Over the last 25 years in the United States, those inspired by al-Qaida and its associated movement (AQAM) have killed nearly seven-and-a-half times more people than far-right extremists have killed in one-fifth as many incidents. However, if you remove two outlier events – the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the Oklahoma City Bombing – far-right extremists (FRE) have killed nearly four times as many people as AQAM extremists, according to a new START report and research brief.
The research outlines the points below.
- The number of attacks and deaths excluding the 9/11 and Oklahoma City bombing victims:
- 62 individuals were killed by AQAM offenders in 38 incidents (1.6 victims per homicide incident) and
- 245 individuals were killed by FRE offenders in 177 incidents (1.4 victims per homicide incident).
- Targeting behaviors by AQAM and FRE:
- FRE victims were more often purposefully targeted where AQAM victims were more likely to be random and representative.
- The majority of AQAM victims were civilians.
- FRE victims were most often targeted for racial or ethnic reasons.
- Weapons used:
- There was a lower use of firearms by FRE (62.9%) compared to AQAM (72.6%).
- When compared to AQAM, FRE favored more intimate forms of violence, such as stabbing or beating their victims to death.
The full report also examines ideological-motivated homicide victimization, to include temporal, geographic, individual and incident characteristics.
The research offers some important policy considerations, including the need for a continued vigilance regarding all ideological motivated violence and standardized training among law enforcement.
To read the full report “Twenty-five years of ideological homicide victimization in the United States” visit http://www.start.umd.edu/pubs/START_CSTAB_ECDB_25YearsofIdeologicalHomicideVictimizationUS_March2016.pdf.
To read the brief “Victims of Ideological Homicides, 1990-2014” visit http://www.start.umd.edu/pubs/START_VictimsofIdeologicalHomicides_ResearchBrief_March2016.pdf.