Domestic terrorism’s link to international terrorism

 

mohabdThe Gorka Briefing, by Dr. Sebastian Gorka, July 25, 2015:

There is a serious problem the way we categorize terrorism in the post-9/11 world. The separation between domestic terrorism and international terrorism breaks down very rapidly–there is an international connection to all the past jihadist attacks in the West. My interview on the John Batchelor radio show (9 minutes) regarding the tragedy in Chattanooga, TN.

Click here to go to the audio.

UK PM Cameron Delivers Landmark Speech on Islamism

Islamist-extremism-Dave-HPClarion Project, by Elliot Friedman, July 20, 2015:

UK Prime Minister David Cameron gave a landmark speech yesterday on Islamist extremism, naming, for the first time, the root cause behind international terrorism.

He told the audience at a school in Birmingham, “This is what we face – a radical ideology – that is not just subversive, but can seem exciting; one that has often sucked people in from non-violence to violence; one that is overpowering moderate voices within the debate and one which can gain traction because of issues of identity and failures of integration.”

This is the first time a Western leader has names Islamist extremism specifically as the problem and terrorism merely as a symptom of the ideology.

He said, “No-one becomes a terrorist from a standing start. It starts with a process of radicalization. When you look in detail at the backgrounds of those convicted of terrorist offenses, it is clear that many of them were first influenced by what some would call non-violent extremists.”

These include groups like the Egypian Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928 by Nazi sympathizer Hassan al-Banna, Hizb ut-Tahrir and the Pakistani-based Jamaat e-Islami, all of which peddle a softIslamism which shares the goals of groups like the Islamci State (ISIS) but differ in methodology.

In the USA, Muslim Brotherhood front groups including the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) all play the part of non-violent extremist groups.

All of these organizations condemn the Islamic State, but as Cameron noted, so does Al-Qaeda. “We can’t let the bar sink to that level,” he stated. “Condemning a mass-murdering, child-raping organization cannot be enough to prove you’re challenging the extremists.”

He attacked the false narrative that grievances are the root cause of Islamist extremism, correctly noting that “it’s groups like ISIL, Al Qaeda and Boko Haram that are the ones murdering Muslims.”

Although he acknowledged that British and Western foreign policy isn’t perfect and that poverty in Muslim communities is an issue, he correctly highlighted that “We could deal with all these issues – and some people in our country and elsewhere would still be drawn to Islamist extremism.”

The Prime Minister stated, “We must be clear. The root cause of the threat we face is the extremist ideology itself.”

Cameron also addressed the problem of integration of Muslim in the UK, which fuels Islamist extremism. “We have to confront a tragic truth that there are people born and raised in this country who don’t really identify with Britain – and who feel little or no attachment to other people here. Indeed, there is a danger in some of our communities that you can go your whole life and have little to do with people from other faiths and backgrounds,” he said.

This is particularly acute in some Muslim communities like Tower Hamlets, where disgraced ex-mayor Lutfur Rahman operated, in the Prime Minister’s words, with “political corruption on an epic scale, with voters intimidated and a court adjudicating on accusations of ‘undue spiritual influence’ for the first time since the 19th century.”

But the Prime Minister broadened the scope of the government’s counter-extremism strategy to tackle all the interrelated issues that form a part and parcel of the Islamist ideology. He highlighted the pervasive anti-Semitism which runs through the Islamist ideology and called out people who only partially oppose Islamism.

He spoke about sharia law courts in the UK, the role of non-violent hate preachers like Abu Hamza and Abu Qatada, female genital mutilation, the Trojan Horse scandal (where Islamists conspired to take over British schools) and the child sex-abuse scandal in Rotherham (in which over 1,600 girls were systematically raped over a 10-year period by Pakistani grooming gangs).

He also called out the recalcitrance of authorities who have been slow to act to curb extremism due to fears of being called racist.

Cameron bluntly said, “This has got to stop.”

Critically, he said, “Simply denying any connection between the religion of Islam and the extremists doesn’t work, because these extremists are self-identifying as Muslims. The fact is from Woolwich to Tunisia, from Ottawa to Bali, these murderers all spout the same twisted narrative, one that claims to be based on a particular faith. Now it is an exercise in futility to deny that.”

Importantly, he said that Islam is not the issue, rather, this extremist ideology which identifies itself as the only legitimate arbiter of Islam is the issue.

“Our new approach is about isolating the extremists from everyone else, so that all our Muslim communities can be free from the poison of Islamist extremism,” he stated.

Clarion Project has covered all of these issues in the past and long stressed the interconnected nature of the ideology, terrorisim, anti-Semitism, abuse of women and children and the like. We also advocate the same solution proposed by Cameron, who said, “We’re now going to actively encourage the reforming and moderate Muslim voices.”

Clarion has conducted many interviews with Muslim (and non-Muslim) human rights activists who are fighting for reform in Muslim communities.

We have also covered the work of womens rights activists who are fighting for equal rights in Muslim communities worldwide. Our latest film, Honor Diaries, focussed on women’s rights activists from communities where honor violence, forced marriage and female genital mutilation are rampant.

We also catalogue progressive Muslim organizations whose work has a positive impact fighting for human rights and against the Islamist ideology.

Indeed, one of these groups, the Quilliam Foundation, was influential in the writing of the Prime Minister’s speech and has been at the forefront of the struggle against Islamism in the UK.

Co-Founder of Quilliam Maajid Nawaz, himself formerly a member of the Islamist group Hizb ut-Tahrir, said of the speech, “The Prime Minister made a giant leap for UK counter-extremism.”

The speech is the precursor to the unveiling of the British government’s Counter-Extremism Policy in the autumn.

The implementation of the policies outlined in the speech can only advance the cause of human rights. Indeed, the speech represents a milestone in the fight against Islamist extremism.

Read the full text of the speech.

Also see:

A Time To Confront Our Enemies At Home

obama (1)Frontpage, by David Horowitz, Daniel Greenfield, July 20, 2015:

The killing of five unarmed military servicemen at two military recruiting centers is an omen and a warning: The “war on terror” has come home.

Thanks to Obama’s retreat from Iraq and the Middle East, the jihad waged by Islamic terrorists is now being fought on American soil, instead of on a battlefront in Fallujah and Anbar. Thanks to the borders Obama has destroyed and the tens of thousands of legal immigrants the White House has decided to import from terrorist regions, the enemy is among us. Thanks to Obama’s denial that we are at war at all, the Islamic jihad is now being waged in Chattanooga and Fort Hood, the fly over country that liberals and progressives have always despised.

This is not the first time that a military recruiting office in the South was attacked by a Muslim terrorist. In 2009 – Obama’s first year in office – Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad opened fire on a military recruiting office in Little Rock, Arkansas, under orders from Al Qaeda in Yemen, and killed Private William Long.

It was the shot that should have been heard around the country but wasn’t, because America’s Commander-in-Chief told us that Muhammad was a lone crazed assassin, not a vanguard Islamic soldier. According to Obama, there was no war with Islamic fanatics. The fanatic himself rejected the lie.  “This is not the first attack, and won’t be the last,” Muhammad warned. “I’m just one Muhammad. There are millions of Muhammads out there. And I hope and pray the next one will be more deadlier than Muhammad Atta!”

The next one—the attack this time– was certainly deadlier than his. Mohammad Youssduf Adulazeer’s attack in Chattanooga copied Muhammad’s tactic of opening fire from a car on a recruiting center before driving on to the next target. In 2009 Abdulhakim Muhammad was not charged with terrorism. The Commander-in-Chief called him “a lone gunman” and a pliant media dutifully dismissed his military mission as a product of personal depression and mental instability rather than an act of service to Allah’s war.

Barack Obama’s first year in office was also the year of the Fort Hood massacre, when a self-declared Islamist warrior, shouting “Allahu Ahkbar,” gunned down 13 American soldiers – also unarmed by order of their government. The Obama administration officially labeled his act of war “workplace violence” and refused to identify the enemy or take steps to defend his targets.

Four unarmed Marines and an unarmed sailor died this week because of the refusal of our Commander-in-Chief to learn from the 2009 attacks or prepare for the next. Instead he covered it up with psychobabble, and continued to deny our servicemen the weapons that could have saved their lives. Obama’s strategy in this war to destroy us, target by target, is to lull Americans into believing that there is no war, that Islamic terrorists are “not Islamic,” and that “the future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam.” The result of Obama’s denial is that the war has come home and we are fighting blind in our own country with our hands tied behind our backs.

Every Muslim attack in the last decades has been made possible because the apologists for terrorism among us have done everything they could to deny the plain and obvious, to tie the hands of our first responders, and to make the tasks of our would be destroyers that much easier. While the Muhammads and Mohammads kill Americans in a holy war for Allah, the liberal apologists for Islamic fanatics wage a holy war against their critics. They have been doing this since 9/11, beginning with President Bush. For eight years the Bush administration kept our Islamic enemies on the run in Afghanistan and Iraq but thanks to the appeasement of Obama and the Democrats, they have finally succeeded in shifting the terror front from Tikrit to Tennessee.

Our military cannot defend our shores against the Islamic holy war when their commander-in-chief will not allow it. By withdrawing from Iraq and tying the military’s hands, Obama has allowed the homeland to become a target. By abandoning the Iraqis to the mercies of the mullahs, he has created chaos and a vacuum in the region that stretches from Afghanistan to the Levant. The results are horrific: hundreds of thousands of Christians and Muslims slaughtered by ISIS with barely a mention from the Obama White House, let alone a response; two million Christian and Muslim refugees driven from their homes by fear of crucifixion and beheading, murder and rape; ISIS savagery instantiated in an “Islamic State.” Obama’s response? “The Islamic State is not Islamic.”

Obama is the leader of America’s fifth column – the domestic abettors of America’s destroyers. The column itself is the danger we face. Even as the ashes of 9/11 smoldered, Saudis and Kuwaitis were rushing to buy up American law firms and PR outfits to defend the killers and transform them into victims; longstanding anti-American parties like the ACLU got to work persuading hundreds of American cities to make pledges of non-cooperation with Homeland Security the Patriot Act; Democrat run “sanctuary” cities sprang up to provide safe havens for criminal aliens seeking a base in the American homeland; a coalition of civil rights groups set out to sabotage America’s defenses, claiming that a totalitarian state was around the corner if Americans dared to confront terrorism with beefed up security.  With the imprimatur of the White House, the Muslim Brotherhood and its fronts manufactured a crisis of Islamic “persecution” and worked to expunge the words “Islamist” and “jihad” from the manuals and pronouncements of the federal government. Their goal? To handcuff law enforcement’s first responders as they dealt with the terrorist threat.  With the connivance of the White House they reached the goal.

So where do we stand? The holy war against Americans – against atheists and believers, against Christians and Jews – grows more dangerous by the hour while the president and his followers find every excuse to promote a nation’s denial and make it more and more difficult to defend itself. Defense of America is condemned as “Islamophobia” – and this by liberals at the Center for American Progress and the New America Foundation as well as by agents of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is actually responsible for inventing the term.

The battle flag of our internal attackers is green and red. The green side of the unholy alliance is the political arm of the Islamic jihad, the Brotherhood and its offshoots. The red side is the political left encompassing the spectrum from liberal to progressive (but excluding patriots like senators Lieberman and Menendez). The apex of this unholy collaboration is in Washington D.C. where the president finds ever more innovative ways of promoting Islam as the victim and denying the obvious threat. He withdraws our military ground forces from frontline battlefields safely distant from America’s shores. He wags his finger at Christians, drawing diagrams of moral equivalence between Islamic fanatics and their infidel victims. He turns his back on allies in Israel and Egypt, while offering his political support to the Brotherhood in Cairo and the Islamists in Teheran. The Democrats have become a party of collaborators and their leader the Petain of a Vichy America that provides a stealth cover to the enemy’s attempts to destroy us.

It is time to stop pretending that Obama and his minions really care when Christians are slaughtered without mercy or Jews are threatened with extinction. What is being done to stop these genocides?

When the Commander-in-Chief occasionally drones a terrorist leader this is not an act of war or reprisal but a feint to draw attention away from the fact that he is disarming America, degrading our military even as the threat to our citizenry grows and grows.

It is time to recognize that Obama does not love America enough to confront our enemies and defend our shores.

It is time for the patriots among us to wake up and step forward. It is time to call the actors by their right names. Islamist are Islamists and terrorists are terrorists. But that is only a beginning.

It is time to hold accountable all those who are helping to bring the war home. This is essential in order to defend ourselves against the next round of terrorist attacks. Let us begin by calling them by their right names:

A denier is a denier.

An appeaser is an appeaser.

An enabler is an enabler.

A betrayer is a betrayer.

And President Obama is all of these.

And so are those who follow his lead.

4 Reasons Why ISIS is more dangerous than Al Qaeda – Dr. Sebastian Gorka

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Published on Jul 10, 2015 by Sebastian Gorka

Dr. Sebastian Gorka provides an analysis of ISIS, its doctrine and strategy and explains four reasons why ISIS is far more dangerous than Al Qaeda. Gorka spoke at the Heritage Foundation, 10 July 2015

http://thegorkabriefing.com/

http://threatknowledge.org/team/

Understanding the Enemy by Dr. Sebastian L. Gorka

Fighting the Ideological War: Winning Strategies from Communism to Islamism

 The Management of Savagery, by Abu Bakr Naji

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Here is the entire event:

Michael Savage Interviews ‘Catastrophic Failure’ Author Stephen Coughlin

Catastrophic-Failure-Cut

In light of the recent comments by the President on defeating the enemy’s ideology, Stephen Coughlin reminds us how it was Obama who has played a major role in blinding us to that ideology by, among other things, adopting Quintan Wiktorowicz’s “Countering Violent Extremism” narrative and empowering the Muslim Brotherhood. Listen and find out how and when the wrong headed “Moderate Muslim Brotherhood” narrative was adopted.

Also see:

UK: Politicians Urge Ban on the Term “Islamic State”

political correctnessGatestone Institute, by Soeren Kern,July 4, 2015:

  • “If we deny any connection between terrorism and religion, then we are saying there is no problem in any of the mosques; that there is nothing in the religious texts that is capable of being twisted or misunderstood; that there are no religious leaders whipping up hatred of the West, no perverting of religious belief for political ends.” — Boris Johnson, Mayor of London.
  • “O Muslims, Islam was never for a day the religion of peace. Islam is the religion of war… Mohammed was ordered to wage war until Allah is worshipped alone… He himself left to fight and took part in dozens of battles. He never for a day grew tired of war. — Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of the Islamic State.
  • While Western politicians claim that the Islamic State is not Islamic, millions of Muslims around the world — referring to what is approved in the Islamic texts — believe that it is.

The BBC has rejected demands by British lawmakers to stop using the term “Islamic State” when referring to the jihadist group that is carving out a self-declared Caliphate in the Middle East.

Lord Hall of Birkenhead, the BBC’s director general, said that the proposed alternative, “Daesh,” is pejorative and using it would be unfair to the Islamic State, thereby casting doubt upon the BBC’s impartiality.

Prime Minister David Cameron recently joined the growing chorus of British politicians who argue that the name “Islamic State” is offensive to Muslims and should be banned from the English vocabulary.

During an interview with BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program on June 29 — just days after a jihadist with links to the Islamic State killed 38 people (including 30 Britons) at a beach resort in Tunisia — Cameron rebuked veteran presenter John Humphrys for referring to the Islamic State by its name.

When Humphrys asked Cameron whether he regarded the Islamic State to be an existential threat, Cameron said:

“I wish the BBC would stop calling it ‘Islamic State’ because it is not an Islamic state. What it is is an appalling, barbarous regime. It is a perversion of the religion of Islam, and, you know, many Muslims listening to this program will recoil every time they hear the words ‘Islamic State.'”

Humphrys responded by pointing out that the group calls itself the Islamic State (al-Dawlah al-Islamiyah, Arabic for Islamic State), but he added that perhaps the BBC could use a modifier such as “so-called” in front of that name.

Cameron replied: “‘So-called’ or ISIL [the acronym for Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant] is better.” He continued:

“But it is an existential threat, because what is happening here is the perversion of a great religion, and the creation of this poisonous death cult, that is seducing too many young minds, in Europe, in America, in the Middle East and elsewhere.

“And this is, I think, going to be the struggle of our generation. We have to fight it with everything that we can.”

Later that day in the House of Commons, Cameron repeated his position. Addressing Cameron, Scottish National Party MP Angus Robertson said that the English-speaking world should adopt Daesh, the Arabic name for the Islamic State, as the proper term.

Daesh, which translates as Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (Syria), is the Arabic equivalent to ISIL. Daesh sounds similar to the Arabic word “Daes,” which means “one who crushes something underfoot,” and “Dahes,” which means “one who sows discord.” As a result of this play on words, Daesh has become a derogatory name for the Islamic State, and its leaders have threatened to “cut the tongue” of anyone who uses the word in public.

Robertson said:

“You are right to highlight the longer-term challenge of extremism and of radicalization. You have pointed out the importance of getting terminology right and not using the name ‘Islamic State.’ Will you join parliamentarians across this house, the US secretary of state and the French foreign minister in using the appropriate term?

“Do you agree the time has come in the English-speaking world to stop using Islamic State, ISIS or ISIL and instead we and our media should use Daesh — the commonly used phrase across the Middle East?”

Cameron replied:

“I agree with you in terms of the use of Islamic State. I think this is seen as particularly offensive to many Muslims who see, as I see, not a state but a barbaric regime of terrorism and oppression that takes delight in murder and oppressing women, and murdering people because they’re gay. I raised this with the BBC this morning.

“I personally think that using the term ‘ISIL’ or ‘so-called’ would be better than what they currently do. I don’t think we’ll move them all the way to Daesh so I think saying ISIL is probably better than Islamic State because it is neither in my view Islamic nor a state.”

Separately, more than 100 MPs signed a June 25 letter to the BBC’s director general calling on the broadcaster to begin using the term Daesh when referring to the Islamic State. The letter, which was drafted by Rehman Chishti, a Pakistani-born Conservative MP, stated:

“The use of the titles: Islamic State, ISIL and ISIS gives legitimacy to a terrorist organization that is not Islamic nor has it been recognized as a state and which a vast majority of Muslims around the world finds despicable and insulting to their peaceful religion.”

Scottish Nation Party MP Alex Salmond, in a June 29 newspaper column, wrote:

“We should start by understanding that in a propaganda war language is crucial.

“Any description of terrorists which confers on them the image that they are representing either a religion or a state must surely be wrong and an own goal of massive proportions. It is after all how they wish to refer to themselves.

“Daesh, sometimes spelled Daiish or Da’esh, is short for Dawlat al Islamiyah fi’al Iraq wa al Sham.

“Many Arabic-speaking media organizations refer to the group as such and there is an argument it is appropriately pejorative, deriving from a mixture of rough translations from the individual Arabic words.

“However, the real point of using Daesh is that it separates the terrorists from the religion they claim to represent and from the false dream of a new caliphate that they claim to pursue.

“It should become the official policy of the government and be followed by the broadcasting organizations.”

The BBC, which routinely refers to Muslims as “Asians” to comply with the politically correct norms of British multiculturalism, has held its ground. It said:

“No one listening to our reporting could be in any doubt what kind of organization this is. We call the group by the name it uses itself, and regularly review our approach. We also use additional descriptions to help make it clear we are referring to the group as they refer to themselves, such as ‘so-called Islamic State.'”

The presenter of the BBC’s “The World This Weekend” radio program, Mark Mardell, added:

“It seems to me, once we start passing comment on the accuracy of the names people call their organizations, we will constantly be expected to make value judgements. Is China really a ‘People’s Republic?’ After the Scottish referendum, is the UK only the ‘so-called United Kingdom?’ With the Greek debacle, there is not much sign of ‘European Union.'”

London Mayor Boris Johnson believes both viewpoints are valid. In a June 28 opinion article published by the Telegraph, he wrote:

“Rehman’s point is that if you call it Islamic State you are playing their game; you are dignifying their criminal and barbaric behavior; you are giving them a propaganda boost that they don’t deserve, especially in the eyes of some impressionable young Muslims. He wants us all to drop the terms, in favor of more derogatory names such as “Daesh” or “Faesh,” and his point deserves a wider hearing.

“But then there are others who would go much further, and strip out any reference to the words “Muslim” or “Islam” in the discussion of this kind of terrorism — and here I am afraid I disagree….

“Why do we seem to taint a whole religion by association with a violent minority? …

“Well, I am afraid there are two broad reasons why some such association is inevitable. The first is a simple point of language, and the need to use terms that everyone can readily grasp. It is very difficult to bleach out all reference to Islam or Muslim from discussion of this kind of terror, because we have to pinpoint what we are actually talking about. It turns out that there is virtually no word to describe an Islamically-inspired terrorist that is not in some way prejudicial, at least to Muslim ears.

“You can’t say “Salafist,” because there are many law-abiding and peaceful Salafists. You can’t say jihadi, because jihad — the idea of struggle — is a central concept of Islam, and doesn’t necessarily involve violence; indeed, you can be engaged in a jihad against your own moral weakness. The only word that seems to carry general support among Muslim leaders is Kharijite — which means a heretic — and which is not, to put it mildly, a word in general use among the British public.

“We can’t just call it “terrorism”, as some have suggested, because we need to distinguish it from any other type of terrorism — whether animal rights terrorists or Sendero Luminoso Marxists. We need to speak plainly, to call a spade a spade. We can’t censor the use of “Muslim” or “Islamic.”

“That just lets too many people off the hook. If we deny any connection between terrorism and religion, then we are saying there is no problem in any of the mosques; that there is nothing in the religious texts that is capable of being twisted or misunderstood; that there are no religious leaders whipping up hatred of the west, no perverting of religious belief for political ends.”

What does the leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, have to say? In a May 2015 audio message, he summed it up this way:

“O Muslims, Islam was never for a day the religion of peace. Islam is the religion of war. Your Prophet (peace be upon him) was dispatched with the sword as a mercy to the creation. He was ordered to wage war until Allah is worshipped alone. He (peace be upon him) said to the polytheists of his people, ‘I came to you with slaughter.’ He fought both the Arabs and non-Arabs in all their various colors. He himself left to fight and took part in dozens of battles. He never for a day grew tired of war.

“So there is no excuse for any Muslim who is capable of performing hijrah [migration] to the Islamic State, or capable of carrying a weapon where he is, for Allah (the Blessed and Exalted) has commanded him with hijrah and jihad, and has made fighting obligatory upon him.”

While Western politicians claim that the Islamic State is not Islamic, millions of Muslims around the world — referring to what is approved in the Islamic texts — believe that it is. While the former are performing politically correct linguistic gymnastics, the latter are planning their next religiously-inspired attacks against the West. A new twist on an old English adage: The sword is mightier than the pen.

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. He is also Senior Fellow for European Politics at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter.

Designating Foreign Terrorist Organizations and Immigration Enforcement

rId14_image2Center for Immigration Studies, By Dan Cadman, July 2, 2015:

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has just issued a public report on the process used to designate foreign terrorist organizations (FTOs) under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), which assigns lead responsibility to the Secretary of State. It is called “Combating Terrorism: Foreign Terrorist Organization Designation Process and U.S. Agency Enforcement Actions”.

GAO initially prepared and distributed the report to the Department of State (DOS) and other government parties in April, but withheld it publicly until material that DOS identified as “sensitive but unclassified” (SBU) was redacted from the public version just released.

Even with the SBU redactions, one finds some interesting and suggestive factoids buried in the report in typically dry bureaucratic language.

Among them is that, under the designation process developed by DOS, various agencies participating in the targeting and review can put “holds” on designation. Section 219 of the INA, which outlines the legal basis for designation of FTOs contains no such proviso.

The reasons described for placing “holds” are just a wee bit fuzzy and this arouses my suspicious nature because, in addition to the other government agencies one would expect to participate (such as the Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, Justice and Homeland Security Departments, etc.), one finds mentioned the DOS regional bureaus (see note 16 in the report). These are the folks that look out for the political angles of inter-governmental relationships between the United States and other countries. Could it be that bilateral politics are involved in FTO designation? One fears so, because it is suggestive that, although various other statistics are scattered throughout the GAO report, the number of holds and who placed them is nowhere to be found. Could this be the “sensitive” data that DOS didn’t want revealed to the public? If so, under which secretaries of State did such regional bureaus exercise this extra-statutory ability? And how many such holds have been placed, and for how long?

Another interesting factoid is that between 2009 and 2014 Customs and Border Protection inspectors denied entry to over 1,000 alien applicants for admission based on terrorism grounds, including membership in or affiliation with designated FTOs. We can reasonably assume that some portion of these aliens were applying for admission under the visa waiver program (VWP) and that a significant number were granted multiple entry visas by DOS consular officers before the terrorist connection was known, but that their visas were not revoked by DOS after the connection was made.

Then there is the abysmally low number of aliens taken into custody within the United States on terrorism-related removal grounds, presumably by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. During the same date range used to calculate CBP figures, (2009-2014 — half of a decade), ICE agents have removed exactly three aliens. Three. And yet the FBI director, the director of national intelligence, and others tell us that the nation is peppered with Islamic State supporters, not to mention the plethora of other terrorist groups one can choose to affiliate with.

The shockingly low number comports with remarks I made in a prior posting when I commented that since the formation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), whose mission is obviously to protect the homeland, we Americans — and most particularly the leaders in this administration — seem to have forgotten the important lesson about the nexus between safe communities and using the deportation laws to remove foreign threats.

Two other noteworthy items that merit their own examinations in full, but not here: that waivers have been granted to individuals with terrorist connections, apparently both to enter the United States, and to gain various immigration benefits administered by one of DHS’s subordinate agencies; and that of the 69 FTOs designated since 1997 when the law authorizing designation took effect, 10 (nearly 15 percent of total designations) have been removed from the list by the Secretary of State.

What Fireworks Does ISIS Plan for the 4th of July?

0 (5)PJ Media, by  James Jay Carafano On June 29, 2015:

What to make of reports that ISIS may try to pull off a terrorist attack on Independence Day?

Let’s look at the facts.

It is not the first time after 9/11 that U.S. authorities have expressed concerns about possible terrorist attacks timed to coincide with significant dates like the 4th of July.  In 2011, a senior U.S. official told reporters, “We have received credible information very recently about a possible plot directed at the homeland that seems to be focused on New York and Washington, D.C.,” timed for the anniversary of al Qaeda’s big attack on the two cities. Some hold that the assault on the U.S. compound in Benghazi was scheduled to coincide with 9/11.   In fact, warnings of impending terror threats from authorities go back as far as 2002.

Next, we know that ISIS is active—both promoting and inspiring transnational terrorist attacks. Just last week near simultaneous assaults occurred in France, Kuwait and Tunisia.

Further, the US remains a prime target for terrorist activity.  There was another Islamist terrorist related plot uncovered last week—the third in less than a month.

Additionally, we can’t even be sure of where an attack might happen. Terrorists have contemplated hitting everything from high-profile targets in big cities to shopping malls in the suburbs.

None of that necessarily means that something bad will happen between grilling the hot dogs, cheering on the main street parades and watching the fireworks over the capitol.

Coordinating a terrorist attack to happen at a specific time and place, particularly when there will likely be heightened awareness and security, complicates the challenge of pulling off a terror strike–though those obstacles didn’t thwart two relative amateurs who bombed the Boston Marathon (and who had also considered conducting an attack on Independence Day).

Still, if an attack does occur the odds of any particular American being a victim are pretty small.  That’s cold comfort, as the real purpose of terrorist attacks is to terrorize us, killing us is just a consequence.

Best advice is to have a nice day, but take the common-sense precautions that people should always take in public. There are plenty of lists out there of the right steps to take. Read one.

The reality is that even the best security can’t child-proof a free society.  On July 4, of all days, Americans shouldn’t want it any other way. When a free society gives up on freedom the terrorists win.

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Also see:

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I’ve been searching for a good article on situational awareness and there is precious little out there. If my readers can find any please leave links in a comment. Here is an interesting one:

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Personal-security-2-Situational-awareness_0Stratfor.com series:

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Rep. Nunes: America Faces Highest Terror Threat Level Ever

ftnnunes0621-450x323Frontpage, June 25, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

Usually the first challenge I face in writing my commentaries is to come up with a concise title that captures the most salient part of the issue I am writing about. Today I found this task easy, I simply borrowed the headline from CBS News’ Face the Nation article that quoted none other than Congressional Representative Devin Nunes, the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.

That headline is concise and echoes the very same concerns I have had in reviewing all of the publicly available information on the issue of threats posed by international terrorists.

What is impossible to understand is how the administration, members of Congress, local and state politicians and journalists have been absolutely unwilling to “connect the impossible to ignore dots” that are flashing, not unlike the strobe lights on a police car or other emergency vehicle.

Here is the segment of the article that accompanied the headline and addressed the topic of the threat of terrorism in the United States today:

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-California, said the nation faces “the highest threat level we have ever faced in this country” due to the flow of foreign fighters to and from Iraq and Syria and the radicalization of young people on the Internet.

U.S. officials have been warning for months about the threat posed by people from America or Western Europe who travel to the Middle East to fight with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and then return to their home countries, where they may carry out attacks. Nunes said the U.S. is not aware of all the people who have made the trek or who have now come back, although FBI Director James Comey has said there are cases open in all 50 states.

Officials are increasingly looking for ways to combat radical jihadists’ effectiveness in recruiting supporters through social media.

“They’re very good at communicating through separate avenues where it’s very difficult to track,” he said. “That’s why when you get a young person who is willing to get into these chat rooms, go on the Internet and get radicalized, it’s something we are not only unprepared [for], we are also not used to it in this country.”

He said that investigations often “do no good” in encrypted chat rooms where those communications take place, so Americans should be diligent about reporting suspicious activity to the proper authorities because “we are having a tough time tracking terrorist cells within the United States.”

The warnings are particularly pertinent with the July 4 holiday approaching. Nunes noted that there will be large gatherings in every city across America.

“It’s just tough to secure those types of areas if you have someone who wants to blow themselves up or open fire or other threats of that nature and we just don’t know or can track all of the bad guys that are out there today,” he said.

The famed playwright, George Bernard Shaw’s statement says it all:

We learn from history that we learn nothing from history.”

If our leaders were to seek to learn history’s lessons they should read the appropriate history books.

The 9/11 Commission Report and the “9/11 and Terrorist TravelStaff Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States” are the most complete and authoritative “history books” concerning the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 and even included evaluations of vulnerabilities that led to previous terror attacks — both those that succeeded and those that failed. These books were prepared by the government of the United States in response to the horrific terror attacks that left more than 3,000 innocent victims dead.

My May 22, 2015 commentary for the Californians for Population Stabilization (CAPS) website, “Bin Laden, The 9/11 Commission Report and Immigration,” addressed the fact that when the U.S. Navy SEALS raided the bin Laden compound, among the documents found in his library were a copy of the 9/11 Commission Report and a copy of an application for United States citizenship. It must be presumed that he had no intentions of filing for U.S. citizenship himself, but was contemplating embedding his terrorist operatives in the United States through the naturalization process.

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A Problem From Heaven – Why the United States Should Back Islam’s Reformation

Egyptian men read the Koran at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo,  September 2008 NASSER NURI / REUTERS

Egyptian men read the Koran at Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo, September 2008 NASSER NURI / REUTERS

Imagine a platform for Muslim dissidents that communicated their message through YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Imagine ten reformist magazines for every one issue of the Islamic State’s Dabiq or al Qaeda’s Inspire. Imagine the argument for Islamic reform being available on radio and television in Arabic, Dari, Farsi, Pashto, and Urdu. Imagine grants and prizes for leading religious reformers. Imagine support for schools that act as anti-madrasahs.

Such a strategy would also give the United States an opportunity to shift its alliances to those Muslim individuals and groups that actually share its values and practices: those who fight for a true Muslim reformation and who currently find themselves maligned, if not persecuted, by the very governments Washington props up.

Foreign Affairs, by Ayaan Hirsi Ali, June 16, 2015:

We have a problem—not a problem from hell, but one that claims to come from heaven. That problem is sometimes called radical, or fundamentalist, Islam, and the self-styled Islamic State is just its latest iteration. But no one really understands it. In the summer of 2014, Major General Michael Nagata, the commander of U.S. special operations forces in the Middle East, admitted as much when talking about the Islamic State, or ISIS. “We do not understand the movement,” he said. “And until we do, we are not going to defeat it.” Although Nagata’s words are striking for their candor, there is nothing new about the state of affairs they describe. For years, U.S. policymakers have failed to grasp the nature of the threat posed by militant Islam and have almost entirely failed to mount an effective counteroffensive against it on the battlefield that matters most: the battlefield of ideas.

In the war of ideas, words matter. Last September, U.S. President Barack Obama insisted that the Islamic State “is not Islamic,” and later that month, he told the UN General Assembly that “Islam teaches peace.” In November, Obama condemned the beheading of the American aid worker Peter Kassig as “evil” but refused to use the term “radical Islam” to describe the ideology of his killers. The phrase is no longer heard in White House press briefings. The approved term is “violent extremism.”

The decision not to call violence committed in the name of Islam by its true name—jihad—is a strange one. It would be as if Western leaders during the Cold War had gone around calling communism an ideology of peace or condemning the Baader Meinhof Gang, a West German militant group, for not being true Marxists. It is time to drop the euphemisms and verbal contortions. A battle for the future of Islam is taking place between reformers and reactionaries, and its outcome matters. The United States needs to start helping the right side win.

TONGUE-TIED

How did the United States end up with a strategy based on Orwellian Newspeak? In the wake of 9/11, senior Bush administration officials sounded emphatic. “This is a battle for minds,” declared the Pentagon’s no. 2, Paul Wolfowitz, in 2002. But behind the scenes, there was a full-blown struggle going on about how to approach the subject of Islam. According to Joseph Bosco, who worked on strategic communications and Muslim outreach in the Office of the Secretary of Defense from 2002 to 2004, although some American officials defined Islam as inherently peaceful, others argued that, like Christianity, it had to go through a reformation. Eventually, an uneasy compromise was reached. “We bridged the divide by saying that most contemporary Muslims practice their faith peacefully and tolerantly, but a small, radical minority aspires to return to Islam’s harsh seventh century origins,” Bosco wrote in The National Interest.

Administration officials could not even agree on the target of their efforts. Was it global terrorism or Islamic extremism? Or was it the alleged root causes—poverty, Saudi funding, past errors of U.S. foreign policy, or something else altogether? There were “agonizing” meetings on the subject, one participant told U.S. News & World Report. “We couldn’t clarify what path to take, so it was dropped.”

It did not help that the issue cut across traditional bureaucratic demarcations. Officers from the U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command argued for the integration of public diplomacy, press relations, and covert operations. State Department officials saw this as yet another attempt by the Pentagon to annex their turf. Veterans of the campaign trail warned against going negative on a religion—any religion—ahead of the 2004 election. For all these reasons, by the middle of that year, the Bush administration had next to no strategy. Government Accountability Office investigators told Congress that those responsible for public diplomacy at the State Department had no guidance. “Everybody who knows how to do this has been screaming,” one insider told U.S. News. But outside Foggy Bottom, no one could hear them scream.

Administration officials eventually settled on the “Muslim World Outreach” strategy, which relied partly on humanitarian projects carried out by the U.S. Agency for International Development and partly on Arabic-language media outlets funded by the U.S. government, such as Alhurra (a plain vanilla TV news channel) and Radio Sawa (a 24-hour pop music station that targets younger listeners). In effect, “Muslim World Outreach” meant not touching Islam at all. Karen Hughes, who was undersecretary of state for public diplomacy and public affairs from 2005 to 2007, has said that she “became convinced that our nation should avoid the language of religion in our discussion of terrorist acts.”

Here, if in few other respects, there has been striking continuity from Bush to Obama. From 2009 to 2011, Judith McHale served in the same position that Hughes had. “This effort is not about a ‘war of ideas,’ or winning the hearts and minds of huge numbers of people,” McHale said in 2012. “It’s about using digital platforms to reach that small but dangerous group of people around the world who are considering turning to terrorism and persuading them to instead turn in a different direction.” The whole concept of “violent extremism” implies that the United States is fine with people being extremists, so long as they do not resort to violence. Yet this line of reasoning fails to understand the crucial link between those who preach jihad and those who then carry it out. It also fails to understand that at a pivotal moment, the United States has opted out of a debate about Islam’s future.

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The Extreme View that IS and Al Qaeda Can Become Moderate

1569667742CSP, by Jennifer Keltz, June 15, 2015:

Last week, articles suggesting the US should ally itself with Al Qaeda and should consider the Islamic State (IS) as a legitimate power were published by the prominent news sources The Wall Street Journal and Foreign Policy. These articles are part of a growing trend, demonstrated by an earlier 2014 Foreign Affairs article, calling for greater US complacency in regards to violent jihadist groups.

The recent pieces present different, equally dangerous ideas, and should be addressed individually.

Yaroslav Trofimov, of the Wall Street Journal, reports influential policy thinkers and U.S. Allies are discussing the possibility of a US alliance with the Syrian Al Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (Nusra). They say that many secular, Western-backed militants fighting in Syria already work closely with Nusra on the battlefield. They also point to Middle Eastern governments, such as Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Qatar, that work closely with Nusra to help topple IS and the Assad regime, which has a horrible human-rights record. This perspective fails to recognize that these are Sunni states and their backing of Nusra has more to do with their desire to weaken Shia Iran and Syria than to help Syrian civilians.

The report presents Nusra as the lesser of two evils: in comparison to IS, its religious views are “certainly radical” but “aren’t nearly as extreme.”

The policy-makers in question lack a greater perspective of the Syrian conflict and of Nusra and Al Qaeda. Its Al Qaeda affiliation demonstrates that, while it may have local goals now, it ultimately wants to install Islamic regimes all over the world, and indeed has the same end goal as IS.

The only reason why Nusra is not attacking the West is because Al Qaeda Central ordered it to refrain from doing so. That does not mean that it is not planning to attack in the future. Any group that must be ordered to not attack the US is not a group with which the US should be aligned.

In an unrelated op-ed in Foreign Policy, Stephen M. Walt, a Harvard professor, asks his audience to consider what the US should do if IS “wins.” He believes IS is likely to establish itself and retain power, similarly to how the USSR and People’s Republic of China started as revolutionary movements before establishing themselves as states.

Walt believes the US should treat IS and its worldview in the way that it treated the USSR and communism throughout the twentieth century – with containment. He ignores history: the Soviets never abandoned efforts to violently spread their ideology, from the 1919 invasion of Poland to the 1989 retreat from Afghanistan.

Walt states that IS is not powerful on a global scale, and its foreign recruitment of 25,000 from a world population of 7 billion is not that large. In fact, he says he would rather see all of the people that desire to join IS actually join it because this would put them all in one place, where they can be isolated from the rest of society. Unfortunately, he only considers IS’s foreign recruitment. Size estimates of the organization range from the tens- to hundreds-of-thousands.

Walt ignores IS’s calls for its international followers to attack Western people and civilizations, and that its followers are listening. A quick Google search shows that it inspired attacks in Texas, New York (where one woman “couldn’t understand why U.S. citizens like herself were traveling overseas to wage jihad when they could simply ‘make history’ at home by unleashing terrorist attacks”), Australia, Canada, and elsewhere.

Though its ranks may be small in comparison to the world population, with its strategic use of the internet and media it has permeated through Western society. The US is not as far away from IS’s violence as Walt wants to think. The widespread use of the Internet means that containment can never truly happen and its ideas will still spread, leading more people to want to join. Additionally, recognizing IS as a state would legitimize it, leading to increased recruitment.

He states IS has few resources, and can now no longer surprise its enemies. However, it brings in millions of dollars daily from oil alone, and it has other sources of income. It is also much larger and better-resourced than Al Qaeda was at the time of the 9/11 attacks, which had a core membership between 500-1000 people. IS is therefore expected to have capabilities far beyond those of Al Qaeda in the early 2000s.

Walt’s argument that IS would self-moderate if it became an actual country is important to his argument for containment. He explains it would need to self-moderate in order to gain legitimacy amongst other nations and to be welcomed into international politics and the world economy. This argument lacks an understanding of the IS worldview.

Cole Bunzel, in “From State to Caliphate: The Ideology of the Islamic State,” describes it as “the view that the region’s Shi’a are conspiring with the United States and secular Arab rulers to limit Sunni power in the Middle East.” In IS’s declaration of return of the caliphate, “This is the Promise of Allah,” they laid out its founding principles and described it in verse:

“We took it forcibly at the point of a blade/…We established it in defiance of many./ And the people’s necks were violently struck,/ With bombings, explosions, and destruction,/ And soldiers that do not see hardship as being difficult…”

Fundamental to IS’s beliefs is that they cannot be compromised because they are mandated by Allah.  Founded upon religious beliefs, which do not appeal to logic but instead to faith, IS cannot and will not become more moderate. Its members view the western concept of “moderation” as the antithesis of what their divinely-conceived worldview requires. It already operates as a pseudo-state anyway; international recognition is irrelevant to its purpose for existence.

The points of view expressed in the two op-ed pieces mentioned are dangerous if left unaddressed. They display a shallow and dangerous understanding of the nature of the Jihadist organizations, their methods, and their goals.

Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of Jihad

1710871446Secure Freedom Radio, June 10, 2015: With Stephen Coughlin

STEPHEN COUGHLIN, author of “Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in Face of Jihad”:

PART ONE:

  • The Islamic law of the land: Shariah
  • The non-kinetic battle space of information operations
  • Political, military, legal, and religious arms of Shariah
  • Defining “Jihad”

PART TWO:

  • Western misconceptions of the term “jihad”
  • The Muslim Brotherhoods explicit purpose in America
  • David Shipler’s Freedom of Speech
  • An Islamist alignment with the Left

PART THREE:

  • Examining the relationship between the Pentagon and the Islamic Society of North America
  • The true reach of Muslim Brotherhood agents and affiliates within the US government
  • What does it mean if “you don’t know your enemy?”

PART FOUR:

  • State Department mantra that “ISIS isn’t Islamic”
  • U.N. Resolution 1618, Hillary Clinton, and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation
  • Understanding the Interfaith Movement as a cultural, Marxist organization
  • The Muslim Brotherhood’s stealth jihad within the US

America’s See-No-Islam Problem Exposed With Boston Jihadism

The Blaze, by Ben Weingarten, June 9, 2015:

The Boston Globe published a column in the wake of the shooting of an Islamic State-linked jihadist from Rosindale, Massachusetts that is a quintessential example of why the West is losing to Islamic supremacists.

In “Are Boston terrorism cases a trend?” two Globe authors reach out to several “antiterrorism specialists” and ask why it is that Boston appears to be so “vulnerable to violent extremism.”

Some submit that Boston’s “emergence as an international hub may leave it exposed to strains of radicalized behavior.”

Others find the existence of Boston-based jihadists curious given these jihadists “cannot be traced to one network, and individuals and groups do not appear to be connected.”

One such expert who has written on the Islamic State, J.M. Berger, acknowledges that “There is some degree of social network here that seems to be involved in radical thought.”

Halfway through the Globe article, the reader is left utterly unaware of any link between Boston jihadists and…jihadism. In fact, readers will not find the word “jihadist” in the column.

What readers do see is the lexicon of our see-no-Islam national security establishment, including euphemisms such as “violent extremism,” “homegrown terrorist,” and “radical presence.”

Somewhat closer to the mark are comments of James Forest, director of security studies at the University of Massachusetts Lowell’s Center for Terrorism and Security Studies, who says: “The ideology that motivates these kind of attacks, there are no geographical boundaries.”

What this “ideology” is, the reader is left to guess.

Usamma Rahim was wielding a knife when he was shot by Boston police. Rahim had planned to attack “boys in blue” according to his intercepted communications. (Source: WCVB-TV)

Usamma Rahim was wielding a knife when he was shot by Boston police. Rahim had planned to attack “boys in blue” according to his intercepted communications. (Source: WCVB-TV)

Next quoted in the piece is Farah Pandith, the first special representative to Muslim communities in then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s State Department.

Pandith asserts that Muslim millennials are “asking questions that parents aren’t answering. The loudest voices seducing these kids are extremists.”

Pandith notes that “extremism” is not so much a matter of geography as “what’s happening in virtual space around the world.”

As for the “seductive” “extremist” voices and the impact of social networks, of course the young and impressionable can be brainwashed, but what are they being brainwashed in, and who is doing the brainwashing? Should not these millennials and their parents be both rejecting as well as rooting out this ideology from their communities altogether?

Some experts seem to recognize an ideological component to what we have seen in Boston – an Islamic supremacist ideology that can proliferate wherever computers or cell phones are found, that thrives especially in tight-knit Muslim communities in free Western countries — yet they cannot bring themselves to define this ideology.

Credit: Steven Coughlin

Credit: Steven Coughlin

Juliette Kayyem, another Obama administration official who served as Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs in the Department of Homeland Security, is next given the floor.

Kayyem believes that Boston — which the columnists describe as a “global city that is diverse, tolerant, and welcomes immigrants and students” – is “a breeding ground for the disaffected to either radicalize or hide.”

Kayyem asserts that “We are going to see this kind of radicalization in any urban area globally.”

But do global cities become “breeding grounds[s] for the disaffected to either radicalize or hide” in a vacuum?

Throughout world history, international locales have been free of the scourge of “violent extremism,” a politically correct term used to avoid offending Muslims while simultaneously drawing moral equivalence with and thereby smearing “right-wing” Americans.

One would think that modern, cosmopolitan, liberal urban areas by their very nature would consist of modern, cosmopolitan, liberal people.

Only to the degree to which these global cities invite in people with retrograde views antithetical to these ideals does their diversity and tolerance make them “breeding grounds” for jihadism.

It is hard to fault the piece’s authors for quoting “mainstream” “antiterror experts.” Yet these “experts” all seem to subscribe to the very see-no-Islam philosophy that paralyzes our national security establishment more broadly, rendering us unable to defeat our enemy.

Parenthetically, the idea of an “antiterror” expert should itself draw our ire, given that terror is a tactic, not the name of an ideologically-driven enemy. After all, during the Second World War we didn’t call upon anti-Blitzkrieg experts to define our enemies. We understood and were able to articulate that we were at war with a foe, not a fighting method.

Meanwhile, today there is nary a mention of Islamic religious tenets like jihad, abrogation and taqqiya, nor a discussion of Islam’s ultimate goal to create a global Ummah under which all submit to Shariah law.

This is not an issue of semantics. If we fail to be precise in how we describe our enemy and its ideology, it will defeat us.

How did we get to a point over a decade after Sept. 11, 2001 when columnists writing about Boston jihadists dance on egg shells around the Islamic supremacist ideology that by the jihadists’ own admission animates them?

While Nazism and Communism were political ideologies, jihadists subscribe to a theo-political ideology based in Islam’s core texts and modeled on the behaviors of Muhammad.

This offends the sensibilities of Americans either ignorant of Islam or uncomfortable with the idea that religion could be used to justify the slow motion worldwide slaughter of Jews, Christians, Hindus, infidel Muslims, gays, women, apostates, cartoonists and others.

In the case of the recently killed would-be jihadist Usamma Rahim, a simple set of Google searches regarding Rahim and the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB) might have provided the Globe columnists and the antiterror experts they quote an illuminating fact pattern worth investigating in response to their question, “Is Boston more vulnerable to violent extremism than other parts of the country?”

Below are some of those relevant data points:

  • Usamma Rahim had been a security guard at the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center (ISBCC) in Roxbury, Massachusetts, an affiliate of the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB)
  • Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev prayed at the ISB’s Cambridge, Massachusetts mosque
  • Notwithstanding ISB denials, Tsarnaev had been the latest in a long line of jihadists linked to the organization:
    • The ISB was founded by Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi, a supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah currently serving a 23 year prison sentence on terrorism charges
    • ISB’s Cambridge mosque is operated by the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Muslim American Society
    • According to Discover the Networks, among other revelations:
      • “FBI surveillance documents show that two days before the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, Suhaib Webb, Imam of ISB’s Boston mosque, joined al-Qaeda operative Anwar Awlaki in headlining a fundraiser on behalf of the Atlanta-based Muslim extremist Jamil al-Amin (formerly H. Rap Brown), who had recently murdered two police officers in Georgia.”
      • “Aafia Siddiqui, who occasionally prayed at ISB’s Cambridge mosque, was arrested in Afghanistan in 2008 while in possession of cyanide canisters and plans to carry out a chemical attack in New York City. Siddiqui subsequently tried to gun down some U.S. military officers and FBI agents, and is now serving an 86-year prison sentence for that offense.”
      • “Tarek Mehanna, who worshipped at ISB’s Cambridge mosque, received terrorist training in Yemen and plotted to use automatic weapons to inflict mass casualties in a suburban shopping mall just outside of Boston. In 2012 he was sentenced to 17 years in prison for conspiring to aid Al Qaeda.”
      • “Yasir Qadhi, who lectured at ISB’s Boston mosque in 2009 and again in 2012, advocates replacing American democracy with Sharia Law; characterizes Christians as “filthy” polytheists whose “life and prosperity … holds no value in the state of Jihad”; and accuses Jews of plotting to destroy Muslim peoples and societies. Further, Qadhi is an acolyte of Ali al-Timimi, a Virginia-based Imam who is currently serving life in prison for inciting jihad against U.S. troops in Afghanistan.”

The Boston Globe article is instructive because it represents the very line of thinking and questioning that is mandated in the halls of America’s national security institutions.

It is also instructive — in light of the facts about the ISB — that a see-no-Islam national security stance leads us to ignore the threats hiding in plain sight, to America’s great detriment.

Those who ignore the nature of the Islamic supremacist threat we face are doomed to submit to it.

Also see:

IG report: TSA failed to identify 73 workers ‘linked to terrorism’

tsa-todd-starnes-620x362Fox News, June 9, 2015:

On the heels of Transportation Security Administration workers flunking a security test at airport checkpoints, the results of a new audit show that — while the agency keeps a robust system for screening commercial airport workers — it still failed to flag 73 airport workers “linked to terrorism.”

Apparently, TSA does not have access to all the terror watchlist information it needs to make those judgments.

“The TSA did not identify these individuals through its vetting operations because it is not authorized to receive all terrorism-related categories under current interagency watch-listing policy,” the June 4 Inspector General report stated.

According to TSA data, the people in question were working for major airlines, airport venders and other employers.

The agency acknowledged that individuals in these categories “represented a potential transportation security threat,” according to the report.

To test the accuracy and effectiveness of TSA’s terrorism vetting procedures, the National Counterterrorism Center was asked to match more than 900,000 records of active aviation workers against its Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment database.

According to the report, the TSA had been unable to find 73 individuals “linked to terrorism” because the information the TSA received from the Department of Homeland Security Watchlist Service and used for vetting did not contain the terrorism “codes” associated with the 73 individuals. In other words, TSA did not have the entire terror watchlist.

Some parts of the IG report, including codes, were redacted.

Overall, the report concluded, the vetting and re-vetting procedures that TSA used were “generally effective” in identifying workers with links to terrorism. Since 2003, the agency has advised airports to deny or revoke 58 airport workers as a result of its vetting process for credential applicants and holders.

The TSA had “less effective controls” in place to ensure airports have a robust verification process for a credential applicant’s criminal history and authorization to work in the United States.

The report advised the TSA to “request and review additional watchlist data, require that airports improve verification of applicants’ right to work, revoke credentials when the right to work expires and improve the quality of vetting data.”

The IG investigation is just the latest in a series that have called out the TSA for massive security breaches at some of the country’s largest airports.

Last week, news broke that undercover federal agents had a 95 percent success rate at sneaking fake bombs and other banned weapons past airport security checkpoints during multiple tests.

Acting TSA Administrator Melvin Carraway was re-assigned less than 24 hours after the report went public. The Senate homeland security committee plans to hold a hearing on the TSA security issue on Tuesday.

In an op-ed piece published Monday, Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., wrote that last week’s full report should be made available to the public. Parts of it had been redacted.

“The publicly available facts are disturbing, but the classified details are even worse,” he wrote in USA Today. “Millions of families will soon fly to summer vacations, but if moms knew what members of Congress have learned behind closed doors, they would march on Washington demanding an urgent, top-to-bottom reevaluation of airport security.”

In the column, Sasse said the findings were troubling for passengers who rely on the TSA to prevent terrorist attacks.

“Until last week, Americans were led to believe that jihadi terrorists could never again weaponize commercial airliners. After last week, it is time to rethink that.”

Not mincing words, he wrote, “We are not safe. It is time to start effectively protecting U.S. flights from those hell-bent on killing us.”

***

A Contrast in Delusions: The TSA vs. Domestic Immigration Enforcement

Berlin_Schönefeld_Airport_metal_detectors-427x350Frontpage, June 9, 2015 by Michael Cutler:

On June 2, 2015 the Washington Times published a report about how massive failures of screeners employed by the TSA, an agency that operates under the aegis of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), failed to find weapons, in the great majority of instances, when undercover operatives went through the screening process. The article, “TSA chief ousted after airport security flunks test, misses most weapons, explosives” included this excerpt:

The acting chief of the Transportation Security Administration was ousted late Monday night after an embarrassing new report found that airport security officers badly failed a new test, missing almost every firearm and explosive investigators tried to sneak by them.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced the move, saying Melvin Carraway had been “reassigned” to another part of the department and his deputy would take over, serving until the Senate can confirm a new chief.

Earlier in the night Mr. Johnson had said he’d just been given a classified briefing on the inspector general’s findings that found a major loophole in security that could allow people to sneak prohibited items by TSA screeners and into what were supposed to be secure areas of airports.

Mr. Johnson said the preliminary findings were classified and said it wasn’t “appropriate or prudent” to talk about them — but ABC News reported that IG investigators managed to sneak contraband material by TSA screeners in 67 of 70 tests.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was created in the wake of the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 and contains a number of agencies that are charged with addressing the failures that enabled the terrorists who carried out those attacks, to enter the United States, embed themselves in the United States and then hijack airliners, using them as de facto “cruise missiles.”

Among the agencies that operate under the aegis of the DHS are:

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA): This agency is charged with keeping weapons or other harmful materials off of airliners along with people who appear on “no fly lists.” It is a simple concept and one that is apparently easy for people to comprehend. In order to achieve this goal officers employed by the TSA carry out ever more intrusive searches of airline passengers and their baggage. Passengers are subjected to x-rays, raising concerns. Passengers are also prohibited from bringing certain items into the passenger cabin of the airliners including large quantities of liquids, etc.

Customs and Border Protection (CBP): The mission of this agency, which includes inspectors at ports of entry, and Border Patrol, which operates between ports of entry, is to make certain that aliens and cargo are not smuggled into the United States and that the inspection of both people and objects keep criminals and terrorists along with other foreign nationals whose presence would be problematic, from entering the United States.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE): This agency is charged with enforcing our immigration laws from within the interior of the United States to backstop the personnel at CBP. When aliens evade the inspections process by entering the United States without inspection, ICE is supposed to seek them out and take them into custody so that they can be removed (deported from the United States). ICE is also responsible for identifying, locating and arresting aliens who are lawfully admitted but then go on to violate the terms of their admission by overstaying their authorized period of admission, accepting unlawful employment, failing to attend schools (in the case of foreign students) or being convicted of committing crimes.

ICE is also supposed to conduct investigations into possible fraud when applicants lie about material facts in applications for various immigration benefits for aliens filed with USCIS and to conduct investigations to identify, arrest and prosecute fraud document vendors.

Finally, ICE assigns agents to work on various multi-agency task forces.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): This agency employs adjudications officers who are responsible for adjudicating applications for immigration benefits. If an Alien Registration Receipt Card, a “Green Card,” and especially United States citizenship are the “keys to the kingdom,” then USCIS is America’s locksmith. This agency confers these benefits, in addition to others, upon aliens.

The ink was barely dry in the newspaper reports about the failures of the TSA to find planted weapons when the director of that agency was re-assigned. Jeh Johnson wasted no time in shaking up the agency that is supposed to keep weapons and terrorists off of our airliners.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if he was as determined to keep alien criminals, terrorists and narcotics out of the United States and off the streets of towns and cities across our nation?

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