This week, a number of articles were published on various conservative websites claiming that the Obama Administration has not used it’s full authority to participate in “Muslim hate” and target Muslim Americans, more specifically, American Mosques–as one article puts it: ?…where the terrorists are.?
While this kind of ignorant rhetoric is both disturbing and irresponsible; it is not the only time in recent years that Muslim-Americans have been held socially responsible for the moral deficiencies of radical extremists.
Who recalls Bill O?Reilly’s public?unraveling?when trying to argue against the Ground Zero mosque on The View circa 2010?
The first problem with these claims is the notion that run-of-the mill American mosques have anything to do with terrorist attacks inspired by radical Islamic fundamentalism. A look at the timeline of the history of U.S. terrorist attacks reveals that less than 5% of all terrorists who have carried out attacks on U.S. citizens are what is referred to as ?home-grown,? meaning that they became radicalized here in the U.S. But Muslim hate has escalated.
The majority of Islamic terrorists come from war-torn, politically unstable regions in the Middle East. They are inspired and sponsored by large terror-organizations such as al-Qaida and Hezbollah, who offer them not only spiritual guidance, but financial support.
When a terror attack has taken place and we discover that one of the attackers was a U.S. citizen, there is an assumption that exists which says that their extremism is in some way linked to their American-Muslim community. We assume that they arrived here with innocent intentions, only to be corrupted in a Mosque where the environment is to teach extremist, radical ideals. However; the truth is, the relationship between Mosque and terrorist has consistently been the other way around, both pre and post 9/11.
Radical members of groups like al-Qaida seek citizenship as a means to their end, and had their goal of deadly Jihad set far before they ever set foot on U.S. soil.
There are seeming exceptions to this, though. Take the Tsarnaev brothers, who had no connection to larger terror cells, and exhibited no signs of Anti-American sentiment almost up until the attack. Or Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistan-born man responsible for plotting the Times Square bombings. While in both cases the FBI has found no connection to larger terror organizations, they have also found no connection to radical Mosques teaching extremist ideals. Muslim hate towards innocent American Muslims is the result of being ignorant of the facts.
The problem of Muslim extremism does not begin or end in a U.S. Mosque. Resentments towards Americans are not supported there, and the westernized definition of ?jihad? is simply not taught.
The desire of conservatives to hold a Salem witch-hunt and take Muslim hate behind the walls of U.S. Mosques is not only counter-productive, but reminiscent of a McCarthy-era America where fear overruled constitutional morality.