by Sam Silverman
I was somewhat surprised at the article “Your Tax Dollars at Work” which
appeared in the December 1992 “Beacon,” having recently run across some
information on both “For the People,” the source of the article, and Colonel
James B. Gritz, more commonly known as Bo Gritz. Both “For the People” and
Bo Gritz have for a long time been associated with extreme right wing views
to an extent verging on fascism (a kind view of their opinions). Gritz’s
views are so extreme that even the Mormon Church, which is very
conservative, has warned him that he may be excommunicated because of his
ultra-conservative views (Boston Globe, November 30, 1992). As to the
incident in question, Randy Weaver, a white supremacist, had vowed never to
be taken alive, and was known to be in possession of an arsenal of weapons.
Weaver has now been charged in a 10-count indictment with murder,
conspiracy, arms violations and other crimes (Boston Globe, Thursday,
November 26, 1992).
“For the People” is a right wing organization which prominently features the
books of one Eustace Mullins, a venomous anti-semite, among other things.
Like most right wingers of this ilk he sees the government controlled by
Jews. “For the People” broadcasts an hour program on something called “Radio
Free America,” which is followed by another hour by Willis Carto’s Liberty
Lobby, one of the most effective and notorious fascist groups in the
country. Apparently the two organizations, which share similar views, are
competing for the allegiance of the hate constituency. Bo Gritz, a former
Green Beret, makes much of his covert activities in Vietnam, Latin America
and other places. In a campaign speech he gave in Tehachapi, California on
August 16, 1992, he gave his responsibilities in Latin America as
“unconventional warfare, guerilla warfare, subversion, sabotage,
assassination, direct action missions.” He didn’t give details of these
activities. He also speaks much of his search for live American prisoners in
In 1988 Gritz accepted a nomination to run for vice-president of the United
States from the Populist Party. The presidential candidate of the party was
David Duke. Gritz later resigned from the ticket and ran for Congress from
Nevada instead. In 1992 Gritz ran as president on the Populist Party ticket.
This party was founded with the support of Willis Carto, a virulent
anti-Semite, and its leadership reads like a Who’s Who of the racist
movement. The party is an amalgamation of “former” Klansmen, Nazis, and
other racist far-right wingers put together in 1984. The party’s National
Executive Director, Don Wassall, reprinted racist material in the party’s
newspaper from an avowed white supremacist group based in Maryland. A former
chair of the Ohio chapter, had been the Grand Dragon of the Ohio Knights of
the Ku Klux Klan. Local leaders of the party in California have included
former Klan leaders, Nazi activists and white supremacists. These examples
should be sufficient to show the nature of the party.
Gritz devoted a lot of effort to Montan in this campaign. Ken Toole,
president of the Montan Human Rights Network, had this to say about groups
like the Populist Party: “Most disturbing of all is the success hate groups
have had in stitching bigotry and ignorance into the political fabric.
Radical epithets have been replaced by the buzz words like ‘quotas,’ ‘career
criminals,’ and ‘welfare mothers.'” The bulk of Gritz’s organizing and
speech making is carried out through the apparatus of the “Christian
Identity” movement, which preaches that Anglo-Americans are the true “chosen
people” of the Bible, that Jews are Satan-spawn, and that non-whites are
“pre-Adamic,” that is, subhuman. None of these views appear in his
California campaign address. But they do crop up in his campaign
autobiography, “Called to Serve.” There he refers to the
“Rockefeller/Rothschild” Federal Reserve System as being controlled by
“seven Jewish families.” His campaign platform states: “It is time to return
America to the Americans, … halt the illegal immigration that is turning
America into a Third World country … end affirmative action … end this
country’s decadent, degenerate ways. I’ve spent my life fighting for
America, and now it’s time to fight again. Will you be a part of my
grass-roots army?” These statements include thinly-veiled code words for
anti-Semitism, racism, sexism and homophobia.
These comments are probably sufficient to indicate the slant of the article
printed in the December 1992 Beacon, and why a certain skepticism about the
report is warranted. It is likely that if the FBI did indeed ask Gritz to
use his influence with Weaver, it was not because of their common Green
Beret background, but because of their shared racist beliefs.
I will end here with an excert from Gritz’s California address which Mensans
interested in his intellectual capacities may find revealing. Gritz is here
giving his solution to the AIDS crisis: “What about Oxygen? Oxygen is really
hard to het ahold of isn’t it? Oxygen doesn’t cost very much, does it? Los
Angeles has four ozone generators, but they don’t have the most. In Moscow
they have the largest ozone generator in the world. What do these things do?
They purify all of the water. How do they do it? You tell me if I’m wrong.
Not one virus, not one fungus, not one bacteria can live in an
oxygen-intensive environment. Is that true or false? It’s true. Gosh, if
that’s true and you can do anything you want to do to the waters of Moscow
— and they probably do in L.A. — and it purifies it, are you telling me we
can’t use oxygen therapy to win the war against AIDS? Isn’t AIDS a virus?”
Source: Beacon, Vol. 17, Issue 1, Jan. 1993 (Boston Mensa)
(Reprinted with permission of the author)