Encyclopedia of Security and Emergency Management

Living Edition
| Editors: Lauren R. Shapiro, Marie-Helen Maras

Terrorism: Domestic

  • Arie PerligerEmail author
  • Matthew M. Sweeney
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-69891-5_250-1


Academics and policymakers designate politically violent attacks perpetrated within the US territory, by groups, which are mostly based in the United States as (American) domestic errorism. The American Federal Bureau of Investigation (n.d.) defines domestic terrorism as acts “perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with primarily U.S.-based movements that espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature.”


However, such a definition can also lead to the inclusion of groups which while are based in the United States operate in a context of a foreign conflict. For example, when presumably Palestinian militants assassinated Yosef Alon, the military attaché to the Israel Embassy in DC in 1973, it was clear to the FBI that the assassination was in the context of the Israeli Palestinian conflict (TOI Staff 2017). Hence, it is conceptually useful to add that local groups in US territory do not...


American Far Right American Far Left US terrorism Anarchism Environmentalism Jihadism in America 
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Further Reading

  1. Michael, G. (Ed.). (2013). Extremism in America. Gainesville: University Press of Florida.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Criminology and Justice StudiesUniversity of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA