Radicalization in America

I have said before that I do not like the term radicalization. The word, "radical", is derived from the Latin word for "roots". So the idea is that the difference goes to the very roots of what it means to be Muslim. I do not think the difference is that fundamental. To go from cultural Islam or non-observant Islam to militant Islam or violent Islam is not to move from one religion to another. It is rather to retrieve the true meaning of Islam, which is and has always followed the (sometimes violent) example of its founder, Muhammad.

There is not much new information here, but it's still a nice summary put together by the AP:

An NYPD report released Wednesday warns of a "radicalization" process in which young men — otherwise unremarkable legal immigrants from the Middle East — grow disillusioned with life in America and adopt a philosophy that puts them on the path to jihad.

"Hopefully, the better we're informed about this process, the more likely we'll be to detect and disrupt it," Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said while presenting the findings at a briefing of private security executives at police headquarters.

The findings drew swift criticism from Arab-American civil rights groups, which accused the NYPD of stereotyping and of contradicting recent federal warnings that the chief terrorism threat remains foreign.

In a statement, Department of Homeland Security spokesman Russ Knocke said federal authorities "appreciate efforts to better understand the phenomenon of radicalization."

"We are fortunate that radicalization seems to have less appeal in the U.S. than in other parts of the world," he said, "but we do not believe that America is immune to homegrown terrorism."

The FBI declined to comment.


Fletcher said…
I often say that the radical Islamic terrorists are the ones that are being true to the calls of the Qu'ran, these are the spiritual elite, the TRUE Muslims following Muhammad's teachings.

Of course, this is not a PC thing to say and it angers people, but if it's true, relevant, and needs to be said, then I feel compelled to say it. In this case, it is all three.

Conversely, the radical extreme Christian who follows Jesus' teachings to the tee is the one who denies himself and takes up his cross daily in Christian service. Radical in service, compassion, and love, denying his own desired for the sake of Jesus, loving and praying for his enemies according to scripture.

Quite a difference.

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