It’s Not Just Trump, Federal Law Enforcement Is Not Very Focused On Far-Right Extremism
The following is an excerpt from Paul Blunmenthal | August 20, 2017 | Huffingtonpost.com |
WASHINGTON ― The death of 32-year-old anti-racist protester Heather Heyer at the hands of a white supremacist on Saturday was the most recent of at least 65 fatal incidents perpetrated by right-wing extremists in the United States since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The incident in Charlottesville is indicative of how far-right extremist violence has surged in the intervening years, as federal law enforcement efforts have shifted attention toward the threat posed by jihadist terrorism, former counter-terrorism officials and experts say.
Conservative media and Republican politicians who oppose federal crackdowns on far-right extremist ideologues encouraged this shift, and presidents from both parties have acquiesced to the pressure. This process has only accelerated since the inauguration of President Donald Trump, who defended the white nationalist and white supremacist protesters who marched in Virginia, by saying there were some good people among them and equating them with anti-racist counter-protesters.
The president and his aides support gutting efforts to counter violent extremism stemming from white supremacy and other racist ideologies in order to divert funding to anti-jihadist measures. The administration has already cut funding to the group Life After Hate, which works to rehabilitate white supremacists.
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