On November 16, 2019, student Charles Robertson posted a video of his class presentation for a writing class at Georgia Southern University in southeast Georgia. The YouTube video, titled “Irreplaceable”, presents the theory that “replacement” immigration from non-white countries is a kind of genocide aimed at destroying white people. The “great replacement” conspiracy theory is a well-known predictor of white supremacist violence and has been cited in mass murder manifestos such as that of the Christchurch shooter.
During his presentation, Charles Allen Robertson advertised the organization American Identity Movement (AmIM) by featuring an image of its banner on the screen. AmIM is a white nationalist group formerly known as “Identity Evropa”, and under that name is currently being sued for its role in Unite the Right at Charlottesville, VA, 2017. Afterward, in the comments of the YouTube video, Robertson engaged with commenters, basked in their praise, and gave out information on the racial composition of his class. Commenters began to abuse one of Robertson’s classmates – briefly audible in the video – with racial slurs. The video quickly went viral in multiple far-Right communities, including 4chan’s /pol/ network. The viral video currently has almost three thousand comments and over ninety thousand views.
A Savannah-area couple are heavily involved in white nationalist networks, ranging from Christian far-Right organizing to apocalyptic neo-Nazism. Arieana K Love, who is currently studying pre-Medicine at Georgia Southern University and was a member of the Georgia National Guard , and Matthew Ryan Burchfield, who moved to Georgia from Virginia last year, are well-connected in regional and national far-Right channels. Love is a member of Legio Christi, an antisemitic and far-Right “traditional Christian” group, while Burchfield describes himself as an “Esoteric Hitlerite” – someone who couches his devotion to Nazism in mystical terms.
Both Love and Burchfield are friends with Haralson County jailer Trent East, whose racist involvement and neo-Nazi affinities we recently documented. Online photos show Ryan Burchfield engaging in what appears to be racist paramilitary training with East.
Both Arieana Love and Burchfield are connected to internet profiles for Dalton Woodward, Trent East’s associate in the whites-only “Ravensblood Kindred” of the Asatru Folk Assembly. Another figure who was linked to both Love and Burchfield on social media is Corwyn Storm Carver, an active duty Army member and ideologue of the Atomwaffen Division, a neo-Nazi group linked to at least five killings.
Although they have friends and political associates in common, Love and Burchfield also operate in somewhat different spheres. For example, Arieana Love declares herself to be a Catholic rather than a racist heathen (East and Woodward), a neo-Nazi Satanist (Carver), or a Hitler devotee (Ryan Burchfield). This difference does not diminish Love’s racist and far-Right commitments, but it does give her white nationalist activity a slightly different character. We will discuss Catholic antisemite Arieana Love first, then her Hitler-worshipping boyfriend Ryan Burchfield.