Posted by: Deborah D | March 9, 2011

Muslim-American terrorism and King’s hearings.

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Muslim-American terrorism and King’s hearings.

In light of Congressman Peter King’s upcoming hearings on the radicalization of American Muslims, it might be a good time to highlight a study done by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security in Durham, NC. This is from Brad Knickerbocker of the Christian Science Monitor.

In the years since the terrorist attacks of 9/11, the number of Muslim-American terrorism suspects and perpetrators has averaged about 16 per year. In 2010, according to a new report, the total was 20.

That was a sharp drop from 2009, when 47 Muslim-Americans committed or were arrested for terrorist crimes, according to the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security in Durham, N.C., a consortium among Duke University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and RTI International.

But 2009 likely was an aberration – the year when a group of 17 Somali-Americans joined Al Shabab, the Islamist insurgent movement linked to Al Qaeda. The number of individual Muslim-Americans plotting against targets in the United States also dropped by half, from 18 in 2009 to 10 in 2010.  Snip –

While most attacks have been disrupted or failed on their own, 11 attacks since 9/11 have resulted in 33 deaths – including 13 people killed by Nidal Hasan at Fort Hood, Tex., in 2009. The Times Square bombing attempt by Pakistan-born Faisal Shahzad could have brought the total deaths due to domestic terror attacks much higher if the bomb had not failed to explode when ignited.

According to professor Mr. Kurzman’s analysis, 75 percent of the Muslim-Americans engaged in terrorist plots in 2010 were disrupted in an early stage of planning.

“This is consistent with the pattern of disruption since 9/11,” he writes, when 102 of 161 plots – 63 percent – were disrupted at an early stage of planning.  Snip –

Over the past five years or so, about 30 American Muslim extremists have been caught up in sting operations, according to Mark Pitcavage, director of investigative research at the Anti-Defamation League.

Those caught included a man who had attempted a bombing of an Army recruitment center in Maryland, and the  unsuccessful December Christmas tree lighting ceremony bomber in Oregon. Also thwarted were attacks on synagogues in the Bronx and plots to attack Metrorail stations in suburban Washington, D.C. Some good news is that many of the sting operations that have been successful in preventing these attacks have come due to tips from the Muslim-American community. That, too, I’m sure will be highlighted in Rep. King’s hearings. Read it all here:

Over at Scott Johnson notes that in the Minneapolis area some of their large Somali-immigrant population has gone missing.

… Recall, just for example, — try hard — recent cases including Nidal Hasan, Abdulhakim Muhammed, Faisal Shahzad, Abdul Hakim Mujahid Muhammad, Colleen LaRose (“Jihad Jane”), Muhammad Hussain (formerly Antonio Martinez), and Mohamed Osman Mohamud.

One would think the seriousness of the problem posed to Americans by radical Islam would be self-evident. In Minneapolis, we have been contending with the disappearance of Somali immigrants who have been recruited by an Al Qaeda-linked group in their native country. What happens if and when they return to the United States?

As chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rep. Peter King is holding hearings this week on the threat posed by the radicalization of American Muslims. Their official title is “The extent of radicalization in the American Muslim community and that community’s response.” The hearings might seem to be overdue, but (Minnesota Congressman Keith) Ellison objects to them. According to Ellison, the focus on the threat posed by radical Islam is unwarranted. Ellison seems to think that terrorism is an equal opportunity employer, or something.

For those unaware, Ellison is a Muslim. You can read all of Johnson here:

There was a protest in New York City over the weekend aimed at Representative King’s committee hearing. Apparently, those attending weren’t too keen on his committee shining a light on homegrown Islamic terrorism. This is from Jonathon M. Seidl at The Blaze.

…On Sunday, some 300 people rallied in the heart of Manhattan to speak out against King’s planned congressional hearing on Muslim terrorism, criticizing it as xenophobic and accusing the Rep. of singling out Muslims rather than extremists.

Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons and the imam who had led an effort to build an Islamic center near the World Trade Center site were among those who addressed the crowd.

“Our real enemy is not Islam or Muslims,” said the imam, Feisal Abdul Rauf. “The enemy is extremism and radicalism and radical ideology.”

In response, King on Monday made clear he wasn’t indicting the entire Muslim community, but rather calling on moderate Muslims to “push aside” radical groups and individuals.

Read all of Seidl here:

What we shouldn’t forget besides the horror of 9/11 is that since then there have been many homegrown attempts to murder Americans on our soil, some successful and some not. Most of these attempts have been planned by either naturalized citizens or American converts to Islam. Here are just a few to remember. This is from Aaron Goldstein at The American Spectator.

…it was a mere ten months ago that Faisal Shahzad attempted to set off a car bomb in Times Square and if not for an alert street vendor there might not have been a Times Square at which to hold the rally much less for Dick Clark to bring in a new year.

While Shahzad was not born and raised in the United States (although he did become an American citizen in 2009) the man who inspired him to carry out the plot most surely was. In the absence of Osama bin Laden, Anwar al-Awlaki is arguably the most powerful voice al-Qaeda has to offer. The fact that Awlaki was born in this country and spent a good part of his early childhood and early adulthood here makes him invaluable to al-Qaeda and that much greater a danger to the United States.

As we all recall, Awlaki was the mentor to the Fort Hood shooter, Nidal Hassan, who took the lives of 13 of our soldiers and an unborn baby in November of 2009. Prior to that horrendous day, Awlaki was also implicated in this shooting:

…it was Awlaki’s literature that helped inspire the American born Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad (formerly known as Carlos Leon Bledsoe) to carry out a drive-by shooting in front of a military recruitment center in Little Rock, Arkansas in June 2009. The shooting spree resulted in the death of Private William Long while wounding Private Quentin Ezeagwula.

And, do you remember when the Comedy Central cartoon South Park was targeted? Awlaki is implicated there too.

it was Awlaki’s e-mail correspondence with the American born Abu Talhah al-Amrikee (formerly known as Zachary Chesser) that provided him with the inspiration in April 2010 to post an online message threatening South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone if an episode depicting the Prophet Mohammed was aired. Last month, Amrikee was sentenced to 25 years in prison for his threats to Parker and Stone as well as for his support of the Somali terror organization, al-Shabaab. While no one lost their lives, the threat prompted Comedy Central to not only pull the two-part episode after its initial airing but also pull a nearly decade old episode which also depicted Mohammed.

So let us also not forget that when cartoonist Molly Norris attempted to show solidarity with the South Park creators by organizing “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day,” it was Awlaki himself who called for Norris to be killed. The FBI advised Norris to change her name, give up her livelihood and go into hiding, which she did last September.

As this very well done article clearly shows, American Awlaki, now in Yemen, has the ability to wreak havoc via the Internet, influencing young Muslims here in the United States to carry out attacks against their countrymen. This is certainly an excellent place for King’s hearings to do some digging. Read all of Goldstein here:

Politically correct delusions.

Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post calls a lot of the anger over King’s hearings politically correct delusions. It sounds like Marcus is a rational liberal instead of a suicidal one. This is from her column appearing at realclearpolitics.

To ignore the religious nature of the terrorist threat is to succumb to politically correct delusion. To ignore the homegrown religious nature of the terrorist threat is to succumb even further.

As Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano testified last month before the House Committee on Homeland Security, “One of the most striking elements of today’s threat picture is that plots to attack America increasingly involve American residents and citizens.”

Napolitano wasn’t referring to right-wing militias or lone-wolf crazies. She was talking about “terrorist groups inspired by al-Qaeda ideology.” And, she pointed out, “This threat of homegrown violent extremism fundamentally changes who is most often in the best position to spot terrorist activity, investigate and respond.”

Or consider Holder himself, who told ABC’s Pierre Thomas last December that he is kept up at night worrying about homegrown terrorists. “The threat has changed from simply worrying about foreigners coming here, to worrying about people in the United States, American citizens — raised here, born here, and who, for whatever reason, have decided that they are going to become radicalized and take up arms against the nation in which they were born,” Holder said.

It is hard to imagine a stronger case for the topic of King’s hearings before the Homeland Security Committee.

To listen to King’s critics, you would think he was urging modern-day internment camps for Muslim Americans. In a letter to King Monday, more than 50 progressive groups slammed him for “singling out a particular community for examination in what appears to be little more than a political show-trial.”

King hearings are overdue.

Finally, as the editors of National Review Online state very clearly, it’s about time Congress took an active role in investigating what is going on inside the country. The threats are real, and who better than a New York City congressman to look into the threats that are clearly aimed at his city more than anywhere else.

The Department of Homeland Security was created in direct response to an act of Islamic terror, an act perpetrated by radical Muslims who lived and worked, planned and plotted inside the United States. Post-9/11, the threat of homegrown jihad is as great or greater. Just yesterday, Jamie Paulin-Ramirez, a Colorado mother who had converted to Islam, married a suspected Algerian terrorist, and moved with him to Ireland to plot attacks in Europe, pleaded guilty to a terrorism charge. She had previously been in contact with Colleen LaRose — aka Jihad Jane — a Pennsylvania woman who herself pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in the name of Islam. As we write, Nidal Hasan, a U.S. Army major of Palestinian descent, who was radicalized in the same Virginia mosque that nourished a number of the 9/11 hijackers and their American-born spiritual leader, Anwar al-Awlaki, sits in jail for the religiously motivated slaughter of 13 at Ft. Hood. He joins Faisal Shahzad, a naturalized U.S. citizen, who will spend the rest of his life in prison after a botched attempt to blow up Times Square for the favor of Allah. Then there are Bryant Neal Vinas, Sharif Mobley, John Walker Lindh, and “the D.C. Five,” all American-born converts to radical Islam arrested in the course of waging jihad against the United States.

These aren’t mere anecdotes. They are constitutive of the brute fact that homegrown terror is an overwhelmingly Islamic phenomenon. And yet a search of the Homeland Security hearings in the 111th yields not one mention of Islamism or jihad. So the cries of religious persecution from groups like CAIR and their allies on the left badly miss the point: It isn’t that we have cast a discriminatory eye toward Islam, but that excessive concern with the pieties of multicultural relativism has prevented us from being sufficiently critical of Islamism. A problem cannot be dealt with that is not first faced foursquarely, and, to appropriate a phrase, we have for too long been a nation of cowards when it comes to addressing jihadist radicalism between our shores. Representative King’s hearings make an honest first effort to do that.

Among the witnesses expected to appear at the hearing is Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, head of the American-Islamic Forum for Democracy, whom we expect to provide an overview of the threat of not only violent but also cultural jihad being waged by Islamists inside the United States. Witnesses Melvin Bledsoe and Abdirizak Bihi will share their firsthand knowledge of this threat. Bihi’s nephew, Burhan Hassan, was radicalized in a Minneapolis mosque and in 2008, at the age of 17, disappeared to Somalia, where he died, apparently fighting for the Islamist group al-Shaheeb. Mr. Bledsoe’s son, Carlos, converted to Islam in college after traveling to Yemen and went by the name Abdul Hakim Mujahid Muhammad when he shot two army recruiters in Little Rock in 2009, killing one. We expect both men’s testimony to be both heart-rending and sobering.

This is a serious American problem that deserves more than politically correct obstruction. Shall we be like we were before 9/11 and close our eyes to the danger that surrounds us or should we look it squarely in the face and attempt to protect ourselves, not only by doing things behind the scenes, but actively discussing it so that more of our youth will not be influenced to attack their own country. Read it all here:


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