[Marxism] David Duke is out of the pokey! His message: target the Jews

Fred Feldman ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Wed Aug 4 19:36:11 MDT 2004


www.thenation.com   posted August 4, 2004

Duke has actually, since the days when he helped organize
anti-integration riots (in Tennessee and elsewhere, I believe) and
through his time in the Louisiana state assembly and his run for US
Senate as the Republican candidate, has generally been one of the more
mass-oriented types on the fascist right in the U.S.

It is a good idea to keep an eye on what he is up to, now that his term
in prison for stealing from his supporters has ended.
Fred Feldman


Return of the White-ist
by Leonard Zeskind 

 
Not that you ever missed him while he was gone, but David Duke is back.
After a year in federal prison, Duke was welcomed home over Memorial Day
weekend by participants in a confab in New Orleans. Old friends, aging
white nationalists and youthful Aryanists, 250 in all, gathered for two
days plus and listened to a dozen speakers. 

They treated the onetime Klansman and past Louisiana Republican
candidate with respect and adoration--as if he'd been jailed for bravely
attempting a putsch in Munich. Duke had simply bilked his own
contributors, however, personally spending the proceeds at gambling
joints. He pled guilty to mail and tax fraud. The mundane nature of his
crime contrasted sharply with the heated rhetoric spewed from the
airport hotel speakers' platform. No fake conservative running for
Governor here. That was yesterday. At this event Duke played the role he
was meant for: a veteran white supremacist preparing for the battles
ahead. 


ADVERTISEMENT As a movement, white nationalism is at a turning point.
The militias of the 1990s have largely disappeared. Skinheads that once
served as street soldiers for the Aryan set currently behave more like a
group of music industry entrepreneurs. Moreover, after Pat Buchanan led
the Reform Party off a cliff in the 2000 elections, the possibility of a
viable third party outlet has disappeared. In its place, a constellation
of neo-Confederate and anti-immigrant activists and think-tankers are
carving out a twenty-first-century white nationalism--without reference
to the anti-Semitic conspiracy theories that have traditionally animated
such enterprises. Into this vortex re-enters David Duke. Target the
Jews, he said in New Orleans. While we're at it, let us sign a compact:
"no enemies on the right" and "zero tolerance for violence." 

To an outsider, the "no enemies" point sounds a bit self-serving. After
all, Duke faces possibly stern criticisms from his own (former)
contributors. Nevertheless, to organizations and personalities long at
odds with each other, a signed agreement might end the bickering and
denunciations that currently hamstring them. Similarly, deciding to
formally eschew bomb plotters seems so elementary as to be unnecessary.
In a movement whose heroes have been bank bandits and killers, however,
the decision to regard any talk of violence as the work of agent
provocateurs cannot but signal a different direction. 

The newest initiative, however, is also the oldest: Go after the Jews.
On this point, Duke is the reigning master. In 1998, he self-published a
736-page screed titled My Awakening. Then he sold foreign-language
translations of the anti-Jewish chapters--which he relabeled Jewish
Supremacism--and spent two years traveling in Italy, Russia, Ukraine,
and other points East and Middle East. Duke now claims that over 500,000
copies are circulating in the Russian federation alone. The reprint has
already been translated into nine languages, he told his friends in New
Orleans, and when it goes into Arabic, sales "will go into the
millions." In a strange twist, Duke now believes that Russia might be
the "salvation of the white race." The one-time Communist enemy is
increasingly "anti-Zionist," he claimed. 

Our task, he told the conferees, "is to get America on the same level
towards liberation as our brothers in Eastern Europe." 

For this endeavor Duke will apparently rely on cadres from the National
Alliance, the organization left behind by Turner Diaries terror novelist
William Pierce. At this conference, it endorsed both Duke's attack on
"Jewish supremacism," and the call for unity and "nonviolence." Since
Pierce died, the Alliance has lost some members. But it retains a
cohesive infrastructure with a paid staff and several active propaganda
outlets. And it has a significant international footprint, with members
throughout Europe. 

Duke has returned full circle to that moment in 1970 when he was just 19
years old and picketed the late radical attorney William Kunstler while
wearing a brown-shirt uniform and swastika. Only this time around, Duke
has dropped the uniform and picked-up a new set of friends across the
globe. Duke's white nationalism is now the "internationalist" kind. 





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