The Obama administration’s recent summit on Countering Violent Extremism perpetuated an age old American tradition – conflating violence abroad with violence at home. As Americans with origins from conflict zones, Muslims are facing the brunt of anxieties arising out of the violence gripping the Middle East.
With every news report of a horrendous beheading by ISIS, the image of “the Muslim terrorist” becomes further solidified in the American psyche. This generates unfounded fears of American Muslims as threats to our immediate safety.... » read more
On January 31, 2014, I spoke at the International Conference on Terrorism in Uskudar, Turkey. The Honorable Metin Kulunk, an AKP parliamentarian and Dr. Serhat Ulagali from Yildiz Technical University in Istanbul hosted the conference. The conference discussions were driven by the attacks on the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris and on the emergence of Daesh, the violent extremist group now carving out a state out of Iraq and Syria.... » read more
The slaughter of French journalists as well as French Jews and Muslims by terrorists is unconscionable and has rightly provoked outrage. All life is sacred and the loss of any life at the hands of killers like those who carried out the shootings in Paris should provoke moral outrage.
At the same time, some have asked why the international community and international media are paying so much attention to the tragic attack in Paris within days of the Paris shooting, but only passing attention to Boko Haram's massacre of 2000 people, 61 killed by al-Qaeda in Yemen...... » read more
Every time my cell phone buzzes early in the morning, I get up and reach for it reluctantly, with a sense of foreboding and dread. Nine out of ten times it is BBC, Delhi, London or Islamabad, requesting a comment on some horrible event in the Middle East or in South Asia. Sometimes I am fortunate to reflect on good news, such as Malala’s Nobel Prize, or a safely completed election and peaceful transfer of power, as in Pakistan last year and Tunisia this year. This month however has been an unending conversation about these horrendous events; ISIS in Iraq, The civil rights fiasco in Ferguson, the US Senate report on CIA’s use of torture and the latest atrocity committed by the Taliban.... » read more
In the post-9/11 era, debates about the role American prisons play in contributing to “homegrown" or domestic terrorism grow with each passing year. However, much of the debate has been premised on alarmist rationales, political distortions, and plainly faulty analyses. The book, The Spectacular Few: Prisoner Radicalization and the Evolving Terrorist Threat by criminologist Mark Hamm is an attempt to assess the situation in the United States. As this book represents the first that tackles the question of prisoner radicalization...... » read more