NSThe US government has acted swiftly since 9/11 to prevent further attacks by US Islamic extremists. When George W. Bush announced the war on terror, billions of dollars were spent on new law enforcement departments, empowering government agencies to monitor people in the United States and abroad.
But existing threats were overlooked while the FBI, CIA, police, and the newly established Department of Homeland Security searched the country and the world for intensified Islam. The last 20 years.
of 2020 According to the Anti-Defamation League, in the United States, the far-right militants were responsible for 16 of the 17 extremist killings. 2019Of the 42 extremist killings, 41 were associated with the far right.
Between 2009 and 2018, the far right accounted for 73% of US extremist-related deaths, and right-wing extremists were in any year since 1995 when bombs planted by rebel militants killed 168 people. Federal building that killed more people in 2018 than In Oklahoma City..
Despite the statistical predominance of far-right and white supremacist killings in the United States, US intelligence has spent far more resources on being perceived as a threat from Islamic terrorism.
“The 9/11 shock actually created this incredible machine in the United States and around the world-all sorts of things that created a whole new institution and task force hearing, and a blind spot,” Cynthia said. The author of Mirror Idris said. Motherland Hatred: New Global Far Right He is a professor at American University and runs the school’s Polarization and Radical Research and Innovation Lab.
“Of course, they were interfering with the plot and warning of threats, so some of them were occurring, but at the same time, other threats were increasing and increasing, and they called it. I didn’t realize it, “she added.
Gunman in the last few years alone Killed 23 people He allegedly posted an online manifesto on white supremacists and anti-immigrants in El Paso, Texas. In it, he wrote that he plans to carry out an attack “in response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”
In February 2019, a self-proclaimed “white supremacist” lieutenant of the US Coast Guard was arrested after stockpiling weapons and compiling a hit list of media and government figures.He was sentenced to 13 years in prison In 2020.
In 2017, nine black church members were killed in Charleston, South Carolina, by a 22-year-old man who confessed to the FBI that he wanted to regain or initiate racism.
However, successive governments have spent most of the last two decades spending most of their resources investigating Muslims both in the United States and abroad. 2019 FBI said Eighty percent of counterterrorism agents focus on international terrorism and 20% focus on domestic terrorism.
As the government pursued Islamic terrorism, the civil rights of American Muslims were violated and many innocent Muslims suffered. Over 1000 people Thousands more were cross-examined after being detained the month after 9/11 and putting mosques and Muslim neighborhoods under surveillance. The number of hate crimes against Muslims in the United States surged shortly after the attack and has since been well above pre-2001 rates each year.
“Although there was a lack of attention from the authorities (resources), some of the actual interventions the authorities took were Islamophobia, and they contributed to this Islamophobia, some of the anti-immigrant sentiment. I did, “said Miller Islam.
Michael German, a former FBI special agent specializing in domestic terrorism and covert operations, said the disparity in attention to Muslim actors and alleged white supremacists has widened since before 9/11. Stated.
However, after the attack, new legislation, including the Patriot Act, gave the government additional power to monitor and target Americans, and the Justice Department gave more power to investigate people without criminal records. Was done.
The Germans, Fellow of the Brennan Center for Justice and National Security Program, said that these powers were predominantly concentrated on Muslim Americans, with little attention to white supremacists.
“”[There was] The FBI has never committed a violent crime, simply saying what the government dislikes, or being associated with people who dislike the government, or suspected by the government simply because they are Muslims I’ve never been involved with a terrorist group, while I couldn’t even record a white supremacist murder because of the difference in the way it targeted religious Americans, “German said.
“A huge amount of resources have been invested in the Joint Counterterrorism Task Force and counterterrorism activities,” Germany said after the attack on the World Trade Center. “But it all focused on the potential terrorism committed by Muslims.”
A 2010 Judiciary audit revealed that between 2005 and 2009, an average of less than 330 FBI agents were assigned to domestic terrorist investigations out of a total of nearly 2,000 counterterrorism agents. rice field.
The Germans said the decision to focus less on white supremacists and domestic terrorism was not just strategic. He said the impact of money and large corporations played a role as the industry urged lawmakers and even the FBI itself to pursue anti-capitalist and environmental protest groups.
“The FBI needs resources, and to get them, we need to convince MPs, and Congress works most effectively when there are wealthy patrons who contribute to their campaign. I will, “said the German.
“So the FBI has to cultivate a foundation of support in a wealthy community, and how can they do that? Well, go to the corporate board and tell them By, as you know, the FBI needs more resources.
“And, of course, it has a huge impact on the FBI’s behavior on corporate boards, and those corporate boards said that the white supremacist-targeted minority community was in the United States. It wasn’t that there, what are you doing about it?
“They were saying:’Hey these [anti-corporate or environmental] Protesters are really painful and, as you know, they can be violent. “
When the government and intelligence agencies tried to expand their intelligence collection after 9/11, it gave companies another bargaining tip, the Germans said – white supremacism and further knocking on the far-right priority list. Did.
“Megacorporations hold a lot of personal information about Americans, and accessing that information has become important to the FBI, so making them happy has become part of their mission.”
In addition to that problem, the fact that “the problem of racism is protracted within the FBI” has led the authorities to remain predominantly white and male organizations, the Germans said.
“That is, it’s part of the spectrum, people who are either racist or implicitly racist. White supremacists don’t threaten their community, so they do it. Is not considered a threat.
“A white male agent returning to a white suburban community doesn’t really see many white supremacist skinheads causing problems in his community, so the threat is less.”
In 2020, there were signs of attention on the far right.Department of Homeland Security Said White supremacists were “the most permanent and deadly threats in their homeland” when they published their reports on threats in the United States.
But that happened a few days after Donald Trump told the extremist group Proud Boys to “wait”. During the presidential election debate..
Trump was reluctant to condemn the violence of white supremacists, and his “two-sided” comments after the Charlottesville riots were seen as justifying the far right. In April 2020, when the pandemic raged in the Midwest, he Said to his supporters “Free Michigan!” After state Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer imposed a stay-at-home order.Hundreds of armed riots Official attack on Michigan State Capitol.. In October 2020, the FBI allegedly charged six people Plan to kidnap Whitmer, Has been the target of Trump’s attacks for months.
The riots in Michigan could be seen as a harsh preview of what happened on January 6 when the far-right movement, which had been brewed for years, spilled into Washington, DC and attacked the Houses of Parliament.
Joe Biden was less reluctant to identify risks to US citizens than his predecessor.In June Biden said White supremacists are the “most deadly threat” to Americans, and his administration came later that month. Presentation A drastic plan to address the problem.
Strategist PW Singer, a consultant to the U.S. military, intelligence and FBI, and a fellow of New American, a public policy think tank, said the growing threat of white paranormalism in the United States was too complex to blame. .. Lack of attention from government intelligence – “but it certainly didn’t help stop it.”
“Think of it as a disease that attacks the body politic. Not only does the person actively deny it, but he deliberately avoids the steps necessary to fight it. No, it also provided normal defense. [used] It was not deployed against other similar threats. “
Trump may have left, but it seems that some Republicans haven’t stopped overrunning right-wing extremists. Most recently, Alabama Republican Congressman August Mo Brooks defended Trump supporters who carried out the threat of the Capitol Hill bomb.
“The motives of this terrorist are not yet publicly known, but generally speaking, we understand the anger of citizens towards dictatorial socialism and the threat to freedom, freedom, and the very structure of American society. doing.” Brooks tweetedHours after a man parked near the Capitol and the Supreme Court and told police he had a bomb.
“The way to stop the socialist procession is for patriotic Americans to fight back in the 2022 and 2024 elections,” he said. “Frankly, America’s future is at stake.”
This is a dangerous game, but the rise of trumpism and far-right extremism in conservative politics can be traced back to the Tea Party movement that demonized Barack Obama. This is one of the things Republicans are likely to continue.
“What was once an unacceptable extreme has become accepted as part of our politics and media,” Singer said.
“It’s a difficult truth that too many people don’t want to accept. It didn’t start on January 6, but many years ago, these extremist views were first accepted and then clicked. It was celebrated as suitable and then voted. “
Near Home: How US Far-Right Terrorism Prospered With a Focus on Islam Since 9/11 | US News
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