VIDEO: An Inside Look At The Ideology Driving Some Veterans To Join Neo-Nazi Groups


As America stumbles out of yet another long, hot summer in which its racial tensions have turned violent, some veterans are in the thick of it, making news in all the wrong ways. There’s the self-styled “CEO” of a U.S.-based neo-Nazi hate group who, it turns out, was a Marine recruiter once. There’s the fellow racist who stood with that CEO’s organization in Charlottesville, hours before allegedly plowing his car into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing one. He was in the Army, however briefly.

There’s an easy temptation for news media and other novices to see a trend here, a necessary connection between the categories “veteran” and “racist,” just as they like to occasionally connect “veteran” and “mass murderer.” That’s simply wrong, and most people know it. The Joint Chiefs of Staff wasted no time after Charlottesville in denouncing race hate and reminding white supremacists that there was no place for them in the ranks. Vets, individually and with virtually every service organization in the country, reminded everybody else that the U.S. military is 2-0 against enemy white supremacist regimes. Even the 82nd Airborne’s Twitter account spent some time dunking on neo-Nazis this month.

But… there’s something happening here. Take the case of Nathan Damigo: former Marine 0311, veteran of two Iraq deployments, convicted felon, and founder of Identity Evropa, a crew of haircut-coding Nazi hipsters (no, really, “nipsters” are a thing) whose “identitarian” shtick about Muslims and Jews watering down civilization probably sounded better in the original German.

As this Task & Purpose video shows, Damigo and Identity Evropa are actively cultivating contacts with fellow vets — and for some, the group’s authoritarian, minority-bashing ideology connects.

A few “fashy” eugenics enthusiasts do not represent even a speck next to the majority of American military veterans. But the increasing boldness of ex-military neo-fascists and white nationalists makes it worth asking: How do former service members get from defending the U.S. constitution to here? And just how many Nathan Damigos are there out there?

(Air Force photo / Tech Sgt. Oneika Banks)

Kirtland Air Force Base isn't much different from the world beyond its gates when it comes to dealing with mental illnesses, a base clinical psychologist says.

Maj. Benjamin Carter told the Journal the most frequent diagnosis on the base is an anxiety disorder.

"It's not a surprise, but I anticipate about anytime in the population in America, about 20% of the population has some form of diagnosable anxiety disorder, and it's no different in the military," he said.

Leading the way among the anxiety disorders, he said, were post-traumatic stress disorder "or something like panic disorder or generalized anxiety disorder."

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(National Archives / Marine Corps Photo / WO Obie Newcomb, Jr., November 1943)

The DNA of a niece and nephew, who never met their uncle, has helped identify the remains of the Kansas Marine who died in WWII.

The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency announced that 21-year-old U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Raymond Warren was identified using DNA and circumstantial evidence. Warren had been buried in a cemetery in the Gilbert Islands, where he was killed when U.S. forces tried to take secure one of the islands from the Japanese.

The Battle of Tarawa lasted from Nov. 20 to Nov. 23, 1943, and claimed the lives of 1,021 U.S. marines and sailors, more than 3,000 Japanese soldiers and an estimated 1,000 Korean laborers before the U.S. troops seized control, the agency said.

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(U.S. Air Force photo by Staff. Sgt. Daniel Snider)

Arizona lawmakers are vowing to fight a plan by the Air Force to start retiring some of the nation's fleet of A-10 Thunderbolt II ground-attack jets — a major operation at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base — as part of a plan to drop some older, legacy weapon systems to help pay for new programs.

U.S. Sen. Martha McSally, R-Ariz., a former A-10 pilot, and U.S. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., both vowed to fight the move to retire 44 of the oldest A-10s starting this year.

During a press briefing last week, Air Force officials unveiled plans to start mothballing several older platforms, including retiring some A-10s even as it refits others with new wings.

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MOSCOW/SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea, whose leader Kim Jong Un was filmed riding through the snow on a white stallion last year, has spent tens of thousands of dollars on 12 purebred horses from Russia, according to Russian customs data.

Accompanied by senior North Korean figures, Kim took two well-publicized rides on the snowy slopes of the sacred Paektu Mountain in October and December.

State media heralded the jaunts as important displays of strength in the face of international pressure and the photos of Kim astride a galloping white steed were seen around the world.

North Korea has a long history of buying pricey horses from Russia and customs data first reported by Seoul-based NK News suggests that North Korea may have bolstered its herd in October.

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Screenshot of a propaganda video featuring former Pakistani Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - A high-profile local Taliban figure who announced and justified the 2012 attack on teenage Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai has escaped detention, Pakistan's interior minister confirmed a few days after the militant announced his breakout on social media.

Former Pakistani Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan, who claimed responsibility on behalf of his group for scores of Taliban attacks, proclaimed his escape on Twitter and then in an audio message sent to Pakistani media earlier this month.

The Pakistani military, which had kept Ehsan in detention for three years, has declined to comment but, asked by reporters about the report, Interior Minister Ijaz Shah, said: "That is correct, that is correct."

Shah, a retired brigadier general, added that "you will hear good news" in response to questions about whether there had been progress in hunting down Ehsan.

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