Vanguard America

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Vanguard America
Vanguard America Flag.svg
AbbreviationVA
Formation2015; 7 years ago (2015)
FounderDillon Hopper (a.k.a. Dillon Irizarry)
TypeNeo-Nazism
Neo-fascism
White supremacism
White nationalism
PurposePromoting neo-Nazism/fascism and a white supremacist version of American nationalism
Location
  • United States
Members
200+ (2017)
Affiliations

Vanguard America is an American white supremacist, neo-Nazi, neo-fascist organization. The organization is also a member of the Nationalist Front.[1][2] The group gained significant attention after it was revealed that James Alex Fields had marched with them at the Unite the Right rally before being arrested on murder charges.[3][4] The group has its roots in the alt-right movement.[5]

History[edit]

Vanguard America was founded in 2015, in California. The group was founded and is run by Dillon Hopper. In 2017, Hopper claimed membership of 200+ members. Hopper, a Marine Corps veteran who had served in Afghanistan, also claimed that "many" members were veterans but active duty service members were barred from affiliating with the group until their contract had ended for their "safety".[6][note 1] Hopper also states that local branches exist in Arizona, California, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington. In July 2017, it also created a women's division.[2][1]

The group had a presence in the Unite the Right rally in August 2017. James Alex Fields, who was later responsible for killing a counter protester and injuring 19 others in a vehicle-ramming attack, was seen marching with the group. The leadership later disavowed him, stating that he was not a member of the group.[1][3][4] The group took part in the "White Lives Matter" rally in October 2017.[7]

The group supports the right-wing nationalist concept of blood and soil.[8] The group has put up racist and anti-Semitic fliers in various towns.[9] On December 18, 2017, its account was suspended by Twitter.[10]

Vanguard America has produced two competing splinter groups, the more popular Patriot Front, founded in August 2017, and the National Socialist Legion, founded in January 2018.[2][11]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Possibly due to the US military's screening procedures meant to prevent recruitment of those affiliated with gangs or extremist groups.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Alleged Charlottesville Driver Who Killed One Rallied With Alt-Right Vanguard America Group". Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c "Vanguard America". Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Vanguard America has increasingly become a neo-Nazi voice - NY Daily News". www.nydailynews.com. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Vanguard America, a white supremacist group, denies Charlottesville ramming suspect was a member". www.washingtonpost.com. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  5. ^ "Deconstructing the symbols and slogans spotted in Charlottesville". Washington Post. August 18, 2017.
  6. ^ Snow, Shawn (September 4, 2019). "The neo-Nazi boot: Inside one Marine's descent into extremism". Marine Corps Times. Retrieved March 24, 2022.
  7. ^ "Neo-Nazis held rallies in Tennessee. They were drowned out by hundreds of counter-protesters". The Independent. October 28, 2017. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  8. ^ "Patriot Front - Reclaim America". Patriot Front. Retrieved November 6, 2020.
  9. ^ "Racist posters found on Rutgers campus and bus". New Jersey 101.5 – Proud to be New Jersey – New Jersey News Radio. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  10. ^ Luckerson, Victor (December 18, 2017). "Twitter Cracks Down on Hate-Mongerers". The Ringer.
  11. ^ "National Socialist Legion". Anti-Defamation League. Retrieved June 6, 2021.