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The Ziggurat of Zealotry: Applying Lessons Learned from Fighting al Qaeda to Right-Wing Extremism

MIN READJan 22, 2021 | 22:47 GMT

The steps of the pyramid of Djoser are seen in Egypt's Saqqara necropolis, south of the capital Cairo, on March 5, 2020.

(MOHAMED EL-SHAHED/AFP via Getty Images)

A terrorist is a terrorist is a terrorist. The dynamics of radicalization are remarkably similar across ideological, religious, and political lines. Looking at right-wing groups, which pose the biggest threat at the moment, we can apply the same tools we used on Salafi-Jihadist extremism after 9/11. The heyday of left-wing extremism passed a few decades ago, despite the obsessive use of the term “radical left.” There is a structure to extremism apart from its content. My former colleagues and I called it the “Ziggurat of Zealotry.”...

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