, 10 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
No matter which ideology fuels an act of #terrorism, it's important to keep things in perspective. In fact, that's an essential part of refusing to allow terrorism achieve its goal, which is — of course — to terrorize. /1
In the U.S., the number of fatal attacks by far-right extremists has increased from around a few per year to highs of seven or eight in a couple of recent years. Homegrown jihadist terrorists have been responsible for an average of around six deaths per year since 9/11. /2
Of course, one casualty is one too many. And yet these numbers represent only a tiny fraction of violence in America, where the number of homicides averages around 15,000 per year. /3
What is now referred to as right-wing terrorism reflects an ongoing current in U.S. history that goes back to at least the early 19th century. This current narrows or broadens, reflecting economic distress, immigration levels/sources, and changing political environments. /4
Right-wing terrorism is a cluster of motivations and actors, including white supremacism, anti-semitism, white nationalism, neo-Nazi, anti-immigration, anti-federal gov't, anti-taxation extremists, and various religious extremist groups, like the Christian identity movement. /5
Those who carried out many of the recent right-wing terrorist attacks in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and the U.S. drew inspiration from one another.

This is a new phenomenon that reflects how the internet and social media have fundamentally altered terrorist recruiting. /6
Instead of being recruited by an organization and then being selected to carry out an attack, many of today's terrorists are self-radicalizing, often through the internet. /7
But while these right-wing terrorists connect themselves to a belief system, they seem far less ideologically motivated than they are inspired by other spectacular acts of violence. Violence itself becomes the motivating belief system more than any political agenda. /8
In other words, there are connections, but this doesn't mean that there is international coordination. /9
We are dealing with individual motives. People are complex. They do things for a constellation of reasons. It has become increasingly difficult to separate ideological motives from individual mental health problems. /end
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