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Reply to: What about American born Islamists?

Reader comment on item: Smoking Out Islamists via Extreme Vetting
in response to reader comment: What about American born Islamists?

Submitted by Larry R. (United States), Mar 11, 2017 at 07:20

Nadia,

Your observations are astute and identify another facet of the Islamism (political ideology) issue facing Western societies and countries. I believe the problems you are referring to specifically deal with what I would call "home-grown" Islamists (an advocate or supporter of Islamic militancy or fundamentalism), or those that are either recruited or self-radicalize to become a radical Islamist. Islamism is something that presents a unique challenge, whether it be from within or at the borders.

To quote The Washington Institute (http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/view/muslims-vs.-islamists), "Islamism is not a form of the Muslim faith or an expression of Muslim piety; it is, rather, a political ideology that strives to derive legitimacy from Islam." I guess you could say it is a good thing the U.S. is founded on the concept of the separation of church and state, a phrase used by Thomas Jefferson and others expressing an understanding of the intent and function of the Establishment Clause and Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States which reads: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." Without these protections afforded to the American people by the Constitution, Islamism could possibly stand a chance of morphing American society.

To get back to your comments... Dr. Pipes' article deals with those seeking admission to the U.S. versus those already inside its borders. As previously stated, both are problem sets that need addressing, unfortunately the processes to solving each are uniquely different. Though the line of questioning proposed by Dr. Pipes can be used to question those inside the borders as well as those trying to come in, the circumstances that allow such questioning are quite different. Incorporating these questions as part of the process to enter the U.S. is allot simpler than questioning those already on U.S. soil. For those inside the borders, unless an individual that is radicalized comes to the attention of law enforcement or the intelligence community before they act out their ideological beliefs, these questions will likely not be asked. This is why the Muslim community as a whole has to police its own members. Having been involved in this line of work for as long as I have, I can honestly say that not one terrorist incident has occurred in the U.S., has happened without someone having prior knowledge of it. Family members and friends fall heavily into this group. But enough of this, I hope this provides a little more insight to the vetting process and the questions that need to be asked.

Submitting....

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