Search This Blog

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

88 people arrested on charges of terrorism since 2014 while Orlando shooter "slips through the net"

Murtaza Hussain, Josh Begley
The Intercept

n the midst of Omar Mateen's shooting rampage in Orlando, law enforcement officials say the 30-year-old Florida resident called 911 and proclaimed his support for the Islamic State. Although FBI officials say they have not identified any direct connection between Mateen and the terrorist group, his case has once again brought calls for a harsh crackdown on individuals who might commit acts of domestic terrorism.

In the United States, 88 people have been arrested on charges of supporting ISIS since 2014, according to statistics compiled by George Washington University's Program on Extremism. Who are they? Most are young, male, and American citizens. But in contrast to the Islamic State's own propaganda, as well as the statements of many political figures, many of the U.S. supporters of ISIS come across as more pathetic than fearsome. While media reports have trumpeted the danger of sleeper cells, most of the people arrested by the FBI appear to have been wayward, isolated young men (and a few women) with little connection to international terrorist groups.

Recent coverage of the Orlando shooting has indicated that Mateen was motivated by homophobia and mental illness as much as any militant ideology; the FBI had investigated Mateen on two occasions and interviewed him but never pressed charges. The FBI's handling of his case, along with its handling of the often-hapless people it does arrest on terrorism charges, shows the complexity and, perhaps, the impossibility of the task — trying to identify and imprison real terrorists before they commit acts of terrorism.

Using court documents, interviews, and Google images of major landmarks from their personal lives, The Intercept has constructed brief portraits of nine recent cases of "ISIS in America."  

Read more

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...