Far-right terrorism a transnational threat backed by state actors, says US official

Slavic UnionThreats posed by white supremacist and other far-right groups are now global in nature and are increasingly backed by state actors, according to a Congressional testimony by an American former counterterrorism official. The testimony was delivered by Joshua Geltzer, former senior director for counterterrorism at the United States National Security Council. Geltzer, who now directs the Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, testified on Friday before two subcommittees of the US House of Representatives. The Subcommittee on National Security and the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties held a joint hearing entitled “Confronting Violent White Supremacy”.

Geltzer said in his testimony [.pdf] that the type of violence perpetrated by white supremacist groups in America cannot any more be characterized as “domestic”, because it is quickly becoming transnational in character. White supremacist violence in America is part of a “global surge” that is “increasingly interlinked and internationalized”. In fact, the attackers themselves internationalize their role in this global movement by referencing white supremacist violence in other parts of the world to justify the use of violence in the US, said Geltzer. He added that the emerging center of this global surge of white supremacist violence appears to be located in Ukraine and Russia. It is there that funds provided by the Russian government are being used to train and educate white supremacist leaders in guerrilla warfare, social media propaganda and various forms of ideological training.

It is therefore imperative, said Geltzer, that the US Intelligence Community begins to examine white supremacist violence within this new transnational context. For instance, it would be helpful if the mission of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence was changed to include a concentration in so-called “domestic terrorism”, including white supremacist violence, he argued.

Also on Friday, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) unveiled its new strategy report. The report views “domestic terrorism and mass attacks” as a growing threat to the United States that is equal in magnitude to the threat posed by Islamist terrorists. The report identifies what it describes as “a disturbing rise in attacks motivated by domestic terrorist ideologies”. One of the most powerful drivers of this new wave of domestic violence is “white supremacy”, according to the DHS.

Author: Ian Allen | Date: 23 September 2019 | Permalink

4 Responses to Far-right terrorism a transnational threat backed by state actors, says US official

  1. Spy Culture says:

    The 2014 Western-backed coup in Ukraine utilised neo Nazis elements, but this is somehow Russia’s fault?

    Is there anything that the Atlantic powers won’t baselessly blame on Russia? After all, it was the US and UK who spent a decade pumping out anti-Muslim hate speech and calling it security policy. Everyone seems to have forgotten that now…

  2. RBW says:

    Cue the pro-Russia trolls, such as so-called “Spy Culture.” The fact is that both sides in the Ukrainian conflict employed nationalists and neo-Nazis. The report actually states that both Russia and Ukraine are the epicenter of the worldwide white supremacist upsurge. Read before you comment.

  3. Spy Culture says:

    I am not pro-Russia, I’m anti-lies. There are all sorts of problems with the Russian government but the relentless nonsense that gets spouted does nothing to help with any of these problems.

    Hence the second half of my comment, about the origins of the resurgent neo Nazi movement. Who has actually spent most of the last 20 years bombing the hell out of brown people, Russia or the NATO countries?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Brenton Tarrant, an Australian who murdered 51 Muslim men, women and children in sleepy Christchurch, New Zealand, on March 15, 2019, was certainly a far right terrorist with international far right connections. Tarrant proved his terrorist credentials in maximizing publicity by live-streaming many of his murders on Facebook Live. Probably no state-actor involvement.

    More details see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christchurch_mosque_shootings

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