by DANIEL GREENFIELD
….Radicalization does not go from zero to sixty. It speeds up from sixty to seventy-five.
It builds on elements that are already there in the mosque and the household. The term “extremism” implicitly admits that what we are talking about is not a complete transformation, but the logical extension of existing Islamic beliefs.
Omar Saleh seemed cheerful enough about Hamas dropping Kassam rockets on Israeli towns and cities. Would he have supported his son setting off a bomb in the Statue of Liberty? Who knows, but his son was already starting from a family position that Muslim terrorism against non-Muslims was acceptable.
Everything else is the fine print.
When Usaama Rahim followed the way of the Muslim Brotherhood, he was with a moderate group whose spiritual guide, the genocidal Qaradawi was the godfather of cartoon outrage and had endorsed the murderous Iranian fatwa against Salman Rushdie.
The slope that leads from Qaradawi’s cartoon rage to trying to behead Pamela Geller isn’t a slippery one; it’s a vertical waterfall. And this is what radicalization really looks like. It doesn’t mean moderates turning extreme. It means extremists becoming more extreme. And there’s always room for extremists to become more extreme which turns old extremists into moderates while mainstreaming their beliefs.
In the UK, Baroness Warsi, Cameron’s biggest mistake, blamed Muslim radicalization on the government’s refusal to engage with… radicals. Or as she put it, “It is incredibly odd and incredibly worrying that over time more and more individuals, more and more organisations are considered by the government to be beyond the pale and therefore not to be engaged with.”
The reason why the government is refusing to “engage” with these organizations is that they support terrorism in one form or another. Warsi is proposing that the UK fight radicalization by mainstreaming it.
Mainstreaming extremism is also Obama’s policy. It’s the logic behind nearly every Western diplomatic move in the Middle East from the Israel-PLO peace process to the Brotherhood’s Arab Spring. And these disasters only created more Islamic terrorism.
The Muslim teenagers headed to join ISIS did not come out of a vacuum. They came from mosques and families that normalized some degree of Islamic Supremacism and viewed some Muslim terrorists as heroes and role models. It’s time for Western governments to admit that the ISIS Jihadist is more the product of his parents and his teachers than of social media Jihadis on YouTube and Twitter.
Radicalization doesn’t begin with a sheikh on social media. It begins at home. It begins in the mosque. It just ends with ISIS.