Violent Extremism

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  • Marines with Combat Marksmanship Coaches Reserve conduct the new Annual Rifle Qualification at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Virginia, September 21, 2021, photo by Lance Cpl. Samwel Tabancay/U.S. Marine Corps

    Report

    How Could the U.S. Military Counter Extremism in Its Ranks?

    Oct 25, 2021

    The U.S. Capitol riot on January 6, 2021 drew attention to the involvement of current and former service members in extremist groups. There are some terrorism prevention programs in the civilian sector that might help the Department of Defense address the issue.

  • The east front of the U.S. Capitol seen through a shattered door on January 7, 2021, the day after the riot, photo by Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via AP Images

    Essay

    Violent Extremism in America: Pathways to Deradicalization

    Sep 8, 2021

    Ideologically inspired violence is a serious threat to U.S. national security. Research on effective strategies to fight it has often failed to engage the people who might know best: those who have lived that life and left it behind. Researchers partnered with antiextremism support groups to change that.

Explore Violent Extremism

  • Blog

    Extremism and Substance Use Disorder, Criminal Background Checks, Vaccine Diplomacy: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on the parallels between extremism and substance use disorder, a better way to measure recidivism risk, global vaccine diplomacy, and more.

    Jan 7, 2022

  • A white supremacist protester is escorted away in handcuffs by a sheriff during a demonstration in Paris, Texas, July 21, 2009, photo by Jessica Rinaldi/Reuters

    Report

    Can Extremism Be Addictive?

    Why do former extremists feel drawn back to radical ideological thoughts and long for reengagement with the movements they left? Is it like an addiction? There could be opportunities to apply lessons from addiction research and treatment to efforts to counter hate and violent extremism.

    Jan 5, 2022

  • Blog

    The Most Popular RAND Research of 2021

    As another extraordinary year draws to a close, we continue to believe that objective, nonpartisan research and analysis has a key role to play in navigating what continues to be a difficult time. Here are the 10 research projects that resonated most with rand.org readers in 2021.

    Dec 22, 2021

  • Blog

    RAND Commentary Highlights of 2021

    Vaccine rollouts, an attack on the U.S. Capitol, massive ransomware attacks, the withdrawal from Afghanistan, record numbers of job openings and people quitting, and more. RAND researchers weighed in on all these topics and more.

    Dec 21, 2021

  • Multimedia

    RAND Video Highlights of 2021

    The best RAND videos from the past year brought our research to life in new ways. From the sidewalks of Pittsburgh to preschools in the Middle East, see how people around the world are using RAND research to make their communities safer and more secure, healthier and more prosperous.

    Dec 20, 2021

  • Barbed wire and protective fencing surrounds the U.S. Capitol, as the sun sets in Washington, February 21, 2021, photo by Al Drago/Reuters

    Multimedia

    RAND Remote: America's Response to Terrorism

    In this RAND Remote conversation, Brian Michael Jenkins, senior adviser to the RAND president, and senior behavioral scientist Rajeev Ramchand discuss how the terrorism threat to America has changed over the past 20 years.

    Dec 16, 2021

  • Multimedia

    Combating Extremism in the U.S. Military

    RAND military sociologist Marek N. Posard describes the threat of extremism in the U.S. military, the ways in which extremism develops, and strategies the military could use to combat extremism.

    Dec 9, 2021

  • Blog

    Addressing Anti-Asian Racism, Stabilizing U.S. Rivalries, the Debt-Ceiling Fight: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on countering anti-Asian racism, the instability of U.S. rivalries with Russia and China, the rise in extremist online activity, and more.

    Dec 3, 2021

  • A woman with a smartphone is seen in front of social media logos, May 25, 2021, photo by Dado Ruvic/Reuters

    Report

    Understanding the Online Extremist Ecosystem

    By the early 2010s, it was clear that the internet provided white supremacists and other extremists a tool to operationalize their hateful ideas and cause real-world harms. How can the average user understand their risk of exposure to extremist content and make informed decisions about the platforms they use?

    Dec 2, 2021

  • A cyclist rides along fencing surrounding the U.S. Capitol that was erected in the wake of the January 6 insurrection in Washington, D.C., July 8, 2021, photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

    Commentary

    Politicians Face Violence and Threats from Voters—and Each Other. Are We Nearing a Civil War?

    Does America's increasingly uncivil behavior mean we are heading toward civil war? The historical record seems to indicate that the country has a high tolerance for violence without breaking apart. But the threat of civil wars cannot be dismissed.

    Nov 15, 2021

  • A member of the local Explosives and Ordnance Division wearing a specialized suit tries to install a water diffuser to an improvised explosive device during a bomb drill in a high school courtyard in Manila, Philippines, July 14, 2017, photo by Romeo Ranoco/Reuters

    Commentary

    Defining 'Terrorism' Is the First Step to Defeating It

    Western policy- and decisionmakers continue to grapple with how to define acts of terrorism and when it is appropriate to bring terrorism charges. Establishing a consensus on the definition of terrorism and bringing to center stage the importance of adequately charging acts of terrorism could be more important than ever.

    Nov 8, 2021

  • Report

    Report

    Classifying acts of violence: Understanding how acts of violence are classified by subject matter experts

    RAND Europe was commissioned to conduct a study on how acts of violence are classified by different subject matter experts. The findings demonstrate ongoing difficulties in classifying acts of violence and inform recommendations for policymakers.

    Oct 27, 2021

  • Trump supporters battle with police at the west entrance of the Capitol building in Washington, D.C., January 6, 2021, photo by Stephanie Keith/Reuters

    Commentary

    Countering Domestic Terrorism May Require Rethinking U.S. Intelligence Strategy

    The United States is deeply divided, its political system polarized. Getting counterterrorism wrong could make the situation worse. The challenge is to isolate and contain violent extremists without turning them into political martyrs or half the country into enemies of the state.

    Oct 5, 2021

  • U.S. soldiers gather as the sun sets at Camp Williams, Utah, April 16, 2021, photo by Sgt. 1st Class Brent Powell/U.S. Army

    Commentary

    Institutions May Be Key to Countering Extremism in the Military

    Extremism is a symptom of broader social and political headwinds within civilian society. By using existing support programs, military leaders may be able to effectively confront these headwinds early and channel them in productive ways that ultimately preserve the effectiveness and readiness of the U.S. military.

    Oct 4, 2021

  • Blog

    Prescription Drug Prices, Unemployment Insurance, Anti-Asian Racism: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on lowering prescription drug prices, reforming unemployment insurance, addressing anti-Asian racism, and more.

    Sep 17, 2021

  • Jessica Marie Watkins (second from left) and Donovan Ray Crowl (center), both U.S. veterans who have since been indicted for their roles in the Capitol riot, in Washington, D.C., January 6, 2021, photo by Jim Bourg/Reuters

    Report

    Reducing the Risk of Extremist Activity in the U.S. Military

    The majority of military personnel are not extremists. But to address their potential exposure to and involvement in extremist activities, commanders who are tasked with combating extremism could receive some support from existing programs that promote diversity and inclusion and prevent violence.

    Sep 16, 2021

  • Blog

    Boosting Vaccine Acceptance, Afghanistan's Refugee Crisis, Environmental Racism: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on addressing vaccine hesitancy, preventing an even-bigger humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, and how to develop antiracist environmental policies.

    Sep 10, 2021

  • Periodical

    Periodical

    RAND Review: September-October 2021

    The cover story highlights strategies to mitigate homegrown terrorism and ideologically inspired violence in the U.S. A second feature describes Costa Rica's ambitious decarbonization plan and its implications for nations around the world.

    Sep 7, 2021