22. juli-senteret

Right-wing extremism in Norway

The extreme right-wing movement in Norway has changed over the past decade. Previously, right-wing extremists were predominantly racist youth gangs and organised Neo-Nazis. It was easier to identify them on the basis of their appearance; they were often skinheads with extreme right-wing symbols on their clothes or as tattoos. These groups were particularly dominant in the 1990s.

Today, the threat from the extreme right is first and foremost in the form of individuals who are involved in right-wing extremist communities on countless internet forums. They front a variety of world images, visions and methods that they believe should be used to achieve various goals. A main distinction can be seen in the difference between those who want ‘pure’ ethno-states and want to achieve this by deporting other ethnic groups, and those who want to create chaos in society with the aim of total destruction and the establishment of a new social order.

Online right-wing extremism has a global structure where users communicate and inspire each other across national borders. In March 2019, Australian Brenton Tarrant carried out a terrorist attack against two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing 51 people. In August 2019, Philip Manshaus killed his adoptive step sister before attacking the Al-Noor Mosque in Bærum where he fired shots. He was overpowered by two members of the mosque before he managed to kill anyone else. Both Tarrant and Manshaus were inspired by Breivik’s ideology.

The Identitarian movement is another phenomenon that stands out as a potential threat, but that, as yet, has had more influence in other parts of Europe, particularly France and Italy. Identitarianism is closely related to the US alt-right movement. These movements promote ethnonationalism, i.e. that ethnic groups and cultures should be kept apart, as we are familiar with from the Apartheid regime in South Africa and segregation policy in the USA. Advocates of these groups are often both anti-feminist and anti-modernist. The movements are loosely organised and strive for a more sophisticated and intellectual form of expression. They are commonly interested in distinguishing themselves from right-wing extremist phenomena such as Nazism and anti-Semitism. However, they often have ties to such segments, as seen in the USA where the link between the alt-right and the Ku Klux Klan has been the subject of great attention. Identitarianists often work more behind the scenes and seek to influence policy by circulating their ideas rather than actually pursuing political power.

 

References

Bjørgo, T. (Red.) (2018) Høyreekstremisme i Norge. Utviklingstrekk, konspirasjonsteorier og forebyggingsstrategier. Politihøgskolen, Oslo. https://phs.brage.unit.no/phs-xmlui/bitstream/handle/11250/2568904/hoyreekstremisme.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

Klungtveit, H. S. (2020, 16. mai) Terror-romaner, 8chan og norske nynazister: Dette vet politiet om Manshaus’ aktivitet på nettet, Filter Nyheter. https://filternyheter.no/terror-romaner-8-chan-og-norske-nynazister-dette-vet-politiet-om-manshaus-aktivitet-pa-nettet/