CREST Guide: Understanding the Far-Right Landscape

CREST Guide: Understanding The Far-Right Landscape

A new CREST guide by Dr Benjamin Lee gives an introduction to the far-right in the UK, including an analysis of some of the groups and networks and the main security threats they present.

Following the electoral collapse of the British National Party (BNP) from its 2009 high point, the UK far-right has lost some of its common cause and direction, fragmenting into smaller informal groups. Some groups continue to contest elections. Others have adopted direct action strategies or have taken on the role of pressure groups and talking shops.

The problems of identifying far-right groups and activists, distinguishing between ideological positions, and understanding the potential security threats posed by the far-right are complex.

Judgements are often made more difficult by a lack of clear information about groups and activists, politicised reporting and analysis, unclear terminology, and even a lack of understanding among some far-right activists about their own groups and ideologies.

Although the vast majority of far-right activists are non-violent, far-right activism has security implications in the UK and globally. Risks associated with the far-right include large-scale acts of terrorism, hate crime, and public order issues. Far-right narratives also undermine community cohesion and can support narratives offered by opposing extremist groups.

Although the vast majority of far-right activists are non-violent, far-right activism has security implications in the UK and globally.

Based on work by CREST researcher Dr Benjamin Lee, this guide is an aide to navigating this complexity. It is an introduction to the far-right in the UK and is not a comprehensive analysis of it. It provides an overview of right-wing ideologies followed by analysis of some of the groups and networks and the main security threats the far-right presents.


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Read more about this topic by downloading the guide here 17-001-01.pdf. This guide will take twenty minutes to read. You can view all our guides here.

As part of CREST’s commitment to open access research this guide is available under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0 licence. For more details on how you can use our content see here.

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