Is he serious?
In the midst of the warning of “9/11 Amnesia” CNN host John Avlon makes the bold claim that ‘Far-Right Terrorists” are more dangerous than Jihadis.
He begins with some reasonable — if debatable — critiques of how things have changed in the 18 years after 9/11. Avlon discusses the advocacy of Jon Stewart on behalf of the 9/11 first responders to get healthcare funding from the government, and the (admittedly terrible) decision to discuss peace in Afghanistan with the Taliban at Camp David on the weekend of the country-altering tragedy that they helped perpetrate. But then, he states that although Jihadi attacks have been foiled, but then highlights “white nationalist terrorists” and ties them to the right-wing.
From the CNN website:
CNN’s John Avlon discusses how things have changed since the terrorist attacks on 9/11, citing concerns with ‘9/11 amnesia’ and America’s newest forms of terrorism.
These terror suspects echoed white supremacist conspiracy theories about “replacement,” hatred toward immigrants and refugees and ambitions of sparking a race war.
This is a growing problem. The FBI reports that of domestic terrorism cases with a racial component, most are linked to white supremacy.
And here’s a startling statistic: since the 9/11 attacks, right-wing terrorists have killed more people in America than jihadist terrorists, according to the New America think tank.
Really John? On 9/11 this is your “Reality Check”?
It’s utterly tone-deaf at best and completely disingenuous at worst.
This is actually quite shocking coming from Avlon who was a speechwriter for Rudy Giuliani. It contrasts greatly from the beautiful and incredibly poignant essay that he wrote in December 2001 called, The Resilient City which is worth reading every September 11. It honors those who fell that day through the eyes of the man who wrote or edited Guiliani’s eulogies for over 400 first responders that died on that fateful day. It also inspires hope. Avlon truly has a way with words.
The question comes down to: Is Avlon right in his assertions about “right-wing terrorism”?
He is correct that subsequent attacks by Jihadists have been thwarted, but not correct that the so-called “right-wing” attacks are actually right-wing.
With the prevalence of identity politics on the left — which is lauded as positive — some right-wingers find themselves falling into the same identitarian trap while attempting to defend the ideals of Western Civilization. It’s something that conservatives should be careful to guard against.
The identitarians who are allegedly on the right cannot really be considered conservative in their ideology. They should be, (and very often are,) shunned by those who hold to conservative principles.
These racists are not actually conservative, they’re “alt-right.”
Here’s an explainer video about what that really means:
Unfortunately, Avlon, much like most folks these days, seems to be conflating alt-right with right-wing.
In another article, New America outlines the threats to the United States as Jihadi, Far-Right Wing, Black Separatist/Nationalist/Supremacist, Ideological Misogyny/Incel Ideology.
It’s surprising that CNN didn’t blame this rise in “right-wing terrorists” on Fox News.
Oh, wait. They already did that in July.
On Tuesday’s CNN Tonight, host Don Lemon and CNN terrorism analyst Juliette Kayyem suggested that Fox News was to blame for right-wing terrorism in the U.S., and that it gives a platform to racism, as the two discussed reports that such violence is a bigger problem in the U.S. than terrorism from other sources.
Is white nationalist violence a problem? Personally, I think it’s a growing threat, (largely as a response to the identitarianism that has been embraced by the left,) but not to the scale that the Media(D) is portraying it to be.
Remember the shooting in Dayton by a supporter of Elizabeth Warren? That disappeared from the headlines pretty quickly because it didn’t fit the narrative. It didn’t even make it onto the New America list of deadly attacks and ideology.
White nationalist violence should be condemned totally. President Trump has said that repeatedly though he never gets the credit for doing so.
Frankly, all tribalist violence and extremism should be condemned.
It is the left that has embraced identity politics and tribalism — unless it’s Caucasians, European heritage, and any sort of celebration of the West. For people who continue to assert that “all cultures are equal,” they seem particularly hostile to the one that has lauded freedom and equality.
I think it is partly the left’s promotion for identity politics that has lured some uncritical, shallow individuals loosely associated with the right into the toxic identitarianism based on race.
Avlon tied white supremacy to the right and I’ll critique him for that. But he did say some things that I can agree with.
I’ll close with his words encouraging us to look at all the threats that we face.
There are some folks who, for their own political purposes, would like to keep the focus on one form of political violence over another.
But that would be unwise.
Because we don’t have the luxury of choosing which threats we face.
But is 9/11 the day to draw attention away from Islamic terrorism which is still a threat 18 years later?
Perhaps Avalon should bring up the issue on a day that is not reserved for remembering those that have fallen because of a group of Jihadis.