More than 400 children under 10 referred for ‘deradicalisation’

Getty Images

Getty Images

BBC, by Sima Kotecha, Jan. 21, 2016:

A total of 415 children aged 10 and under have been referred to the government’s deradicalisation programme in England and Wales over the last four years, the BBC has learned.

National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) figures obtained by the BBC show 1,424 children aged 11-15 were also referred.

The “Channel” scheme, set up after the 7 July London bombings, aims to steer people away from extremism.

The government says the scheme has successfully deradicalised people.

The BBC obtained NPCC figures, under a Freedom of Information request, which showed that a total of 1,839 children aged 15 and under had been referred over concerns they were at risk of radicalisation between January 2012 and December 2015.

The figures show referrals are rising year on year.

The “Channel” programme, which is part of the government’s counter-terrorism strategy, focuses on identifying people who are vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism and providing them with support to stop that from happening.

Those at risk of right-wing extremism can also be referred.

Sally Bates, of the National Association of Head Teachers’ (NAHT) says it is important for teachers to be able to safeguard their pupils from extremism and radicalisation.

In some cases, young children had seen beheading videos with their families, she said.

“That does raise a number of concerns and that’s where I can understand that referrals are then made from teachers.”

Under laws brought in last summer, schools, prisons, the NHS, and local authorities have a legal obligation, known as the “Prevent Duty”, to spot individuals who might be vulnerable to extremism and radicalisation.

Figures show most of the referrals in both age groups were made in November last year – after the new law came into force – suggesting it could partly be a reason for the increase in the number of referrals.

‘Stigmatising Muslims’

One parent, Ifhat Shaheen, told the BBC her 14-year-old son was interrogated by people working on the government’s counter-terrorism strategy after he mentioned the word “eco-terrorists” in school.

He was taken aside at Central Foundation School in London and asked if he was affiliated to the Islamic State group, she said.

“A teacher’s job is to teach children and not to spy on children,” she said.


What is the ‘Channel’ programme?

“Channel” is the government’s programme designed to stop vulnerable people from being drawn into violent and non-violent extremist or terrorist behaviour.

It is an “early intervention” scheme, designed to work with individuals of any age who are at risk of being exploited by extremist or terrorist ideologues.

The type of support is tailored to the individual, but may focus on a person’s vulnerabilities around health, education, employment or housing, as well as specialist mentoring or faith guidance, or even broader diversionary activities such as sport.

Anyone can make a referral, including education, health, youth offending teams, police, social services, families or the community.

The programme is voluntary and, in the case of children, parental consent is needed.

Source: The Channel Programme


She added: “Schools are meant to be a safe place where you can have open dialogue and discussion.”

“It’s really heart-breaking to hear that young Muslim children are being criminalised in this way for the wrong reasons and an overreaction. It stigmatises Muslims.”

Her son’s school said the safeguarding and wellbeing of its young people was its main concern and it did not comment on individual cases.

Three London schoolgirls, Kadiza Sultana, Amira Abase and Shamima Begum, travelled to Syria last February

Three London schoolgirls, Kadiza Sultana, Amira Abase and Shamima Begum, travelled to Syria last February

At another school – Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School in north London – head teacher Jo Dibb said that no pupils had been referred to “Channel”.

Part of the reason, she says, is that staff encourage conversation and debate about extremism rather than shying away from it.

“Just because a young person makes an off-the-cuff remark – it doesn’t make them a terrorist.

“All young people will say things that they don’t mean and it’s our job as educators to make sure they understand what they’re saying and that they can explore their ideas.” If there was still concern, only then would a referral be made.

‘Growing trust’

The Channel programme is voluntary and of the 4,000 referrals since 2012, only hundreds have agreed to take part.

Former teacher Khalsoom Bashir, from Muslim women’s charity Inspire, says a rise in referrals shows more people have faith in the system.

Schools will have a duty to prevent pupils having access to extremist material online

Schools will have a duty to prevent pupils having access to extremist material online

The government says the “Channel” programme has changed lives – and pulled people away from a dangerous life of extremism.

Security Minister John Hayes said: “This is about safeguarding and it’s working. This is about protection, this is about help, this is about providing all the support you need to make sure your children are safe.”

The Politics of Radicalization

2294MEF, by A.J. Caschetta
The Sun-Sentinel
January 21, 2016

Towards the end of his too-brief life, George Orwell came to the conclusion that English society had become decadent and that “the English language is in a bad way.” It was 1946, several years before introducing the world to “newspeak” with his greatest novel, 1984, when he wrote perhaps his greatest essay, “Politics and the English Language,” describing the disease he observed and prescribing its cure.

The belief that “political chaos is connected with the decay of language” led him to conclude that language had become “ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish [and] the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.” Today, the ways we speak and write about the threat of Islamism are often inaccurate and slovenly, making “foolish thoughts” almost inevitable. Everyone involved needs Orwell’s prescription.

The post-9/11 era is rife with what Orwell called “the abuse of language” (“war on terror,” “overseas contingency operations”), but no abuse more obviously illustrates his complaints than the media cliché describing how a moderate Muslim becomes an Islamist: he becomes radicalized. This euphemism (a passive construction in grammatical terminology) denotes almost nothing. Orwell calls it a “verbal false limb,” that is, a device used to “save the trouble of picking out appropriate verbs and nouns.” It has become the default explanation for a phenomenon few want to discuss.

The post-9/11 era is rife with what Orwell called ‘the abuse of language.’

“Politics and the English Language” has advice for arresting the English language’s slide into decadence, culminating in 6 rules that “will cover most cases.” Each rule points to its author’s zeal for clear and precise prose, unmarred by clichés, jargon and anything extraneous. Among the obstacles to clarity, the passive construction is so severe that rule #4 is “Never use the passive where you can use the active.”

An active structure emphasizes the agent of activity conveyed in the verb: “Tom kicked the ball.” A passive structure emphasizes the object being acted upon: “The ball was kicked by Tom.” It can also eliminate the agent altogether: “The ball was kicked.” Aside from being imprecise, passive constructions allow writers to conceal important evidence: who kicked the ball? Or, more germane to political prose: who dropped the bomb? Who gave the order? Who planned the attack?

There is much to dislike about both the passive “was radicalized” construction and the term “radicalization,” which comes from an adjective (radical) turned into a verb (radicalize) and then into a noun. The term “self-radicalized,” which appears to be a reflexive passive verb, if such a thing exists, is even worse.

Consider the following sentences, which could have been pulled from a thousand sources:

  • Tamerlan Tsarnaev was radicalized in Dagestan.
  • Sayed Rizwan Farook became radicalized by his wife.
  • Maj. Malik Nidal Hasan was self-radicalized.

The passive construction in each blurs the relationship between agent (Tsarnaev, Farook, Nidal) and the already-vague verb “radicalized”. Each deflects responsibility elsewhere, or omits it altogether, treating “radicalism” as a contagion that infects its host upon first contact.

Observing Rule #4 from “Politics and the English Language” might yield instead the following sentences:

  • Tamerlan Tsarnaev sharpened his nascent hatred for the US among the Islamists in Dagestan.
  • Sayed Rizwan Farook traveled to Pakistan and Saudi Arabia seeking a wife who shared his Islamist views.
  • Maj. Malik Nidal Hasan sought spiritual and operational guidance from AQAP leader Anwar al-Awlaki.

What Gore Vidal called “the popular Fu Manchu theory that a single whiff of opium will enslave the mind” is not a good metaphor for Islamism. Islamism is inculcated over time. Teachers spread it inschools with books. Imams and community leaders reinforce it in mosques and Islamic centers. Somecommunities ignore it, and some families tolerate it. Sudden Jihad Syndrome only appears sudden to outsiders.

What Gore Vidal called ‘the popular Fu Manchu theory that a single whiff of opium will enslave the mind’ is not a good metaphor for Islamism.

Orwell insisted that language always be used “as an instrument for expressing and not for concealing or preventing thought,” but he understood that not everyone shared his view.

The “was radicalized” construction has become ubiquitous mostly by thoughtless repetition, but to those who deliberately obfuscate, this seemingly inoffensive passive construction provides a way to avoid what has increasingly become the un-nameable. Maajid Nawaz calls this “the Voldemort effect: the refusal to call Islamism by its proper name.”

Those who make and influence US counterterrorism policy must recognize that jihadists are not created accidentally or spontaneously. Speaking and writing as though they are, either deliberately or through “the slovenliness of our language,” hinders clear thinking. And as Orwell put it, “to think clearly is a necessary first step toward political regeneration: so that the fight against bad English is not frivolous and is not the exclusive concern of professional writers.”

A.J. Caschetta is a senior lecturer at the Rochester Institute of Technology and a Shillman-Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum.

NYPD ordered to purge info on Islamic terror

AP

AP

American Thinker, by Carol Brown, Jan. 19, 2016:

A U.S. District Court has ordered the NYPD to purge extensive documentation that outlines the rise of Islamic terror in the West and threats to the United States. The report, Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat, focused on providing law enforcement and policy-makers with vital intelligence on domestic terror operations. A key component of the document outlined how jihadists get into the country and carry out terror attacks. Many experts have described the report as “critical” to our national security. The court order is a huge victory for the ACLU (who spearheaded the effort two-and-one-half years ago) and Islamic supremacists.

The Free Beacon reports on key areas reached in the settlement, including the following mandates:

  • The NYPD must purge the report on the department’s understanding of “radical Islam” along with how best to police the threat.
  • The NYPD must “remove the publication from its database and vow not to rely on it in the future” and that they will not open or extend investigations based on it.
  • The NYPD must implement measures to “mitigate the impact of future terror investigations on certain religious and political groups,” such as those in the Muslim-American community.

Needless to say, many legal experts have pointed out that this action “could hamper future terrorism investigations.”

The court ties law enforcement’s hands behind their back, blindfolds them, and performs a lobotomy.

While NYPD officials would not comment Thursday when contacted by the Washington Free Beacon, a spokesperson directed a reporter to a recent press release affirming the department’s commitment to upholding the court settlement. (snip)

The NYPD confirmed that it would remove from its website the 2007 radicalization report.

The department will additionally incorporate into the guidelines “police policies against religious profiling” and insert an additional “provision for considering the impact investigations have on people who are not targets of investigations,” according to the statement.

John Miller, the NYPD’s deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, maintained in a statement that the settlement would not “weaken the [department’s] ability to fulfill its steadfast commitment to investigate and prevent terrorist activity in New York City.”

Naturally, experts are already weighing in, not that we need “experts” to know this is a deplorable and dangerous court ruling. But, ok. The experts.

Benjamin Weingarten, writer and national security analyst, covered the court case and said that now more than ever local police departments need the NYPD report. “To pursue a see-no-Islam counter-jihadist strategy is not only absurd and contradictory on its face, but its [sic] a severe dereliction of duty—ignorance is not an excuse, and it represents a failure to do everything necessary to defend against an ideology that seeks to undermine the Constitution and subvert and destroy Western civilization again, according to Islamic supremacists themselves,” he said.

“Dereliction of duty.” Precisely. And it’s shoving Americans into harm’s way. Far too many have already paid the ultimate price.

Maj. Stephen Coughlin, retired Army officer and leading expert on Islamic law and counter-terrorism, also weighed in: “I am greatly concerned with the imposition of [the case] which, I believe, exists to replace counter-terror efforts. This is a continuation of a purging of evidentiary based counter-terror analysis first initiated in 2011.”

Meanwhile, when The Free Beacon contacted the ACLU for comment, the ACLU directed them to an editorial published in the Guardian that celebrated the decision. Here are two little gems from the co-authors of the editorial:

“Bias-based policing legitimizes religious discrimination, It can pave the way to copy-cat approaches by other agencies and set the stage for hate crimes nationwide,” wrote Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s national security project, and Ramzi Kassem, a law professor at the City University of New York.

“We hope the settlement announced this week pulls our city and its police department out of a downward spiral by reaffirming core values and principles, ones just as necessary to a local police force as they are to a rational debate on civil rights and liberties nationally,” they wrote.

This is Islamic supremacy in action. The more time passes, the less critical useful idiots will be as Islamic supremacists supplant them in organizations across the country, as with Hina Shamsi at the ACLU (here, here, here, and here).

To read more about the court ruling, see Daniel Greenfield’s recent article, here.

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Also see:

Court Requires NYPD to Purge Docs on Terrorists Inside U.S.

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Washington Free Beacon, by Adam Kredo, Jan. 18, 2016:

The New York Police Department has been directed by a U.S. court to remove from its online records an investigation pertaining to the rise of Islamic extremists in the West and the threats these individuals pose to American safety, according to legal documents.

As part of a settlement agreement reached earlier this month with Muslim community advocates in U.S. District Court, the NYPD will purge from its website an extensive report that experts say has been critical to the department’s understanding of radical Islam and its efforts to police the threat.

The court settlement also stipulates that the NYPD make a concerted effort to mitigate the impact of future terror investigations on certain religious and political groups, according to a copy of the court documents published by the American Civil Liberties Union, which has spearheaded the case since June 2013.

Legal experts and critics of the settlement maintain that it could hamper future terrorism investigations and view it as part of a larger campaign by Muslim advocacy organizations in the United States to dismantle surveillance programs encompassing that community.

Critics expressed particular concern about the case in light of a recent surge in attacks on U.S. citizens committed by individuals pledging allegiance to terror groups such as ISIS.

A key portion of the settlement focuses on the NYPD’s purported use of a document produced by the department’s intelligence division to examine how radicalized individuals make their way to the United States and carry out terror attacks.

The document, “Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat,” aimed to provide local law enforcement and policy makers with information about domestic terrorists and their operations.

As part of the settlement agreement, the NYPD will be forced to remove the publication from its database and vow not to rely on it in the future.

The NYPD and New York state government agencies included in the case “represent that they do not, have not, and will not rely upon the Radicalization in the West report to open or extend investigations,” according to the settlement. “Defendants will remove the Radicalization in the West report from the NYPD website.”

The settlement further affirms that the NYPD will be “committed to mitigating the potential impact” of future investigations on political and religious groups, such as those in the Muslim-American community.

While NYPD officials would not comment Thursday when contacted by the Washington Free Beacon, a spokesperson directed a reporter to a recent press release affirming the department’s commitment to upholding the court settlement.

The NYPD and relevant New York state agencies will “provide additional guidance to police officers as part of a settlement of lawsuits accusing the NYPD of improperly investigating Muslim groups,” according to the Jan. 7 press release. “While the City did not admit to engaging in any improper practices, the changes represent an effort to provide more detailed guidance to NYPD personnel within the existing Handschu Guidelines,” which govern how authorities investigate political activities.

The NYPD confirmed that it would remove from its website the 2007 radicalization report.

The department will additionally incorporate into the guidelines “police policies against religious profiling” and insert an additional “provision for considering the impact investigations have on people who are not targets of investigations,” according to the statement.

John Miller, the NYPD’s deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism, maintained in a statement that the settlement would not “weaken the [department’s] ability to fulfill its steadfast commitment to investigate and prevent terrorist activity in New York City.”

However, some experts have cast doubt on this statement, claiming that the decision to delete the anti-terrorism handbook will impact officers’ ability to understand how terrorists organize and operate in the United States.

Benjamin Weingarten, a writer and national security analyst who has covered the court case, said that local police departments should be relying more heavily on the now-banned counterterror analysis.

Referring to the recent shooting of a Philadelphia police officer by a radicalized individual who allegedly pledged allegiance to ISIS, Weingarten noted that the assailant followed the “‘four stages of radicalization’ detailed in the NYPD report.”

The information about radical terrorists provided in “the NYPD’s analysis may have at the least led Philadelphia authorities to dig deeper and flag him,” he said.

The settlement further reflects a larger cultural shift in America that shuns terms such as “war on terror” and “Muslim terrorism,” Weingarten said.

“To pursue a see-no-Islam counter-jihadist strategy is not only absurd and contradictory on its face, but its a severe dereliction of duty—ignorance is not an excuse, and it represents a failure to do everything necessary to defend against an ideology that seeks to undermine the Constitution and subvert and destroy Western civilization again, according to Islamic supremacists themselves,” he said.

Stephen Coughlin, an attorney and intelligence officer, expressed concern about what he described as a widening attempt by local and federal authorities to redefine the nature of domestic counter-terror efforts.

“I am greatly concerned with the imposition of [the case] which, I believe, exists to replace counter-terror efforts,” Coughlin said. “This is a continuation of a purging of evidentiary based counter-terror analysis first initiated in 2011.”

The ACLU and Muslim community advocates initially filed the lawsuit following reports after the 9/11 terror attacks that the NYPD was running a domestic spy operation centered on the American-Muslim community.

The ACLU, which would not comment on record for this report, directed the Free Beacon to a recent editorial published in the Guardian celebrating the court decision.

“Bias-based policing legitimizes religious discrimination, It can pave the way to copy-cat approaches by other agencies and set the stage for hate crimes nationwide,” wrote Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s national security project, and Ramzi Kassem, a law professor at the City University of New York.

“We hope the settlement announced this week pulls our city and its police department out of a downward spiral by reaffirming core values and principles, ones just as necessary to a local police force as they are to a rational debate on civil rights and liberties nationally,” they wrote.

5 Critical Takeaways from the Islamic ‘Radicalization Report’ the NYPD Is Deleting From Its Website

Screen-Shot-2015-04-16-at-8.27.55-PM.sized-770x415xcPJ Media, by Ben Weingarten, Jan. 13, 2016:

New York City has caved to the demands of Muslim groups in connection with its intelligence and surveillance activities of the Islamic community. In a politically correct move, the city is resorting to self-censorship over safety.

As part of its settlement with plaintiffs in the cases of Raza v. City of New York and Handschu v. Special Services Division — coincidentally, the settlement was released within hours of the shooting of Philadelphia police officer Jesse Hartnett by a self-identified American jihadist — the NYPD will be removing Radicalization in the West, the groundbreaking 2007 report on the “homegrown” jihadist threat, from its website.

Plaintiffs in the Raza case argued that the report reflected the “analytic underpinnings” of New York’s so-called “Muslim surveillance program.” The plaintiffs deemed the report unlawful on account of its alleged “religious profiling and suspicionless surveillance of Muslim New Yorkers” based on a “false and unconstitutional premise: that Muslim religious beliefs and practices are a basis for law enforcement scrutiny.”

Supposedly, the NYPD radicalization report “stigmatizes an entire faith community and invites discrimination. It specifically singles out Muslims for profiling and suspicionless surveillance because of their religious beliefs and practices.”

In spite of the fact that New York did not acknowledge any wrongdoing in its practices nor disavow the “radicalization report” on its analytical merits, the city is pulling the report. Further, the city also represented in the settlement that it does not, has not, and will not rely upon the report to open or extend investigations.

Yet much of what is contained in Radicalization in the West would appear to have value in a world in which Europe’s violent Islamization continues apace. Americans are awakening from their post-9/11 slumber to realize that perhaps something is awry in light of the jihadi carnage wrought in Boston by the Tsarnaev brothers, by San Bernardino shooters Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, by would-be Philly cop-killer Edward Archer, and by many others nationwide — not to mention the suspected jihadis in the more than 900 active investigations of ISIS-linked individuals across the 50 states.

The report, which analyzed almost a dozen cases of “homegrown” jihadis across the U.S. and Europe in order to provide “a conceptual framework for understanding the process of radicalization in the West,” contained a variety of still-relevant and oft-ignored findings.

Here are five of its most critical takeaways.

———————————-

1. Jihadis are chiefly animated by their theo-political Islamic supremacist ideology.

Radicalization in the West draws forth a fundamental insight that our national security and foreign policy establishment — under administrations Republican and Democrat — continues to ignore to America’s great detriment.

The report explicitly states:

Radicalization in the West is, first and foremost, driven by:Jihadi-Salafi Ideology. What motivates young men and women, born or living in the West, to carry out “autonomous jihad” via acts of terrorism against their host countries? The answer is ideology. Ideology is the bedrock and catalyst for radicalization. It defines the conflict, guides movements, identifies the issues, drives recruitment, and is the basis for action. In many cases, ideology also determines target selection and informs what will be done and how it will be carried out.

The report notes that there is a religious and political dimension to this ideology:

The Religious Dimension. Jihadi-Salafi ideology is but one stream of the broader Salafi movement. The general goal of this Sunni revivalist interpretation of Islam, is to create a “pure” society that applies a literal reading of the Quran and adheres to the social practices that prevailed at the time of 7th century Arabia.Implementation of sharia law and replacement of the system of nation states with a worldwide Caliphate are the ultimate political aims. While other Salafi currents encourage non-violent missionary or political activities to achieve these religious/political goals, jihadi-Salafis utilize endorsements of respected scholars of Islam to show that their aims and violent means are religiously justified.

  • Contemporary Saudi (Wahhabi) scholars have provided the religious legitimacy for many of the arguments promoted by the jihadists.1
  • Extreme intolerance and hostility towards unbelievers, including Jews, Christians, Hindus and Shiites, is a core doctrine provided by Wahhabi religious thought. It provides the primary theological foundation for jihadi-Salafi causes and reduces the barriers to violence.

The Political Dimension. The political aspect of jihadi-Salafi ideology is heavily underpinned by the work of Sayyid Qutb, an Egyptian author, Islamist, and the leading intellectual of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1950’s and 1960’s. He believed that Islam was under attack from the West and divided the world into the Muslim and the non-Muslim. To Qutb, democracy challenged the sovereignty of God’s divine law and should be resisted. Moreover, he also contended that militant jihad had to be used to attack institutions and societies in order to overthrow non-Islamic governments and to bring about a “pure” Islamic society. [Emphasis mine]

2. Ideology trumps materialism.

Moreover, Radicalization in the West directly challenges our enlightened materialist political establishment with its “jobs-for-jihadis” and global warming gobbledygook.

The report includes the following among its findings:

Despite the economic opportunities in the United States, the powerful gravitational pull of individuals’ religious roots and identity sometimes supersedes the assimilating nature of American society which includes pursuit of a professional career, financial stability and material comforts.

This is why, as noted elsewhere, jihadis yell “Allahu Akbar,” not “Workers of the world unite!”

3. The “jihadization” process has everything to do with Islam.

This assertion may seem to be a truism, given that jihad is an Islamic concept, but the four-stage process that the report lays out from “Pre-Radicalization” through “Jihadization” follows a similar pattern of increasing adherence to Islam as understood by Islamic supremacist adherents:

RadicWest

Radicalization in the West, Page 75.

To think that future jihadists will not exhibit these same behaviors and follow these same courses of action, and that such fact patterns may not be helpful in preventing future jihadist plots would seem to be not only the height of folly, but a dangerous dereliction of duty on behalf of America’s law enforcement and intelligence officers.

4. Contrary to those who would pooh-pooh the momentum and strength of the jihadist threat, Islamic supremacist ideology has been growing for years.

The report — again, published back in 2007 — notes:

This [jihadist] ideology is proliferating in Western democracies at a logarithmic rate. The Internet, certain Salafi-based NGO’s (non-governmental organizations), extremist sermons /study groups, Salafi literature, jihadi videotapes, extremist – sponsored trips to radical madrassas and militant training camps abroad have served as “extremist incubators” for young, susceptible Muslims — especially ones living in diaspora communities in the West. [Emphasis mine]

The notion that the “homegrown threat” is something new ignores reality.

5. Islamic supremacists who do not become violent jihadists still pose a significant threat.

The report notes:

It is useful to think of the radicalization process in terms of a funnel. Entering the process does not mean one will progress through all four stages and become a terrorist. However, it also does not mean that if one doesn’t become a terrorist, he or she is no longer a threat. Individuals who have been radicalized but are not jihadists may serve as mentors and agents of influence to those who might become the terrorists of tomorrow.

In Islamic supremacism’s war against the West, in some respects the stealth, “peaceful” jihadists pose the greatest threat in their aiding, abetting, and enabling of violent jihadists. This is especially true in a liberal society like ours that values freedom of speech and religious pluralism. In a war, different enemies call for different tactics, and from the Islamic supremacist’s view, we in the West are ripe for subversion by covert and subtle means — especially when you consider our superior military strength.

As the Muslim Brotherhood’s 1991 Exploratory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America stated:

The process of settlement is a “Civilization-Jihadist Process” with all the word means. The Ikhwan must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believersso that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions. Without this level of understanding, we are not up to this challenge and have not prepared ourselves for Jihad yet. It is a Muslim’s destiny to perform Jihad and work wherever he is and wherever he lands until the final hour comes, and there is no escape from that destiny except for those who chose to slack. But, would the slackers and the Mujahedeen be equal. [Emphasis mine]

That destruction of Western civilization from within can be accomplished by kinetic and non-kinetic means.

Read the full report here. Download and share it before it’s gone.

***

Also available at Amazon

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A Conversation With Ayaan Hirsi Ali

ayaanhirsiali (1)Weekly Standard, by Daniel Harper, Jan. 4, 2016:

The latest episide of Conversations With Bill Kristol features Ayaan Hirsi Ali:

“A best-selling author and fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School and the American Enterprise Institute, Ayaan Hirsi Ali is a brave, impassioned, and provocative analyst of the problems in Islam today, including the dangers of what she calls ‘Islamic totalitarianism.’ In this conversation, Hirsi Ali narrates her own experiences as a young woman in Kenya attracted by radical Islam and explains the dangerous allure of Islamism to youth all over the world. She calls on Westerners to assert the superiority of liberal societies to political Islam—and argues that our current obsession with multiculturalism and political correctness has rendered us ill-equipped to do so,” writes the Foundation for Constitutional Government, the sponsor of the series.

The Families and Friends of the Terrorists Know about Their Radicalization

malik and farookNational Review, by Victor Davis Hanson, Dec. 17, 2015:

Amid all the furor over Islamic terrorism in the United States, a few themes are ignored: the role of friends and family of terrorists, and how well the U.S had treated many of those who went on to kill Americans.

Take, for example, the family members of Tashfeen Malik and Syed Rizwan Farook, who recently murdered 14 people and wounded 21 in San Bernardino before being killed by police. The New York Times recently contacted Malik’s sister in Pakistan, Fehda Malik, who insisted that her sister was not an extremist, “She knew what was right and wrong,” Fehda Malik said.

The Times then noted of Fehda herself: “In 2011, on the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, she posted a remark on Facebook beside a photo of a plane crashing into the World Trade Center that could be interpreted as anti-American.”

Farook’s father gave an interview to the Italian newspaper La Stampa shortly after his son’s murderous rampage. He matter-of-factly remarked, “My son said that he shared [Islamic State leader Abu Bakr] al-Baghdadi’s ideology and supported the creation of the Islamic State. He was also obsessed with Israel.”

If true, the elder Farook, who was welcomed into the United States as an immigrant from Pakistan, knew before the killings that his son was an advocate of the Islamic State. He apparently kept quiet about it.

For that matter, what are we to make of Farook’s mother, who lived in the same rented townhouse with the two killers? She claimed that she knew nothing of her family’s bomb-making and stockpiling of weapons inside the small home. Farook, it should be noted, enjoyed a comfortable job with the state of California.

The parents of the Boston Marathon bombers are Dagestan natives and former Chechnya residents who applied for asylum to the United States after spending time here on a tourist visa. They claimed the family was in danger back in Chechnya.

The Tsarnaev family was welcomed in Boston and at times enjoyed liberal public assistance — at least until the two sons, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar, one a recipient of a college scholarship, murdered three and wounded more than 260 during the 2013 Boston Marathon.

Before the bombing, Russian intelligence had warned U.S. authorities about the radicalization of Tamerlan and, reportedly, his mother. Shortly after the bombings, Mr. and Mrs. Tsarnaev moved back to Chechnya, apparently without facing the dangers that they claimed had forced them to move to America in the first place.

The bombers’ mother, Zubeidat, had lots to say about her once-adopted United States after her surviving son, Dzhokhar, was convicted of 17 capital charges. The Tsarnaevs, Zubeidat exclaimed in a social-media message to friends, would be “the ones who will rejoice when Allah grants us the chance to behold the U.S. in the flames of an eternal and terrifying fire, an otherworldly flame.”

Perhaps no terrorist has done more damage to the United States after 9/11 than the late Anwar al-Awlaki, the al-Qaida propagandist and U.S. citizen whose father emigrated from Yemen after being awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study in America.

Before al-Awlaki was killed by a drone in Yemen in 2011, he had been the spiritual advisor to three of the 9/11 hijackers; to Army Major Nidal Hasan, who killed 13 of his fellow Fort Hood soldiers; and to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who tried to blow up a Northwest Airlines plane on Christmas Day 2009.

Al-Awlaki’s father, Nasser, frequently defended his son, denying that he had any ties to radical Islamic terrorism.

In almost all of these cases there is a monotonous narrative. Muslims arrive from abroad, often citing dangers at home and new opportunities in America. They are treated well, frequently being offered public assistance, university admittance, scholarships, or government jobs. Their children become “radicalized.” (Note that this is a passive term rather than an active one — as if mysterious forces rather than free will turn someone into a killer.) After the murders, relatives claim that they knew little of such transformations. On occasion, they contextualize the violence.

It seems inconceivable that family members could be oblivious to the radicalization of a loved one when it transpires right under their noses — particularly in the cases where a parent’s U.S.-born children visit the Middle East and come back radicalized, with the change noted by friends but supposedly not by immediate family. The idea that close relatives do not know about the Islamic extremism of their kin is as absurd as it is dangerous to the security of the United States.

— Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author, most recently, of The Savior Generals. You can reach him by e-mailing author@victorhanson.com. © 2015 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

They’re ‘so nice,’ until they get religion and want to kill us

Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, the two jihadists who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California. (Photo: Screenshot from video)

Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, the two jihadists who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California. (Photo: Screenshot from video)

New York Post, by Paul Sperry, Dec. 13, 2015:

‘We see growing efforts by terrorists to poison the minds of people like the Boston Marathon bombers and the San Bernardino killers,” President Obama said while addressing the nation in the wake of the latest homegrown massacre at the hands of Muslims.

But is that really what’s poisoning their minds?

FBI investigators are now operating on the belief that San Bernardino terrorists Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik were individually “radicalized,” and for “quite some time,” possibly starting as early as 2013 — before the rise of ISIS and its Internet propaganda machine. So it wasn’t ISIS poisoning their minds, as the president suggests.

So what was it? The feds are still scratching their heads, willfully blind to the obvious religious factor.

But this much they know: “These two killers were starting to radicalize towards martyrdom and jihad as early as 2013, and so that’s really before ISIL [ISIS] became the global jihad leader that it is,” FBI Director James Comey testified Wednesday. “They were actually radicalized before they started dating.”

Unlike other mass murderers, who exhibit antisocial, paranoid, narcissistic or schizoid traits, Farook and Malik do not appear to be natural born killers. Neither had a history of violence nor criminal record, and both generally were described as pleasant people.

In fact, friends invariably called the 28-year-old Farook a “very nice person,” while his landlord even described him as a “very gentle person.” He enjoyed working on old cars and shooting hoops. For her part, the 29-year-old Malik was seen as “a good girl” and a good student who aspired to be a pharmacist. Before dressing in austere Islamic clothing, she was even viewed as a “modern girl.”

Muslims and non-Muslims alike spoke highly of them both. Then suddenly a switch went off, and the couple went medieval.

By all accounts, that switch was piety. They simply got closer to their religion, immersing themselves in Islamic scripture.

Farook and Malik devoted themselves to Islamic study, which culminated in both of them memorizing the Koran, a high honor in Islam. They began wearing traditional Islamic garb — Farook, a white tunic and skullcap, and Malik, a black veil and robe.

Before long, Farook was slaughtering fellow Americans, many of them co-workers, shooting them at point-blank range with his wife by his side, the two of them stopping only to reload. Why? Because as US taxpayers, the 14 people they killed supported Israel and the Jews.

We saw the same transformation in the Tsarnaev brothers of Boston, who were considered “nice” and “normal,” even partiers — until their mother made them stick their noses in their holy books and get religion. Within a matter of just a couple of years of becoming more fervent in their Muslim faith, these “typical American boys” were making shrapnel bombs and blowing off limbs of innocent bystanders at the Boston Marathon to “punish” fellow Americans for supporting wars in Muslim lands. And that was after the oldest boy, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, nearly beheaded a couple of Jews he once befriended.

“I told Tamerlan that we are Muslims, and we are not practicing our religion, and how can we call ourselves Muslims,” Mrs. Tsarnaev said. “And that’s how Tamerlan started reading about Islam, and he started praying, and he got more and more and more into his religion.”

The change was dramatic in both boys, who stopped partying and started hating — Jews, Christians, America. Suddenly they were growing out Islamic beards and saying they were “willing to die for Islam.”

A similar change came over the Chattanooga jihadist, Mohammad Abdulazeez, who was described as “very friendly” — until he became intensely observant in his faith and saw it as his religious duty to fatally gun down five soldiers in Tennessee earlier this year.

Moreover, two brothers suspected in last month’s Paris terror attacks were born-again Muslims as well. Reportedly, they really began to change around six months prior to the attacks, when they stopped drinking and started studying and praying.

This phenomenon is well documented in virtually every FBI case of homegrown American terrorism: the more religious, the more radical. The pattern is borne out in hundreds of criminal complaints and court documents since 9/11 that I’ve reviewed for my books on terrorism. Almost to a person, suspects are described by family, friends, neighbors or co-workers as “nice” — that is the universal adjective for these mass murderers — until they get closer to their religion and suddenly seek out infidels to kill.

Case agents have seen the link between Islamic belief and violence firsthand.

“Evidence exists to demonstrate that a greater level of adherence to Islamic law correlates to a greater likelihood of violence,” said FBI veteran John Guandolo, who worked some of the nation’s biggest terrorism cases out of the bureau’s Washington field office after 9/11.

Studies back him up, including one recently published in Europe that found that Islam is the only religion in the world in which people become more violent the stronger they believe.

Danish linguist Tina Magaard and a team of researchers spent three years examining the texts of the 10 largest religions to see if any incite violence. “The texts of Islam are clearly distinct from the other religions’ texts, as they, to a higher degree, call for violence and aggression against followers of other faiths,” she concluded. “There are also direct incitements to terror.”

A 2010 study of 45,000 teens by a German criminal research institute, moreover, found that young religious Muslim boys were much more likely to use violence than their non-Muslim counterparts, even when social factors were taken into account.

Unlike federal agents and investigators working terrorism cases on the ground, higher-ups in Washington are too clouded by politically correct fantasies about Islam to accept what is self-evident. They cannot even entertain religion as a motivating factor in terrorism. They cannot fathom that such heinous violence could be inspired by sacred texts.

Forced to rule out workplace rage, seduction and now ISIS as sources in the San Bernardino case, Comey now says: “We’re working very hard to understand the source of their inspiration.”

“The question for us is how and by whom and where were they radicalized?” said David Bowdich, the FBI’s assistant director in Los Angeles.

Brass will continue searching in vain for an “un-Islamic” motive — anything to avoid arriving at the inevitable, unspeakable conclusion that these Muslims, like countless jihadists before them, were faithfully following the dictates of Islam.

The switch that turns a good person into a “bad Muslim” isn’t heretical outside forces. The tens of thousands of jihadists threatening the West aren’t all “brainwashed” by evil modern cult figures. Though personalities certainly have an influence, the main influence is the religion itself. If there’s any radicalization, it’s self-radicalization through devotion.

“They think they’re doing something good for Allah,” al Qaeda informant Morten Storm, a former Muslim, said. “They really believe that.”

There’s a famous speech on the show “The West Wing” where the fictional president accosts a Christian radio host. She believes homosexuality is wrong because the Bible says so. He points out that the Bible also allows him to sell his daughter into slavery and execute his chief of staff for working on the sabbath. The “West Wing” president, by the way, is a practicing Catholic — but he’s making the point that Christianity went through a reformation.

Most Christians today don’t read the Bible literally, and the ones that do are roundly mocked by liberals. But those same liberals bristle at any suggestion that Islam is inherently intolerant.

Islam is not a “religion of peace,” and won’t be until most of its followers — the Taliban, the Ayatollah, ISIS, the Muslim Brotherhood, the mullahs of Saudi Arabia — reject tenets like jihad. To suggest otherwise is naive. Virtually everyone is hacking at the branches of this growing menace, and almost no one is striking at its root.

Paul Sperry, a visiting Hoover Institution media fellow, is author of “Infiltration” and “Muslim Mafia.” Sperry@SperryFiles.com.

Nonie Darwish: Where Were the Terrorists Radicalized?

ht_malik_farook_airport_BUGGED_BG_lf_151206_4x3_992-800x600Atlas Shrugs, Dec. 13, 2015:

AFDI Geller Fellow Nonie Darwish explodes the prevailing myth that jihad terrorists generally grew up in “moderate” Muslim homes and then were somehow “radicalized”:

Where were the terrorists radicalized? Hmmmm…

The media and law enforcement have been asking and investigating when and where the San Bernardino Muslim terrorist couple was radicalized. Was it before or after they met on line and got married? And who inspired them?

Such questions imply that mainstream Islamic culture does not attempt to radicalize, and does not stress jihadist education and hatred of non-Muslims. They imply that the majority of Islamic schools and mosques in the Muslim world are not teaching jihad and martyrdom as an obligation for every Muslim; that they are not calling Jews, Christians and non-Muslims “infidels, apes and pigs and enemies of Allah”; that the majority of Muslim children are not immersed in hate education from birth; that there are no Islamic laws clearly stating that a Muslim who kills an apostate will not be prosecuted; that only a few Muslim preachers are warning Muslims from befriending Jews and Christians; that there are no Muslim preachers encouraging Muslims to burn and destroy churches; no Islamic preachers waving knives and swords during their sermon and from the pulpit of mosques, commanding Muslims go “stab, stab”; and that there are no Islamic national TV stations equating the killing of infidels with worshiping Allah.

All of the above is common preaching in Islamic mosques all over the Middle East. But in addition to encouraging jihad, Islamic popular culture highly honors jihadists, martyrs and their families after their deaths or suicide attacks. I grew up watching Islamic leaders and politicians give preferential treatment in hiring to the jihadists and their families. Awards, financial rewards and life pensions are given to the families of those who die in the jihad. That is not only in Gaza and the West Bank, but also all over the Middle East. My own father was an Egyptian army colonel general and headed the “fedayeen” operations against Israel in the 50’s. He was killed in the jihad against Israel. After my father’s death, the president of Egypt, Gamel Abdel Nasser, honored our family personally by visiting our home. Books were written about him, a major street and school were named after him in Alexandria, Egypt, and a monument was built in his honor in Gaza, which still stands today. Even non-Arab Muslim countries such as the Shiite government of Iran named a street in Tehran after Khalid Islambouli, the Sunni Egyptian man who killed Anwar Sadat.

The honoring and preferential treatment of jihadists also extends to women jihadists, as well as to the mothers and wives of jihadists. Families of martyrs are not only honored, but are given life pensions. Women who express pride in their jihadi sons and husbands are often given lucrative government positions and parliament seats, in addition to becoming symbols of honor and respect for other women to emulate.

Western logic often believes that the majority of Islamic terrorists were originally born in a moderate Islamic culture, but somewhere along the way, some specific unpopular education or inspiration was dropped on them by a few bad apple jihadists (who are not true Muslims) and turned them into terrorists.
But that is not how Muslim jihadists are created. To be born and raised in a majority Islamic society, one cannot avoid but interacting daily with radical and jihadist views and hate indoctrination. In fact, at least until very recently, those who refuse to do jihad are considered infidels. Even the minority Christian population in Egypt was forced to participate in all the jihadist wars against Israel, or else they would be considered traitors.

The Muslim world was subjected to an electric shock in their mainstream jihadist education after 9/11, when the West started questioning their sacred cow of jihad. But as usual, Muslims who are commanded to lie for the sake of Islam’s reputation had to explain that jihad means an inner struggle and not killing and torturing non-Muslims in Islam’s holy agenda to control the world. Today, the Muslim world is in turmoil and even internal war, because they don’t know how to explain to the West the truth about what they learned over centuries as their pride and centerpiece of their religious education: jihad.

To answer the question of who radicalized the terrorists, the answer is that the whole culture of Islam has constantly radicalized terrorists. Perfectly healthy young men and women were driven by a cruel totalitarian ideology to do the unthinkable in the eyes of the world: they are driven to hate their lives, hate humanity, and abandon their kids for the sake of terrorizing non-Muslims, expanding Islam, and bringing the whole world under a glorious Islamic Caliphate.

But luckily, even though Arab and Muslim kids were subjected to intense jihadist education, not all became terrorists, even though many sympathize with the jihadist ideology and defend it. I was personally asked at age 8 by the president of Egypt at the time, Gamel Abdel Nasser, when he and his entourage asked me and my siblings: “Which one of you will avenge your father’s death by killing Jews”. My siblings and I were speechless, but the question troubled my young mind for many years. It made me feel that since I didn’t want to kill anyone, then could that mean I did not love my father?

There is no escape from the Islamic hate and jihad indoctrination if one lives in the Muslim world. We were all subjected to Islamic hate indoctrination just by hearing mosque preaching and reading Quran commandments to “fight in His cause, and slay and be slain.”

It is also true that not everyone subjected to Islamic radicalization ends up a radical. In fact, it is nothing short of a miracle that in spite of the intense Islamic jihad culture, the majority of Muslims are not terrorists or active jihadists.

It would be more logical for the West to ask: “How come some Muslims despite the radicalism have escaped without a shred of hatred in their hearts, and in some cases even with love for the West and Israel?”

AFDI Geller Fellow Nonie Darwish is the author “The Devil We Don’t Know” and president of “Former Muslims United,” a program of the American Freedom Defense Initiative.

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Nonie Darwish Moment: Hiding Tashfeen Malik’s Face

California Shooting: How Does Someone Become Radicalized?

Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, the two jihadists who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California. (Photo: Screenshot from video)

Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, the two jihadists who killed 14 people in San Bernardino, California. (Photo: Screenshot from video)


We need to bear two things in mind when talking about radicalization. It doesn’t come from nowhere and ultimately it’s a choice.

Clarion Project, by Elliot Friedland, Dec. 6, 2015:

After it emerged the two terrorists who carried out the December 2 San Bernandino attack in California were supporters of the Islamic State, speculation began about how and why they became radicalized.

This type of speculation typically follows terrorist attacks, in which pundits and journalists attempt to figure out how an otherwise peaceful person comesto hold an ideology of hatred and violence which ultimately drives them to kill.

When discussing radicalization, there are two important factors which are often missed:

Radicalization Does Not Take Place in a Vacuum

The ideology of Islamist extremism is a spectrum, ranging from the Islamic State at one end, to ‘soft Islamist’ political parties like Ennahda at the other. This ideology shares common values, including the desirability of establishing an Islamic State, ruled by a Caliph, the supremacy of Islamic law (sharia) over man-made law, the importance of enforcing that law as state law, and the supremacy of Islam over other faiths. They are also anti-gender equality and have been disastrous for minority groups in every place they have come to govern.

These ideas are drawn from an interpretation of the Islamic religion and many of the ideas percolate beyond those who are politically engaged in the wider community. The extent to which problematic ideas are held by the wider Muslim community will be the subject of Clarion Project’s upcoming film By The Numbers, which analyzes polling data to paint a clearer picture of how far elements of the Islamist ideology have spread.

It is by no means the case that most Muslims hold these views. Many proudly and actively fight against them. Many others subscribe to very different understandings of Islam which preach peace, tolerance and human rights for all. Yet Saudi-sponsored mosques and preachers echo the line of their government and support extremism internationally.  The Saudi state is thought to have spent $100 billion exporting its hardline Wahhabi ideology over the past 30 years.

Even Al-Azhar in Egypt, considered to be the foremost institution of learning in the Islamic world, ruled that the Islamic State are not heretics and fall within the Islamic spectrum. Al-Azhar alumnus Sheikh Muhammed Abdullah Nasr noted al-Azhar could not have excommunicated the Islamic State since it preaches some of the same things itself.

“It can’t [condemn the Islamic State as un-Islamic]. The Islamic State is a byproduct of al-Azhar’s programs” he said. “So can al-Azhar denounce itself as un-Islamic? Al-Azhar says there must be a caliphate and that it is an obligation for the Muslim world [to establish it]. Al-Azhar teaches the law of apostasy and killing the apostate. Al-Azhar is hostile towards religious minorities, and teaches things like not building churches, etc. Al-Azhar upholds the institution of jizya [extracting tribute from religious minorities]. Al-Azhar teaches stoning people. So can al-Azhar denounce itself as un-Islamic?”

Ideas like ‘a woman must always submit to her husband’s will’ and ‘blasphemers must be put to death’ do not necessarily lead to a person carrying out terrorist attacks. But they provide a broader context for radicalization to take place. And these views are widely supported by international Islamist organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood, but also by states like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Iran.

For every terrorist attack that takes place, there are many others who justify and tacitly support it. This ideology must be challenged and defeated.

 

Jihad is a Choice

No amount of ideological context changes the fact that ultimately jihad is a choice. Every person who comes into contact with the ideology of Islamist extremism, who listens to a lecture by an Islamist hate preacher or who reads a copy of the Islamic State’s propaganda magazine has a choice – to accept it or reject it. We can see from the large number of Muslims and the comparatively small number of terrorist attacks that most Muslims choose to reject jihad. Even other Islamist factions like the Muslim Brotherhood, have chosen to attempt to create their caliphate through peaceful means rather than violent ones.

We can and must tackle the ideology that inspires extremism and the myriad of problems of integration, alienation and funding that fuel that fire. But we cannot stop people from choosing to commit murder in the name of God.

Ultimately terrorism is the fault of the perpetrator.

Sign up to get a copy of Clarion’s upcoming film ‘By The Numbers’

Elliot Friedland is dialogue coordinator at Clarion Project.

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The above article asserts that the Muslim Brotherhood is non-violent which is patently false. This belief is the result of years influence operations. Read the bill Ted Cruz has introduced: Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act. Otherwise the author makes many valid points.

Listen to what Kyle Shideler has to say about the correlation between Sharia compliance and the promotion of violent jihadist ideology. He also points out that both al Qaeda and Islamic State have urged followers to conduct individual jihad. And further, he raises the question of indoctrination.

Shooter’s Mother Active In US Branch Of Pro-Caliphate Islamic Group

Daily Caller, by Chuck Ross, Dec. 5, 2015:

Rafia Farook, the mother of San Bernardino terrorist Syed Rizwan Farook, is an active member of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), a Muslim organization that promotes the establishment of a caliphate and has ties to a radical Pakistani political group called Jamaat-e-Islami.

Farook’s affiliation with ICNA was revealed on Friday when MSNBC and other new outlets scoured the Farooks’ apartment in Redlands, Cal. An MSNBC reporter found a certificate of appreciation presented to Safia Farook last summer by ICNA’s sisters’ wing.

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On Wednesday, Syed Farook and his wife, Tashfeed Malik, killed 14 people during a holiday party being held for San Bernardino County workers in what the FBI considers a terrorist attack.

Malik reportedly posted a comment to Facebook during the attack stating her allegiance to ISIS. Farook is also believed to have communicated with known terrorists based overseas.

Though ICNA has not been named as a target in the ongoing investigation into Wednesday’s attack, the group has been associated with many others who have engaged in terrorism or plotted to do so. (RELATED: Here’s A Map Of Radical Mosques In The US)

Al-Qaeda recruiter Anwar al-Awlaki has spoken at the group’s events. He spoke at an ICNA event in Baltimore in 2002, though the group has said that al-Awlaki was not radicalized at that time. Al-Awlaki exchanged emails with Nidal Hasan, the Army major who killed 13 people in a terrorist attack at Fort Hood in Nov. 2009. Al-Awlaki was killed by a U.S. drone strike in 2011 in Yemen.

Another ICNA member was indicted in April on federal terrorism charges. Noelle Valentzas and another woman were charged with plotting an attack on New York City similar to the attacks at the Boston Marathon.

As The Daily Caller uncovered at the time, Velentzas gave presentations at at least two ICNA events in recent years. One of those, ICNA’s 2012 annual convention, was also attended by Indiana Rep. Andre Carson, one of two Muslims in the House of Representatives. (RELATED: One Of The Women Who Plotted NYC Attack Had Ties To U.S. Islamic Group)

And in 2009, five American students who knew each other from an ICNA mosque in Alexandria, Va. were arrested in Pakistan and charged with plotting to attack American troops in Afghanistan.

Founded in 1968 and is based in Jamaica, N.Y., ICNA is considered one of the more conservative Islamic umbrella organizations operating in the U.S. Unlike other groups like the Islamic Society of North America or the Council on American-Islamic Relations, ICNA segregates men and women at its events, a practice endorsed in the Farook household.

An attorney for the Farooks said on Friday that the family was “very traditional” and that Tashfeen Malik sat with the women at family events. The attorney also said that men in the family had never seen Malik’s face because she wore a burqa. Malik and Farook married last year. She came to the U.S. last summer on a K-1 fiancé visa. The couple leave behind a six-month old daughter.

ICNA is heavily reliant on the teachings of Abul A’la Maududi, the controversial Islamist founder of , a political party operating in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh whose goal is to establish an Islamic state, according to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

As the ADL notes, an article in ICNA’s “The Message” stated that “using the organizational development methodology of Maulana Mawdudi and the Jamaat Al-Islami of Pakistan, which lays special emphasis on spiritual development, ICNA has developed a strong foundation.”

Maududi “is a jihadi ideologue,” according to the ADL. “He has written that ‘the nation of Jews will be exterminated’ in the end of days.”

In one of his numerous books, Maududi wrote that devout Muslims “would be under an obligation to do their utmost to dislodge [non-Muslims] from political power and to make them live in subservience to the Islamic way of life.”

Maududi’s Islamic supremacy and Jamaat-e-Islami’s alleged involvement in genocide against unarmed Bengalis in 1971 led the Bengali government to outlaw Maududi’s books in 2010.

Though ICNA appears to have distanced itself from Maududi and Jamaat-e-Islami — at least in public — the group still espouses Islamic supremacism with a goal of establishing Islam across the world.

A 2010 handbook given to members of ICNA’s sisters’ wing touts “a united Islamic state, governed by an elected khalifah (caliph) in accordance with the laws of shari’ah (sharia).”

The handbook also states that “leadership of al-Jama’ah (or an Islamic state) has the authority to enforce Sharia’s political, educational, criminal Justice System etc that is beyond the jurisdiction of a jama’ah.”

And according to the Clarion Project, another group which tracks organizations with potential terror ties, ICNA’s literature is full of positive references and citations of Muslim Brotherhood

In one training guide obtained by the Clarion Project, ICNA favorably quoted Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna and Sayyid Qutb, an Egyptian leader of the Muslim Brotherhood whose writings had influence on al-Qaeda and its leader, Osama bin Laden.

For its part, ICNA has said it is “appalled” by Wednesday’s attacks. (RELATED: Syed Farook’s Co-Worker Says Citizens ‘Should Be Armed’ [VIDEO])

“As the investigations are still ongoing, we remind the American Muslim community to be extra vigilant and to immediately report any suspicious activity to the law enforcement agencies,” the group said in a statement.

Also see:

Jim Hanson: they are setting up to be able to preach jihad and radicalize people… It’s a cunning plan.

A photo provided by the FBI shows Tashfeen Malik (left) and a photo provided by California Department of Motor Vehicles shows Syed Farook, who attacked a holiday gathering of county workers in San Bernardino, Calif., this week. FBI, left, and California Department of Motor Vehicles via AP

A photo provided by the FBI shows Tashfeen Malik (left) and a photo provided by California Department of Motor Vehicles shows Syed Farook, who attacked a holiday gathering of county workers in San Bernardino, Calif., this week.
FBI, left, and California Department of Motor Vehicles via AP

Chris Wallace interviewed Center for Security Policy’s Jim Hanson and counterterrerrorism expert Aaron Cohen last night on the O’Reilly Factor.

While several people on twitter reported the name Syed Farook heard on Police scanners early on the day of the San Bernardino attack, Jim Hanson was the first to bravely report the name on a cable news show, O’Reilly Factor.

Jim Hanson warns of civilization jihad and radicalization in Mosques:

JH: I think it is fairly common in incidents like this for someone to make a martyrdom action. In this case if she is posting, potentially while he’s inside reconing the site of the massacre, and she’s posting a message pledging alleience, they’re basically saying “we’re in the jihad, we’re part of the Caliphate, we’re part of the Global Jihad Movement”. And I think that’s not uncommon. I think you need to look at this Chris, it’s easy for people to understand the violent jihad. Heads get cut off, people get slaughtered at holiday parties. But there’s a larger civilization jihad that the Muslim Brotherhood is perpetrating in America. They have a plan. They are using the Muslim Student’s Associations that they have formed, they are using mosques where they buy the land where they import the Imam and front groups to go ahead and push that agenda.

MW: I want to pick up with that with you Jim because you say that the mosque that Farook attended, one of a couple that he attended, The Islamic Center of Riverside, you’ve raised questions about that and it’s ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. What’s your point?

JH: They, the Muslim Brotherhood through a number of front groups, one of which is the North American Islamic Trust, have bought property and put in place most of the mosques in the United States. So they buy them, they set up front groups to go ahead and get them staffed. They import the Imams to do a lot of the preaching and they bring in the traveling Imams. So this is an operation where they are setting up to be able to preach jihad and radicalize people under the cover of religious freedom here in the United States. It’s a cunning plan.

Jim Hanson is the Executive Vice President of the Center for Security Policy. Mr. Hanson served in US Army Special Forces and conducted Counter-Terrorism, Counter-Insurgency and other operations in more than a dozen countries. Jim joined the Center to provide the expertise of a practitioner of the art of war. He is also a seasoned fighter in the war of ideas and is helping lead the Center to an information operations strategy that takes full advantage of the new media environment.

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Watch this video by Breitbart of a hard hitting press conference from the Dar Al Uloom Al Islamiyah of America mosque, where San Bernardino shooter Syed Farook attended:

EXCLUSIVE – Terror Mosque Imams: ‘No Comment’ On FBI Investigating MORE Muslim Attendees, Refuse To Talk Islamic Caliphate

German Officials Warn of New Security Risk: Local Extremists Recruiting Refugees

Islamic preacher Pierre Vogel arrives for a rally of supporters of Salafism, a fundamentalist strain of Islam, in Pforzheim, Germany, last year. PHOTO: ULI DECK/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

Islamic preacher Pierre Vogel arrives for a rally of supporters of Salafism, a fundamentalist strain of Islam, in Pforzheim, Germany, last year. PHOTO: ULI DECK/AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

WSJ, By ANTON TROIANOVSKI And RUTH BENDER, Nov. 29, 2015:

BERLIN—The Paris attacks have raised fears of terrorists slipping into Europe by posing as refugees. But in Germany, the top migrant destination, security officials have another worry: Local extremists will recruit the newcomers to join the Islamist cause once they arrive.

German authorities warn that migrants seeking out Arabic-language mosques in search of the familiar are increasingly ending up at those attended by Islamist radicals. In interviews, security officials from Berlin to the southwest German state of Saarland said they have registered a sharp rise in the number of asylum-seekers attending mosques they believed attracted extremists.

Federal officials said they have counted more than 100 cases in which Islamists known to them have tried to establish contact with refugees. According to state and local agencies across the country, Islamists have offered migrants rides, food, shelter and translation help. In some cases, they have invited them to soccer games and grill parties, or brought them copies of the Quran and conservative Muslim clothing.

“They start by saying, ‘We will help you live your faith,’ ” said Torsten Voss, the head of the German domestic intelligence agency’s Hamburg branch. “The Islamist area comes later—that is, of course, their goal.”

Security officials across Germany describe the potential radicalization of migrants, still entering the country by the thousands every day, as a challenge that adds to Europe’s existing security threats. With Germany expecting to take in roughly one million asylum-seekers from the Middle East and elsewhere this year, authorities are scrambling to prevent new pockets of radicalism from forming.

Intelligence services say they have no evidence of successful recruitment efforts, pointing to the risk as a long-term problem.

Many politicians and migrant advocates argue that refugees fleeing Islamic State and religious conflict generally have no interest in extremism. Still, others, including Jewish organizations, warn that many of the migrants are coming from places where radical views are common.

“Many of the refugees hail from societies in which anti-Semitism and enmity of Israel are propagated,” Josef Schuster, president of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, said last week, urging that new arrivals be well-integrated and arguing that Germany’s capacity for doing so was limited.

Germany—the European Union’s most populous country—hasn’t experienced a major Islamist terror attack in recent years, though it is home to one of Europe’s largest Muslim populations. Part of the reason, security officials say, is that most of Germany’s Muslims have roots in relatively secular Turkey rather than the Arab world.

But many of the migrants arriving now are from Syria and other Arab countries and are seeking out Arabic-speaking mosques—some of which have ties to extremists, security officials say.

Berlin authorities describe the Ibrahim Al Khalil mosque, inside a ramshackle, two-story brick warehouse in an industrial section of the German capital, as a key meeting point in the city for fundamentalist and potentially militant Muslims. On Friday, many recently arrived migrants were among the several hundreds who gathered for weekly prayers.

Many of the migrants there said they were there simply out of convenience. One Syrian man, who said at least 40 people in his refugee shelter rode the subway to Al Khalil every Friday, said he had discovered it via a smartphone app listing nearby mosques.

“We come here to do our Islamic duty,” said another Syrian, 27-year-old Ali Kafri.Referring to fundamentalist movements, he added: “We don’t care if it’s a Salafi or a Muslim Brotherhood mosque.”

The chairman of the Al Khalil mosque in Berlin, Adnouf Nazir, rejected the authorities’ claim that his congregation had ties to extremism.

“We want to live in peace,” Mr. Nazir said. “It can be that some people have other thoughts, but that doesn’t mean that we are responsible for this.”

Still, a Berlin security official said the authorities were registering with alarm the rising numbers of refugees at the Al Khalil mosque, as well as two others in Berlin that are seen as meeting points for fundamentalist Muslims.

The city distributed a 16-page pamphlet to migrant-shelter workers earlier this month flagging those three mosques and alerting aid workers to the risk.

Islamists may “take advantage of the refugees’ emotional situation to influence especially young people ideologically, to build ties to them ideologically, and in the worst case to incite them to acts of violence,” the pamphlet says.

Security officials said that because fundamentalist Muslims approaching or recruiting migrants generally aren’t breaking any laws, the best they can do is to keep a close watch on extremist networks and to ask workers at shelters to be on the lookout.

Many of the groups identified by security officials as fundamentalist say they have only religious and humanitarian motives in helping refugees.

Despite evidence that at least two Paris attackers entered Europe by blending in with the flood of refugees arriving on Greece’s shores, security officials played down the possibility of Islamic State fighters traveling along the well-trodden migrant route and into Germany. They argued that radicalized EU citizens could enter more easily through an airport.

“If I’m planning an attack on Europe, I would choose the more secure and simpler path,” said Helmut Albert, the top domestic intelligence official in the state of Saarland. “I would find people from Western Europe with clean papers who are probably not known to the security agencies. I would train them, and I would send them to conduct the attack.”

In Saarland, on the French border, intelligence officials have long had an eye on several mosques they say attract followers of the fundamentalist Islamic strain known as Salafism. Officials noticed in early September that newly arrived migrants were increasingly frequenting those mosques, Mr. Albert said.

Mr. Albert said that migrants now attend Friday prayers at those places of worship in numbers ranging from 50 to 200 per mosque—sometimes accounting for half the faithful in attendance. The migrants appeared to be going to those mosques simply to hear sermons in Arabic and talk to Arabic-speaking locals, he said. But in the long run, he said he worried they might become susceptible to the more fundamentalist ideology of other worshipers.

“We’re watching to see whether, over time, the refugees start going there not only because the sermons are in Arabic but because they’ve joined the movement,” Mr. Albert said in an interview.

The wave of migration is exacerbating a problem that has vexed German security officials for years: how to deal with fundamentalist Muslim preachers who they suspect play a role in radicalizing youths but don’t appear to be breaking laws in doing so.

One of the most prominent of such preachers, a German convert to Islam named Pierre Vogel, published a how-to guide on Facebook in September on reaching out to migrants to help them in their worship, though it makes no suggestion of drawing them into extremism. The Salafist preacher urged his followers to bring gifts and a compass to help Muslim asylum-seekers pray in the direction of Mecca.

The human tide coming to Germany has created an opportunity for good deeds—known in Islamic tradition as hasanat—that would be rewarded after death, he said in a video posted online.

“We have the gold rush, like in America in the time of gold when one found the gold mines,” Mr. Vogel said in the video. “One can now get gold mines of hasanat.” Mr. Vogel, who has said he rejects violence in the name of Islam, didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Some 70% of the migrants arriving in Germany are believed to be Muslims, according to a spokeswoman for the federal domestic intelligence service. A top German expert on Islamic radicalization, Claudia Dantschke, said she was increasingly getting queries from local officials on which mosques to recommend to migrants and which ones to avoid.

“These people don’t arrive here ready to be radicalized,” said Ms. Dantschke, who runs a counseling program for radicalized Muslims. She added that refugees needed to be quickly given a chance to integrate into German society. “We are responsible as to whether or not they ever become open to radicalization.”

How LIBERALS cause ISIS TERROR ATTACKS – Bill Whittle

WhittleRight Scoop, by soopermexican, Nov. 21, 2015:

Conservative Bill Whittle produces some of the best political commentary in his “Afterburner” video series and this latest one is no exception. In this one he explains how liberal policies help create the circumstances that lead to more terror attacks from Islamic extremists on the West.

Watch below:

This kind of analysis is very important because so many people see these attacks and wonder why they’re happening and they have absolutely no understanding of the history that lead to them because the media doesn’t show the true causes. Instead they tell us that global warming is causing the extremism…

Radicalization: Social Media And The Rise of Terrorism

online-radicalizationMEMRI, by Alberto M. Fernandez, Oct. 28, 2015:

On October 28, 2015, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee subcommittee on National Security held a hearing titled “Radicalization: Social Media and the Rise of Terrorism.” The background given by the subcommittee for the hearing, which it said aimed to “address the scope of radicalization, and assess what steps can be taken in order to mitigate the rise of terror via social media,” read: “In recent years, terrorist organizations have attempted to control their image, attract new recruits, and inspire ‘lone wolf’ attacks through the use of social media, including disseminating images of graphic violence. Terrorists’ use of social media is resonating with vulnerable populations. Media platforms like Twitter are used to spread their message and enable supporters to find one another. Recent estimates indicate that 30,000 foreign fighters, including at least 250 Americans, have traveled or attempted to travel to Syria or Iraq to fight with extremist groups, including ISIS. Federal and state governments, as well as communities have begun to take action to mitigate the threat of terrorist propaganda on social media. However, they have experienced multiple challenges in combating such a wide and pervasive threat.”

The following is the written testimony given by MEMRI Vice President Alberto M. Fernandez at the hearing:

“Written Testimony By The Honorable Alberto M. Fernandez

“It is an honor to have been asked to address this Committee. For most of my 32 year career as a Public Diplomacy Officer in the U.S. Foreign Service, serving mostly in the Middle East and the Muslim world, the great and continuing challenges presented by the juxtaposition of the power of media, radicalization, and political violence have been most salient in much of my work.

“As Vice President of the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), I am fortunate to have joined an independent institution which has for almost 20 years been in the forefront of documenting and analyzing political, social and intellectual currents in the Middle East, including the rise of terrorist groups like ISIS, Al-Qaeda, Hamas, and Hizbullah and their use of media, and especially social media, for propaganda purposes. MEMRI continues to meticulously document the latest twists and turns of the extremist narrative, bridging the language gap for Western audiences with translated primary material in Arabic, Turkish, Farsi and other languages.

“Radicalization and terrorism is nothing new in the world. In the late 19th century and early 20th century, influential individuals such as the anarchist leader Mikhail Bakunin popularized the concept of the ‘propaganda of the deed,’ that the best way to demonstrate the importance and power of a political idea was to show it by concrete action, preferably by violent action. ‘We must spread our principles, not with words but with deeds, for this is the most popular, the most potent, and the most irresistible form of propaganda,’ Bakunin wrote in 1870.

“As scholarly studies such as the 2013 Rand Europe report on radicalization in the West have shown, social media alone is not the creator or reason for radicalization but merely a very powerful and effective accelerant. Social media takes concepts and actions already present in the real world and rapidly disseminates it to a willing and receptive audience. It is a powerful idea which seemingly has real effect in the actual world and which can then be dynamite in the virtual world.

“It is the narrative that gives power. This has certainly been the case throughout history when people have been motivated by great causes, many of them political or religious, some of them truly evil, to give all they had in the fulfillment of goals that to us clearly seem odious. When we think of something like Leni Reifenstahl’s repulsive yet compelling 1935 documentary ‘The Triumph of the Will, ‘ we are conscious of the technical quality, of the power of images, AND of an ideological worldview that for millions of Germans at a particular time and place seemed particularly potent and seductive. Reifenstahl’s skill added to the power of the message but it was the message itself that was the wellspring of that evil. So it is with social media today, which makes certain messages in certain spaces appealing to specific audiences easy to see and seemingly difficult to remove.

“While the narrative of some terrorist groups are tied to a specific political narrative such as Hamas or Hizbullah, both albeit with a strong Islamist component, there are few narratives as ambitious and as aggressive as that of the Islamic State. This is a complete package which includes a strong ideological component deeply rooted in a specific Salafi Jihadist reading of the period of formative Islam, a political project which is seemingly a going concern, and a 21st century appeal to substantive and consequential participation aimed at youth searching for purpose and identity in a seemingly aimless, empty and hedonistic world.

“Indeed, one can marvel at the fact that so few have been motivated to join up with the mesmerizing siren call of this revolutionary vanguard offering purpose, violence, sex, the end of the world, and fulfillment in the path of God rather than so many. Despite the relatively small numerical appeal of ISIS within the context of the number of Muslims worldwide, its impact has been tremendous when coupled with that toxic accelerant which is social media.

“So we have a message that is difficult for governments, both in the East and the West, to counter directly. And you have an on the ground political reality, in Libya, in Nigeria, and especially in the ISIS heartland in Eastern Syria and Western Iraq, that gives the propaganda the necessary mooring it needs in the real world. What are the logical steps to be taken in confronting this uniquely potent propaganda challenge?

“Obviously, changing the political reality on the ground is one sure way of rapidly reducing the impact of the propaganda. The shiny, soaring, scary object that was ‘Triumph of the Will’ had tremendous appeal in its heyday of the mid-30s; it had less so in the rubble of German cities in 1944-45. The gap between the propaganda and the reality was too wide to be breached by celluloid. An ISIS Caliphate who predicates that it will conquer Constantinople, Rome and America ‘by the permission of God,’ is unmasked if it cannot hold Tel Abyad or Raqqa or Mosul.

“But given the difficult political-military reality and the difficulty in identifying on the ground alternatives to the Islamic State, what are practical steps which can be taken now to mitigate the appeal of the Islamic State and to at least try to put a blanket on that accelerant which is social media?

“On a strategic level, governments must identify ways to combat the basic pillars of Jihadist Salafism which is the breeding ground from where this ISIS pathology emerges. It is important to point out that this worldview does not emerge fully formed, Athena-like, out of nothing but has been promoted by countries like Saudi Arabia – whether officially or unofficially – for decades. Salafism, not all of which is pernicious, has for decades had the cash, the patronage, the protection and the push that other trends and worldviews within Islam have lacked.

“But much of the activity in this Salafi sphere does frankly promote a worldview which is very conducive to radicalization, material that is extremely intolerant, antisemitic, anti-Christian, and anti-all sorts of Muslims such as Shias or Sufis or others found insufficiently ‘Islamic’ by this worldview. Once the strategic decision is taken that a key part of the problem is Jihadist Salafism, this can be tackled in a variety of ways.  Some of the best ways to counter this may be through quiet and frank conversation by our diplomats behind the scenes with local interlocutors but this is still something than needs to be prioritized and done.

“On the tactical level, there are a series of practical steps that need to be taken to begin to reverse the head start the extremists have built up over the past few years. We need to recognize that while social media propaganda is not super-expensive, we in the West have treated it with far less urgency and importance than have our adversaries. ISIS is prolific, working 24/7, tailoring its approach to the individual and nationality it is seeking to influence. The budget over a three year period of the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications (CSCC), for example, which I headed for three years, equaled cumulatively the cost of just one Reaper drone. It accomplished some good things with small amounts of money but was always outnumbered and outgunned in the very specific space we are talking about. We need to fund a media counteroffensive appropriately. We don’t need to break the bank to fight this adversary in social media but we do need to spend somewhat more than we have and spend more wisely.

“In the highly charged narrow space we are talking about, the good guys are heavily outnumbered. ISIS and its supporters are trolling and messaging 24/7 in large numbers. You need a network to fight a network. The way to address this is to both increase the number of anti-ISIS messengers and to make it more difficult for extremists to communicate freely, while recognizing that you will never be able to remove everyone and that the extremists’ message needs to be actually confronted. An August 2015 MEMRI report minutely documented how an ISIS hashtag campaign was ‘hijacked’ by anti-ISIS twitter trolls. The hashtag #WeAllGive BayahToKhalifah was massively interrupted with over 50% anti-ISIS material including all sorts of mockery and even a lot of explicit sexual content within 24 hours. This hijacking limited the reach of the ISIS media campaign, caused ISIS supporters to abandon the hashtag and is something that was not happening a year ago at the height of the ISIS media offensive after the declaration of the Caliphate.

“Secondly, you need content. ISIS messaging is MOSTLY about a Utopian, grievance-laden version of Jihadist Salafism, but it is presented in a wide range of tailored ways, many of these approaches are not particularly violence filled. There has been some incremental progress in this field but not enough. A sarcastic approach on Twitter such as ISIS Karaoke is an interesting small-scale effort but this is not enough. Another recent effort comes from Japan where #ISISchan uses the imagery and language of anime to push the revolutionary concept that ‘knives are for cutting melons,’ not heads. There are a number of reformers, liberals and secularists throughout the Muslim world who have been fighting the good fight against extremists, on their own for years even before the rise of ISIS. Maximizing the stories and visuals of the steady stream of individuals disillusioned with the Islamic State is another resource that counterterrorism communicators are aware of but that is still being used too little. There also needs to be some sort of organized ‘off-ramp’ in Western countries where returnees or convicted, repentant supporters can look directly into a camera, like ISIS supporters often do, and relate in their own words how they were wrong.

“Much work can also be done in highlighting the voices and stories of Sunni Arab Muslim victims of ISIS violence. The stories of the massacres of the Syrian Shaitat tribe or of the hundreds of Iraqi Anbar province Sunni tribesmen or clerics are yet to be told in the words of those who knew them. There are people today in Syrian refugee camps, on the road to Europe as refugees, or being held as prisoners by friendly governments that can make a more compelling case than we can directly on why joining ISIS is a really bad idea and underscore a basic criticism of ISIS that actually has power, which is that most of its victims are the very Sunni Muslim population it claims to represent. It is also pertinent to mention the heroic work of citizen journalist collectives such as Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently and Mosul Eye, reporting bravely from deep inside ISIS-controlled territory.

“Deepening understanding among at risk populations about the rights and responsibilities of being a citizen in the West is still another needed element. It has been a while since I was in school but we generally seemed to do a good job in the United States in inculcating civic values about what it means to be an American to our children. That is not the case elsewhere. I recently spoke to a Northern European citizen who lamented that his country did a poor job in promoting love of country among its immigrant population. The symbols and stories of the nation-state had, because of a fear of extreme nationalism which has existed in Europe in the past, been surrendered and instead of promoting loyalty, pride and inclusion all too often governments promoted nothing, allowing a vacuum to exist which will be filled by others. As Bob Dylan once said, ‘you’ve got to serve somebody,’ and if you can’t serve and be proud of the country you are in, you may go and try to find that with someone else.

“More can also be done to digitally empower leaders and opinion-makers in at-risk communities (both domestically and overseas) to be able to fund and support their own private, individualized approaches to counterterrorism messaging. This will not all look the same or necessarily say the things we would say, but that is alright as long as there is activity constant over time against those who would radicalize the innocent and lead them to violent extremism. An individualized, handmade approach to counter-radicalization can have power by the very nature of its authenticity and independent nature. The very fact that such an approach doesn’t sound or look like what the State Department spokesman would say gives it more, rather than less, credibility.

“Radicalization through social media is often not the mass consumption of snuff videos but rather the direction, intimate interaction between individuals who form a bond through cyberspace. There is a role for vetted members of civil society in helping out in a very powerful, unique and individualized way to intervene against these extremist interactions.

“Finally, we need to recognize that just like extremists have flourished in the ungoverned corners of the world on the ground – Waziristan, Somalia, Northern Mali, parts of Yemen, the chaos of Syria and Iraq – they have also taken advantage of the mostly ungoverned space existing in social media, in space provided by mostly American social media companies. Not all companies are the same and there has been real progress made, for example, by Facebook in protecting its space from ISIS supporters. Others have done less well, with YouTube and especially Twitter being far too open to the incitement and provocation of explicitly labelled propaganda by Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTOs) which should have no place in social media. Both those companies are trying to do better, but they should do more to police the space they control and ensure protection from misuse by FTOs and supporters in what often is abuse of the terms of service of the companies themselves.

” And there are still other online hosts, such as the San Francisco-based Internet Archive founded by Brewster Kahle in 1996, which is frequently used by Jihadists as a safe harbor for their material. Surely there has to be a better way to safeguard freedom of expression, preserve online archives, and protect the public from terrorist propaganda. A bright light needs to be shined on the work of companies so that there should at the very least be an informed and rational discussion of the challenges that democratic open societies face in dealing with the propaganda of violent radicals.

“The political pathologies of the Middle East have very deep roots going back centuries which can be addressed and mitigated by Western governments but in the end cannot be solved by them. While the heavy military and political lifting can best be done by governments in the region, many of whom have a longstanding and productive relationship with the United States, there are a series of commonsense, relatively low cost steps that the U.S. government alone, and in partnership with friendly governments, with civil society, and with social media companies can, and should, take to, at the very least, make the work of these terrorists seeking to radicalize the unwary more difficult. As impressive as ISIS propaganda is, the impact has all too often been not because it was so great but because there were little or no countermeasures taken by its opponents.”

***

Here is the video of the entire hearing:

 WITNESSES AND TESTIMONIES