The Farm Belt führer: the making of a neo-Nazi
They’re easy to spot, the neo-Nazi and his driver, strolling side by side up Main Street beneath a noonday sun, flanked by the two-story brick and limestone buildings of Beatrice, Nebraska. But it’s not the way they’re dressed.
Gerhard Lauck, the man they call the “Farm Belt führer” doesn’t draw attention to himself heedlessly, doesn’t swaddle himself in swastikas – not any more, anyway, and not out here in south-east Nebraska, where he finally retreated after serving a four-year stint in a German prison for distributing neo-Nazi propaganda. He doesn’t bark “Heil Hitler!” He doesn’t shoot his right arm into the air.
No, it’s not the way they’re dressed, though Lauck is wearing a military brown shirt, and his driver, who won’t identify himself, is over-buttoned for a warm spring day. It’s something about their posture, a self-seriousness reflected in their stride, as if they’re not conducting business so much as playing at it.