SPLC Report Exposes State Department Official as a White Nationalist Organizer

0
2179

A U.S. State Department official has been outed as a white nationalist who regularly hosted like-minded racists at his home and marched in the violent “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, according to a recent report by the Southern Poverty Law Center‘s Hatewatch.

Matthew Q. Gebert, a foreign affairs officer with the Bureau of Energy Resources, allegedly used the pseudonym “Coach Finstock” to spread white nationalist propaganda online, the SPLC found. In his correspondence with fellow white nationalists, Gebert, as “Coach Finstock,” also once expressed his desire to build a nation for whites only.

U.S. State Department
The SPLC report found that the U.S. State Department official became radicalized shortly after joining the agency. (Photo by Alastair Pike / AFP/ Getty Images)

“[Whites] need a country of our own with nukes, and we’ll retake this thing lickety split,” “Coach Finstock” said during a May 2018 episode of “The Fatherland,” a white nationalist podcast.

“That’s all that we need,” he added. “We need a country founded for white people with a nuclear deterrent. And you watch how the world trembles.”

Public records show Gebert joined the State Department in 2013 and started becoming radicalized just two years later. In a January 2018 thread shared on white nationalist forum The Right Stuff, the government official bragged about getting “into this [movement], and off the conservative reservation in 2015.”

Several sources who spoke with Hatewatch also named Gebert’s wife, Anna Vuckovic, as “Wolfie James,” a vlogger and online personality with ties to the white nationalist movement.

“Gebert, as ‘Coach Finstock,’ and Vuckovic, as ‘Wolfie James,’ left behind a substantial trail of archived Twitter posts under their pseudonyms,” the report states.

Two sources recalled spending time at the couple’s Leesburg, Virginia, home in 2017, at which there were gatherings that included members of the white nationalist movement, including podcaster Michael Peinovich. The sources said there was even a secret hotel dinner meeting with Holocaust denier David Irving in June that same year.

The report highlights that, under the Hatch Act, State Department officials are barred from engaging in political activities “in an official capacity” while on the job, though it’s unclear if Gebert was on duty during the Irving dinner or if the meeting was politics-related.

In addition to hosting meet-ups with his fellow nationalists and working to recruit young impressionable ones to his “D.C. Helicopter Pilots” organizing chapter for Peinovich’s The Right Stuff network, Gebert was focused on spreading his racist ideology.

In an episode of “The Fatherland,” “Coach Finstock,” talked about attending the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, explaining how he wore hat and sunglasses so that he wouldn’t be recognized.

“I came back in one piece. Un-doxxed. Knock on wood,” Gebert said,  referring to the fact that he managed to remain incognito.

The raucous rally saw clashes between white nationalist sympathizers and counter-protesters. The situation proved deadly after a Neo-Nazi protester drove his car into crowd of counter-protesters, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer.

I came back  “Un-arrested; just with some mild war wounds that frankly I’m kind of proud of,” Gebert bragged.

Hatewatch said it contacted Gebert and his wife about the allegations on multiple occasions; Vuckovic denied being linked to the white nationalist movement while Gebert ignored requests for comment.

The State Department spokesman responded to the claims laid out in the SPLC’s investigation, saying: “We are committed to providing a workplace that is free from discriminatory harassment and investigates alleged violations of laws, regulations, or Department policies, taking disciplinary action when appropriate.”

[wpdevart_facebook_comment ]