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Matthew Heimbach

A white separatist claimed victory in Charlottesville and called for more protests


One of the white supremacy groups President Trump condemned has its roots in Cincinnati.

Duane Pohlman of our affiliate WKRC has been investigating that group and its leader for months.

His name is Matthew Heimbach and he is part of a growing number of millennials who are now fueling the white supremacy movement.

On Monday, Heimbach put himself front and center, pushing back against the media.

And he's claiming victory in Charlottesville.

"The nationalist community defended ourselves against thugs,” said Heimbach.

Just two days after the carnage in Charlottesville, Matthew Heimbach, who once called Cincinnati home, stood at the police station there and lectured anyone who would listen.

"We defended ourselves. We brought helmets and shields, while the enemy brought improvised flamethrowers, while they brought bleach, while they brought paint, while they brought sticks, while they brought knives,” said Heimbach.

But "who" is Matthew Heimbach? Duane Pohlman found out months ago during an interview in his new hometown of Paoli, Indiana.

Pohlman: "Hitler?"
Heimbach: "Good guy."
Pohlman: "Good guy?"
Heimbach: "Good guy!"

Heimbach is one of a growing number of millennials that are now spearheading white supremacy movements.

He founded the “Traditionalist Worker Party” and its youth outreach arm the “Traditionalist Youth Network, which both have a goal of a whites-only state.

Pohlman: "So, you set aside area for people, based on race?"
Heimbach: "Yeah. To be able to opt out of the system.”

Both organizations are listed by the Southern Poverty Law Center as hate groups. Heimbach says they're not.

Pohlman: "It's not a hate group?"
Heimbach: "Right."
Pohlman: "You don't hate anybody?"
Heimbach, "Nope. It's a love group."

Heimbach, who's from Maryland, called Cincinnati home for more than a year until 2015, disrupting press conferences and leading rallies, including a protest of the 4th of July beating of a white man at Government Square.

Pohlman: “You're still involved in Cincinnati?”
Heimbach: “Yep. I actually have an active party chapter in Cincinnati.”

On Monday night, Duane Pohlman caught up with Heimbach on Skype from Charlottesville.

Duane: “Everyone is condemning the hate groups… supremacists such as yourself. They're saying you are the cause of what happened in Charlottesville. Are you?
Heimbach: “There would have been no violence if the left had simply gotten a permit in another park to protest.”
Pohlman: “Did you commit violence? Of course we didn't commit violence. Anything that happened was self-defense.

And that includes, Heimbach says, that moment when James Fields, Jr. allegedly plowed into a crowd of counter-protestors.

“If his vehicle was attacked and he feared for his life that is an entirely separate situation,” said Heimbach.

Despite the violence, Heimbach says white supremacists are ready for more.

Pohlman: “Has this emboldened or has this caused pause for the members?”
Heimbach: “Oh! Absolutely, we're moving forward. This was a stunning victory for us. We achieved all of our objectives.”
Heimbach says that he and other white supremacists are considering going to Lexington, Kentucky next to protest the removal of two confederate statues.

As Heimbach says, his group and many others are organized and mobilized and are ready to fight.

Heimbach talked about white nationalism at Trump's inauguration.

The 'new David Duke' would like you to know that the inauguration is just the beginning.

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