“It terrifies me, the fragility of these moments in our lives.”
Wednesday, 16 November 2016
Rightwing 'lone wolves' kill more than Islamic terrorists acting alone, says report
report looked at attacks between 2000 and 2014, including that in
Norway by Anders Breivik.
Rightwing extremists kill and injure more people in lone wolf
attacks than Islamic terrorists acting alone, according to a report
by a security thinktank.
Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in London says in its
Lone Actor Terrorism that
rightwing extremists across Europe present a substantial threat to
the public that should not be overlooked.
details the cases of 94 people who were killed and 260 who were
injured in attacks by far-right terrorists acting on their own
between the start of 2000 and the end of 2014.In contrast,
religiously inspired lone attacks killed 16 and injured 65 people.
report, which is released in updated form on Wednesday, says:
“Rightwing extremists represent a substantial aspect of the lone
actor threat and must not be overlooked.”
says that lone wolf extremists have been responsible for 98 plots and
72 attacks in 30 European countries including Norway and Switzerland
in the period examined.
services say the lone wolf terrorist attack is one of the most
difficult to detect and preempt. The RUSI report is the result of
detailed examination of terrorist plots and attacks across Europe and
is being constantly updated.
include the killing of 77 and injuring of 242 people in Norway by
Anders Breivik in July 2011 in shooting and bomb attacks fuelled by
his rightwing views and belief in the Islamisation of Europe.
report says the intense focus among the public and in the media on
the danger from the Islamic terrorist threat is at odds with the
reality of the threat posed by rightwing lone wolves.
inflict a higher death toll and in percentage terms more of them are
lone wolves, as opposed to motivated by organised terror groups, than
religiously inspired terrorists.
media, and consequently public attention, is largely focused on
violent Islamist extremists; while this may reflect the broader
threat, it is at odds with that from lone actor terrorism,” the
research was carried out by RUSI and a consortium of thinktanks
including Chatham House and provides a database of lone wolf terror
cases across Europe. RUSI said the overall objective was to see if it
was possible to discern patterns or trends that could feed into
recommendations for policy makers.
actor terrorists are perceived as presenting acute challenges for law
enforcement practitioners in detection and disruption,” the report
says. “By definition, they act without direct command and control
from a wider network, and it is assumed that without such
communications they may evade the ‘tripwires’ that would usually
bring them to the attention of the authorities.”
also states that lone wolf rightwing extremists are harder to detect
than religiously inspired Islamicterrorists.
was established that 40% of rightwing extremists were uncovered by an
element of chance, as part of an investigation into other offences or
because the perpetrator accidentally detonated a device, drawing
attention to his or her activities. Although chance was also evident
in some examples of religiously inspired terrorism, overall 88% of
interventions were intelligence-led, suggesting a clear disparity,”
the report says.
also found that rightwing extremists were far less likely to talk
about their activities, and were often discovered only after
detonating a device or killing an individual. Islamist extremists,
however, in 45% of cases talked about their inspiration and possible
actions with family and friends.
contrast, only 18% of leakage by rightwing extremists was to this
audience,” the report says.
wingers are also found to be more likely to be socially isolated or
suffer mental health problems than other lone wolf terrorists and
more likely to “post telling indicators” on the internet.