In 2017, extremists from a wide array of groups committed 34 “domestic extremist-related killings,” according to a report by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).
“White supremacists were responsible for the majority of extremist-related killings in 2017, as is usually the case each year,” the ADL reported. That, however, was not true in 2016, when the numbers dipped to 13 percent.
“Twenty of the 34 extremist-related murders in the United States in 2017, or 59 percent, were related to right-wing extremism,” the ADL reported.
“Islamic extremists were responsible for nine of the 34 killings (26 percent) documented in 2017,” the ADL reported. “Over the past 10 years, Islamic extremists have been responsible for at least 99 of the 387 documented extremist-related murders (26 percent).”
The majority of Islamic extremists murders have been carried out by only a few individuals who had a high rate of casualties, compared to the numerous deadly small-scale murders done by other extremist groups, it was reported.
In 2017, “five of the 34 murders (15 percent) were committed by Black nationalists,” according to the ADL. “The Center on Extremism includes both Black nationalists and anarchists in the broader category of the ‘left-wing extremism,’ while acknowledging that Black nationalists include some adherents who don’t necessarily fit neatly within that category.”
In 2016, some of “the most significant Black nationalist-related violence since the early 1980s” took place, according to the ADL. It said there should be concern about this group as a “possible emerging extremist threat,” but it is smaller than threats modeled by Islamic extremists and those by right-wing extremists.
The report categorizes extremists as anti-government, Islamic extremists, White supremacists, Black nationalists and alt lite, an offspring from the alt right. Subgroups of these extremists organizations “adhere to or are influenced by more than one extremist movement,” it was reported. In these instances, extremists are categorized by their ideology.
Some right-wing groups, for example, are influenced by the White supremacist movement, militia movement, sovereign citizens, and anti-government extremists. At least one murder was committed by the alt lite, the ADL reported.
According to the report, “Prior to 2017, the alt right was overwhelmingly an online phenomenon, with people expressing opinions in online venues ranging from 4Chan and Reddit to Twitter and Facebook, as well as more obscure sites and platforms.”
The report said the 2016 presidential election and media attention “energized” alt right and alt lite adherents to get involved in the real world. From that, groups like Identity Evropa were formed. They have engaged in protests and the August “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, VA. These groups are also responsible for the dissemination of racist literature on college campuses in the United States and Canada.
The ADL report stated that some divergent alt right groups “reject explicit White supremacy while retaining the alt right’s other hateful views of Muslims, immigrants, LGBTQ individuals, the left and especially women.”
“Over the past 10 years (2008-17), domestic extremists have been responsible for at least 387 murders,” the ADL reported. “Of these, 274 (71 percent) were committed by right-wing extremists of one type or another.”
“It is quite likely that the future will see yet more violent acts stemming from the ranks of the alt right and the alt lite as more of their adherents move their activities into the real world” the ADL report concluded.