Too Right Does Make a Wrong: The Rise of the Radical Right in the West

The rise of radical right-wing ideology has been on the radar in recent years, but at times has taken a backseat to other issues hitting the news. As recent events, such as the August 12, 2017 violent protests in Charlottesville, North Carolina, have revealed, the extreme-right is a threat to U.S. homeland security and the West as a whole.

A recent undercover study done by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue, a global counter-extremism organization, reveals that the extreme-right ideology is using the online platform as a point of connectivity and mainstreaming: “This report builds on a combination of quantitative and qualitative analysis to explore the connectivity and convergence of the global extreme right. Based on our analysis of 5,000 pieces of content gathered from more than 50 platforms, this report maps the extreme-right eco-system, categorising different extreme-networks into ideological and geographic clusters.”

The resulting report, titled “The Fringe Insurgency: Connectivity, Convergence and Mainstreaming of the Extreme Right,” synthesizes the study’s key findings and offers recommendations for adapting existing countermeasures to fit the nature of the cyber-savvy and globally interconnected extreme-right. A particularly notable point presented by the study is that tactics employed by the radical-right are similar in style to military psychological operations, and thus are highly sophisticated in moving “large-scale online mobilisation into real-world impact.”

Included are three case studies on the radical right campaign Defend Europe, the Unite the Right Rally, and the September 2017 German elections. The report concludes with a section on “Convergence and Nexus Points” and recommendations for providing effective responses to extreme-right radicalization.

View the full report here. Non-registered users may access the report here. The HSDL offers many resources on related topics. Visit the Featured Topics to find more on Domestic (U.S.) Terrorism.