December 24, 2019

Hate and violent extremism from an online subculture: The Yom Kippur terrorist attack in Halle, Germany

Source: ohpi
A new form of terrorism emerged in 2019. Incubated by a globalised, toxic, anonymous online culture, incitement to hate now all too frequently leads to violent extremism that manifests offline, and has cost the lives of dozens of innocents, including children. Participants and spectators of this newly forged online culture encourage, support and celebrate the serious crimes that they commit, and revel in the chaos and destruction they inflict.

The Online Hate Prevention Institute’s latest report provides a detailed look at the online elements of the terrorist attack in Halle, Germany, in October 2019. It places the attack in the context of a series of incidents, starting with the Christchurch attack in New Zealand, which can be directly traced to the online culture promoted in a board called /pol/ which exists across platforms such as 4chan, 8chan and others. The report goes on to document the infiltration of /pol/ by right wing extremists intent on shifting its culture to promote their own agenda.

The role of antisemitism permeates both the Halle attack and the culture on /pol/. Using the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s Working Definition of Antisemitism, the report provides an analysis of this antisemitism.

Most significantly, the report provides detailed recommendations to tackle this emerging threat. The recommendations call for government, industry and civil society collaboration and provide a series of ideas for new solutions and recommendations for each stakeholder group.

You can also access the following extracts:
The forward by Katherina Von Schnurbein, European Commission Coordinator on Combatting Antisemitism
A selection of statements on the report by stakeholders and experts
A review of the report by Prof. Raphael Cohen-Almagor