Members of the Proud Boys at a rally in Portland, Oregon. Credit: The Atlantic

In its decades-long fight against terrorism, the United States regularly criticized countries such as Iran, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia for exporting extremist ideologies and violence. Ironically, today the United States stands accused of doing the same. The spread of homegrown American conspiracy theories, beliefs in racial superiority, antigovernment extremism, and other manifestations of hate and intolerance has become such a problem that some of the United States’ closest allies—Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom—have designated both American groups and citizens as foreign terrorists.

Although little reported by the U.S. press, the October 2022 killing of two people at a gay bar in Bratislava, Slovakia, by a man espousing racist and homophobic views is an example of the pernicious effects of this “made in America” ideology. In a now all-too-common pattern, the gunman posted a manifesto explaining his intent just before the attack. Written in English, the document displayed all the racist, anti-Semitic, and homophobic justifications that have become de rigueur for this type […]

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