(CCU Student) Looking back at Western Conservative Summit 2010 through the eyes of a future soldier, the words I remember most are these: "What price are you willing to pay for freedom?"They were spoken by the last man from whom I would expect to receive a lesson in patriotism -- a Lebanese PLO operative who partook in missions against Israel and the west from the time he was a child. However, Kamal Saleem’s words at Western Conservative Summit were probably the most moving and thought provoking of the entire weekend. Kamal Saleem was born in Beirut, Leabanon to parents who devoutly followed Shariah law and the teachings of Jihad and the Koran. Saleem participated in his first mission against Israel with the PLO at the mere age of seven. He continued to follow his beliefs and fight against the west throughout his entire childhood and yong adult life. As a young man, Saleem was a frequent house guest and strong friend of Omar Khadafi and his family. Saleem helped to train terrosts to fight against the United States and Israel and instructed numerous organizations from the IRA to the Black Panthers. Eventually, he was sent to the United States and given the task of secretly recruiting young Muslim men in America to travel to the Middle East and join in the Jihad against Israel and her ally, the United States.
While here in the United States,Saleem was involved in an acciddent and was taken in by a Christian and Jewish family. Because of the amazing love and grace of these individuals, Saleem found the love of Christ and left his old life of evil behind. He now is a steadfast believer and an ardent patriot of his new home, the United States. During his speech, Saleem asked us who would stand on the wall and defend freedom from her enemies. This is when his speech particualrly began to grab my attention. As a cadet in the Army ROTC program at CCU, I have truly begun to dig into and explore the concept of deending freedom and protecting the American people from the enemy. And frankly, I am more than willing to stand on the wall next to Mr. Saleem any time. It is the bravery of this man that insired me and moved me so much. I couldn’t help but share my feelings with Mr. Saleem and the moment we shared will be with me forever. When I told Mr Saleem how I felt about what he said and that I was preparing to become an officer in the Army, it brought tears to his (and to mine) and he shared with me his heartfelt gratitude that I have rarely felt from anyone else during my time as a cadet. Something that Saleem asked the crowd was what they were willing to pay in exchange for the freedom we have in the United States. Sadly, I do not think many in the crowd, and in this nation, can answer that question. The majority of us simply go on through our lives and never give it a second thought. As a result, fewer and fewer men and women are willing to stand up and a make a consious decision to stand guard for freedom. Let us hope that with men like Kamal Saleem and others, more freedom lovers will take to the wall. Whether it be with a microphone, a pen, a computer, or a rifle, we all have a part to play in keeping the American dream and liberty alive and safe.
Thursday, 20 May 2010 11:55 by Admin
Three jihad attacks on US soil in six months should cost Attorney General Eric Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano their jobs, says John Andrews in the May round of <em>Head On</em> TV debates. But Susan Barnes-Gelt dismisses the Times Square bomber as "an inept dissident" and condemns talk of jihad and sharia as "fear-mongering." John on the right, Susan on the left, also go at it this month<!--more--> over offshore drilling, the Kagan Supreme Court nomination, school reform, and the McInnis-Hickenlooper race for governor. <em>Head On</em> has been a daily feature on Colorado Public Television since 1997. Here is the first of their five scripts for May:
1. NEW YORK CITY BOMB
Susan: Alert citizens and quick response of law enforcement combined to avoid tragedy in mid-town Manhattan when an inept dissident tried to set off a car bomb in Times Square. The Pakistani-American claims ties to the Taliban. Stateless terrorism may be the greatest threat to America's security.
John: Susan, please. Your “stateless terrorism” is a meaningless euphemism. The threat to America is fundamentalist Islam. Its goal is a global superstate, erasing America. Obama won’t even mention Islam with its violent jihad and its theocratic sharia law. Fort Hood, Detroit, Times Square, all in six months. This president needs to wake up.
Susan: John, your Fox News talking points ignore the fact that US intelligence caught the wanna be Times Square bomber in 53 hours and no one was injured. Your so-called fundamentalist global superstate is fear-mongering and does nothing to mitigate the need for a watchful public and fully integrated intelligence community.
John: Counting on luck for the bombers to fail and then bragging about catching them is NO way to keep America safe from this fanatical enemy. Jihad seeks the destruction of our country, nothing less. This is a war situation, not a crime situation. Obama should fire Napolitano and Holder.
Read the other four Head On scripts for May 2010.
(Centennial Fellow) Here is a summary of key facts regarding the attack on Times Square in New York, with analysis provided at the end. The purpose is to provide the reader with an understanding of the situation based on a long-term analysis of the enemy, and an understanding of their operating procedures, doctrine, and strategic outlook.
On May 1, 2010, at approximately 6:34pm, a gray 1993 Nissan Pathfinder was discovered unattended in front of 45th and Broadway, New York City, with smoke emanating from it. Alerted by a T-shirt vender, a mounted NYPD officer observed people running away from the area of the vehicle. The Officer evacuated the area and called the bomb squad.
** Suspect was captured on NY surveillance video in the immediate area of the vehicle.
** Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) tracked to previous owner (Connecticut resident), led to the identification of Faisal Shahzad as the driver (other information utilized as well).
** Shahzad is a Pakistani-born male, 30 years of age, who became a naturalized U.S. citizen approximately one year ago.
** On May 2, 2010, Pakistani Taliban issued 3 video tapes declaring the Bombing in Times Square as an act of revenge for the killing of Baitullah Mehsud, the Emir of the Taliban, and others. The tapes were recorded prior to the bombing. In a 9+ minute video, Hakimullah Mehsud, the new Emir of the Taliban, speaks of impending attacks on the United States. The CIA has claimed Mehsud has been dead for five months via a US drone strike.
** Once identified, FBI Surveillance followed Shahzad to his home in Connecticut. Shahzad departed his residence via the rear door which was not covered by FBI surveillance. Suspect fled to JFK airport (stops in between unknown).
** Shahzad’s name appears on the watch list compiled by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
** Shahzad reserved an airline ticket enroute to the airport and paid cash upon arrival. Shahzad boarded Emirates Airlines Flight 202 for Dubai (UAE).
** Alert Customs officials recognized the name on the manifest for Emirates Flight 202 as the same name as the individual whose name appears on the watch list. They made appropriate notifications and Shahzad was removed from the plane and taken into custody.
** Shahzad confessed to parking the car and being the one who built the bomb. He was recently in Pakistan for approximately 5 months where, according to him, he was given bomb-making training.
** When he returned from Pakistan Shahzad went to Herndon, VA, the Southeast University in Washington, D.C. and to Colorado – at a residence approximately seven (7) miles from NY Subway bomber (captured prior to attack) Najibullah Zazi.
** A website for alumni of Sharia College at Minhaj University in Lahore, Pakistan, listed a profile for “Faisal Shahzad” of Pakistani descent.
After the attack, numerous officials stated that Shahzad’s device was “crude” and “amateurish,” all of which may be true. However, all evidence reveals the device was made by a Taliban-trained Muslim Pakistani in order to have some desired effect. So far, the U.S. Intelligence Community, public officials, and the media at large have all been silent as to the purpose of this attack. I propose there are two likely reasons behind this attack. While the Taliban leadership states the NY attack was retribution for the death of Baitullah Mehsud, the former Emir of the Taliban, there is likely a more strategic reason.
First, it must be understood that the Taliban (like Al Qaeda and other Jihadi organizations) takes action outside of its area of influence in order to affect the situation on the ground IN its area of influence. Therefore, one must look at what is taking place on the ground in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Sources on the ground are reporting that representatives of the Karzai government are meeting with Gulbuddin Hekmatyar – a powerful Afghan mujahideen leader and a “designated terrorist” by the U.S. government. This meeting is not overtly supported by the U.S. government. However, by taking offensive action in the U.S. via the Times Square bombing, the Taliban’s actions strengthen Hekmatyar’s negotiating position on the ground in Pakistan/Afghanistan. The United States has made it known to the world that it will cut-and-run in Afghanistan, and has demonstrated no will to take the fight to the enemy with the ferocity and level of violence required to defeat this enemy. The fact the U.S. wrote a constitution for Afghanistan dictating that Islamic Law, not democratic principles, guides Afghanistan notwithstanding, the U.S. government fails to realize the importance of Information Warfare in its overall Strategic Campaign. That said, the events this past weekend in NYC reflect a strategic push by the Taliban to affect something that isn’t even on the radar screen of the Attorney General, the Mayor of New York, and the FBI.
Another fact that has been lost in this incident is the actual address of the target. According to a report compiled by the IntelCenter in Alexandria, Virginia, and corroborated by the New York Police, the vehicle (VBIED) was parked “in New York City’s Times Square near the Nokia Theatre.” The Nokia Theatre is located at 1515 Broadway, NY, NY. This is also the address of Viacom. Viacom is the corporate parent to a number of major media enterprises, to include Comedy Central. Approximately one week ago, Comedy Central’s popular show “South Park” aired a show in which the Muslim Prophet Mohammed was dressed in a bear costume and spoke on the show. A group calling themselves “RevolutionMuslim” called the episode “insulting” and stated that the writers of the show, Trey Parker and Matt Stone “will probably end up like Theo Van Gogh,” a reference to the Dutch film-maker killed by a Muslim for insulting Islam.
It is interesting and disturbing that our nation’s finest intelligence agencies are not putting these pieces together as we consider motive. Unless, of course, motive is not important to our government. We have not even discussed the requirements of Islamic Law to kill those who “slander” the Prophet Mohammed or for Muslims to wage jihad (only defined in Islamic Law as warfare against non-muslims) until the world is claimed for Islam. That might be a bridge too far at this point.
Centennial Institute Fellow John Guandolo is a 1989 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy who served as a Marine officer in infantry and reconnaissance units, including combat operations in Desert Storm. After 12 years as a Special Agent with the FBI, he now works advising government officials on the threat from the Islamic Movement.
David Petteys of Act for America, Denver chapter, and Michael Del Rosso of the Claremont Institute recently compared notes on the strange reluctance of Republicans running for office to identify our jihadist enemy in plain language. Here is their exchange:
PETTEYS: Our friend Michael Del Rosso recommended that the following question be asked of every candidate: “In your opinion, what is the greatest threat to our country and what would you do about it?” Recently I had the opportunity to actually ask this question of Jane Norton, the front running GOP Senatorial candidate here in Colorado. I am happy to say her response was this:
“Islamic Terrorism, and we need to get over this idea that the rights of terrorists have priority over the lives of American citizens.” Although I would prefer the term “Islamic Jihad” as opposed to Terrorism, it is a step forward. Certainly preferable to the answer you’d get from most Democrats who would talking needing to "save the planet from climate catastrophe by cracking down on the evil oil companies”.
I’m also happy to report my Congressman Mike Coffman’s office notified me today that he was joining Sue Myrick of North Carolina’s “Counter Terrorism Caucus” as a result of my suggestion.
DEL ROSSO: Dave, I would NOT accept Terrorism as an answer from this candidate.
A couple of weeks ago I put the following query to three of the seven Republican candidates attempting to reclaim Virginia's 5th District US House of Representatives seat for the GOP: "America has been in a shooting war for over 8 years with over 5,000 KIA, tens of thousands wounded, and a trillion dollars spent, with no end in sight. Who is our Enemy, what is their Doctrine, and what is their Objective?" Each time the exchange went generally this way:
Candidate: “We’re fighting Terrorists.”
Me: That makes as much sense as saying “Our Enemy is Tanks.” Terrorism is a tactic, not an enemy.
Candidate: “We’re fighting Muslim Extremists.”
Me: “How do you know their Extremists? How do you know they are not actual Mainstream Muslims?”
Encountering a bewildered look and no response I further asked “Have you ever read the Quran? Any book on Islamic jurisprudence and doctrines? Have you read the 9-11 Report?”
Every time, the candidate's answers to all three were “No.”
So I informed each of them: “You just admitted that you have no basis in fact, you have no knowledge, in making any claim about who are enemies are. How can you presume to ask me to vote for you to be my Representative when you have not even taken the trouble to identify our enemy 8 years into a war?”
What does Burj Khalifa, the world’s new tallest building dedicated this week in Dubai, have to do with the Twin Towers destroyed eight years ago? In Islamic Law non-Muslim buildings are not allowed to be higher than Muslim ones, especially mosques. According to Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri’s Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law, non-Muslims “may not build higher than or as high as the Muslim’s buildings” o11.4(5).
In a statement released from prison by Khalid Sheik Mohammad, mastermind of the 9/11 terrorist attacks soon to be tried as a common criminal in New York, boasted, “Your end is very near and your fall will be just as the fall of the towers on the blessed 9/11 day.” (CNN Online, 3/10/09) What is most disturbing, however, is when the American Left celebrates the felling of the Twin Towers. Norman Mailer responded to the 9/11 attacks by saying, that "Everything wrong with America led to the point where the country built that Tower of Babel, which consequently had to be destroyed." (Interview, 2001)
Ayn Rand’s disciple Harry Binswanger noticed, “First, observe the target: the World Trade Center. What does the World Trade Center symbolize? It is the core of Wall Street, which is the base of New York City. New York is the dynamo powering America—the so-called Great Satan.” Juxtapose this with “the images of Osama bin Laden and his primitive, bearded barbarians squatting in the dirt around their campfires in Afghanistan.” America stands for “individual freedom, the freedom to use one’s independent mind to produce material prosperity, a rising standard of living, and individual happiness on this earth. Freedom, Wealth, Happiness.” (Columbia University Lecture, 10/2/2001)
The World Trade Center towers were 1368 and 1362 feet, the tallest buildings in the world from 1973 to 1998, when Malaysia constructed their 1482 foot tall twin towers in Kuala Lampur. That record held until the other day when Dubai surpassed it at 2717 feet. It is also worth noting, that an Islamic Investment Group has bought the tallest building in London, the Pinnacle, a 945 foot building in the financial district.
By the way, there is a mosque on the 158th floor of that new tower in Dubai, which hopefully will satisfy the Shar’ia injunction that infidel buildings may not be higher than those of Muslims, presumably making it unnecessary for Al-Qaida to knock down any more of our buildings.
--------------------Additional Recommended Reading: Raymond Ibrahim, ed.; The Al-Qaida Reader (Broadway,2007), and Lawrence Wright; The Looming Tower: Al-Qaida and the Road to 9/11 (Vintage,2006)
('76 Contributor) When the President solemnly vows to “get to the bottom of all this and bring these violent extremists to justice”, he is telegraphing the following:
1. He is NOT connecting the violence to Islamic Jihad, which IS the main ideological threat to the United States. Islamic Jihadists generate markers that fit the facts on the ground. With these markers, we can proceed to watch the Mosques where Jihadist groups are formed, we can read their literature and understand their doctrine, we can listen to the Imams and anticipate their actions. But “violent extremists” generate nothing! How do you define one? You can’t! The media continues their apologist approach, describing the million and first “disturbed young man”, and of course Islam has nothing to do with it. They also strive for “balance” and are sure to mention “right wing extremists” in the same breath, even though there has been a weekly Islamic Jihad incident since July of this year, and nothing from “right wing extremists” since Oklahoma City.
2. The President, by avoiding the mention of Islam, is also letting us know he buys into the false narrative about Islam perpetrated by the Muslim Brotherhood and its front organizations such as CAIR, ISNA, MPAC, MAS, and all the rest. This false narrative would have us believe that Islam is the “religion of peace”, that all Muslims are moderate, and only a “fringe” are violent, owing to our policies. The reality is, Jihad is built into the faith. Jihad is the solemn duty of ALL believers. Jihad can be waged four ways: with the mouth, the pen, the money and the sword. Note that our misdirected “War on Terror” only deals with Jihad by the sword, leaving the other three modes unattended!
3. Also, to “bring violent extremists to justice” reveals a view that the war with Islamic Jihad is a police problem. A question: how to you deter suicide attacks with the threat of fines and imprisonment? The legal straitjacket we have put ourselves in is this: everything is legal until a crime has been committed. What happens when this “crime” is the detonation of nuclear weapons in a half dozen cities? Also, we see Jamaa’t al-Fukra training thousands of soldiers for Jihad in the United States. A steady stream of young men are going to the Middle East to the battlefields of jihad and are gaining combat experience. They are returning to the United States as seasoned combat veterans and trained killers. They are becoming the training cadre and the backbone of a Muslim Jihad Army being built before our eyes right here in the United States! And we are turning a legalistic blind eye lest we “offend the Muslims”?
When “Zero Hour” arrives, (and this is their term, not mine), and these thousands of combatants rise up in armed insurrection, what will the government do then? Threaten to file suit? Threaten to pull their 503c status?
(CCU Faculty) Interrogation in normal police procedures is intended to gain information about a crime, with the ultimate goal being to gain a conviction. When police question a suspect or person with knowledge of a crime, they are trying to build a case that will be substantial enough to ensure that the guilty parties are punished for their offense. What is most frightening about our current Democrat leadership is that they view the capture and interrogation of terror suspects with this same mindset.
The purpose of interrogation in a time of war is not primarily about securing convictions. It is about gaining information about your enemy so that you can defeat them. When we capture a terrorist, we want to learn about their organization, their plans, their current location, etc. We do this in the hope of preventing imminent plans from coming to fruition, while at the same time improving our strategy for their ultimate defeat.
This is not the priority of the current administration. The Democrat Party’s dangerous pre 9/11 mentality can most clearly be seen in two comments, one by Attorney General Holder and the second by Senate Judiciary Committee chair Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont.
When questioned on November 18 by Republican Lindsay Graham about whether or not Osama Bin Laden would need to have a Miranda warning read to him immediately upon capture, Holder unconvincingly responded that we would probably not need to Mirandize him because the evidence is “overwhelming.” While being interviewed on C-Span, Senator Leahy reiterated General Holder’s point: “For one thing, capturing Osama Bin Laden – we've had enough on him, we don't need to interrogate him.”
What both of these quotes make clear is this: the Democrats simply want to arrest Bin Laden so that they can punish him for his previous crimes. While Bin Laden most certainly should pay for the evil he has done, his value, as well as that of his fellow members of al Qaeda, should not be based on how much we punish him for his guilt; it should be based on how our interrogations of them might lead to the destruction of their terror organizations.
One final note: the fact that we are even having a debate on when terrorists are entitled to be Mirandized, which naturally presents the potential for the invocation of the exclusionary rule against the masterminds of the September 11 attacks, makes clear that the current administration does not view the war against terrorism as a war at all.
Less than two hours after the worst act of terrorism on U.S. soil since 9/11 FBI Director Robert Mueller announced that his investigators were “definitely not discussing terrorism”. Soon after President Obama urged Americans “not to jump to conclusions”. When reporters asked what the President meant by that White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs had no coherent answer. The initial stories by both the New York Times and the Associated Press gave great prominence to reports that the killer had been “harassed because he was a Muslim”, that he was “dismayed” by U.S. Policies in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that he was “upset” about the “terrible things” he heard from soldiers returning from the war zone. On the afternoon of the tragedy Americans channel surfing for updates on the massacre found an odd mix of reportage. Chris Matthews of MSNBC offered an impassioned monologue on the “horrible costs of war”. Other commentators amplified this theme of “the soldier as victim”. Shepherd Smith of the much reviled Fox News obtained a live interview with Army Colonial Terry Lee who knew the killer from his time at Walter Reed Hospital in Washington. Colonel Lee related how the killer “seemed pleased” when a Muslim had shot and killed a U.S. Soldier in front of an Army recruiting office in Arkansas, and had also likened Muslim suicide bombers to those soldiers who throw themselves on a grenade to save their buddies. Colonel Lee also stated that any harassment the killer experienced was not because of his Muslim faith but due to expressing these kind of view in the presence of men who had seen friends and fellow soldiers killed in combat. Apparently no other news outlet had been able to find Colonel Lee or any similar purveyors of “an inconvenient truth”. On Friday when it was confirmed that before commencing his slaughter, the killer jumped on a table and shouted “Allah Akbar” (God is Great) the media story line began to shift, but not too much. As soon as they learned that the killer was still alive various commentators began to pose the following weighty questions: “Why was the killer moved from a civilian to a military hospital?” or “Would wide spread prejudice make it difficult for the killer to obtain a fair trial or adequate legal counsel”? or “In light of Guantanamo, should the killer be tried in a civilian or military court? “ or“could a possible death sentence create a martyr and inflame the Muslim world” or “ does the fact that the killer purchased his handguns legally mean we need tougher gun control?” or “Was the Army culpable in failing to prevent this” Perhaps the most bizarre line of inquiry was the assertion that if the killer acted alone and not as part of a conspiracy then the massacre cannot be viewed as an act of terrorism (See, Director Mueller was right!) but rather a case of a “stressed” or “demented” individaul who just “snapped”. This rampant political correctness and willful blindness too facts is not just coming from the loony left like the Huffington Post which initially denied the killer was a Muslim or The Nationwhich denounced any mention of his religion or ethnicity as “Homophobia”, but from mainstream media and public officials who are responsible for the nation's safety. Days after the massacre the N.Y. Times and the Washington Post still insisted the killers“ motives were unclear”. Even when it was known that the killer had praised suicide bombers, declared himself a Palestinian, sought to proselytize his patients, and carefully prepared for his atrocity- even giving away his possession- a Denver Post heading read “Clues Elusive in Killing”, and not a single public official from President Obama on down uttered the word “terrorist” or traitor or made the obvious connection to jihadist fanaticism- the preferred terms offered being “shooter” and “act of violence”. In keeping with the summons and prediction of Obama bin Laden a Muslim fanatic perpetrated the worst act of domestic terrorism since 9/11 but our political leaders abetted by a craven media don't want you to know it, say it or even think it, and if you do “jump to conclusions”-however obvious- you will be called ignorant and bigoted. If the next home grown jihadist gets hold of a chemical, biological, or nuclear weapon, and kills thousands, will the reaction or story line be any different? How many Americans must die before our people in their righteous anger decide its time for a new story line and new leaders to honestly pursue it.
William Moloney is a Centennial Fellow and former Colorado Education Commissioner. His columns have appeared in the Wall St. Journal, U.S.A. Today, Washington Post, Washington Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, Baltimore Sun , Rocky Mountain News and the Denver Post.
(Centennial Fellow) Here's a sampling from the major news outlets this morning and how they are covering this story. Note these key points: 1) Most barely touch on the fact that Hasan was Muslim, despite the fact he shouted "Allahu Akbar" before killing 13 people at Fort Hood. 2) The commander of the base and the investigators are still "stumped" as to the motive of the shooter. 3) Nearly all reports contain a portion of the press release from the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR - known Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas entity). 4) The New York Times and CNN make no mention of the facts that Hasan is Muslim, went to Mosque, or attended the Muslim Community Center, Silver Spring, MD.
Remark: They say Hasan shouted “Allahu Akbar” before shooting, yet investigators are still stumped as to the motive.]
Their angle... Still unexplained last night was the motive for Hasan's attack. Asked if it could be considered a terrorist attack, Cone replied, "I couldn't rule that out" but said the evidence does not point to that
Their angle... Hasan's motive remains unclear, although various sources said he is a devout Muslim who is opposed to U.S. involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq and was upset about an imminent deployment. He also had expressed some anger about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Their angle.... Before Thursday's shooting, Hasan reportedly gave away all of his furniture along with copies of the Koran to neighbors, KXXV-TV reported… Authorities have not ruled out that Hasan was acting on behalf of some unidentified radical group, a senior U.S. official in Washington said. He would not say whether any evidence had come to light to support that theory….The motive for the shooting wasn't clear, but Hasan was apparently set to deploy soon, and had expressed some anger about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, said generals at Fort Hood told her that Hasan was about to deploy overseas
Remark: No mention he is Muslim, attended mosque or Muslim Community Center
Their angle... A senior U.S counter-terrorism official said Thursday night that the Army and FBI were looking into whether Hasan, who is Muslim, had previously come to the attention of federal law enforcement officials as the suspected author of inflammatory Internet comments likening suicide bombers to heroic soldiers who give their lives to save others.
Sympathy and warmth toward US Muslims is up in the past two years, while concern for Islam's tendency to violence is down, according to a Pew survey reported in USA Today on this, the eighth anniversary of 9/11. Bush's "religion of peace" mantra, combined with his refusal to speak bluntly about jihad or radical Islam, set the stage for Obama's truly Orwellian purge of America's vocabulary for thinking about those sworn to destroy us. And voila, today's poll findings are the result. Here is part of the USA Today story:
According to the Pew survey, belief among Americans that Islam encourages violence has fluctuated since the Sept. 11 attacks, and was at its lowest level — a quarter of those surveyed — in March after the terror strikes.
By 2007, 45% of Americans believed Islam was more likely than other faiths to encourage violence. This year, that number fell to 38%. The group most likely to say Islam encourages violence this year was conservative Republicans, at 55%. But that dropped 13% from two years ago, making them the group with the biggest change of opinion since 2007.
The survey, conducted by telephone, also indicated that Americans have grown steadily more knowledgeable about Islam: 41% knew that the Muslim name for God is Allah and the Quran is the Islamic sacred text, compared to 33% in March 2002.
The "small and gradual, but noticeable" change has an affect, Smith said. Those most familiar with Islam were least likely to link the religion with violence. Fifty-seven percent of people who knew the names Muslims use to refer to God and their sacred text, and were also acquainted with a Muslim, said Islam did not encourage violence more than other faiths.
The same percentage of that group said their overall opinion of Muslims was favorable and 70% of that group said there's discrimination against Muslims.