
In 1982, Martin Kerr, a leader at the Franklin Road headquarters, announced that the organization was changing its name to the New Order and moving to the Midwest, effective January 1, 1983. Due to recruitment issues along with financial and legal trouble, Koehl was forced to relocate the group's headquarters from the DC area, eventually finding his way to scattered locations in Wisconsin and Michigan. After Koehl's death in 2014, long-time member and officer of the New Order, Martin Kerr assumed leadership and maintains the New Order website and organization.
The American Nazi Party are also infamous for their involvement in the Greensboro Massacre. In recent years they have associated themselves with the Alt-Right. They are widely considered to be a hate group.
Under Rockwell, the party embraced Nazi uniforms and iconography.
After several years of living in impoverished conditions, Rockwell began to experience some financial success with paid speaking engagements at universities where he was invited to express his controversial views as exercises in free speech. This prompted him to end the rancorous "Phase One" party tactics and begin "Phase Two", a plan to recast the group as a legitimate political party by toning down the verbal and written attacks against non-whites, replacing the party rallying cry of "Sieg Heil!" with "White Power!", limiting public display of the swastika, and entering candidates in local elections.
The years 1966 and 1967 were possibly the height of Rockwell's profile. He was interviewed by Playboy magazine, an event that stirred controversy within the ranks. At the time Rockwell had about 500 followers.
In 1966 or 1967, Rockwell renamed the ANP the National Socialist White People's Party (NSWPP), a move that alienated some hard-line members. The new name was a "conscious imitation" of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Rockwell wanted a more "ecumenical" approach and felt that the swastika banner was impeding organizational growth. Rockwell was killed on August 25, 1967, before he could implement party reforms.
Matt Koehl, a purist National Socialist, succeeded Rockwell as the new leader and this ended the American Nazi Party. Thereafter, the members engaged in internecine disputes, and they were either expelled by Koehl or they resigned. After the murder of Rockwell, the party dissipated and ad hoc organizations usurped the American Nazi Party logo. Those included James Burford in Chicago and John Bishop in Iowa.
Since the late 1960s, there have been a number of small groups that have used the name "American Nazi Party."
- Perhaps the first was led by James Warner and Allen Vincent and it consisted of members of the California branch of the NSWPP. This group announced its existence on January 1, 1968. In 1982 James Burford formed another "American Nazi Party" from disaffected branches of the National Socialist Party of America. This Chicago-based group remained in existence until at least 1994.
- A small American Nazi Party operated from Davenport, Iowa, led by John Robert Bishop until 1985.
- The name "American Nazi Party" has also been adopted by a group run by Rocky J. Suhayda, a member of Rockwell's original ANP in 1967. Although Suhayda's ANP states that Rockwell was its founder, there is no direct legal or financial link between it and Rockwell's legacy organization, now a low-key Hitlerian religious group called the New Order. Headquartered in Westland, Michigan, Suhayda's ANP website sells nostalgic reprints of Rockwell's 1960s-era magazine The Stormtrooper. 2008 National Socialist presidential candidate John Taylor Bowles was a member. Suhayda holds semi-private yearly meetings at his home, and a national convention in California. His followers do not wear uniforms, except for the SA, or Security Arm, and they eschew public demonstrations, frequently criticizing the rival organization the National Socialist Movement for "outing" its members with excessive media exposure.