• U.S. Facing Growing Terrorism Problem, with White Supremacists the “Most Significant Threat”: Report

    A new report by terrorism experts at the conservative-leaning CSIS thinktank says that the United States faces a growing terrorism problem which will likely worsen over the next year. The most significant threat likely comes from white supremacists, though anarchists and religious extremists inspired by the Islamic State and al-Qaeda could present a potential threat as well. Right-wing attacks and plots account for the majority of all terrorist incidents in the United States since 1994, and the total number of right-wing attacks and plots has grown significantly during the past six years. Right-wing extremists perpetrated two thirds of the attacks and plots in the United States in 2019 and over 90 percent between 1 January and 8 May 2020. Over the rest of 2020, the terrorist threat in the United States will likely rise based on several factors, including the November 2020 presidential election.

  • U.S. Government, Statutes, Terminology Not Prepared for Growing Threat of Domestic Terrorism: NCTC-led Panel

    The National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), together with FBI and DHS, held a conference to examine the U.S. government’s approach to confronting the threat of domestic terrorism (DT) and to inform future DT policy. The conference explored four themes: Terminology, Authorities, Operations, and Expanding Partnerships.

  • COVID-19 Pandemic Has Unleashed Wave of Anti-Semitism

    The coronavirus epidemic has been accompanied by what the WHO described as “infodemic” – an avalanche of conspiracy theories and disinformation which has spread on social networks. As is often the case, anti-Semitic conspiracy theories are prominent in this infodemic, and a new report offers an analysis of the phenomenon.

  • Extremism Rising in Canada

    Acts of terrorism committed by the far-right have increased by 320 percent over the past five years, supported by an increasingly connected and internationalist community of right-wing extremism. Canada has not been isolated from this trend and in recent years the number of hate groups operating in the country has tripled.

  • The “Domestic Terrorist” Designation Won’t Stop Extremism

    As U.S. politics heat up in advance of the November election, it’s not surprising that extremist groups across the political spectrum are becoming more active and engaged in acts of political violence. A growing number of scholars and policymakers suggest this problem should be dealt with by designating violent groups as “domestic terrorist” organizations. As someone who has studied democracies’ response to domestic terrorism for almost 20 years, I believe that legally designating domestic extremist groups as terrorist organizations will have limited benefits, if any at all.

  • How the Boogaloo Movement Is Turning Memes into Violent Action

    The Boogaloo movement, an extremist, right-leaning and libertarian, anti-government militia with online roots which is increasingly organizing attacks in the real world. Alex Goldenberg, Joel Finkelstein, and John Farmer Jr. write that “Like an American version of the Islamic State, their mythology attempts to recapture a glorious revolutionary American past in a mythological confrontation. The Boogaloo movement seeks to co-opt grievances across the political and racial spectrum and funnel them into an anti-government mob with tactical and technological capacities that look a lot like an American version of the Islamic State or al Qaeda.” The authors add: “The hope of these militants is to incite violence sufficient for society to betray the American civic tradition by forcing immense violence to protect it.”

  • Sudanese Asylum Seeker Shot Dead after Stabbing 6 in Glasgow, Scotland

    Six people, including an injured police officer, are in hospital after a Sudanese asylum seeker stabbed them in and around a hotel which houses asylum seekers in Glasgow, Scotland. The incident follows a similar multi-victim knife attack near London last week. The suspect went on a rampage after complaining about the hotel meals served to him during the COVID-19 pandemic. The knifeman had threatened violence against other refugees and complained he was “very hungry” in recent days after being re-housed in the hotel.

  • Islamic State Calls for Followers to Spread Coronavirus, Exploit Pandemic and Protests

    An Islamic State group online publication in India has called for its supporters to spread the coronavirus, saying “every brother and sister, even children, can contribute to Allah’s cause by becoming the carriers of this disease and striking the colonies of the disbelievers.” The group claims that devout Muslims will not be sickened, because “no disease can harm even a hair of a believer.” It is the latest in an effort by the Islamic State group and its followers to take advantage of the pandemic and general civic instability in the West. Brian Glyn Williams writes in The Conversation that Islamic State followers are excited at the prospect of a massive Western death toll from the coronavirus, which they defined as “God’s smallest soldier.” They also see the virus at work in U.S. military pullbacks related to the coronavirus – such as the March announcement from the Pentagon that it would stop sending troops to Iraq for at least two months. In addition, the U.S. pulled some troops out of Iraq, withdrew many more from six frontline operating bases and ordered the troops remaining in the country to stay on their bases – moves that ended most joint missions with local Iraqi and Kurdish troops.

  • Nuclear Alarmism: Proliferation and Terrorism

    Alarmism about nuclear weapons is common coin in the foreign policy establishment, John Mueller writes. He notes that during the course of the Cold War, for example, the chief concern was that the weapons would somehow go off, by accident or by intention, devastating the planet in the process. More recently, the worry has been that terrorists would get their hands on nuclear weapons. Concerns about the dangers inherent in nuclear proliferation and in nuclear terrorism certainly seem overwrought, Mueller writes, concluding: “There may be reason for concern, or at least for interest and watchfulness. But alarm and hysteria (not to mention sleeplessness) are hardly called for.”

  • Growing Terrorism Threats: Iran-backed groups, IS in Africa, and White Supremacists: State Dept. Report

    The Trump administration, noting significant victories against global terrorism, says Iran continues to increase its support for extremists, while IS is increasing its presence in Africa and Southeast Asia. Attacks by white supremacists are on the rise, and the terrorism threat posed by white nationalists is of particular concern.

  • Viruses and Violence: How COVID-19 Has Impacted Extremism

    In April 2020, the Tony Blair Institute acknowledged that “extremist groups are beginning to recognize the scale of the COVID-19 pandemic, seeing opportunities to exploit fears, exacerbate tensions and mobilize supporters while government are occupied with trying to address COVID-19.” Extremists across the ideological spectrum have incorporated the pandemic into their messaging and their operations, though groups have differed on just what COVID-19 means and how to best exploit the pandemic and its resultant unrest.

  • Terrorism in Europe is Geographically Widespread and Multifaceted

    Europol’s just-published report shows that in 2019, there were 119 foiled, failed, and completed terrorist attacks in 13 EU member states, and that 1,004 individuals were arrested on suspicion of terrorism-related offenses in 19 EU member states. Nearly all of deaths and 26 injuries were the result of jihadist attacks.

  • U.S. Army Soldier Charged with Plotting “Mass Casualty” Attack on His Own Unit

    A U.S. Army soldier, 22, has been charged with plotting a mass attack on his unit by sending sensitive military information to the Order of Nine Angles (O9A), a U.K.-based occult-obsessed, neo-Nazi, white supremacist group, the Justice Department announced Monday. O9Ahas affiliates around the world, including the United States, where they are associated with the neo-Nazi Atomwaffen Division.

  • DHS Warns Boogaloo Bois May Be Targeting Washington, D.C.

    On Monday, DHS has circulated intelligence memos to law enforcement agencies around the country, warning public safety officials that Boogaloo Bois, an extremist anti-government movement, may be targeting Washington, D.C. for violent attacks. The intelligence assessment stated that “the District is likely an attractive target for violent adherents of the boogaloo ideology due to the significant presence of U.S. law enforcement entities, and the wide range of First Amendment-Protected events hosted here.”

  • MI5, Prevent Deemed Reading Attack Suspect Not Worth Investigation

    Saturday knife attack in Reading, U.K., in which three people were killed, is being investigated as an act of terrorism, but investigators say that the 25-year old suspect’s long history of serious mental health issues, exacerbated by heavy drug use, is also being considered. In the last two years, the Libyan national, who was granted asylum in Britain in 2018, was investigated twice for possible ties to Jihadi extremists, but counterterrorism specialists at Prevent and MI5 determined that he had no clear ideology, posed no threat to the public, and required additional mental health care.