Beyond hate: countering violent extremism from the white power movement
Owens, Kimberly B.
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Counterterrorism efforts are a major focus for the homeland security enterprise. Throughout the world, however, efforts have largely focused on countering violent extremism from Islamist organizations. While Islamist terrorists have been responsible for more deaths in the United States, this research focuses on white power domestic terrorism. It considers successful methods from the United States and the United Kingdom (UK), but applies them to factions of the right-wing movement, rather than Salafi-jihadist groups. This research is a case study comparison of former right-wing leaders, both of whom were associated with planned domestic terror plots. Significantly, the research included participation of individuals formerly active within the politically motivated Ku Klux Klan, and the religiously motivated the Covenant, the Sword, and the Arm of the Lord (CSA). It revealed a common anti-government theme between the vastly different groups, as well as the sociological underpinnings for participation in the Klan, within the theoretical framework of Social Identity Theory. While extremism is an unpleasant fact, perhaps violence can be mitigated, and having dialogue with those who once carried the torch of white power rhetoric may hold some answers, or provide a starting point for successful counterterrorism efforts.
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