American National Socialists in Rhodesia’s Struggle for Racial Freedom

Sunday, 19 June 2016

by Martin Kerr

Everyone who has spent time on online White Nationalist Internet forums has come across posters who identify themselves as “White Warriors” or something similar. No doubt some of these men really are genuine fighters for our Race in an actual sense. Yet, one cannot help but get the impression than most of them are fantasists or armchair warriors, who have never truly put themselves in harm’s way for the sake of their folk, and who have no intention of ever doing so.

But such men really do exist – men who risk life and limb in defense of the White race. It was my honor to have met such men on occasion in my capacity of National Organizer for the National Socialist White Peoples Party. Beginning in the mid-1970s, small trickle of NSWPP activists, voluntarily and at their own expense, journeyed to Rhodesia for the express purpose of defending their racial brothers and sisters there in their struggle for national and racial freedom.

The list of these volunteers includes (but is not limited to) Richard Biederman, Robert B., Joseph Bishop, Jimmy Clendennen, Harold Covington and Frederick Verduin.

Richard Biederman, of Swedish farmer stock from Minnesota, was the first to enlist. He was a member of the NSWPP headquarters staff and a tough Stormtoop NCO. In time, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant in the elite Rhodesian Special Air Service (SAS). He died in action behind enemy lines in Mozambique in October, 1977. Rest in peace, noble comrade!

biederman

Poster page from issue 85 of WHITE POWER newspaper (June 1978), honoring the blood sacrifice that Richard Biederman made for his race.

Robert B., a New Jersey NS activist, joined up either with Biederman or shortly afterwards – my memory is a little fuzzy on this point. Today he is a successful mainstream author, and is active in the Odinist/Asatru community. Joseph Bishop was wounded, but survived. He remained in Rhodesia the longest of all of the NS volunteers, but eventually returned to the US. Enemy fire is not the only danger that a soldier faces: Jimmy Clendennen, who had previously fought the communists in Vietnam as a combat infantryman, contracted a rare respiratory disease and had a lung removed, thus ending his military career.

Harold Covington was the only American who did not acquit himself well. He avoided combat, and busied himself with counterproductive and unhelpful “neo-Nazi” political agitation aimed at the White separatist government of Ian Smith. The Rhodesians, engaged in a life-or-death struggle for survival, had little tolerance for Covington’s shenanigans and unceremoniously expelled him from the country. But let me give credit where credit is due: at a time when most people in the Movement limited their aid to White Rhodesia to voicing moral support from the safety and comfort of their living rooms, Covington backed his words with action, as misguided and futile as those actions proved to be.

Frederick Verduin was a veteran of the elite US Third Infantry Regiment and a dynamic NSWPP street activist. Soon after enlisting in the Rhodesian army he was made an officer cadet. He was a member of the last graduating class of officer candidates of the Grey Scouts, the renowned cavalry unit, in which he was commissioned as a lieutenant. After the final collapse of the White Rhodesian government, Verduin and other hardcore White Nationalist foreign soldiers made their way to South Africa, and offered their services to the apartheid regime of that country. The South Africans allowed Verduin to keep his commission as a lieutenant. This was a rare honor, as Verduin did not speak Afrikaans, which was the official language of the South African military. Also serving in Verduin’s company were two former National Front members from England, who likewise placed their racial loyalty before their personal safety.

Eventually, Verduin, too, returned to the US, where he became associated with Joseph Turner’s NS community Volksberg in Northern California. However, he found life stateside boring and decided to embark on a career as a professional mercenary. The saga of one of his adventures became the subject of a three-party article in Soldier of Fortune magazine – but that is a tale for another time! Comrade Verduin died in 2007. I have been unable to find out the place and exact circumstances of his death.

The story of the NS and WN volunteers in the Rhodesian military has never been fully told. For its part, the Rhodesian government preferred to keep their participation quiet. The Rhodesians were in a desperate situation and needed whatever foreign help that was offered to them – but if word had gotten out of “racist” involvement in their struggle, it would only have made matters worse. The leadership of the NSWPP did not want to publicize the fact that some of its key activists were giving up the political fight at home to engage in a military adventure abroad.

The sole exception to this was when Biederman was killed in action: on that occasion, the Party newspaper White Power devoted two pages to his memory, and a special memorial service was held for him at Party headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. Later, the Minneapolis Unit of the Party was officially renamed the Richard Biederman Unit.

The men mentioned here were not the only National-Socialists or White Nationalists who served in the Rhodesian military. I write about them because I knew each of them personally (with one exception). But there were more.

After the collapse of the White government, Rhodesia was renamed “Zimbabwe.” At the time I was the editor of White Power. I wrote that the paper’s policy would be to ignore the name Zimbabwe and that we would continue to call that land “Rhodesia” as long as it still had a significant White population. Today, that point of no-return is long past.

It is hard – very hard – for any racially conscious White person to witness the sadistic, brutal persecution of the tiny remaining White population. News reports, including horrifying video footage, show these die-hard holdouts being savagely killed, tortured, raped and beaten. Some are imprisoned without charges in subhuman conditions. The Marxist, Black supremacist government of Robert Mugabe does not merely encourage this bestial behavior: it participates in the savagery itself.

Perhaps there are some people reading this who wonder, as I do, if the vicious treatment being meted out to these defenseless White people is merely a foretaste of what our own grandchildren and great-grandchildren will have to endure, if someday they, too, become a tiny minority in their own country. Over the decades some Rhodesian Whites have chosen to flee: that is an option that our descendants will not have, because by then there will be no place to run.

Whites were about 89 percent of the total US population in 1960, but today are only 63 percent – or less. The White birthrate is below the replacement level, while that for Blacks, Hispanics and Asians continues to rise. Millions of non-White invaders have flooded across the borders into America, virtually unimpeded by a government that could not care less about White racial interests. Already Whites are a minority among elementary schoolchildren in the US – which does not bode well for the future.

For those of us viewing the situation from afar, the plight of the White people of Zimbabwe today in all the harder to bear, for the knowledge that there is nothing that we can do to ameliorate it, even to the slightest degree. But small comfort though it may be, we may at least draw a little consolation from the fact that once, not long ago, there were some White Men, who were really worthy of the name MEN, who were willing to go to another country – another continent – and put their lives on the line for their racial brothers and sisters.

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