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Neo-Nazi and Navy veteran explains the right way to struggle white supremacy within the navy

  • Chuck Leek, a former neo-Nazi and navy aviator, instructed us how he recruited different servicemen into his hate group.
  • The US navy nonetheless doesn’t particularly ban members of white supremacist teams.
  • Greater than a 3rd of the troopers say they noticed white supremacists within the ranks.
  • Visit the Insider homepage for more stories.

Chuck Leek has spent a part of his life working and hoping for a riot just like the one which occurred on the U.S. Capitol on January 6.

He is a former neo-Nazi, and now he talks in regards to the relevance of his navy previous to present politics.

“I did not grow to be an lively and actual white supremacist till after I joined the Navy,” Leek instructed Insider.

Leek is a former US Navy Airman 1st Class. He was additionally a skinhead who attracted new members to the naval base the place he hooked up helicopters.

The FBI referred to as them “ghost skins” more than ten years ago – skinheads mixing into society and slipping into regulation enforcement to infiltrate and recruit, instigate breaches of investigations, unfold tolerance for racism and endanger the safety of regulation enforcement sources and personnel. order.

“I spent loads of time getting ready and recruiting folks,” Leek mentioned. “I completely know that the bottom within the navy understands the depth of the issue.”

Greater than a 3rd of troopers say they noticed white supremacists within the ranks, based on a 2017 survey, and the navy nonetheless doesn’t particularly ban members of white supremacist teams.

Insider spoke to Leek at his dwelling in San Diego to learn the way he recruited from the ranks and what it will take to eradicate white supremacy within the navy.

When he watched the January 6 riot in California, Leek mentioned he felt a part of the accountability.

“It was form of a heartbreaking day,” Leek mentioned. “For a superb a part of my life I used to be actively in search of one thing like this. You realize, the autumn of the federal government, the chaos in America and the collapse of society.”

As many as one in 5 individuals who stormed the U.S. Capitol had navy expertise, based on the George Washington University Program on Extremism. The insurgency was probably the most critical of a rising variety of assaults by far-right activists in public, mentioned Mike German, a former FBI particular agent who has frolicked undercover investigating the teams. white supremacy.

“We talked about ‘How can we get the abilities that we wish to use to create an occasion so massive it will begin a race battle?’ German instructed Insider.

“The recruiting technique was to recruit troopers for coaching, to have entry to tools,” mentioned Leek. “Significantly with skinheads who’ve infiltrated regulation enforcement, the best hazard is that they might achieve entry to and hurt folks of shade.”

Leek recruited different troopers into his hate group.

Navy Recruit Training Camp

U.S. Navy recruits march in formation on the Recruit Coaching Command in Nice Lakes, Unwell., Might 14, 2020.

US Navy / Seaman Amy Johnson


In 1988, native information aired a three-part collection on Chuck’s white supremacist gang. Leek spoke of “skinhead and white delight” within the section and mentioned the present is unlikely to have an effect on his profession within the Navy, though he added “it would.”

A white supremacist chief and former KKK Nice Dragon, Tom Metzger, was additionally featured within the report. After the story, he contacted Leek.

“He requested us to deliver as many new folks as doable into the group,” mentioned Leek.

Metzger needed navy insiders like Leek to assist result in his finish to the white supremacist occasion: a race battle and a white ethno-state.

Leek mentioned his recruiting to the naval base needed to be delicate. However he was capable of spot potential recruits by the best way they acted round navy personnel of shade.

“Within the navy, you are uncovered to lots of people of shade, and you’ll form of get a really feel with folks, white folks, after they’re much less comfy with that,” Leek mentioned.

“And after they, , issues they are saying, after which when the coloured folks aren’t round, the masks tends to fall off, ?” And so we’d actually be rolling after individuals who had been free to talk their minds.

After the report, the Naval Felony Investigative Service discovered Nazi airmen in Chuck’s trash when questioned.

“Clearly, I did not inform the reality,” Leek mentioned. “I lied about nearly the whole lot. It was truly a bit surprising after they allow us to go with out scot.”

In some way, Leek saved his job as a helicopter electrician on base. Actually, within the NCIS report, the naval investigator appeared to point out sympathy for Leek.

“They had been extra involved with whether or not or not we had been proof against the influence of different folks on the bottom,” he mentioned.

Chuck then served two years in jail for beating a Hispanic man.

Consultants urge the US to struggle extremism within the navy.

Lloyd Austin

Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin.

Jim Lo Scalzo / Pool through AP


Leek’s expertise isn’t a surprise to consultants like Heidi Beirich, co-founder of the International Venture Towards Hate & Extremism. She testified earlier than Congress in 2020 on white supremacy within the navy and is advocating for obligatory navy stories on white supremacy in its ranks.

“Not one of the packages associated to eliminating white supremacists and different extremists are ok,” she instructed Insider. “They barely exist.”

“Hear, the scariest factor that occurs if extremists are within the navy is that they study to kill,” she mentioned. “Particularly with skinheads who’ve infiltrated regulation enforcement … The best hazard is that they will entry and hurt folks of shade.”

In the meantime, black veterans like Victor LaGroon have referred to as white supremacy an existential risk.

“They’re all a risk to our democracy, and they’re all a risk to my existence,” mentioned LaGroon, who represents 300,000 veterans as chairman of the Black Veterans Empowerment Council. “So , I do not care the place the service member is branched out or on responsibility or what base it’s on. You are in danger.”

After the Capitol Riots, Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin ordered members of the navy to assessment their oath and focus on extremism. Nonetheless, present navy coverage permits members of white supremacist teams to be within the armed forces, so long as they aren’t “lively” white supremacists.

A Protection Division spokesperson instructed Insider that the navy will replace its definition of extremism quickly and {that a} process drive will current a wide range of options to Secretary Austin this summer season.

“He is not being confronted head-on,” LaGroon mentioned. “He’s not confronted constantly. There isn’t a important accountability for that.”

Leek needs the navy to acknowledge its actuality. However to eradicate white supremacy, he says the navy wants to listen to its story and by no means let it occur once more.

“A zero tolerance coverage for any form of racial incident can be a superb begin,” Leek mentioned. “In 1988, they placed on blinders and regarded the opposite method. And it continues to today.”

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