Most of the crises we’ve covered have been natural events, such as an asteroid strike, or human-made problems, such as global warming. Let’s turn to a purely human phenomenon. What is the number one risk that we face from each other? The consensus appears to be white-supremacist terrorism.
Politico lists eight issues that experts fear. Number ONE among them is the globalization of white supremacy.
In recent weeks, the State Department—for the first time—formally designated a white supremacist organization, the Russian Imperial Movement, as a terrorist organization, in part because it’s trying to train and seed adherents around the globe. . . There are serious—and explicit—warnings about this coming from U.S. government and foreign officials that eerily echo the warnings that came about for al Qaeda before 9/11.
Military Times warns that our own military have dangerous white supremacy involvement. A poll of active military found that 36% witnessed white supremacy within the ranks—compared to 21% the previous year.
More than one-third of all active-duty troops and more than half of minority service members say they have personally witnessed examples of white nationalism or ideological-driven racism within the ranks in recent months, according to the latest survey of active-duty Military Times readers.
Overall, troops who responded to the poll cited white nationalists as a greater national security threat than both domestic terrorism with a connection to Islam, as well as immigration. . .
Congressional response–House Armed Services Committee members will hold a hearing on the issue next Tuesday titled “Alarming incidents of white supremacy in the military — how to stop it?”
War-on-the-Rocks says white supremacy is built into the military, which has so many monuments, military posts, and ships named after leaders of the Confederacy—who declared and waged war on the United States of America.
Fear of white supremacy is not just among the military. A YouGov-Fox poll noted that half the population, as a whole, sees white supremacy as a “very serious” problem, with one-out-of-five considering it a “somewhat serious” problem. Democrats are more concerned that Republicans, but among Independents, 65% see the problem as “serious.” One Republican got into trouble about it. . .
Rep. Steve King came under fire earlier this year for his statements about white supremacy. “White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?” he said in an interview with The New York Times.
The Department of Homeland Security says white supremacy violence is now as big a danger as ISIS or al Qaida.
Domestic terrorism and mass attacks are as great a threat to the United States today as foreign terrorism, the Department of Homeland Security said in a new strategy report. . . “In our modern age, the continuation of racially based violent extremism, particularly violent white supremacy, is an abhorrent affront to the nation,” acting homeland security secretary Kevin McAleenan said.
The FBI is also concerned.
Individuals adhering to racially motivated violent extremism ideology have been responsible for the most lethal incidents among domestic terrorists in recent years, and the FBI assesses the threat of violence and lethality posed by racially motivated violent extremists will continue. The current racially motivated violent extremist threat is decentralized and primarily characterized by lone actors. These actors tend to be radicalized online and target minorities and soft targets using easily accessible weapons.
The FBI has already made a series of arrests among members of U.S. white supremacist organizations who had been harassing journalists and houses of worship and discussing violent attacks, and it has now elevated such traditionally domestic terror groups to the same priority level as foreign groups like the Islamic State. . . Before 9/11, the deadliest terror incident on U.S. soil was Timothy McVeigh’s bombing in Oklahoma City. . .
Foreign Policy in Focus says law enforcement should change its focus from Islamic extremists to domestic, white terrorists.
There’s a strong argument to shift law enforcement resources from Muslim organizations to domestic white terrorists. . . Although its precise scale is hard to measure, violent white supremacy is clearly a problem in the United States.
The Wall Street Journal says, “The U.S. should use its hard-won experience against al Qaeda and Islamic State to combat today’s surge of lethal white supremacist attacks.” Meanwhile, Business Insider says, “Justice Department data reveal that alleged white supremacists were behind nearly all race-based cases of domestic terrorism in 2018.”
Voice of America warns that the problem is worse than we think, since it’s mostly underground—on the Internet.
In September, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security released its framework for countering terrorism and targeted violence, which states that online space appears essential to the recent growth of white supremacists, in particular. . .
“We are witnessing the internationalization of the white supremacist movement,” the Anti-Defamation League found in a recent report. “European and American adherents are learning from each other, supporting each other and reaching new audiences.”
The issue has struck inside the White House. Former Breitbart editor Katie McHugh, who was fired after racist tweets, says she was radicalized into white supremacy by Trump’s senior adviser, Stephen Miller. Business Insider notes that McHugh provided more than 900 emails between her and Miller, relating to the issue—some of which were sent from an official government account.
Fox Carolina reports that 25 Jewish members of Congress have called on Trump to fire Miller.
The conservative Washington Examiner also says, “It’s high time for Trump to dump Miller,” not just for his racist views, but also for what conservatives view as incompetence or malevolence in his job.
Ann Coulter, perhaps the most significant influence on Trump’s immigration stance, weighed in on Miller’s unwillingness to make a deal.
“He’s never taken to heart the important Reagan slogan, there’s no end to what can be accomplished if you don’t care who gets the credit,” Coulter told Frontline. “He’s the one blocking a lot of the things in the Trump administration, like hiring anyone who knows how to get it done.”
We can’t say with certainty what hate is or isn’t in Miller’s heart, but we know that he was happy enough to use the work of hatemongers and kill the GOP’s last shot at immigration reform, apparently because it would help predominantly Mexican immigrants. It’s long past time for Trump to dump Miller.
And finally, back to the general topic, the conservative National Review says, “It’s time to declare war on white-nationalist terrorism.”
It’s time to face some dreadful, terrible facts. The United States is now facing a deadly challenge from a connected, radical, online-organizing community of vicious white-nationalist terrorists. They are every bit as evil as jihadists, and they radicalize in much the same way. And just like the ISIS terrorists our nation and our allies have confronted in the great cities of the West, they use the most modern of tools to advance the oldest of hatreds. . .
Beginning in 2015, however, it became apparent to those who had eyes to see that our nation was starting to experience a new youth movement of hate. The Charleston church massacre was followed by a strange — and for those who experienced it — terrifying wave of bizarre online racist harassment. The word “alt-right” entered the American lexicon. It targeted Jews, it targeted African Americans and Hispanics, and it targeted critics of Donald Trump.
The article lists just a few of the white-supremacist terror attacks.
A young man drove his car into a crowd of anti-racist protesters in Charlottesville. . . One of the “trolls” . . .armed himself, slaughtered worshippers in two New Zealand mosques, and filmed the attack. . . The next month, a young man in California. . .tried to slaughter worshippers in a California synagogue. . . the Tree of Life synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh. . . white supremacist who killed a black man in New York with a sword. . . attempted church massacre in Kentucky. . .gunned down two black victims at a Kroger grocery store instead. . . an “alt-Reich” Facebook group stabbed a black Maryland college student to death. . . a white man in Kansas shouted ethnic slurs before shooting two Indian engineers in a bar, killing on. . .
And that short list doesn’t even mention the most horrendous attack on American soil, prior to 9/11: the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing—on which the government quickly and quietly closed the book, after condemning only two participants.
A disaffected veteran named Timothy McVeigh drove a Ryder truck stuffed with explosives into downtown Oklahoma City and destroyed a federal office building, killing 168 people, including 19 children, and maiming hundreds of others. . .
Obvious suspects were offered deals by government prosecutors, usually but not always in exchange for their testimony. Others slithered down the priority list until they were lost or forgotten. Half a dozen rightwing radicals fingered as possible suspects by government informants or by fellow anti-government warriors were not questioned about the bombing, even when it became clear they had lied about their whereabouts on 19 April.
Larry Mackey, the No 2 prosecutor against McVeigh and the lead prosecutor against Nichols, has acknowledged his team did not entirely believe it, either. “If you had said to us: ‘Anybody in the room 100% confident that McVeigh was alone, raise your hand,’ we would have all kept our hands in our laps.”
This is a big article about a big problem—white-supremacist terrorism–which we will ignore at our great peril.