The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) wants Americans to believe since 2011, when the word “extremists” was just starting to take root in the public’s consciousness, there has been an explosion of violent extremism.
In 2011, DHS published the “Empowering Local Partners To Prevent Violent Extremism In The United States” report, while at the same time calls for ending America’s neverending war on terror started taking hold.
The DHS report made dubious claims like al-Qa‘ida was trying to recruit and radicalize Americans across the country, which coincidentally was also the 10th anniversary of 9/11. The report mentions extremists and violent extremists interchangeably during a time when Americans were beginning to question the war on terror.
In May 2011, National Public Radio wrote, “Why We Must End The War On Terror” and asked in September, “Is It Time To End The War On Terror?” Similar articles were being published across the country asking the same thing.
Fast forward eleven years to 2022, and the war on terror shows no signs of abating.
DHS, who could be mistaken for magicians if it were not so ironic, have convinced law enforcement that America now has at least twenty-three different types of extremists.
There does not appear to be a master list of American extremists published by DHS or the Department of Justice.
I used four sources to compile this list of twenty-two different types of violent extremists, but I fear that the government’s “official list” is far larger.
- Anti–government violent extremist
- Anti-war extremist
- Anti–authority violent extremist
- Anarchist violent extremist
- Domestic violent extremist
- Racially or ethnically motivated violent extremist
- Militia violent extremists
- Sovereign citizen violent extremist
- Individual violent extremist
- Involuntary celibate–violent extremist
- Abortion extremist
- Anti-abortion extremist
- Animal rights extremist
- Environmental extremist
- Right-wing extremist
- Left-wing extremist
- Christian Identity extremist
- Islamist extremist
- Muslim extremist
- Racist extremist
- Nativist extremist
- Schoolboard extremist
Sources: National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism, A Schema of Right-Wing Extremism in the United States, Homegrown Violent Extremist Violent Indicators (2019) report and the National School Board.