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The aim of this paper is to conduct a comparative study of Radical Right Wing terrorism and Radical Islamic terrorism both of which are categorized under the Religious Nationalism/Extremism typology of terrorism. In order to compare and contrast the two fairly, I broke down the ideology, motives, methods, and the demographic profile of members of both Radical Right Wing and Radical Islamic terrorism then provided examples of different groups that fall within those categories in order to effectively illustrate the striking similarities of the two categories that have been addressed and condemned differently by the United States. Then I had analyzed how and why the United States has approached groups that fall under Radical Right Wing terrorism vastly different than groups under Radical Islamic terrorism even though both fall under the same Religious Nationalism/Extremism category of terrorism. This comparative study is also being conducted to examine why the United States did not have the same reaction to Radical Right Wing terrorist groups before the September 11th attacks as it did to the Radical Islamic groups since Radical Right Wing groups had committed the most violent acts in the United States prior to September 11th 2001. Lastly, I will also briefly discuss the present day social implications associated with the difference of treatment between the two terrorist groups.

Publication Date


Subject Major(s)

Political Science and Homeland Security


Terrorism, Comparative Study, Radical Right Wing, Radical Islamic, Terrorist, Radical Politics, Politics


Comparative Politics | Defense and Security Studies | Peace and Conflict Studies | Political Science | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Terrorism Studies

Current Academic Year


Faculty Advisor/Mentor

Doctor Herbert Hirsch


© The Author(s)

A Comparative Study of Extreme Religious Nationalist Terrorist Groups in the United States