Cleveland Jewish News, Aug. 1, 2002
Hatemonger Erich Gliebe promoted after death of chairman William Pierce.
By MARILYN H. KARFELD, Staff Reporter
Erich Gliebe, longtime coordinator of the Cleveland unit of the National Alliance, has been named the new national chairman of the white supremacist group, according to an e-mail sent Monday to National Alliance members.
Billy J. Roper II, deputy membership coordinator, announced Gliebe’s promotion following the July 23 death of National Alliance leader William Pierce at age 68. The CJN obtained the e-mail from Mark Pitcavage, Anti-Defamation League national director of fact-finding.
Ranked several years ago by the Southern Poverty Law Center as one of six rising hatemongers in the U.S., Gliebe has managed the National Alliance’s Resistance Records out of the Cleveland area and edited its glossy Resistance Magazine.
Resistance Records uses white power rock and racist video games to recruit young people, particularly alienated males, to its neo-Nazi cause.
With estimated annual revenues of $1 million, Resistance Records is a “cash cow” for the National Alliance, notes ADL’s Pitcavage. “There are few fringe groups that have that kind of income. At the same time Resistance Records brings in money, it helps get the words out and brings in recruits.”
Gliebe (pronounced glee-bee), 38, reportedly has recently relocated to West Virginia, where Pierce headquartered his group on a 10-acre compound in Hillsboro.
Unlike members of other white supremacist groups such as the Ku Klux Klan, National Alliance leaders are intelligent, well-organized and well-funded, according to Bettysue Feuer, regional director of the ADL.
The ADL, which monitors hate groups, had hoped that with Pierce’s death the 1,500-member National Alliance would splinter into warring factions.
West Virginia law enforcement authorities worried that a more violent faction would take over the group upon the death of Pierce, who learned a month before his death that he had terminal kidney cancer, Feuer says.
With Gliebe’s prompt promotion, infighting seems less likely.
In 1996, Gliebe arranged a speech in Cleveland by Holocaust denier David Irving, who later lost a libel suit he brought in England against Holocaust historian Deborah Lipstadt. The following year Gliebe organized a Cleveland address by former KKK leader David Duke, who spoke to about 200 people at the Lithuanian American Hall on E. 185th Street.