National Socialist Movement

What do they believe?

The National Socialist Movement (NSM) began at the original American Nazi Party, which was founded in 1959 by former Navy Commander George Lincoln Rockwell. In 1974, seven years after Rockwell was murdered by one of his followers, Robert Brannen and Cliff Herrington, two chief lieutenants under Rockwell, formed the National Socialist American Workers Freedom Movement. Jeff Schoep assumed leadership of the group in 1994 and renamed it the National Socialist Movement.

Under Schoep’s leadership, the NSM grew, soon becoming the largest and most powerful white nationalist group in the United States. Unlike other neo-Nazi outfits, the NSM adopted an open-arms recruiting policy that allowed members of other white supremacist groups to take part in NSM actions and join the NSM.

On April 22, 2016, Jeff Schoep brought together leadership from ten different white nationalist organizations to form the Nationalist Front. This meeting of 200 white nationalists streamlined the efforts of all groups to work towards the ideology’s common goals of white separatism, anti-immigration and anti-Semitism.

In November of this year, Schoep declared the NSM will no longer use the swastika on uniforms, flags, banners and patches in an effort to bring their movement more into the mainstream of American politics.

Acts of violence

The National Social Movement does not engage in overt acts of violence, describing themselves as a peaceful, legitimate political organization. Instead, the group organizes rallies and demonstrations in areas most likely to incite a violent response to their presence. For example, in December of 2005, the NSM marched through a predominantly black neighborhood in Toledo, Ohio, dressed in full Nazi uniforms with swastika armbands. This sparked rioting by residents and counter-protestors, resulting in more than $336,000 worth of damage.