New Zealand Classifies Proud Boys as Terrorists

Photo: Associated Press [via The Wall Street Journal]

The Facts

  • Far-right US group, the Proud Boys, was declared a terrorist organization by New Zealand's government on Thurs., who cited its involvement with the Jan. 6 riots, violent messaging, and hypernational and chauvinistic ideology.

  • The group is one of 19 to have been given an official terrorist designation in the country. The status makes it illegal to fund, recruit, or participate in the groups in New Zealand, and allows authorities to take action against those who do.


The Spin

Left narrative

New Zealand is right to designate the Proud Boys as a terror group. They've recently faced the consequences of white supremacist violence with the Christchurch mosque shootings, and their vigilance in identifying and labeling potential threats should be applauded. The group's coordinated violent attack on the US Capitol was an act of terrorism and warrants this designation.

Right narrative

There is no basis for designating the Proud Boys as a terrorist organization. Most chapters of the group are simply activists attending rallies and protests, and limiting the freedom of individuals to do these activities is an infringement of free speech. It is also an overtly politicized decision targeting the right-wing in the US.

Nerd narrative

There is a 50% chance that at least 25K deaths will occur as a result of terrorism in 2025, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


Political split

LEFT

RIGHT

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