I heard an interesting discussion on the Colorado shooter on NPR’s Diane Rehm show this morning; namely, whether the Planned Parenthood Shooting was terrorism. It probably was based on various definitions. It was political violence aimed at civilians to create terror, enact legal change, make a statement, etc. There was a related discussion of how there’s more hand-wringing here than in the case of Islamic terrorism. Maybe, at least for people with good sense. Nidal Hasan was dismissed as “workplace violence,” one may remember.
But something should be noted, and no one mentioned it. The shooter acted alone. The South Carolina black-on-white shooter, also probably a terrorist, acted alone. Almost all the right wing nutjobs act alone. Tim McVeigh didn’t, and he was deadly effective on account of it. Teamwork and a murderous ideology are an especially deadly combination.
A great number of Muslim terrorists don’t act alone. In other words, they’re not nearly as marginal in that community. I’m anti-abortion, and I would turn someone into the FBI who was saying they’d do this. Not so much with the Muslims. We see a great deal of moral support for them, in such varied movements as the anti-GITMO movement, or in the “dual loyalties” Muslims have for the war against Muslim terrorists. Indeed, we’re starting to see similar solidarity for the anti-police and anti-white violence bubbling up during the Great Uniter’s tenure.
Indeed, online and in person, they apparently get a lot of support. It’s easy to find confederates. There’s a whole bunch of potential terrorists among them, and they find each other easily. There is a whole mini-caliphate dedicated to terrorism in the form of the Islamic State, people are coming from all over to join it and fund it, and the Paris shooters had a dozen or more people involved. There were 19 hijackers for 9/11. Yes, some act alone, like the Chattanooga shooter and Nidal Hasan. But it’s equally likely they act together, with the multiplier effect that involves. Indeed, this is what made Obama’s leftist terrorist buddies in the Weather Underground deadly effective as well. And like leftists and blacks and other alienated groups, there is an instinctual aversion to the “system” and “law enforcement,” that lends these groups a great deal of passive support for their political violence.
So yes there are right wing and Christian terrorists. But they’re so marginal, they almost always act alone. And no one wants anything done to them, other than that they be prosecuted for their crimes.