Despite Claims From Trump and the Right, ANTIFA Has Not Killed Anyone

Two month ago, Donald Trump tweeted the following:

This came shortly after protests over the hyper-militarization of America’s police forces in the wake of the Minneapolis police murder of George Floyd began erupting.

Since ANTIFA (which means “anti-fascist”) is neither terrorist nor an organization, the United States cannot “Designate ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization.”

However, because most Americans aren’t aware of this, it is all Trump needs to gin up support for anonymous, unidentifiable vigilantes showing up to intimidate and instigate violence toward peaceful protesters, and to deploy unidentified officials to forcefully detain Black Lives Matter (BLM) protesters and crush peaceful demonstrations, which he has threatened to expand to Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, and other major cities in a re-election ploy filed under “law and order.”

It’s easy to toss out baseless terms like “left-wing violence,” “dangerous radical leftists,” “violent Democratic cities,” and the oxymoronic “far-left fascism,” especially since ANTIFA and BLM can be used as convenient scapegoats for them.

Myriad media outlets have promoted the story that ANTIFA and other “left” groups are responsible for the injuries, murders, and destruction terrorizing America’s streets.

Yet something conspicuousy omitted with these claims is facts.

How many murders has ANTIFA been behind in the past 25 years?

The answer is actually zero.

According to a Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) database, since 1994, anti-fascist-caused violence has resulted in one attack in which the only person killed was the perpetrator.

White supremacists and other right-wing extremists groups, however, are responsible for 329 deaths.

Counter-terrorism expert and CSIS database creator, Seth Jones, explained:

“Left-wing violence has not been a major terrorism threat. The most significant domestic terrorism threat comes from white supremacists, anti-government militias and a handful of individuals associated with the ‘boogaloo’ movement that are attempting to create a civil war in the United States.

As The Guardian reported:

“More broadly, the database lists 21 victims killed in left-wing attacks since 2010 , and 117 victims of right-wing attacks in that same period–nearly six times as much. Attacks inspired by the Islamic State and similar jihadist groups, in contrast, killed 95 people since 2010, slightly fewer than right-wing extremists, according to the data set. More than half of these victims died in a single attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in 2016.”

Multiple violence-tracking databases, including the Anti-Defamation League, conclude violent right-wing groups present the greater threat, not “far-left” ones.

According to the CSIS researchers, most categorized deadly “left-wing” extremist attacks came from African Americans, mainly veterans, some black nationalist group members, acting out retribution for police killings of black Americans.

Police have a history of not taking white supremacist groups seriously, even abetting them.

For example, a violent 2016 rally in California resulted in law enforcement working with neo-Nazis to build criminal cases against anti-fascist protesters. Despite stabbing anti-fascist protesters, however, not a single neo-Nazi was charged.

In 2006, an FBI bulletin warned of the threat of white nationalists and skinheads infiltrating police ranks, stating:

“At least one white supremacist group has reportedly encouraged ghost skins to seek positions in law enforcement for the capability of alerting skinhead crews of pending investigative action against them.”

Police attacks on the media have surged during the recent BLM protests.

Let’s not ignore the “Boogaloo” movement that the Southern Poverty Law Center explains:

“Began to predominate in far-right web spaces in early 2019, began as a shorthand for civil unrest following potential local or federal firearms confiscation and has been embraced by anti-government and white nationalist communities.”

According to analysis from The Washington Post and The Guardian:

“Daily interpersonal violence and state violence pose a much greater threat to Americans than any kind of extremist terror attack. More than 100,000 people have been killed in gun homicides in the United States in the past decade, according to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. US police officers shoot nearly 1,000 Americans to death each year. Black Americans are more than twice as likely to be shot by the police as white Americans.”

Remember that “ANTIFA” means “anti-fascist.”

It’s the equivalent of someone calling him or herself “conservative.”

The next time someone goes off on ANTIFA based on something Sean Hannity, Lou Dobbs, or Donald Trump says, ask, “So, are you pro-fascist?”

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Ted Millar is writer and teacher. His work has been featured in myriad literary journals, including Better Than Starbucks, The Broke Bohemian, Straight Forward Poetry, Caesura, Circle Show, Cactus Heart, Third Wednesday, and The Voices Project. He is also a contributor to The Left Place blog on Substack, and Medium.