- New research, based on almost 900 politically-motivated plots and murders in the US since 1994, found only one person’s death in the last 25 years was linked to “antifa” or anti-fascists, and the person who died was the attacker.
- In comparison, over that same period, 329 murders were linked to the far-right.
- When the label was broadened from anti-fascists to left-wing violence, it found 21 victims had been killed since 2010, compared to 117 in right-wing violence in the same time period.
- Jihadist groups were responsible for 95 people’s deaths since 2010.
- The database, which was compiled by a thinktank called the Center for Strategic and International Studies, was launched after Trump’s administration spent several months stoking the possibility of left-wing violence, especially during the George Floyd protests.
- Seth Jones, a counter-terrorism expert, who helped create the dataset, told The Guardian: “Left-wing violence has not been a major terrorism threat.”
- He said: “The most significant domestic terrorism threat comes from white supremacists, anti-government militias and a handful of individuals associated with the ‘boogaloo’ movement that are attempting to create a civil war in the United States.”
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President Donald Trump has accused far-left groups of inciting riots and violence, but in the last 25 years, no murders in the US have been linked to anti-fascists, while 329 murders have been linked to the far-right, according to new research.
Researchers at a think tank called the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) assembled a database of almost 900 politically motivated plots and attacks in the US since 1994, ending in May 2020, which was reviewed by The Guardian.
The review found that only one person’s death in that period was linked to “antifa,” a leaderless movement dedicated to combatting right-wing and white supremacist groups, and the person who died was the attacker.
When the review widened its category from antifa to “left-wing violence,” it found 21 victims had been killed since 2010, compared to 117 people killed in right-wing violence, in the same time period. Jihadist groups were responsible for 95 people’s deaths since 2010.
Seth Jones, a counter-terrorism expert, who helped create the dataset, told The Guardian: "Left-wing violence has not been a major terrorism threat."
He said currently: "The most significant domestic terrorism threat comes from white supremacists, anti-government militias and a handful of individuals associated with the 'boogaloo' movement that are attempting to create a civil war in the United States."
It wasn't just CSIS either. Researchers at the Global Project Against Hate and Extremism, and at the Anti-Defamation League, told The Guardian they did not know of any murders linked to antifa in the US in the last 25 years.
Since the widespread protests began, Trump, senior officials, and Republican lawmakers have attempted to push the theory that antifa has been infiltrating protests to stoke violence. Trump's threatened to designate antifa as a terrorist organization.
The CSIS database was launched as Trump's administration began to repeat Trump's warnings about a possible "left-wing revolution," according to The Guardian.
In a memorandum released by Attorney General William Barr late in June, it states: "We have evidence that anti-government violent extremists - including those who support the 'Boogaloo,' those who self-identify as Antifa, and others- will pose continuing threats of lawlessness."
It goes on to state that the extremists "may be fortified" by foreign powers who wish to "sow chaos and disorder" in the US.
But there was little proof of any coordinated effort, Business Insider reported in late June.
Paul Barrett, the deputy director of the New York University Stern Centre for Business and Human Rights, told Business Insider's Sonam Sheth that the attempt to frame protests as "a violent leftist conspiracy" bore "all the earmarks of current-day disinformation."