In the comments to my post on the attacks in Norway, a portion of the conversation has turned to the fact that the larger terrorism threat is domestic - from one's fellow citizens. There is always good reporting, and some excellent recent stuff, on this topic, but you won't find it in the major media. Rather its at Esquire's Daily Politics Blog and from Dave Neiwert at Crooks and Liars. Mr. Neiwert has been aggregating incidents since 2008 (the last presidential election cycle) into an interesting interactive map.
In the Spring of this year I taught an elective on religious and (other forms of) identity violence at the US Army War College. We focused on a number of case examples, finishing with extremists here in the US. The enduring issue is how does one contextualize, analyze, and formulate responses to extremists threats from within? Threats that come from one's fellow citizens, people that look and sound just like you. We also worked on how one works these issues if one has to intervene as a third party. There is a reason that the most effective groups have always struck at domestic targets. Whether its the IRA, the UFF, Hamas, Hezbullah, the Mehdi Army, and the Order or the Army of G-d here in the US (to use just a few examples from a lot of places), domestic extremist threats are so effective because they understand all of the terrain. The international stuff is often flashy and grabs the headlines, but the domestic stuff is a far more sustained set of campaigns. And its harder to get one's head around that people so similar to you think you're the enemy or a collaborator with the enemy.
*Adam L. Silverman is the Culture and Foreign Language Advisor at the US Army War College. The views expressed here are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of the US Army War College or the US Army.