Thursday, December 10, 2015

Editorial: ACLU was wrong about radicalization and is still wrong.

More and more facts about the San Bernardino terrorist attack continue to come out as law enforcement officials and the media do their jobs.    An American citizen hooked up with the wrong people, took a trip, came back with a terrorist wife, and we know the rest of the murderous story.  Liberals jumped quickly out the gate blaming the NRA and racism for what took place last week. It's all about not letting a crisis go to waste, you see.   However, if we are going to play the blame game, there is indeed one group who is morally culpable for what took place last week and has blood on its intellectual hands: the ACLU.

The ACLU sued the New York Police Department over its 2007 report on the dangers of "homegrown" terrorism.  JJ warned its readers about the danger posed by the ACLU's lawsuit earlier this year.  JJ published this post on January 21, 2015:

The New York Post reported last week:

In top-secret talks to settle federal lawsuits* against the NYPD for monitoring mosques, the city is weighing a demand that it scrub from its Web site a report on Islamic terrorists, The Post has learned.

The groundbreaking, 92-page report, titled “Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat,” angers critics who say it promotes “religious profiling” and discrimination against Muslims. But law-enforcement sources say removing the report now would come at the worst time — after mounting terror attacks by Islamic extremists in Paris, Boston, Sydney and Ottawa....

Sources familiar with the case confirmed that removal of the NYPD report is one of the major sticking points in settlement negotiations.

The report was the basis for the NYPD’s controversial “demographic unit” which specifically targeted Muslims.  Also on the table are demands that the NYPD halt any ongoing surveillance in the Muslim community and that records of prior monitoring be expunged, sources said.

With what seems today like a crystal ball, the 2007 NYPD report identified an “emerging threat” — al Qaeda-inspired jihadists in the United States and abroad, hell-bent on attacking their host countries. “Radicalization is something the NYPD saw happening in Europe,” said the former NYPD official. “It was prescient in identifying this phenomenon and predicting it would increase.” Rest of article.

Here are some actual excerpts from the report:

The NYPD’s understanding of the threat from Islamic-based terrorism to New York City has evolved since September 11, 2001. While the threat from overseas remains, terrorist attacks or thwarted plots against cities in Europe, Australia and Canada since 2001 fit a different paradigm. Rather than being directed from al-Qaeda abroad, these plots have been conceptualized and planned by “unremarkable” local residents/citizenswho sought to attack their country of residence, utilizing al-Qaeda as their inspiration and ideological reference point.....

Where once we would have defined the initial indicator of the threat at the point where a terrorist or group of terrorists would actually plan an attack, we have now shifted our focus to a much earlier point—a point where we believe the potential terrorist or group of terrorists begin and progress through a process of radicalization. The culmination of this process is a terrorist attack.

Understanding this trend and the radicalization process in the West that drives“unremarkable” people to become terrorists is vital for developing effective counter-strategies and has special importance for the NYPD and the City of New York. As one of the country’s iconic symbols and the target of numerous terrorist plots since the1990’s, New York City continues to be among the top targets of terrorists worldwide......

An assessment of the various reported models of radicalization leads to the conclusion that the radicalization process is composed of four distinct phases:
• Stage 1: Pre-Radicalization
• Stage 2: Self-Identification
• Stage 3: Indoctrination
• Stage 4: Jihadization....

The NYPD’s understanding of the threat from Islamic-based terrorism to New York City has evolved since September 11, 2001. Where once we would have defined the initial indicator of the threat at the point where a terrorist or group of terrorists would actually plan an attack, we have now shifted our focus to a much earlier point—a point where we believe the potential terrorist or group of terrorists begin and progress through a process of radicalization. The culmination of this process is a terrorist attack.....

However, as al-Qaeda’s central core of leaders, operatives, and foot soldiers shrunk, its philosophy of global jihad spread worldwide at an exponential rate via radical Internet websites and chat rooms, extremist videotapes and literature, radical speeches by extremist imams—often creating a radical subculture within the more vulnerable Muslim diaspora communities. This post-September 11 wave of militant ideological influences underpins radicalization in the West and is what we define as the homegrown threat..."

 This report was issued before the rise of ISIS and other similar groups.  Muslim groups are not the only ones who want to banish this report from reality forever.  The ACLU says on its website:

 Like a villain in a horror movie, the widely debunked concept of terrorist "radicalization" is once again raised from the grave by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) in its 2013 report, "American Jihadist Terrorism: Combating a Complex Threat." CRS is an influential legislative branch agency charged with providing objective policy analysis for members of Congress, which makes its continued reliance on the "radicalization" model promoted in a now-discredited 2007 New York Police Department report, "Radicalization in the West," particularly troublesome....

 In addition to being factually wrong, this radicalization concept is also dangerous, because, as the CRS report points out, adopting beliefs and associating with like-minded people is First Amendment-protected activity. But if counter-terrorism officials believe that adopting radical beliefs are a necessary first stage to terrorism, they will obviously target belief communities and activists with their enforcement measures, as they often do. The CRS report highlights the NYPD radicalization theory, and while it acknowledges the criticism of the NYPD report it continues to hew closely to the model of radicalization it promotes.... Rest of ACLU statement. 

Dear ACLU, the concept of radicalization is indeed "dangerous".  There are fourteen graves that prove how dangerous "radicalization" actually is.  There are another 21 injured victims who can literally testify to its peril as well.  However, they may define "dangerous" a little differently than does the ACLU.  Their view is somewhat distorted by the fact that they were trying to avoid bullets and bombs instead of lawsuits.  Meanwhile, the ACLU calls "dangerous" law enforcement's efforts to prevent more terrorism. 

The ACLU has made important strides in fourth and fifth amendment protections.   It stood up for the first amendment in Skokie. However, the ACLU is just plain wrong as it now tries to prevent law enforcement from gathering intelligence about the enemy.  It does not want our protectors to understand the enemy nor develop strategies to stop the enemy.  In other words, the ACLU demands the police do the dirty work of stopping terrorism without actually getting its hands dirty. If a few people die, well, they were sacrifices for the cause. 

The ACLU's attempts to suppress the report will have a chilling effect on fighting terrorism.  It will force law enforcement officials to think twice before monitoring terrorism threats in our communities. Are you a police chief in a major city who wants to make a serious threat assessment? Don't write it down on paper as the ACLU may take you to court if it doesn't like what you wrote.   Law enforcement officials never thought the only threat of terrorism came from "homegrown" radicals.  However, they would be derelict in doing their duty to protect us if they ignored this particular threat as the ACLU so desires.  One can hope that America does not reach a sad state of affairs in America where police must fear the ACLU more than it does terrorists.

Keep in mind what the ACLU is attempting to do is keep police from studying the concept of radicalization and how it might be used to fight terrorism.  Think of it as thought police for the police. The ACLU can argue all day long that homegrown radicalization is a "debunked" theory. 
However, what was debunked in San Bernardino last week was the ACLU as terrorists shot through its credibility. 

*The case settled earlier this year.  NYC Mayor Bill Deblasio and Police Commissioner William Bratton disbanded the unit that oversaw the program.


Anonymous said...

Just ordered my FN PS90, four 50 round magazines and 2,500 rds. Not as much for fear of Jihadees as the inevitability of more weapons control legislation using San B as the impetus. Something to be said for living in the sticks and not being a soft target for Jihadees or Thugs.

Anonymous said...

The world doesn't have a gun problem, or a big government loving liberal problem. The world has a islam problem.

Anonymous said...

I will agree that we have a problem. Give this a little thought. Do you think Americans would be a little pissed at another country if it took over here and started making demands on our country? We need to let other countries handle their own country. Just maybe if we bring our military home the people in other countries might not be so willing to kill us. Let them run their own country.

From the report; this is the problem. Salafism/ Wahabism. said...

Salafi –
From the word "Salaf" which is short for "Salaf as-Salih" meaning (righteous)predecessors or (pious) ancestors

Salafi is a generic term, depicting a Sunni revivalist school of thought that takes thepious ancestors of the early period of early Islam as exemplary models...

Consequently, Salafis seek to purge Islam of all outside influences, starting with the cultures and traditions of contemporary Muslim societies, and restore it to that of an imagined 7th century utopia (the Caliphate). The Salafi interpretation of Islam seeks a “pure” society that applies the Quran literally and adheres to the social practices and Islamic law(sharia) that prevailed at the time of the prophet Muhammad in the 7th century in Arabia.

Anonymous said...

Muhammad and Islam are simply heresies and frauds -people seeking power, riches, sex, etc.

Anonymous said...

The main tenant, per Muhammad, is convert or die. Little known fact, Islam does believe in Jesus. According to them, when he returns, he will break the cross, discard it and select Islam as the one, true faith.

Anonymous said...

11:59 - Out of curiosity, how many guns has Obama taken from you since he was elected?

Anonymous said...

None as of today but if he and his kind would they would take them all, tomorrow. Are you really so ignorant that you can't understand this?

Anonymous said...

11:59 here..None! nor do I intend to be prevented from buying my weapon of choice in the future. You infer that I was concerned with Obama's actions. Sincet the ACA, his inactions worry me more. It is Congress, albeit presently under Rupublican control, that concerns me.

Anonymous said...

What side will the ACLU be on when civil war breaks out?

thusbloggedanderson said...

Since the ACLU, according to the post, didn't actually stop anybody from studying radicalization - how could it? - the "blood on its hands" bit is a bit, um, hyperbolic.

Their objections to this report may've been misplaced, but then, that is why nobody looks to the ACLU to study or defend against terrorism and its threats. The ACLU is more about defense against threats from our own gov't. (Ironically, the usual idiots who blather here in comments about defense of their rights, are also critical of an organization that actually defends people's rights.)

All that said, interesting post - thanks! It reminds me of the days when there used to be thoughful discussions in the comment threads at JJ (interspersed with the usual noise).

Six Shooter said...

I don't think you can buy 50-round clips. Or can you?

Anonymous said...

Yeah Anderson. We wouldn't want to offend any Muslims.

The State Dept agrees with you & the ACLU. That's why state shut down a homeland security investigation into groups with connections to the SB shooters.

By all means, let's not offend Muslims. It might keep them from murdering real Americans. But at least the rag heads' civil rights will never be violated.

Anderson, have you ever heard of the communist National Lawyers' Guild, and do you know its connection to the ACLU?

Anonymous said...

Hey Anderson: copy & paste this link into your browser, read it, then give us another talk on civil liberties for MUSLIMS, who want to slit your liberal throat.

Anonymous said...

The ACLU has also defended limitations on Neo-Nazi's rights to protest.
Profiling can be a very useful tool if in the hands of those who actually know how to profile based on research that includes more determinants than just a person's race or religion.
Pedophiles are most often Caucasian but you wouldn't want it assumed all Caucasians are pre-deposed to be pedophiles.
Not all terrorists are Muslims as Timothy McVey and the person who shot up the Hindu temple thinking he was shooting Muslims shows. And, I would remind everyone of Catholic terrorists who blew up civilians in Britain not so very long ago.
Religious and/or political fanaticism are determinants and some of you sound like potential terrorists who need only a radical organization or charismatic leader to turn you into mass murderers.

Anonymous said...

7:15 -

Tim McVey was a professing atheist.

Since 9/11, more than 27,000 individual acts of terror have been committed by (wait for it) MUSLIMS.

Can any other group of people come close to that record? No.

But do try & deflect. Tell us how this isn't related to Islam at all. Parrot your president, who says ISIS isn't Islamic. If the Kenyan says it, it must be true.

Anonymous said...

7:15AM - You talking about the ACLU defending the Neo Nazi's right to march in Skokie? That was 1978.....lot of water under the bridge since then. Furthermore, ACLU argued for their right to rally, but the Nazi's agreed to move the event to Chicago, removing Skokie from the equation, which is important because many Holocaust survivors lived in Skokie. Of course your comment was void of those details since they don't fit your agenda.

The mention of Catholic terrorist (IRA) bombings is a real stretch of a comparison due to the catalyst. The U.S. never ruled the entire Muslim population of the Middle East, as the United Kingdom did the entire island of Ireland from roughly 1800-1920. Nor does America currently own/govern one-sixth of the land in the Middle East, as U.K. does Northern Ireland. Throw in Henry VIII's creation of the Church of England, remember, the same church/state many of America's early settlers fled and eventually fought the Revolution against, and this too is an entirely different ball of wax than the history and current relations between "The West" and Muslim nations.

Anonymous said...

When the war starts, and believe me, its coming, I truly hope the muslim loving gun hating democrats are the first to go. Don't expect us to do ANYTHING to help you. You idiots deserve what you get.

Anonymous said...

It's already here 9:02. We don't love Muslims, we just know that the only way this war is going to end is by someone dropping a nuke and turning that shit into glass. Sounds great and all until you start thinking about mutually assured destruction.

Anonymous said...

"However, the ACLU is just plain wrong as it now tries to prevent law enforcement from gathering intelligence about the enemy." - JJ

I don't believe you've characterized the ACLU's position accurately. The ACLU was trying to prevent surveillance of a group of people who exercised a religion. That exercise is protected in the country, as you are well aware. They then demanded that fruits from that improper exercise be dropped. This happens in the court system each day. Police f/u an investigation by being too aggressive or not following the law, even if they get the evidence they need, they can't use it.

Gather the evidence against ISIS. Use that evidence to root out evil and then destroy it. Just do it lawfully.

Kingfish said...

If that was all it was doing that would be one thing. However, they went after the entire radicalization concept itself.

Danny said...

Radicalism and extremism are the same no matter which end of the ideological spectrum they emanate from. Yes, right-wing radicals, Trump-stumpers, and neo-Nazis are every bit as dangerous as the Daesh.

Anonymous said...

@10:46 AM, who nukes us? You aren't clear about that.

Anonymous said...

I read their point, limited to that posted above, to say that radicalization grows out of a religious belief system that is protected. It is true. I also take it as distinguishing between thoughts that are born from and cultivated in that protected area and those actions that can stem from those thoughts. Radicalization, although it can have evil desires/thoughts, can't be criminalized until an overt action is taken to put it into motion. That line between thought / speech (protected) and actions (not necessarily protected) is precious and needs to be guarded.

I'm not a big fan of the ACLU nor the causes they cherry pick, but I am in favor of protecting that line.

Anonymous said...

Danny -

Muslims have committed 27,000 + acts of terror since 9/11.

How many can you attribute - in the same time period to right-wing Americans and supporters of Trump?

If it's less than, say, 10,000, you're a moron and should probably take your own life.

Anonymous said...

News you won't see from "Anderson".

ACLU Board Member Resigns After Urging People To Kill Supporters Of Trump

DENVER (CBS4)– A board member for the American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado has resigned after urging people to kill supporters of presidential candidate Donald Trump.

Loring Wirbel’s Facebook post was captured by The Daily Caller – a right-leaning online newspaper.

The post states, “The thing is, we have to really reach out to those who might consider voting for Trump and say, ‘This is Goebbels. This is the final solution. If you are voting for him I will have to shoot you before Election Day.’ They’re not going to listen to reason, so when justice is gone, there’s always force…”

Anonymous said...

Sounds like someone is getting nervous about loosing their gravy train.

Anonymous said...

Been to Sam's Club in Madison lately? There sure are a lot of Muslims.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry @4:28. They're being closely watched.

Anonymous said...

every time I have been lately there as been a plethora of angry Muslims yammering around. I guess Islam likes mayo by the 55 gallon tub, who knew?

Anonymous said...

Yes on the 50 rd mag. Capacity was one of the deciding factors.

Anonymous said...

8:26 and others
The ACLU has more recently protected Rush Limbaugh's right to privacy and Westover Baptist Church's right to hate speech and joined with NRA in court briefs.

If you do your homework, you'll find 8 very recent ( and less publicized) defenses of " conservatives" using the 2nd and 5th amendments.

And, Timothy McVey's religious beliefs don't matter. Terrorism is terrorism and it's mother is fanaticism. That fanatics use a religion in their recruiting or to convince a group they are superior or oppressed is a tactic. What about establishing a Caliphate did you miss? What about being the dominant religion so as to be in power and control escapes you?

What about the Catholic/Protestant conflict in Northern Ireland made you think this was all about British rule? Do you really think that centuries of Protestant /Catholic conflict in Europe didn't have a cultural effect?

Which governments with an state sanctioned religion or saying their could be no religion can you name that you admire?

Did you hit your head when you fell off the turnip truck?

Anonymous said...

By the way, before those of you take the bait on government with a state sanctioned religion, you should know that Israel doesn't have a constitution but is governed by The Basic Laws which guarantees religious freedom.
Of course, when admiring a government, mandatory military service might be a problem for some.

Anonymous said...

Just my opinion but I agree completely with mandatory military service. At least we should make it one of the mandatory things before being allowed to run for office on any level.

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