Monday, November 27, 2006

Muslim trust gap

CSMonitor reported "9/11 created a pretty big divide and we still have a ways to go, but there has been progress," says Arsalan Iftikhar, national legal director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations in Washington.

Yes we have foiled a number of additional attacks, both here and overseas.
"With five years of retrospect at our disposal now, we as a nation are able to see more accurately what are and what are not effective law-enforcement initiatives and how it is important to reach out to the Muslim-American community and make them feel as partners in our society."
And if they do not cooperate, then to keep a close eye on them.
There's no question the US Muslim community felt the brunt of the FBI's counterterrorism and law-enforcement initiatives after 9/11, say experts. More than 1,200 immigrants, mostly Arab and Muslim males, were detained and denied due process for months. The Justice Department's own inspector general concluded that their detentions were "indiscriminate and haphazard," with no clear distinction made between those held for immigration violations and those who were suspected terrorists.
Both of which justify incarceration.
The report also found "a pattern of physical and verbal abuse" by correction officers. Ultimately, only a handful of those detained were charged with a terrorism-related offense, and 231 were deported.

The Justice Department also set up a special program that required male visitors from 24 Arab and Muslim countries to register with local immigration offices.
A very good idea.
More than 80,000 men did so. Immigration officials found an estimated 13,000 were "out of status," which means there were problems with their visas. They're now awaiting deportation hearings.
Hopefully they are being held, or at least observed.
But experts say many of the visa problems were caused by inaccurate data and long delays in processing applications for permanent status. The Justice Department eventually canceled the program.
This was stupid.
"By singling out a large group of mostly Arabs and Muslims, [these programs] involved a massive investment of law-enforcement resources with negligible return," says James Zogby, president of the Arab American Institute in Washington....
Other than catching a number of terrorists, and finding 13,000 with visa problems.
"One of the most disturbing things is that [polls show] more than half of the country views Islam as a violent or an extreme religion," says Faiza Ali, a student at Pace University, who spoke at the conference in New York.
Why whatever would make them think that? Did they read the Quran which says (Surah 9:29)Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. Or did they read the Sunnah and Hadith (19:4294) Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah. Fight against those who disbelieve in Allah. Make a holy war .... If they refuse to accept Islam, demand from them the Jizya. If they agree to pay, accept it from them and hold off your hands. If they refuse to pay the tax, seek Allah's help and fight them.
The FBI found many such misperceptions about Islam among its agents as well, according to Andrew Arena, the special agent in charge of the New York FBI office. And so, as as the bureau began a concentrated effort to reach out to the Muslim community, education became one of its first priorities. At the FBI Academy and in ongoing field training, agents are now taught about the Muslim faith - its basic tenets and things like the difference between Shiites and Sunnis.
And why they each want to kill the other, all over who should have become boss when Mohammad died.
"It's helped to make our agents more culturally sensitive to the concerns of not only the Muslim community, but all of the communities that we deal with," says Mr. Arena.

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