Forgotten News: The Constant Threat of Right-Wing Terrorism

Did you know that right-wing terrorist attacks and schemes have occurred every year for the last quarter century? Right-wing extremism continues to be a modern day national security issue, yet the magnitude and frequency of this growing vulnerability is unbeknownst to the average citizen. A recent publication from the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism warns all Americans of the significant and deadly threat of right-wing terrorism. A Dark & Constant Rage: 25 Years of Right-Wing Terrorism in the United States is a comprehensive study of the right-wing extremist attacks that have quietly plagued our country since 1993. The report analyzed all of the domestic terrorist acts committed, attempted, or conspired by right-wing extremists in the past 25 years and developed a list of 150 incidents that demonstrate the severity of this national security threat. According to their research, “Right-wing extremists have been one of the largest and most consistent sources of domestic terror incidents in the United States for many years, a fact that has not gotten the attention it deserves”. Over 850 people were injured or killed by right-wing terrorist attacks studied in this report alone. One of the most tragic cases of right-wing extremism was the infamous Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, that traumatically killed 168, injured hundreds, and shocked millions nationwide. However, this was not a rare or isolated occurrence, but rather amid “a long string of terror incidents connected to right-wing extremists” that have been under emphasized by the media.

One consequence of insufficient media coverage is that policy-makers and the public alike are unaware and unprepared. Even after a long history of attacks by right-wing radicals there is yet to be a federal domestic terrorism statute passed, nor is there an adequate budget to educate law enforcement officials or emergency responders of this deeply rooted threat. These violent extremist movements have a rich ancestry in American society that has remained under the radar yet relentlessly targeted our national security for decades. Simply put, “If the United States does not treat right-wing extremism as a real threat, the list of right-wing terror incidents can only grow.” For more resources related to this report, check out the Domestic Terrorism: Extremism and Domestic Terrorism: Single Issue/Special Interests Featured Topics at Homeland Security Digital Library (some resources may require login).