Florida is home to many Neo Nazi groups and growing

Florida seems to be a great base for a large number of Neo Nazi and other hate groups

As News Talk Florida reported earlier this week about a man accused of shooting his two roommates Friday in a Tampa Palms apartment. He told police he shared neo-Nazi beliefs with the men until he converted to Islam then killed them because they showed disrespect for his faith.

The man at the heart of this investigation is Brandon Russell a person who served in the Florida National Guard, who is an admitted neo-Nazi and was fond of Timothy McVeigh. The man who carried out the Oklahoma City bombing killing 168 people and injuring 680 more back in 1995.

There was a massive number of explosives found at the posh Tampa Palms home of Russell and his former roommates. So, as authorities pour over what was going on in Tampa Palms the real story could be what Russell and his roommates were planning before things went wrong.

Fact is there is a growing number of White Supremacist groups finding Florida to be fertile group for recruitment.

Neo-Nazi groups have found a home in the Sunshine State where at present there are 17 active hate groups who believe in the inferiority of Jews, African-Americans, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The Ku Klux Klan, Knights of the White Disciples, Ku Klos Knights

of the Ku Klux Klan, Endangered Souls RC/Crew 519, Gallows Tree

Wotansvolk Alliance, American Vanguard and the Stormfront are just a few of the over 95 groups identified by the Southern Poverty Law Center designates as hate groups. The state of Florida has at least one chapter in 10 of the 95 largest groups listed by the SPLC.

These groups like to target young men to join their ranks and according to 2017 report released in January by the Anti-Defamation League, college campuses are the focus of the hate groups.

White supremacist groups have taken aim at college campuses visiting 104 colleges nationwide. They are posting anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim and racist fliers, posters and stickers.

The 104 visits took place in 25 states, with eight incidents on Florida campuses.

According to the ADL the groups went on a recruiting tour in the Sunshine State that included trips to University of Florida, Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, State College of Florida in Bradenton, the University of Central Florida and Valencia College East Campus in Orlando.

In an interview given earlier this year to the Miami Herald, Oren Segal, the director of the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism and one of the authors of the report was clear that “This level of recruitment on college campuses is unprecedented.”

He went on to say “White supremacists have on occasion tried to attract younger people, but not on the level we’ve seen at this time and in the diversity of ways,” Segal said. “They view young people as bringing energy to a movement. What they want to do is try to recruit a new generation of people to carry on their messages to the future.”

So, the Neo-Nazi part of the Brandon Russell investigation, might almost as chilling the as the actual murder of his two roommates.

 

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Jim Williams is the Washington Bureau Chief, Digital Director as well as the Director of Special Projects for Genesis Communications. He is starting his third year as part of the team. This is Williams 40th year in the media business, and in that time he has served in a number of capacities. He is a seven time Emmy Award winning television producer, director, writer and executive. He has developed four regional sports networks, directed over 2,000 live sporting events including basketball, football, baseball hockey, soccer and even polo to name a few sports. Major events include three Olympic Games, two World Cups, two World Series, six NBA Playoffs, four Stanley Cup Playoffs, four NCAA Men’s National Basketball Championship Tournaments (March Madness), two Super Bowl and over a dozen college bowl games. On the entertainment side Williams was involved with Berman Concerts and directed over 500 concerts for Showtime, Pay Per View and MTV Networks.