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The list of speakers at American Freedom Party and Council of Conservative Citizens joint conference scheduled for June 15-17 in the woods outside Burns, Tennessee, reads like a who’s who of the old-school white nationalist mainstreamer crowd.

The event marks a return of the Council of Conservative Citizens, dormant since the group was linked to the Charleston massacre. It also marks an enhanced movement role for longtime National Socialist, David Duke, who has stepped into the post-Charlottesville leadership vacuum.

The event has not been without controversy, as at least one speaker has pulled out of the conference. In addition to Duke, the event includes a number of other notable white nationalists.

William Daniel Johnson, aka James O. Pace

American Freedom Party Chair William Daniel Johnson is a practicing corporate attorney based in Los Angeles, California and the principle of Johnson & Associates. In 1989 Johnson ran for the U.S. House seat vacated by Dick Cheney after his appointment as Secretary of Defense; in 2008 he ran for a seat on the Los Angeles Superior Court. He failed both times. For a short period in 2016, Johnson was on the delegate list for Donald Trump.

Johnson connects the AFP to a long history of white nationalist politicking. In 1985, under the pseudonym “James O. Pace,” Johnson wrote the book Amendment to the Constitution: Averting the Decline and Fall of America. Arguing that the United States should return “the citizenship status of nonwhites to that of the Dred Scott era,” Johnson offered a Constitutional amendment stating that, “No person shall be a citizen of the United States unless he is a non-Hispanic white of the European race, in whom there is no ascertainable trace of Negro blood.” Dred Scott v Sandford (1857) is the infamous Supreme Court decision in which Chief Justice Roger B. Taney wrote that the “African race” had “no rights which the white man was bound to respect and that the negro might justly and lawfully be reduced to slavery for his benefit.” Johnson’s proposed amendment also declared that no one could be a citizen with “more than one-eighth Mongolian, Asian, Asia Minor, Middle Eastern, Semitic, Near Eastern, American Indian, Maly or other non-European or nonwhite blood.”

Johnson’s book drew praised from the likes of Richard Butler, the now-deceased head of the neo-Nazi Church of Jesus Christ Christian-Aryan Nations that helped birth the terrorist underground, The Order, in the mid-1980s.  Johnson also ties the AFP to the failed March conference at MSU, serving on the board of the Foundation for the Marketplace of Ideas (FMI) that had sponsored the event.

Kevin MacDonald

American Freedom Party board member Kevin MacDonald is a onetime psychology professor at California State University, Long Beach. McDonald is also an editor of the white nationalist Occidental Dissent; white nationalist Richard Spencer has promoted Kevin MacDonald as a “thinker” on things Jewish. McDonald argues that Jews are driven to destroy western societies, writing in his book The Culture of Critique, that,

“Since the 1960s a hostile, adversary elite has emerged to dominate intellectual and political debate. It is an elite that almost instinctively loathes the traditional institutions of European-American culture: its religion, its customs, its manners, anda its sexual attitudes… This ‘hostile elite’ is fundamentally a Jewish-dominated elite…The emergence of this hostile elite is an aspect of ethnic competition between Jews and non-Jews and its effect will be a long-term decline in the hegemony of European peoples in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world.”

In the July 23, 2011 Occidental Observer, MacDonald wrote of Anders Brevik that “it must be said that he is a serious political thinker with a great many insights and some good practical ideas on strategy (e.g., developing culturally conservative media, gaining control of NGOs. and developing youth organizations that will confront the Marxist street thugs).” MacDonald continued that Brevik “is certainly right in characterizing multiculturalism as an ideology of hate.” Anders Brevik is the racist who the day before MacDonald’s article had massacred seventy-seven people at a Norwegian Labor Party Youth League summer camp.

Of Brevik’s mass murder, MacDonald wrote,

“It remains to be seen what the long term effect of his [Brevik] actions will be. There is certainly great revulsion at the murder of young people. However, I suppose it is possible that in the long run European elites will understand that the glorious multicultural future will not be attained without a great deal of bloodletting (including themselves and, as in this case, their children) and realize they will have to change their ways.”

During MacDonald’s tenure as faculty at CSULB a majority of faculty in the Psychology Department issued a statement that “Faculty were particularly concerned that Dr. MacDonald’s research on Jewish culture does not adhere to the Department’s explicitly stated values on academic freedom, responsibility in research, and human diversity.” They continued that, “many of these writings have appeared in other media rather than in psychological journals that require peer review and rigorous scientific and psychological methodology.” As a result, “the department wishes to dissociate itself from the controversial writings of Dr. Kevin MacDonald…[and] we affirm that they are his alone and are in no way endorsed by the Department of Psychology at California State University, Long Beach.”

Tomislav “Tom” Sunic

Boasting a Ph.D from the University of California at Santa Barbara, Tomislav Sunic occupies a niche as a white nationalist “intellectual,” radio broadcaster and proponent of the “spiritual” approach to race along the lines advocated by fascist “intellectual” Julius Evola. He’s also listed as an AFP leader.

In Sunic’s words,

“One could…suggest that in order to preserve their true identity White Europeans and White Americans must first resurrect their common cultural and racial awareness…American sociobiologists can be helpful in formulating the view that racial and ethnic identities are an integral aspect of human nature. However, first and foremost the meaning of race should be re-evaluated. Race is not just a biological phenomenon: it also has spiritual implications. The metaphysical base of the race should come first, as Julius Evola argues…The common racial heredity of White Americans and Europeans appears as the only valid factor in the identity-building process. It cannot be changed at will. One can change his ideology, his language, his theology, his favorite football team and his geographic location. But a person cannot change his genetic heritage. However, as Evola wrote, to consider genetic heritage or the race factor as the only hallmark of identity boils down to biological determinism and is unlikely to generate strong emotions of loyalty. This is particularly true with many White nationalists in America, who focus too often on the anthropological aspect of race — the physical phenotype — while neglecting the spiritual part of race. The resurrection of identity among White Europeans and Americans in a broader racially spiritual way appears as the only valid answer.”

For his “spiritual” contributions, former Knights of the Ku Klux Klan leader Thom Robb referred to Sunic a “good friend” who helped sponsor his 2010 “European/American Heritage Festival” in Pulaski, Tennessee. In 2008 Robb wrote that he had a “wonderful visit” with Sunic at the Council of Conservative Citizens annual conference in Sheffield, Alabama. According to Robb, attendees also included Don Black of Stormfront and Ed Fields, the virulent racist who formerly produced the vulgar Truth at Last tabloid.

Sunic has also hosted a radio show on the Voice of Reason, interviewing a wide range of white nationalists. Sunic’s guests and topics have included, Kevin MacDonald on “Jewish Psychology;” a show dedicated to the “The American Third Position Party – The Hope of Our Future?;” reporting on the 2012 AFP presidential bid by Merlin Miller and running mate, Virginia Abernethy; and an interview with  Thom Robb on “the Theology of Christian Identity.” Christian Identity holds that whites are the actual Isaelites of the Bible, Jews descend from Satan and people of color are a pre-Adamic (before Adam) and inferior “mud race.”  Sunic also gave a radio platform to neo-Nazi Harold Covington, Michael Hill of the League of the South, Mark Weber of the Holocaust-denying Institute for Historical Review, and white nationalist Greg Johnson, then of the Occidental Quarterly and now at Counter-Currents publishing

On the issue of anti-Semitism, Sunic wrote in 2012 that,

“While it is a common place for the vast number of white American elites to crack jokes in private about Mexicans, Africans, or for that matter deride their fellow Gentile citizens, without looking over their shoulder, a critical comment about the staggering influence of Jews in America, even when that comment is founded on empirical facts, is viewed as a grave insult to Jews… While a great many thinkers in America unabashedly challenge modern myths and sport staggering erudition and courage in their demolition, the most sensitive point of reference in the twentieth century, i.e., the Jewish question, is carefully avoided. If the subject of Jews is mentioned in America, then it is usually in a laudatory fashion, which clearly points to a morbid desire of postmodern American white elites to curry favor with the Jews… It is the lack of open discussion about the topic of the Jews that confirms how Jews play a crucial role in American conscience building, and by extension, in the entire West… Hypothetically speaking, if Jews, by some miracle, were to play a marginal role in America – as they claim they do – then, logically, they would be the subject of a normal critical discussion, just like other American ethnic groups, races, or next door neighbors are…American anti-Semitic delusions only provide legitimacy to American Jews in their constant search for a real or surreal anti-Semitic boogieman around the corner. Without the specter of anti-Semitism, Jews would likely assimilate quickly and hence disappear.”

Earl Holt

Earl Holt is President of the Council of Conservative Citizens, the longtime white nationalist group formed from the mailing lists of the Civil Rights-era White Citizens Councils. In this tradition, the Council of Conservative Citizens’ 2007 Statement of Principles declared,

“We believe the United States is a European country and that Americans are part of the

European people. We believe that the United States derives from and is an integral part of European civilization and the European people and that the American people and government should remain European in their composition and character. We therefore oppose the massive immigration of non-European and non-Western peoples into the United States that threatens to transform our nation into a non-European majority in our lifetime…We also oppose all efforts to mix the races of mankind, to promote non-white races over the European-American people through so-called ‘affirmative action’ and similar measures, to destroy or denigrate the European-American heritage, including the heritage of the Southern people, and to force the integration of the races.”

In 2015 the Council of Conservative Citizens gained national attention when Dylann Roof’s “manifesto” became public. Explaining his evolution as a racist, Roof wrote that “The first website I came to was the Council of Conservative Citizens…There were pages upon pages of these brutal black on White (sic) murders. I was in disbelief. At this moment I realized that something was very wrong. How could the news be blowing up the Trayvon Martin case while hundreds of these black on White murders got ignored?”

On June 17, 2015, during a prayer service and the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, Dylan Storm Roof entered the church and sat with attendees before murdering nine African-American churchgoers. In January 2018, Roof was sentenced to death for his actions.

Michael Hill

Michael Hill is President of the neo-Confederate League of the South. Hill ties the AFP conference to alliances with National Socialism, paramilitary organizing and the glorification of racist violence. Proclaiming himself a “Southern nationalist” and a “proud White man.”

Across 2016 and 2017, Hill may have been influenced by David Duke to move from an emphasis on southern secession to embrace an international white nationalist struggle to seize the United States and Europe for white people:

“By fighting to preserve the blood and soil (sic) South and her people, we are indirectly serving the cause of a larger White nationalism…We do not fight only for ourselves; rather, we fight to aid in the re-establishment of a White hegemony over all the lands we have inherited from our noble and courageous ancestors. Once we make the South White Man’s Land once again, we must use it as a base from which to reconquer all that our people have lost, especially in the remainder of North America and in Europe. Our enemies must be completely deprived of any footholds or bridgeheads in our territory lest they use them to renew their attacks against us and our posterity.”

To this apparent end, Hill helped form the Nationalist Front, a coalition consisting of the League of the South and three national socialist organizations:  the National Socialist Movement, Vanguard America and the Traditionalist Worker Party. The Nationalist Front proclaims that its purpose is to “unite pro-White organizations…to achieve the main objective: The creation of a white ethno-state for White people in North America.” With its Nationalist Front partners, the League of the South helped organize the infamous white nationalist/national socialist “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in August 2017.

The League of the South also has a close relationship with announced AFP conference speaker and longtime national socialist David Duke. Duke appeared at the group’s 2017 national conference, and April event to “honor” the former Knights of the Kux Klux Klan leader, and is scheduled to appear at the League’s 2018 conference. Hill also ties the AFP conference to the paramilitary wing of white nationalism, making a call in February 2017 for,

 “all able-bodied, traditionalist Southern men to join our organization’s Southern Defense Force for the purpose of helping our State and local magistrates across Dixie combat this growing leftist menace to our historic Christian civilization… As a League member, you will have opportunities to increase your proficiency with hand-to-hand defense skills, firearms training (both pistols and long weapons), and other related skills.”

In a tweet that was re-tweeted Vanguard America, Michael Hill wrote glorified “when my time comes…let me die…knee-deep in the blood of my enemies.”

In March 2017 Hill wrote that the enemies of the “traditionalist whites” of his movement include Jews, Muslims, “other minorities” and “anti-white whites.”

Virginia Abernethy

Virginia Abernethy continues to be listed as a Director of the American Freedom Party. Abernethy retired in 1996 from Vanderbilt University where she had served as a professor of anthropology and psychiatry. Abernethy served as the 2012 Vice-Presidential candidate of the American Third Position Party, later the American Freedom Party.

In response to a 2012 USA Today article about her ties to organized racism, Abernethy responded,

“It is factually untrue that I am a supremacist. I am an ethnic separatist, which means respecting preferences to be with whomever one wishes. I have no objection to campus African-American groups, B’nai B’rith, La Raza or countless others. What I see, however, is that Christian and European-American groups—and only these groups—are targeted for discrimination…It is factually untrue that I am a neo-Nazi, or that people with whom I associate are neo-Nazis. They are American patriots… Kathy McKee is the Arizonan who started and saw though to a successful ballot conclusion Proposition 200. Well into the initiative process in 2004, she asked me to speak with the overseas media, which I was pleased to do. I hope I helped…

American3rd Position is a new Party and one that may draw support from Americans who feel unrepresented by the major Parties…A3P is pro-American, which means representing the values of the majority of Americans and defending European-Americans from being cast as the destroyers of society. European-Americans are historically, and are still, builders. European-Americans are on track to becoming a numerical minority in the United States. This trend can be reversed by stopping mass immigration and a conscious coming together of like-minded men and women.”

In the above passage, Abernethy highlights her involvement with Protect Arizona Now, the group behind the 2004 Proposition 200, an early “papers please” ballot proposition which required individuals provide citizenship documents before being able to vote. Abernethy served as the Chair of the group’s National Advisory Board. In 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down parts of the proposition requiring proof of citizenship for those using a federal registration form to vote.  Abernethy’s running make, Merle Miller, stated that criticism of Abernethy was driven by “Zionist power background, including the mainstream media, which is controlled by Zionist influences in my opinion” – that is, by Jews.

In addition to fronting for A3P, Abernethy previously served as an editorial adviser for the Council of Conservative Citizens, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. She remains listed on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Occidental Quarterly under Editor Kevin MacDonald and alongside the AFP’s Tom Sunic. Abernethy has also played a leadership role in anti-immigrant groups, currently serving on the National Board of Advisors of the Carrying Capacity Network, a group that issued a May 2018 Action Alert declaring, that

“In the caravan now piled up against the US’s border walls, (and in Sanctuary cities) [Jean] Raspail’s Camp of the Saints is coming to the USA!  His chillingly prophetic 1973 novel about a huge armada of ‘refugees’ from the Third World invading Europe is being realized both in Europe and here in the USA NOW.”

Raspail’s notoriously racist book depicts the destruction of Europe by brown-skinned refugees.

Adrian Krieg

Adrian Krieg is listed as a Director of the American Freedom Party. The AFP site describes the Swiss-born Krieg as having a Ph.D in Manufacturing Science. Krieg’s AFP biography also states that he serves on the editorial board of the Nationalist Times, the publication of the American Freedom Union, formerly the American Nationalist Union.

Don Wassall is the Executive Director of the American Freedom Union and is also listed as an AFP director. As the AFP page describes, Wassall was the Executive Director of the Populist Party of American from 1987 to 1995, managing the presidential campaigns of neo-Nazi David Duke in 1988 and Christian Identity adherent James “Bo” Gritz in 1992. The Populist Party was founded in 1984 by Willis Carto as a vehicle for various white nationalists, including neo-Nazis, Ku Klux Klan groups, Christian Identity believers and so-called Christian Patriots. The party’s first national chair was Mississippi Klan leader Robert Weems. Wassall wrestled the party away from Willis Carto in 1992. Christian Patriots promote a white Christian republic and the overturn of the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

In the Nationalist Times, Adrian Krieg wrote,

“There exists within our society the predisposition by the ruling regime to articulate gender, race, personal preferences as well as differing social and societal groups as being equal. This is a total communist lie that has no credence in reality. Gender equality is the first issue; it is mostly pushed by the feminist movement, the leadership of which in large part consists of Jewish women…Race equality is a complete repudiation of history and that is why the communists so openly oppose Southern historic monuments and have succeeded in destroying accurate history as a subject in public education…Conversely, the promoted equality of races is ludicrous; Chinese and White societies attained the Bronze Age 5,300 years before the Blacks of Africa, who learned it from the Islamic invasion of Africa. The variance in intelligence (as documented by prominent authors such as Rushton, Francis, Garrett, Murray, and Lynn) between races is huge and indisputable.”

Kreig also wrote in the Nationalist Times that,

“It saddens me that many of our countrymen have succumbed to the free trade lie that permeates every Jewish news source in America. Indeed we live in a world controlled by a Jewish media and a society whose members, thanks to modern education, seem totally incapable of thinking for themselves.”

Ayla Stewart Cancels Appearance

After having first been announced as a speaker at the AFP conference, Ayla Stewart later announced, “I am not associated with that event in any way. I am not associated with the people at that event in any way.” While Stewart’s exit from the AFP event appeared to coincide with the announcement that David Duke would appear as a speaker, her exit is not a product of her own lack of racist credentials.

Ayla Stewart runs the “Wife With a Purpose” website, billing herself as a “Christian, wife, mom of six, author/educator, Nationalist pundit on white Western heritage and God’s love for all His children.” She describes herself as “actively anti-feminism” and notes that she developed a “really strong racial identity” after seeing “so much negativity toward white people” on Twitter.  Stewart’s “white identity” is rooted in biological determinism – the idea that genetic “race” determines characteristics such as human intelligence. Stewart writes,

“what’s baffled me is in the past couple years…people have been saying that race is a social concept – that we just have different skin and that’s it, there’s no other differences. And as somebody who comes from an anthropology background, that really starts to irritate me…our skin is different, our bones are different, our brains are different, there are physical differences in the brain. And then of course, Charles Murray very famously wrote the Bell Curve, so there are differences in IQ in general populations…IQ is genetic.”

Murray and Richard J. Herrnstein’s 1994 book The Bell Curve promoted the idea that racial stratification in the United States was the product of genetic differences in IQ across groups.

Stewart’s biological determinist leanings have led her to an obsession with “white genocide” She describes that,

“The problem with white genocide is that by current birth rates, white people will be extinct within 300 years. If we continue on our current path of not having enough babies, and the little bit of mixed racing, again that’s negligible, but it’s mostly that we’re not having babies, white people aren’t. So, I got involved in that movement and that idea from that perspective.”

Based on these ideas Stewart has promoted the “white baby challenge,” encouraging whites to have more children. She also argues that “I think that anywhere that we’ve seen that where there is a white culture, and we bring in a gangster, black influence, it’s always been detrimental.” She also promotes “traditional families,” which means “obviously heterosexuality.”


Chuck Tanner

Author Chuck Tanner

Chuck Tanner is an Advisory Board member and researcher for the Institute for Research and Education on Human Rights. He lives in Washington State where he researches and works to counter white nationalism and the anti-Indian and other far right social movements.

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