September 14, 1953 |
Burlington, North Carolina, USA
|Occupation||Writer, political activist|
|Genre||White supremacy, science fiction|
Harold Armstead Covington (born September 14, 1953) is an American neo-Nazi activist and writer. He has been active in white nationalism in the United States and United Kingdom since the 1970s. Covington advocates the creation of an "Aryan homeland" in the Pacific Northwest, and is the founder of the Northwest Front, an online political movement which seeks to further this goal.
Born in Burlington, North Carolina, Covington joined the National Socialist White People's Party while in the U.S. Army in 1972, then moved to South Africa, and later to Rhodesia (now known as Zimbabwe). Covington was a founding member of the Rhodesian White People's Party, and later claimed to have served in the Rhodesian Army. He was deported from Rhodesia in 1976, after sending threatening letters to a Jewish congregation.
Covington joined the National Socialist Party of America (NSPA) after returning from Rhodesia. In 1980, while leader of the party, he lost a primary election for the Republican nomination for candidates for attorney general of North Carolina. Covington resigned as president of the NSPA in 1981. That same year, Covington alleged a connection between the NSPA and would-be presidential assassin John W. Hinckley. However, law enforcement authorities were never able to corroborate the alleged Hinckley-NSPA connection.
Covington later settled in the United Kingdom for several years, where he made contact with British far-right groups and was involved in setting up the neo-Nazi terror group Combat 18 (C18) in 1992. C18 openly promotes violence and antisemitism, and has adopted some of the features of the American far right.
In 1994, Covington started a new political entity, the National Socialist White People's Party (NSWPP), in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, which was briefly the most active neo-Nazi party in the United States. However, Covington no longer runs the NSWPP. He launched a website in 1996, and used the nickname Winston Smith, becoming one of the first neo-Nazi presences on the Internet.
Since 2005, Covington has maintained a political blog entitled "Thoughtcrime". He also records a weekly podcast, "Radio Free Northwest", in which he discusses politics and racial issues. Covington is furthermore the author of a number of novels in various genres. He runs a blog focused on Holocaust Denial under the pseudonym Winston Smith. 
Covington was mentioned in the media in connection with the 2015 Charleston shooting, whose perpetrator Dylann Roof cited Covington as an influence. According to Covington, the shooting was "a preview of coming attractions" but he also believed it was a bad idea for his followers to engage in random acts of violence, instead he supports organized revolution. 
- Murhpy, Dan (18 June 2015). "Why would an American white supremacist be fond of Rhodesia?". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 27 March 2016.
- Brennan Clarke (July 25, 2011). "Neo-Nazi sympathizer fatally shot by Nanaimo police didn’t fire flare gun, probe told". Toronto Globe and Mail. Retrieved November 7, 2013.
- NorthwestFront.org. Retrieved June 6, 2012.
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- Tsai, Robert (2014). America's Forgotten Constitutions: Defiant Visions of Power and Community. Harvard University Press. p. 338. ISBN 978-0674059955.
- "Internet Archive Search: Harold Covington". Retrieved February 18, 2013.
- "Smelly Cheese". Southern Poverty Law Center. Summer 2003. Retrieved July 23, 2011.
- "White supremacist calls Charleston 'a preview of coming attractions'".