League of the South (LoS)

league of south logo

Key Points:

  • The League of the South (LoS) is a white supremacist group that advocates for southern secession and an independent, white-dominated South.
  • The LoS espouses racist and anti-Semitic rhetoric.  It organizes white supremacist rallies, conferences and flash demonstrations, and attends events organized by other white supremacist groups.
  • Founded in 1994, the LoS has been stagnant until recently, but is raising its public profile, holding multiple public events and quickly becoming one of the country’s most active white supremacist groups.
  • The LoS is part of the Nationalist Front, an umbrella organization that consists of neo-Nazis, traditional white supremacists, and some racist skinheads.

Overview:

For more than two decades, the Alabama-based League of the South (LoS) has advocated for southern secession. For much of that time, the group denied allegations of racism or white supremacy. In recent years, however, LoS members and its leader, Michael Hill of Killian, Alabama, have publicly espoused hardline white supremacist and anti-Semitic views.

Origins:

J. Michael Hill, a former history professor at Stillman College, a historically black college in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, founded the League of the South in 1994. The group was originally called the Southern League, but that name was already taken by a baseball league.  The LoS is the largest and longest-lasting of a number of neo-Confederate groups that emerged in the 1990s.

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League of South leader Michael Hill

Hill established the LoS to advocate for a modern-day southern secession and an independent southern nation dominated by “Anglo-Celtic culture,” -- a thinly-veiled code for “whites.”  Many early leaders and members of the LoS were paleoconservative writers and academics. Paleoconservatism is a school of conservatism that advocates for limited government, opposes multiculturalism and immigration, and seeks a return to the social values (regarding race, religion and gender) of the pre-Civil Rights era.  Paleoconservatism has had a considerable intellectual influence on the alt right.

In the LoS’s early years, its racism was more implicit than explicit, and leadership denied allegations that it was a hate group. However, incidents of overt racism in its various publications emerged from time to time. In 2003, a South Carolina newspaper revealed that copies of inflammatory books including Little Black Sambo and The Negro: The Southerner’s Problem were being sold in the LoS unofficial state headquarters.

That same year, the LoS held a rally in Montgomery, Alabama, in support of then-Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore’s refusal to remove his Ten Commandments monument at the Alabama Judicial Building. During Hurricane Katrina in 2005, various LoS members offered assistance to victims—as long as they were white.

Even in its early years, the League of the South attracted some hard-core extremists to its ranks, including Michael Tubbs, a white supremacist and former Green Beret.  In 1987, Tubbs and another person assaulted and robbed two African-American soldiers at Fort Bragg in North Carolina, while yelling, “This is for the Klan.” Authorities discovered an arsenal of weapons and explosives connected to Tubbs, much of it stolen from military installations—and some subsequently sold to white supremacist groups. By then, Tubbs had his own group, the Knights of the New Order, and was plotting to target black and Jewish-owned businesses. In 1991, Tubbs pleaded guilty to federal weapons charges, and following his release from prison, he joined the LoS and eventually became a leader in its Florida chapter.  Tubbs remains a key member of the LoS.

By the 2010s, Michael Hill had become far more openly radical himself, advocating that LoS members hone their survivalist skills and the formation of private militias. By 2013, the LoS was holding “rifle clinics” for its members and organizing marches against the “demographic displacement” of white southerners by non-whites.  At this time, the LoS still cared enough about its image to refuse to allow white supremacist Matthew Heimbach to join its rallies because of his association with neo-Nazis, but soon, the LoS itself was openly associating with neo-Nazis and embracing its identity as a hardcore white supremacist group.  Along the way, Hill’s group lost many of its original members, who found the group had become too radical for their tastes, but picked up a younger group of followers who were attracted to the group’s open racism and white supremacy.  

Ideology:

Openly racist and anti-Semitic, the League of the South espouses white supremacist ideology and southern nationalism, advocating for an independent southern nation devoid of Jews and other minorities. Hill wrote in a March 2018 social media post that ridding the south of Jews and their influence is the “foundational concern that must be taken care of before anything else.”

Hill’s VK.com post

Hill’s VK.com post

League of the South anti-Semitism and racism in their own words:

  • “Anti-Semitism is a White survival strategy. Or if it's not, it should be. Maybe one day you'll learn, White Man, before (((they))) completely destroy you and your civilization.” Michael Hill, Twitter, April 14, 2018
  • “If there is a war, you can bet that a fuckin’ (((Zhid))) is behind it, gleefully rubbing his grubby hands in anticipation of profits and the shedding of goyim blood. FUCK THIS!!” Michael Hill, Twitter, April 13, 2018
  • “A stupid, unfounded belief in racial equality, fostered by the perfidious Jew, will be the death of the White race. Reject equality. Even a blind man in the dark can see it's a Big Lie.” Michael Hill, Twitter, April 3, 2018
  • "The Jew is filling up his cup of wrath to the very top, waiting for his day of divine judgement. He now occupies the sacred &, at the same time, the most profane & accused ground on earth: Golgotha, Calvary, the place where they murdered the Son of God Himself. They will pay.” Michael Hill, Twitter, March 24, 2018
jews dixie
  • “The US was created by and for Europeans. We are the "posterity" our White Nationalist Founding Fathers had in mind. Were you consulted by those who are changing America's nature through immigration, multiculturalism, and political correctness? Me either. This is the Jew at work!” Michael Hill, Twitter, March 22, 2018
  • “The Jews' claws are sunk too deeply in the USA for her to survive in her present form. We must have an independent South to rid our part of the earth of this pestilence. There must be no Jew influence in our new nation-state. That is our prime concern.” Michael Hill, Twitter, March 22, 2018
  • “For Whites, no more brothers’ wars. This at present means between the US and Russia. The Jew foments these conflicts to destroy the world’s White population. Juden Raus! #110 in 2018!” Michael Hill, Twitter, March 19, 2018
  • “Southern man, next time you consider "making nice" with niggers and Zhids (kikes), just remember what they've done to your civilization (e.g. New Orleans, Memphis, Atlanta, et al). They cannot be trusted and must be driven out. The South must once again be White Man's Land!” Michael Hill, Vk.com, December 21, 2017
  • “Once the globalist-progressive coalition of Jews, minorities, and anti-white whites stop reeling in confusion from the results of yesterday’s election, we can expect them to start striking back with trickery and violence.  Thus, we as Southern Nationalists face both danger and opportunity. Now more than ever, we need tight organization and numbers to help drive a stake through Dracula’s heart and keep him from rising once again to menace our people and civilization.  No mercy should be shown to the enemies of our God, our Folk, and our civilization.” Michael Hill, Statement on election of Donald Trump LoS website, November 9, 2016
  • “If the white races are to survive, all negroids and Islamists must be removed from our lands. And more importantly, their (((puppet masters))) must be exterminated.” Joseph Cole, Vk.com. July 10, 2017
  • “[This country was] Built by God. Civilized, Colonized, and Cultured by White Men with Guns. Taken to the trash heap by Jews and Negroids.” Larry Paulson, Facebook, April 17, 2017

Tactics:

As the League of the South has radicalized over the past decade, its tactics have evolved to more closely resemble those of other hardcore white supremacist groups.

The LoS has raised its public profile recently by organizing a number of white supremacist rallies, conferences, and flash demonstrations. They also attend events organized by other white supremacist groups.

In 2018, the LoS started to employ flash demonstrations as a protest tactic. These unannounced appearances allow the group to avoid large counter-protests by anti-racists. On April 7, a group of more than 45 LoS members and supporters, accompanied by notorious white supremacist David Duke, held a “flash” roadside event in Wetumpka, Alabama. In March, they held impromptu rallies at a Daffodil Festival in Camden, Arkansas, and during a St. Patrick’s Day celebration in Knoxville, Tennessee.

The LoS is also building alliances with other white supremacist groups and individuals. In April 2018, the LoS held a conference honoring Duke for “a half of century of work on behalf of our people and civilization.” Duke spoke at the LoS annual conference in June 2017, which was also attended by members of the Global Crusader Knights, an Alabama-based Klan group.

In early 2017, the League of the South joined the Nationalist Front, a loose alliance of white supremacist groups that includes neo-Nazis, traditional white supremacists and racist skinheads.  Throughout 2017, the League participated in events as part of the Nationalist Front, including the August “Unite the Right” in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the October “White Live Matter” rally in Shelbyville, Tennessee.

The LoS also collaborates with the Knights Party, an Arkansas-based Klan group. Hill is a scheduled speaker for the Klan’s April 2018 Faith and Freedom conference at their headquarters in Harrison, Arkansas.

Recent activity:

  • Wetumpka, Alabama, April 7, 2018: Approximately four dozen League of the South members participated in a road side flash demonstration followed by a conference honoring long-time white supremacist leader David Duke and celebrating Confederate Heritage Month.
  • Knoxville, Tennessee, March 17, 2018: Approximately two dozen League of the South members participated in a flash demonstration during a St. Patrick’s Day festival.
  • Camden, Arkansas, March 10, 2018: Several members of League of the South, alongside members of the Knights Party, an Arkansas-based Klan group, held a flash demonstration near a Daffodil Festival.
  • Knoxville, Tennessee, February 17, 2018: Several members of the League of the South attended a Matthew Heimbach speaking event at the University of Tennessee. Heimbach was the co-founder of the neo-Nazi Traditionalist Worker Party until it imploded in the spring of 2018 following Heimbach’s arrest on domestic violence charges.
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LoS members assemble in Knoxville, Tennessee

  • Tallahassee, Florida, January 27, 2018: Approximately two dozen League of the South members rallied in front of the Old State Capital building.
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LoS members and supporters gather in parking in Tallahassee, Florida

  • Shelbyville, Tennessee, October 28, 2018: Several dozen members League of the South members, along with other groups associated with the Nationalist Front, participated in a White Lives Matter rally.
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LoS member at the “White Lives Matter” rally in Shelbyville

  • Crossville, Tennessee, September 29, 2017: Several members of the League of the South attended a white supremacist conference organized by long-time white supremacist Billy Roper of Mountain View, Arkansas.
  • Hollywood, Florida, August 2017: Several League of the South members participated in a counter demonstration outside the town’s city hall during a meeting of city commissioners who were voting to rename three city streets previously named in honor of Confederate generals.
  • Charlottesville, Virginia, August 2017: Several dozen League of the South members, along with other groups associated with the Nationalist Front, participated in the Unite the Right rally.
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LoS member at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia

  • New Orleans, Louisiana, May 7, 2017: About a dozen League of the South members joined a group of white supremacists and others to protest the removal of several Confederate monuments.
  • Pikeville, Kentucky, April 28, 2017: More than a dozen League of the South members, along with other groups associated with the Nationalist Front, rallied in front of the Pike County courthouse.
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LoS members and supporters gather for rally in Pikeville, Kentucky

  • Auburn, Alabama, April 18, 2017: Several members of the League of the South attended a speech by Richard Spencer at Auburn University.
  • Wetumpka, Alabama, June 23, 2017: League of the South members and supporters held their annual conference. The conference was attended by long-time white supremacist David Duke and members of the Global Crusader Knights, an Alabama-based Klan group.
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David Duke and members of the Global Crusader Knights attend LoS conference

Recent Criminal activity:

  • Tyler Watkins Davis, a LoS member from Middleburg, Florida, is facing charges of malicious wounding for his alleged role in the August 2017 parking garage beating of DeAndre Harris in the aftermath of the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.
  • LoS member James M. O’Brien of Tampa, Florida, was arrested at the August 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, and later convicted of a misdemeanor charge for carrying a concealed handgun. He was sentenced to 60 days in jail, all suspended, and fined $500.
  • Ryan M. King, a LoS member from Montgomery, Alabama, was arrested for disorderly conduct for his role in a fight in Auburn, Alabama, while attending Richard Spencer’s April 2017 speech at Auburn University. He has since been convicted.
  • Florida LoS member Christopher Rey Monzon was arrested following an altercation in New Orleans during a pro-Confederate monument rally in May 2017. In August of that year, Monzon was arrested and charged with aggravated assault, disorderly conduct and inciting a riot in Hollywood, Florida, after he allegedly charged into a crowd of civil rights activists.