Deradicalization and Disengagement: Exit Programs in Norway and Sweden and Addressing Neo-Nazi Extremism
Keywords:Deradicalization, Norway, Sweden, Exit Programs, Disengagement
Though the study of deradicalization is relatively new, in the last several decades many countries have undertaken the task of building programs within the space to address the growing threat of extremism and radicalization – both from a religious and political perspective. This paper examines the birth of deradicalization programs in Norway and Sweden, which were two of the first – if not the first – countries to create holistic programmatic approaches to tackling disengagement and deradicalization. Both of these programs sprang up in the mid-to late 1990s and were tasked with growing far-right extremist groups. The paper outlines the opportunities and challenges that facet of the program presented and if and how they were able to adjust. Finally, the paper looks at the data collected by each program, specifically on the number of their participants and if they remained separate from radical ideologies to determine if the programs were success and similar programs could be replicated and expect similar successes. With the resurgence of white power and Neo-Nazi extremism across Europe and the United States, a consideration of the programs developed in Sweden and Norway two decades ago may provide a replicable template for current issues with extremism.
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