On Monday President Obama offered a creative, efficient method for prosecuting terrorists affiliated with the 9/11 attacks or the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq: namely, military tribunals in a secure island compound you may not have heard of called “Guantanamo Bay.”
Back on the home front, Representative Peter King, Homeland Security Committee Chair, has planned a hearing for Thursday on whether al-Qaeda is trying to recruit young Muslims in the U.S. and whether Muslim Americans are sufficiently cooperating with federal officials to ensnare would-be domestic terrorists such as American-born Ft. Hood shooter Nidal Hasan.
The most infamous failed attack on American soil in the past several years was U.S. citizen Faisal Shahzad’s attempted car bombing in Times Square, which was thwarted only because a suspicious hot dog vendor happened to be looking in the right direction at the right time.
Naturally, last Sunday hundreds of willfully naïve, politically correct New Yorkers gathered in Times Square, steps from where Shahzad tried to kill hundreds of New Yorkers, to protest King’s hearing as racist and Islamophobic.
In an effort to dilute the impact of King’s investigation and make it harder for the nation to ask honest questions about the threat of Muslim youth recruitment, Obama had his national security advisor speak at a mosque in northern Virginia to assure Muslims that the federal government was not disproportionately examining Islamic groups.
Minnesota’s Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to the U.S. House, declared on Sunday that focusing on one religion more than any other was wrong, though he graciously allowed that it was OK for us to scrutinize “radicalization.” Radicalization of what? Lady Gaga’s fashion sense?
According to Ellison, “To say we’re going to investigate a religious minority… is the wrong course of action to take. I don’t want [al-Qaeda] to be able to stand up and claim… ‘America is at war with Islam.’ That’s one of their main recruiting arguments.”
Actually, one of their main recruiting arguments is, “The infidel is wicked, and his self-imposed weakness and inability to consistently stand up to us prove that our cause is just.” An argument that would hurt recruiting would be, “America is at war with Islam, and you are going to get blown to smithereens if you continue to fight for our side.”
Ellison insisted that in order to stop recruitment of domestic terrorists, we need to engage Muslim-Americans rather than frighten them.
In fact, there are two kinds of Muslim-Americans: those who would never dream of getting involved in terrorism, and those who might in their wildest fantasies toy with the notion. The former have nothing to fear, and the latter need to be frightened out of their wits at the consequences of taking up arms against their fellow citizens.
Why is this controversial? What if we said that there are two kinds of Americans: those who would never dream of committing mass murder, and those who might contemplate it in their wildest fantasies, and that the latter need to be frightened out of their wits via correctional deterrents and police presence at the possibility of carrying out their plans? Would that be an “anti-American” policy because it deterred potential mass murderers who happened to be American?
Our intelligence shows that Muslim-Americans have become more, not less, radicalized since 9/11. Aren’t we allowed to even ask why that might be happening?
Immediately after 9/11, liberals were hysterical about the possibility of a never-to-materialize spike in anti-Muslim “hate crimes.” Why are we still, 10 years later, bending over backwards not to offend members of Muslim communities? Why aren’t Muslim Americans going out of their way to dispel stereotypes and prove what a spectacularly helpful resource they are in deterring terror?
One obtuse protestor stationed outside Representative King’s office last week declared, “A bomb doesn’t differentiate between a Muslim and a non-Muslim. We are just as afraid of extremists as anybody else.” Yes, but is a bomb planter differentiated by being disproportionately Muslim vs. non-Muslim?
While we’re on the subject of differentiation, is al-Qaeda so quick to avoid “demonizing” the U.S. and obliterating nuances among Americans’ political ideologies? Do they distinguish between “radicals” and innocents when choosing targets for their bombings and shootings? “The Great Satan” is not exactly a paragon of subtlety.
Here’s a glossary of by-now-meaningless terms liberals should be banned from using in the conversation over King’s hearings: alienating Muslims, at war with Islam, demonizing, hijacking a peaceful religion, inflammatory rhetoric, Islamophobia, McCarthyism, singling out, witch hunt, and xenophobia. Hey, liberals, let’s play a giant game of Taboo: can you explain why it’s wrong to demand greater cooperation from Muslim communities in helping catch terrorists and greater condemnation against acts of terror without using any of the above words?
Instead of our endless back-and-forth, advance-and-retreat, catch-and-release, shoot-ourselves-in-the-foot, Tom and Jerry farce of a policy, let’s set our traps right where we need them and stop liberals’ cat-and-Muslim game once and for all.
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- House panel to examine Muslim radicalization (reuters.com)
- Quandary at heart of terror hearings | Philadelphia Inquirer | 2011-03-09 – Philadelphia Inquirer (news.google.com)
- Peter King — What makes him tick? (cnn.com)
- Rep. Peter King shrugs off McCarthy comparisons (cbsnews.com)
- Critics fear probe of U.S. Muslims will become witch hunt (nationalpost.com)