The Atlantic

How White-Supremacist Violence Echoes Other Forms of Terrorism

Their enemies are different, but their tactics are often the same.
Source: Ozan Kose / AFP / Getty Images

Their enemies are different, but their grievances and methods can look strikingly similar. The suspected gunman charged with killing 49 people at two mosques in New Zealand on Friday was a white nationalist, bent on killing Muslims. But in many respects, he’s not so different from the jihadists who have conducted similar mass shootings on behalf of violent Islamist groups.

Terrorists across ideologies and decades have craved attention and tended to see themselves and their identity groups as persecuted and needing protection. The 21st-century twist is the use of newer communications technology to mobilize followers, spread propaganda, and incite attacks. And from the perspective of the societies attacked by terrorists, the recurring and awful problem

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