The Trump administration recently declared the Russian Imperial Movement (RIM) a terrorist organization, after receiving global reports from other countries.
According to reports coming from Sweden there are indications that RIM was widely involved in incidences of Neo-Nazi bombing in Sweden in 2016 and 2017. The same group seemed to have inspired white supremacists to carry out the Christchurch shooting incident in New Zealand in 2019, as well as other attacks that took place in Scandinavia during the year.
The designation that Trump announced last Monday, is regarded as an unprecedented move as far as the White House is concerned; particularly in matters related to “white supremacists” and to Russia. After all, the Russian Imperialist Movement is widely speculated as the organization responsible for the 2016 election interference. Moreover, the group is also suspected of conducting military training to U.S-based neo-Nazi factions. .
In fact, the 1995 bombing in Oklahoma City that killed 168 people, were discovered to have been staged by members of an extremist militia group based in Michigan.
What the Declaration Intends to Impose on White Supremacist Groups in the U.S.
Apparently, officials at the State Department were able to make Donald Trump understand the threats posed by the RIM and their connection to the spate of violence that transpired in the last five years. According to reports, Trump’s response to the briefing was that
I thought incidents of white nationalist violence were the actions of small group of people and not part of a rising global threat.”
As concerns heightened over the growing number of violent activities instigated by white supremacists with transnational links, White House officials had in 2018, included the threat . of said white supremacist groups to the U.S. governments National Strategy for Counterterrorism agenda.
The designation declaring white supremacist groups as terrorist organizations gives U.S. law enfocement officers the authority to prevent American citizens from giving any kind of support to, or enter into any agreements with such groups.
Moreover, the Treasury Department now has the authority to bar the named terrorist group from having access to any American asset, as well as block their members from entering the U.S. soil.