School-shooting suspect admired Hitler in writings

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Although his people had long suffered oppression and were nearly annihilated, Jeff Weise identified with the oppressor and annihilator.

“I guess I’ve always carried a natural admiration for Hitler and his ideals, and his courage to take on larger nations,” Jeffrey Weise, an American Indian, wrote in an online forum frequented by neo-Nazis and wannabes last year. The postings give a glimpse into the thoughts of a troubled young man, now suspected of going on a killing rampage Monday before turning the gun on himself.

He said he was interested in finding like-minded Indians, a goal other posters on the forum encouraged. He also admitted he was a suspect in a threat at school.

“Once I commit myself to something, I stay until the end,” he replied.

For Weise, the end came Monday afternoon when he allegedly shot himself at Red Lake High School on the Red Lake reservation, about 300 miles north of the Twin Cities. Authorities said he took his own life after killing seven others at the school, including six fellow students, and his grandfather and a woman at their home before going to the school.

Officials said they had no clue as to what fueled Weise’s violence. But in a post to a nationalist Web site last year that foreshadowed Monday’s events, he said he had been questioned by police in connection with an alleged threat at the school.

“By the way, I’m being blamed for a threat on the school I attend because someone said they were going to shoot up the school on 4/20, Hitlers birthday, and just because I claim being a National Socialist, guess whom they’ve pinned,” he wrote in comments posted at 11:41 p.m. on April 19, 2004.

Five weeks later, he wrote that “the school threat passed and I was cleared as a suspect, I’m glad for that. I don’t much care for jail, I’ve never been there and I don’t plan on it.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate and extremist groups across the country, only lists three neo-Nazi groups in Minnesota. They are far from the reservation.

Alternately using the online pennames Todesengel-German for “angel of death”-and “NativeNazi,” Weise wrote several posts in which he said he believed Hitler and the National Socialist movement that embroiled the world in war and caused millions of deaths got a bad rap.

“When I was growing up, I was taught (like others) that Nazi’s were evil and that Hitler was a very evil man ect,” he wrote in one posting replete with misspellings. “Of course, not for a second did I believe this. Upon reading up on his actions, the ideals and issues the German Third Reich addressed, I began to see how much of a like had been painted about them. They truly were doing it for the better.”

In other posts, he wrote that he believed a National Socialist movement could work on his reservation and planned on trying to recruit some members at school when it started up last fall.

“The only ones who oppose my views are the teachers at the high school, and a large portion of the student body who think a Nazi is a Klansman, or a White Supremacist thug. Most of the Natives I know have been poisoned by what they were taught in school.”

The public school system, he wrote, “has done more harm than good, and as a result it has left many on this reservation misled and misinformed.”

He wrote that when he talked in school about maintaining the tribe’s ethnic purity by not marrying outside the bloodline, “I get the same old argument which seems to be so common around here. `We need to mix all the races, to combine all the strengths. . . .’

“They (teachers) don’t openly say that racial purity is wrong, yet when you speak your mind on the subject you get `silenced’ real quick by the teachers and likeminded school officials,” he wrote.