To be radicalised is essentially to be brainwashed into thinking that one’s ideology is paramount and they’re prepared to defend it at all costs.
“the action or process of causing someone to adopt radical positions on political or social issues.” – Oxford dictionary
When people are radicalised into cults, or fundamentalist schisms of religions they are often recruited to perform a duty that will attain a goal. People who are radicalised are often force fed propaganda to give the illusion that the ideology, that’s often political agendas, is substantiated, and in some cases necessary for the greater good. Unfortunately this often leads to violent extremism that manifests in terrorism, be it global or the political arena.
“No one really knows why they are alive until they know what they’d die for.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
I’m going to quote Marton Luther King Jr. twice for a reason.
“A man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
I know where his mindset is coming from with both of the statements, and with him being an incredibly intelligent and articulate man, and a pacifist, I understand his passion for life, but what he’s said can so easily be taken out of context and in the hands of a radical extremist his words can be enforced to mean a far more sinister ideology.
Take the Islamist extremists who were part of the terrorist group ‘Al-Qaeda’ (al-Qāʿidah) they believed in a cause that was bigger than them and hijacked and flew American Airlines Flight 11 into the North tower of the World Trade Center, and United Airlines Flight 175 into the South tower. This is currently the most devastating terrorist attack in history that resulted in thousands of deaths, many more thousands injured because Osama bin Laden objected to American foreign policies in the Middle East. Here is the statement published by the ‘World Islamic Front‘ and below is their call to arms.
“We — with Allah’s help — call on every Muslim who believes in Allah and wishes to be rewarded to comply with Allah’s order to kill the Americans and plunder their money wherever and whenever they find it. We also call on Muslim ulema, leaders, youths, and soldiers to launch the raid on Satan’s U.S. troops and the devil’s supporters allying with them, and to displace those who are behind them so that they may learn a lesson.”
This is known as the ‘1998 fatwā’ created by Osama bin Laden and signed by four other key members of Islamist groups and was published February 23, 1998, in the ‘Al-Quds-Al-Arabi‘ newspaper, and was called the ‘World Islamic Front for Jihad Against Jews and Crusaders‘.
“All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration of war on Allah, his messenger, and Muslims.”
The far right political mindset is equally as dangerous as it’s a form of extremism that gave birth to white supremacy and the Ku Klux Klan, or the fascist ideology of Nazism and white nationalism. Many of these groups share the same hatred for liberal ideologies and their views are often racist, sexist, and against rights or even acceptance of LBGTQ. This extreme radicalisation caused the Christchurch Mosque terrorist attack on 15th March, 2019, where 51 Muslims were executed in the house of worship and many more injured by lone gun man, ‘Brenton Tarrant‘. He was an Australian citizen who had adopted extreme right wing views and hatred of Islam. Christchurch has been recognised as a predominantly xenophobic region this led to the biggest terrorism massacres in New Zealand’s history. When he was asked if he had any regrets his reply was:
“No, I only wish I could have killed more invaders, and more traitors as well” – Brenton Tarrant
Some good did come of it as it made the government allow a month long amnesty where the public could freely return firearms without any legal requirements were enforced as they planned to ban the most destructive firearms. Many thousands of guns were handed over to the government.
On the 22nd July, 2011, Norwegian National, ‘Anders Behring Breivik‘, was responsible for two terrorist attacks; one, a car bomb in the nation’s capital, ‘Oslo‘, that killed 8 people and injured many more; and the second he dressed as a police officer he boarded a ferry to the island of ‘Utøya’, where he executed 69 victims with firearms who were there as a youth league attending a summer camp. His political ideology was racially motivated and he feared that white peoples would eventually be replaced with Middle Eastern Muslims who would wipe the whites out through genocide. Since imprisonment he’s confirmed that his views are Nazi, facist extremism and he’s actually said that he regrets not killing more people.
“I prayed for the first time in a very long time today. I explained to God that unless he wanted the Marxist-Islamic alliance and the certain Islamic takeover of Europe to completely annihilate European Christendom within the next hundred years he must ensure that the warriors fighting for the preservation of European Christendom prevail.” – Anders Behring Breivik