Thursday, June 23, 2011

Harold Covington Calls Dr. William Pierce a Coward

In his podcast of 9 June 2011 Harold Covington played the well known recording of Robert Jay Mathews' speech at the 1983 annual Labor Day gathering of the National Alliance. Covington described it as "a very rare recording." That may be true insofar as there are not many recordings of Robert Mathews, but this recording, with an introductory commentary by Dr. Pierce, has been freely available online, first through and now through, for some years now.

The speech as found online has an introductory and concluding commentaty from Dr. Pierce. (Click here to listen.)

Covington concealed the existence of Dr. Pierce's commentary on Mathews' speech from his audience, telling them that Dr. Pierce had "tried to bury" the recording for years as part of a general attempt to dissociate himself publicly from Robert Mathews.

Covington repeats the completely unsubstantiated claim that Dr. Pierce received $300,000 from Matthews, asserting that "everybody and his dog in the movement knows," which is simply a lie. By agreement with other members of the Order Mathews was supposed to give Dr. Pierce $50,000, the same amount that several others allegedly received. It is purely a matter of speculation as to whether Mathews really gave him more than that, and if so, how much more. Covington's claim that Dr. Pierce received $300,000 from Mathews is pure speculation.*

The main focus here however is on the more unusual and surprising -- one might even say absurd -- accusation that Dr. Pierce for some years tried to suppress the fact that he had ever known Robert Mathews.

I knew that National Vanguard Books had been selling cassettes of Robert Mathews' 1983 speech at least as of the early 1990s when I bought my copy from National Vanguard Books. To learn what was done with the recording in the 1980s, I had to make inquiries.

First I discovered in online newspaper archives that in 1984, when news-media were attempting to contact Dr. Pierce for comment about Mathews, Dr. Pierce refused to talk to them. Under the circumstances, this was simple prudence. The fact, however, that the media were trying to contact Dr. Pierce for comment about Mathews, means that the connection was well known.

I asked Tom Metzger for his comments on Covington's accusation. Metzger said that the recording of Mathews' 1983 speech was never "buried" but was made available by the National Alliance on cassettes at the time. Metzger said that Dr. Pierce never attempted to pretend that he did not know Mathews, and certainly never "denounced" him.

Kevin Strom also says that Mathews' speech was made available contemporaneously through the National Alliance Bulletin, and that about a hundred members of the National Alliance were present when the speech was made.

The National Alliance Bulletin of December 1984, the same month that Mathews died, specifically referred to Mathews' former membership in the National Alliance as well as his 1983 speech. In the January-February 1985 issue of National Vanguard appeared an essay titled, "What It Will Take," wherewith Dr. Pierce praised Mathews without reservation.

I found that shortly after Mathews' demise, Dr. Pierce attended a couple of gatherings where Debbie Mathews (the widow, and a member of the National Alliance) and other people that had known or admired Bob Mathews were also present. Metzger says that Robert Mathews was heavily discussed by everybody at these events, especially by Dr. Pierce because he had known Mathews personally while most others had not. One of these gatherings was at Bob Miles' church and the other was at Aryan Nations, the event where Blood in the Face was recorded.

In 1989, when National Vanguard Books acquired a high-speed tape-duplicator, the Mathews speech and others were advertised for the first time in the book catalog.

Harold Covington's claim that Dr. Pierce tried to deny that he ever knew Robert Mathews is pure comedy. There is not an iota of truth in it.

Covington the Self-Aggrandizing Publicity-Hound

As always, the personal smear is a means for Covington to declare his superiority to the person attacked. First he makes the false accusation, then takes the moral pose that he, noble Harold Covington, would never do such a thing.

Covington declares that he would never try to distance himself from anybody involved in any exciting illegal revolutionary activities. There is some semblance of truth in this, insofar as Covington has gone out of his way to try to create the appearance of an association between himself and such activities, at least as early as John Hinckley's attempt to assassinate Ronald Reagan in 1981.

A crucial difference here, however, is that Dr. Pierce really knew Robert Jay Mathews, whereas it is highly doubtful that Harold Covington ever really had any contact with Hinckley.

Think about it: if Covington had really known Hinckley, the smart thing to do, as chairman of the National Socialist Party of America at the time, for the benefit of Hinckley and the NSPA alike, would have been to shut up about it. The Secret Service ultimately dismissed Covington's claims about Hinckley as mere publicity-seeking. You can read a contemporary analysis of that hoax here.
* Covington seems to use the claim that Dr. Pierce received such a large sum of money in order to explain away the fact that Dr. Pierce was much more successful. Since Covington in the late 1970s also received a windfall in the form of a $90,000 inheritance, which he somehow managed to squander in a few years so that by 1987 Gary Gallo could describe him as "destitute," it behooves Covington, for the sake of his self-esteem, to claim that Dr. Pierce's windfall was much more than what he got.

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  1. Harold Covington, adamantly denies any contact with Hinckley, I think you are confused.


    1. "Covington claimed Hinckley drove to St. Louis with Texas-based neo-Nazis to attend a rally on March 12, 1978." -- Jack Taylor, The Oklahoman, 3 April 1981.

      So, obviously Covington has claimed to have some knowledge of Hinckley's activities, in addition to signing his NSPA membership card.

      But the reality is that Hinckley was never in the NSPA: Covington lies about that.

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