US Narrows Counter-Extremism Program to Focus on Islamists

Funding Shifted Away From Groups That Combat Domestic Extremism

The US Department of Homeland Security today announced that they are changing the focus of their counter-extremism grant program, shifting funding away from groups that focus on combating general domestic extremism in favor of groups specifically targeting Islamist extremism.

This isn’t an unexpected move, as President Trump was said to have intended to make such a move back in early February, at the time suggesting the Countering Violent Extremism program would even be renamed to the Countering Islamic Extremism program to reflect the shift.

Though more than a little of the funding for the program was already going to targeting ISIS recruiting and general indoctrination into violent Islamist ideologies, it also targeted other forms of extremism in the past, including violent white supremacist factions.

Instead of such funding, the money was shifted to more groups focused on Muslims, including $1.2 million in grants for local law enforcement offices in California, Washington, and Minnesota. The money will be used to train police to identify “signs of alienation” that might make people vulnerable to recruitment.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.