Whenever there is a jihadist attack anywhere in the world, it is inevitably followed by a very tired meme which says the attacker interpreted Islam incorrectly and became “self-radicalized.” That meme is extremely important for Islamists and the
politically correct cowardly media outlets / bureaucrats always seem to oblige. It’s important because taking the next step would implicate Islam itself.
The Investigative Project on Terrorism has posted a powerful piece by Patrick Dunleavy on the myth of self-radicalization:
Recent studies and statements by several government officials, including the director of the FBI and the secretary of Homeland Security, tell us that the greatest threat facing us post 9-11 is the individual terrorist.
But in looking at two specific cases of Islamic terrorist attacks we may find that definition an over-simplified version of what actually took place.
The first is the case of Mohamed Merah, the 23-year-old French / Algerian in Toulouse, France who shot three French paratroopers and four Jewish civilians, three of whom were young children.
The profile coming out initially said he was self-radicalized because of the economic poverty he grew up in. A victim of high unemployment and discrimination against an immigrant minority caused the anger that fueled the fire in him. If that is true, where did the $26,000 found on him come from? Not to mention the cache of weapons and the expenditures necessary for him to travel to Afghanistan and Pakistan? Who provided the funds, the contacts, and the weapons?
Ah, the poverty-stricken Muslim youth who is actually a victim. Rarely mentioned is the fact that Muslim communities don’t seem much interested in assimilating into the cultures of the western countries they inhabit.
The second case is that of Rashid Baz, the Lebanese/Palestinian immigrant known as “the Brooklyn Bridge Shooter” responsible for the death of Hasidic student Ari Halberstam in 1994. The case was initially thought to be “road rage.” It wasn’t until 1999 when US Attorney Mary Jo White opened an investigation into the crime and found it was indeed a terrorist act that it was reclassified.
Yet, despite the evidence, it was declared that Baz acted alone. The final report stated, “Baz acted on his own … and there appear to be no unpunished co-conspirators.” He was by definition a “lone wolf” terrorist. And since then he has been free to move about the general population of the prison influencing other inmates and even working as the chaplain’s clerk in the prison mosque.
Now, from his prison cell in Attica 18 years later, Baz admitted that he had intentionally targeted Jews on that fateful day in March. Why? Was no one else involved?
Looking back at the evidence, the answer is disturbing. Two relatives helped him hide the weapons he used in their house. When the guns and ammunition were found, they said that they knew nothing of his involvement in the crime nor did they share his radical hatred for Jewish people.
Phone records obtained by police show just the opposite. The family members were in contact with a member of an Islamic terrorist organization, Hamas.
Until westerners stop fighting ghosts, they will continue to lose ground to explosive and political jihadists.