Neo-Nazism is a violent movement of (mostly) youth, based on the principles of Adolf Hitler: anti-semitism and arianism.

World War 2 never put an end to nazism in Europe, it simply forced the organization underground. In the late eighties and early nineties they began to surface again, and specially in Germany, Sweden andDenmark. Today, the phenomenon is mostly concentrated in Sweden and Germany.

Norway experienced their first Neo-Nazist murder in January 2001, when a fifteen-year old boy was stabbed to death, due to his skin color. Norway has an active society of about 150 neo-nazists, organized in groups like Blood & Honour (Swedish), Boot Boys and Valkyria (Girls only).

Neo-Nazism must be looked upon as a problem for the society as a whole, because the kids who join them do more often than not join because they feel alone or inapt. Very few were nazists before they joined.

In the US, the problem is more straightforward called nazism. In the UK, there are similar organizations without the nazist ideology, f.ex. the hooligans. In other countries, there are small groups supporting neo-nazism.

A neo-nazist typically dresses in army boots, tight jeans and a leather jacket, and does often skin his head.

Neo-nazism is a serious threat to everything we have built after World War 2. Fight it.

A Neo-Nazi is a participant or member of the party of the same name. They are sometimes referred to as skinheads.

Neo-Nazis are perhaps misunderstood because people think the party is a new breed of Nazis. In fact, they are simply just a new generation. Generally they hold the same beliefs that Hitler and the original Nazi party held during the time period of World War II. They have not updated their standards nor changed the core of their system. They have split in to many different sub-groups though that represent different aspects of the party. These groups include the P2s, Committee for a Workers’ International, The New World Order, and the Kalifornia Righteous. This does not include the KKK, however similar the groups may be.

Neo-Nazis are firm believers in Aryanism, or the belief that whites are supreme over other races. As well, most still believe in the propaganda that Jews are to blame for most of societies problems. However, in certain mindsets, particularly those of the U.S. Neo-Nazi leaders, blame has shifted from the Jews to the African Americans and Hispanics.

The Neo-Nazis are mostly concentrated in Europe, in countries such as Germany, Denmark, Italy, and Sweden. They have also established large chapters in the U.K. and the U.S. In the U.S. the Neo-Nazi are treated more like a gang rather than a political party. Most Neo-Nazi chapters in the U.S. are based out of California (Often Neo-Nazis refer to the state as “Kalifornia”)

The Neo-Nazis are often regarded as a terrorist group in the modern world. They are continually becoming less politically active and more based on the violent acts of their militias. Common Neo-Nazi crimes include but are not limited to destroying property of non-white classes; beatings, rapes, and murders of non-whites, and other violent acts towards the people they consider to be the lesser. Many of the U.S.’s school shooters have been considered Neo-Nazis, i.e. Columbine and Red Lake.

A typical Neo-Nazi can be identified as a young white male, wearing tight jeans, tight white t-shirts, and white laces in black combat boots. Often they brand themselves with tattoos of the swastika and shave their heads, thus the name skinhead. They are also characteristically heavy drinkers. However, you must consider these are stereotypes and not all skinheads fit this description, nor are all people who fit this description skinheads.


Sources:

The writings of George Lincoln Rockwell

Resisting Hitler by Shareen Blair Brysac

http://www.socialistworld.net/index2.html?/area/sweden.html


A great movie to watch on the subject is American History X
One thing missing at this node, that we should also realize about the extreme groups known as "Neo-Nazis", is that they may talk about the extreme racist beliefs of Hitler and his Nazi party, but they also end up missing a large aspect of the Nazi parties creed. Nationalism.

It is the concept of Nationalism that thrives in groups like the National Heathen Front (NHF) or the National Socialist Black Metal scene. This form of the Nazi creed is almost always missing in most forms of neo-nazism, which tend to focus on the more traditional pure racism, that all white people are greater and higher than all other races. In a nationalistic Nazi group this concept would become, all in my tribe or nation is higher or more pure than others. Thus Germanic peoples should consider themselves more pure than Gothic peoples. This thinking is of course faulty in that the concept known as "Germanic" is often intertied with so many other European groups that it can become impossible to find anything that seperates them. The actual Germanic peoples are one of the most racially mixed groups of the European countries.

Neo-Nazism tends to be more tied with extreme right wing, often Christian religious groups like the Klu Klux Klan (most European heathen Nationalists despise the American form of this, calling it silly pointless skinhead rheortic and saying that it destroys its own words by being Christian, which many Heathen Nationalists hold, is against the very concept of Nazism, and then go on to talk about the degenerate being of the American people). Also it is often equated with the skinheads, who remain a strangly ambivalent group, who often are subject to simply getting drunk and beating on anyone different. Though I am not condoning either Nationalistic Nazi's or Neo-Nazis the question exists who does the more damage? It is very often without a doubt the Neo-Nazis, who are often tied to right wing extreme terriorist groups, many of whom operate in what we think of as "free countries". The United States features many.

A Police officer I knew was undercover in a millitant neo-nazi group in my state of Colorado. They were busted, for owning explosives without permits, which is a fine way to put a violent group into prison. The leader of this group owned a "Army Surplus Store" down the street from me. Soon after the bust the store closed down. However it was rather frightening to think about having such people right down the street.

However Neo-Nazism is often hyped up in the media. If anything the FBI or local Police groups are pretty much aware of Neo-Nazi groups actions and movements. The ideological danger of such groups is the main problem. Racism is still a strong threat in most States, and in many countries, and Neo-Nazi's are direct predators of the racism sentiment, eating at out own fears of the Nazi's that have existed since World War II and are presented to our eyes and minds constantly due to the policy of "never forget" about the holocaust. We have a great difficulty in understanding the Nazi's, as we are fed pre-disposed thoughts about them. If one were to be able to freely (and by freely I mean throw aside what we think we know about them) look into the concepts that surrounded Hitler we could easily see the falsehood of his words. Though many may take offense at what I say, we as a people are part of the problem when it comes to Neo-Nazis and other "hate groups". To solve this problem we must look inside ourselves and find the places where we cannot look at this clearly, where we have been brainwashed into thinking something is bad or good, once we deny the power of racism thinking we deny the power of the rascist thinkers (or lack thereof).

Nazism is a subscription to the ideology of the Nazi party – the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP), or German National Socialist Worker’s Party. Neo-Nazism is belief in the same ideology and philosophy, but is applied to anyone who believes in Nazism post-1945. Neo-Nazism is not fascism, not exclusively, although a Venn diagram would show overlap between what could be called fascist and what could be called neo-Nazi (see Noung on fascism for more).

At present, there are a number of neo-Nazi groups active worldwide. It is important to make the distinction between two separate categories of neo-Nazi groups, although again there are grey areas and overlap between the two. The first category is that of the 'new right'; legitimate political parties operating within the law, but the policies of which are awash with neo-Nazi ideals such as xenophobia and authoritarianism. Examples of the new right are the British National Party (BNP), the French Front Nationale or the Australian One Nation. The second is skinhead and white power organisations, such as the American Aryan Nations or the British Combat 18. These organisations are usually illegal, revelling as they do in race attacks and violence.

Clearly, the most successful period for the far right in Europe was in the 1920s and 1930s. Mussolini's Fascists came to power (albeit undemocratically) in 1921. Hitler’s NSDAP became the largest party in the German parliament, the Reichstag, in the elections of 1933. Franco's position of power was cemented with the end of the Spanish civil war in 1939. We all know who the Nazis were. The jackbooted thugs with matching armbands and crewcuts are revived every day in books and on television, in history lessons and in newspaper columns. Who would, in this day and age of multicultural liberal pluralism, want to return to dictatorial interwar Europe?

But some do: the BNP received 192,850 votes in the British General Election 2005. Pauline Hanson's One Nation was marginalised in Australia's 2001 legislative election only after incumbent Prime Minister John Howard ran a morally and factually dubious campaign centred on immigration and asylum. More sinister were the 1999 Combat 18 nailbomb attacks in east London. While it is true that no party realistically wishing to achieve any meaningful level of popular support in today’s political climate can publicly label themselves as neo-Nazi, the far right has experienced cyclical growth and decline in support and success. The neo-Nazi underground has always had some support, but again, support and overt power have increased or decreased dependent on several conditions.

The politics of the far right are essentially the politics of fear and anger. Lead to the dark side they do. Several unifying policies or beliefs link most far right organisations, legal or illegal. The differences come in the ways in which they address them. The first is that of white or Aryan supremacy. The second, linked point, is an extreme form of nationalism. Put together, these two tenets can lead to, amongst other things, discriminatory policies against immigrants.

Immigration and asylum is one of the most contentious issues in modern European politics. One reason for the controversy that regularly surrounds the issue is the tone of press reporting on it. Government policies are often reported in a biased and irrational manner by populist sections of the media. The upshot of this is a slanted and unrepresentative impression being given to the electorate, and can leave many open to exploitation by the extreme right parties themselves. Extreme right parties are able to capitalise on fears and prejudices held by many people in order to increase their own support. Media bias adds to these prejudices by playing on the most negative aspects of asylum systems, and the disadvantages of immigration. Public perception is therefore often out of line with reality. When what is presented as factual news reporting is closer to propaganda, it becomes that much easier for actual propaganda to slip under the radar. Put another way, an ill-informed electorate is likely to make ill-informed decisions.

The far right is able to play on the fear of many in Europe that immigrants will take their jobs. This is an example of economic insecurity. Immigration was welcomed into Germany following the Second World War. The cheap labour these migrants provided were a key factor in the reinvigoration of the west German economy in the immediate post-war period. A large wave of immigrant workers initially came from less developed southern Europe (Portugal and southern Italy), then, as these areas began to prosper, so progressively Turks and north Africans began to migrate. These were economic migrations encouraged by the German government. At this time Germany also had the most liberal asylum regime in western Europe. Another reason for this was because so many of the officials in government had themselves had to claim asylum in foreign countries as they fled the Third Reich.

Despite the political will of the occupying Allies, German far right parties soon began to spring up, especially after 1947 when restrictions on the formation of political parties were lifted. As a guard against any Nazi resurgence, the new German constitution had included a clause for banning any party found to be Nazi or neo-Nazi in character. It was not immediately invoked, however, as these newly formed parties did not fare well in the economic climate and the atmosphere of social integration most immigrants promoted. This situation "produced a broad legitimation of the democratic state and also made for the rapid integration of extreme right-wing parties into the bourgeois camp." 1 So, while immigrants were perceived to be usefully employed, lots of Germans were in work and there were no significant problems of integration, the far right was effectively silenced.

As unemployment and economic uncertainty increased, so did support for the extreme right. Germany's economy is currently in the doldrums – technically slipping into recession in 2003 and with lacklustre growth rates since 2000. 2 Unemployment is running at over 10%3. This is partly a result of the structural realignment that has affected most industrialised nations over the last thirty years, that is, that manufacturing and manual labour industry is on the wane with new growth mainly in the tertiary service sector. These economic changes and their sometimes unclear macroeconomic causes have created the need for those affected to find scapegoats. The extreme right's unambiguous stance on immigrants means that they can easily provide them.

Jean-Marie le Pen's Front Nationale has explicitly made a link between immigrant workers and French unemployment. Jörg Haider's Freedom Party has a strong appeal for those affected by such change, its policies encompassing a mixture of protectionism, social welfare and anti-immigration rhetoric. While Austria's economy is relatively healthy compared to its ailing western neighbour, its location on the periphery of the EU meant that for many years it played host to not only predominantly Muslim guest workers, as in Germany, but also a large proportion of immigrants leaving the Communist bloc. The Freedom Party was able to make much political capital in the early 1990s as statistics showed the proportion of immigrants employed in the workforce had reached 9.1%. Under pressure from the growth of the Freedom Party, the Austrian government subsequently imposed a cap on this, limiting the proportion of foreigners to 10% of the labour force. 4

Support for the far right and neo-Nazi groups is cyclical. Racial violence has become a more pervasive problem in Europe throughout the 1990s, and, although the majority of it is likely to be unprovoked, unorganised thuggery, neo-Nazi groups have capitalised on broader misgivings about immigration and employment. Profiling has shown that a typical far-right voter tends to be white, male, young (under 30) and working class – manual or semi-skilled. Proximity to areas of high immigrant population is also a common factor, as in the electoral success of the BNP in Burnley in 2001. This profile is almost identical to that of a member of a neo-Nazi organisation.

Violent neo-Nazi groups have been active in every developed country. Prominent groups have been the Aryan Nations and American Nazi Party in the US; Blood and Honour and Combat 18 in the UK; the Wiking-Jugend in Germany. Combat 18 maintains chapters in other European countries such as Italy, Serbia, Sweden and France. Actions of such groups can be categorised as low-level terrorism or low-level organised crime. A mix of the two is usually accurate. This low-level classification is not to underplay the fear and intimidation a neo-Nazi campaign can instil in a particular area; merely that such organisations tend not to have significant capabilities on a national level.

The Aryan Nations is linked to a prison gang called the Aryan Brotherhood. This gang protects white inmates from other race-aligned (usually Hispanic or black) prison gangs, and funds its activities through selling marijuana and amphetamines. Aryan Nations was founded by Richard Butler in 1971, based on the teachings of Wesley Swift, a radical preacher. The organisation maintained a compound in Idaho until a lawsuit brought by two victims shot by an Aryan Nations member resulted in the payment of $6.3m damages and the loss of said compound. Amongst other attacks, Aryan Nations was involved in a massacre at a Los Angeles Jewish daycare centre in 1993, and the firebombing of an Oklahoma synagogue in 1999.

Combat 18 are probably the most prominent British neo-Nazi group. Attacks attributed to them include the 1999 nailbombs in Brixton, Soho and Brick Lane, London. One member, William Thompson, was convicted in Northern Ireland of storing weapons for loyalist paramilitaries, giving rise to fears of possible collaboration between loyalist and neo-Nazi terrorists both in Northern Ireland and on the mainland. Raids in Germany led to the arrest of German members in 2003.

The problem with the far right is one that that faces many in a liberal democracy; free speech is not only for those that you agree with, and you do not have the right not to be offended. Skinhead thugs and supremacist terrorists are and should be watched, arrested and locked up, but those that represent them in the political arena are usually careful to stay within the law. (Usually being the operative word, because BNP party leader Nick Griffin is currently facing charges of inciting racial hatred.) Understandably sensitive on this issue, Germany has passed several laws banning various forms of neo-Nazi speech, imagery and writings. A call by the German Foreign Minister for an EU-wide ban in the wake of an incident where Prince Harry, son of the heir to the British throne, was photographed at a fancy dress party in an SA uniform has not made much headway. Neo-Nazis will continue to draw their support from the disaffected and angry, and their hate will continue to appeal to those who need it to sustain them.




Notes:
1 Backer, S., 2000. writing in Hainsworth (ed.) The Politics of the Extreme Right, Pinter
2 According to the CIA, real economic growth in 2003 was -0.1%. CIA – The World Factbook – Germany, Central Intelligence Agency. http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/gm.html#Econ
3 Ibid.
4 Jandl, M. and Kraler, A, 2003. Austria: A country of immigration? Migration Policy Institute, Washington. http://www.migrationinformation.org/Profiles/display.cfm?ID=105.

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