Rise of Domestic Terrorism and Its Relation to United States Armed Forces   [open pdf - 173KB]

From the thesis abstract: "Extremist and potentially terroristic groups have, to some extent, infiltrated and negatively impacted on the morale and cohesiveness of individual military personnel and units. Racial, religious and political ideological differences will continue to exist within and among active duty military personnel, primarily as a reflection of the same issues in the civilian society. Fair and effective means of limiting the involvement of active-duty military personnel in extremist organizations will require aggressive education and training at all levels, particularly among new recruits [...]. Recent events of domestic terrorism [...] have caused significant concern and alarm over the extent to which extremists and hate-groups are present in the military services. A major dilemma is posed in dealing with this issue, specifically when an individual's freedoms of thought and association are identified as a contributing factor to the existence of such people in the military services [...]. Right-wing extremists and hate-motivated groups have historically, and are currently recruiting active duty military personnel for several reasons, including: 1) they lend a degree of 'legitimacy' and 'bravado' to militant groups that aids in the group's ability to recruit civilians, 2) they are trained and are capable of training group members in the use of weapons and tactics, 3) they are useful as an 'inside' point of contact for ordinance and munitions thefts, and 4) the military environment fosters a more disciplined and conservative mindset that these groups can exploit and construe to attain loyalties and devotion based upon the racial or religious convictions of the soldier [...]. Additionally, education and frank, open discussions will be required to prevent and eliminate such problems in the future."

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