‘Meet the Moscow Mouthpiece Married to a Racist Alt-Right Boss’
Comment: “I noticed they managed to shoe-horn in a photo of Richard Spencer Sieg Heiling. Except that he wasn’t; he was waving at jeering protesters in the back of the room. Not that I expected The Daily Beast to be honest.”
The Daily Beast:
Nina Kouprianova is not a member of the racist alt-right. At least, that’s what she’ll say when you ask her. “I am not a member of any movement,” Kouprianova, who was born in the Soviet Union, recently told The Daily Beast via email. She added that she was “sympathetic” toward movements that “challenge the dominant and globally oriented post-Liberal ideology,” but white nationalism—that fracturing of the U.S., resulting in a white ethno-state that would salve the wounds of American racists—is not for her.
Still, the track record, both personally and professionally, of Kouprianova—who also goes by the nom de plume Nina Byzantina—casts a pall over her denials. This is, after all, a woman who elected to marry Richard Spencer, the longtime lodestar of American white nationalism and progenitor of the term “alt-right.” While the two are currently separated—as Spencer told The Washington Post, his recent work has taken a “toll” on their relationship—Kouprianova hasn’t publicly distanced herself from the views of her husband, a man who has kept neo-Nazis enthralled with his views and who has expressed continued admiration for Vladimir Putin.
In fact, Kouprianova, who has a young daughter with Spencer, wrote a letter this week to the Flathead Beacon, one of their local papers in Montana. In it, Kouprianova compares the “witch hunts” surrounding her husband to Stalinist purges: “Threats and intimidation, which my current extended family continues to experience in Whitefish [Montana], remind me of the way my grandfather was forced to live [in the Soviet Union],” Kouprianova wrote. And to be fair, following Spencer’s rise to prominence, threats—veiled and otherwise—have risen alongside…
Interestingly, Kouprianova’s presence in Spencer’s life has caused notable schisms within the white-nationalist community in the U.S. While ethnic Russians are, broadly, considered part of the broader “European identity” pushed by American white nationalists, Spencer told Mother Jones that his wife is part Georgian. For some members of Spencer’s racist community, that makes something other than white. For instance, prominent white nationalist Greg Johnson, who doesn’t view Georgia as part of Europe, wrote in 2014 that “Richard is basically being dominated by Nina Nogoodnik, his Russian-Georgian wife.”
Johnson, as it is, says Kouprianova is not a white nationalist. And yes, Kouprianova may not share outright her husband’s views on ethnic cleansing. But given Kouprianova’s work with Dugin, her writings for America’s most prominent white nationalist journal runs counter to those claims—and helps build one more bridge in the ongoing relationship between Russia and America’s white nationalists.
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