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News Analysis

NYPD's Counterterrorism Ops Under Attack

Mon, June 10, 2013

In the May/June issue of ISNA's Islamic Horizons magazine, ISNA tells us that 'Muslim terrorism is not a threat after 9/11,' and characterizes anti-Muslim discrimination as the real threat to America.

In the May/June issue of ISNA's Islamic Horizons magazine, ISNA tells us that 'Muslim terrorism is not a threat after 9/11,' and characterizes anti-Muslim discrimination as the real threat to America.

by: 
Ryan Mauro

The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity, said that “Muslim terrorism is not a threat after 9/11” in the May/June issue of its magazine, Islamic Horizons. The Boston bombings, committed by Muslim terrorists, happened on April 15. Instead, ISNA characterizes anti-Muslim discrimination as the real threat.

The magazine includes an article titled “New York Police Need Strict Oversight” that slams the NYPD’s counter-terrorism intelligence-gathering operations as an infringement upon Muslims’ rights. The ISNA article makes the absurd statement:

“Despite being proved by reports such as the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security that Muslim terrorism is not a threat after 9/11, [the] NYPD continues to insist that if Muslims have nothing to hide, they should overlook the violation of their rights.”

In contrast, ISNA paints Muslim-Americans as the ones being terrorized and persecuted. It claims, “Imams and students are afraid to express themselves, and some Muslims are scared to pray in public. Even if a Muslim went to report a crime, he was the one investigated.”

It is possible that the magazine was printed before the April 15 Boston bombings, but the embarrassment should still shatter ISNA’s credibility. While ISNA claimed that there was no Muslim terrorist threat after 9/11, the Muslim terrorists behind the Boston bombings were plotting. And while ISNA makes it sound like the entire Muslim community is caught in a web of discriminatory surveillance, the way the Boston bombers’ slipped through the cracks shows how exaggerated this rhetoric is.

ISNA makes the straw-man argument that Muslims live in fear and are afraid to state their opinions. To whatever extent that is accurate, it is less attributable to reality and more attributable to the constant drumbeating about a dangerous wave of “Islamophobia.” Without providing a single example, ISNA claims that Muslims are keeping their mouths shut—which raises the question, what are ISNA’s unnamed Muslims holding back from saying?

It is true that Muslims, like any other American, can be investigated for their use of free speech but they cannot be prosecuted for it. Conducting an investigation when your language contains extremist rhetoric is a common sense measure that must be taken whether it’s a Muslim talking about supporting Hamas or an anti-Muslim extremist talking about attacking a mosque. ISNA twists this broadly accepted practice into a conspiracy rooted in bigotry.

ISNA and its allies lambasted the NYPD for “mapping” the Muslim-American community and infiltrating mosques and Muslim student groups, but these weren’t just any groups that they were infiltrating. In each case, the NYPD had information about their radical beliefs and were following-up.

As for the “mapping,” no one’s rights were violated. The NYPD used open-source information accessible to any American to graph out the makeup of the Muslim communities. The same has been done in Hispanic communities by law enforcement personnel tracking Hispanic drug cartels. This is a nationwide practice. As retired NYPD officer John Cutter said, “It’s not profiling. It’s like, after a shooting, do you go 20 blocks away and interview guys or do you go to the neighborhood where it happened?”

But what about the Triangle Center report referenced by ISNA?

The Center is led by David Schanzer. His think-tank’s first guest speaker was a senior fellow from the Center for American Progress, the publisher of "Fear Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America." The report slams “the conspiracy theory about Muslim American civil liberties organizations being proxies for the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The U.S. government and the Muslim Brotherhood’s own internal documents identify their American partners. The U.S. government and the Muslim Brotherhood hardly ever agree on anything—but they agree that ISNA and similar groups are U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entities. Yet, this report calls it “conspiracy theory.”

Schanzer wrote an article in 2011 titled, "It's Time to Confront the 'Counterjihadists.'" He writes:

“For years, a group of American authors, bloggers, pundits and activists have mischaracterized the conflict with al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations as part of a broader "clash of civilizations" between Muslims and Western society. This clash, they claim, is not just about preventing terrorist attacks but about stopping a global Islamic movement that threatens the very foundations of Judeo-Christian society.”

Yet, the Muslim Brotherhood itself (of whom ISNA was named as one of its entities) said themselves 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 believers… [W]e must possess a mastery of the art of ‘coalitions’, the art of ‘absorption’ and the principles of ‘cooperation.’”

Schanzer’s influence goes beyond ISNA literature. He was a subject matter expert for the Department of Homeland Security’s Working Group on Countering Violent Extremism. The body appears to have been responsible for the revised training guidelines that exonerate American Islamists while sidelining Muslim reformers.

The claim that Muslim terrorism is not a threat is demonstrably false, as proven by the acts occurrence around the world practically every single day. ISNA apparently thinks its subscribers are incapable of seeing how ridiculous of an argument that is. The Islamic Horizon’s readers should be insulted at the lack of respect its magazine editors gave them. 

The following short video "Anatomy of a Smear" shows how Muslim Brotherhood Front groups have tried to sabotage the NYPD's counterterrorism efforts in the past:

 

Ryan Mauro is the ClarionProject.org’s National Security Analyst, a fellow with the Clarion Project and is frequently interviewed on Fox News.