Thursday, May 31, 2007

Our First Line of Defense Against Terrorism

An update to my post about James Fallows's Atlantic article, Declaring Victory, from late last summer. There Fallows argued, convincingly, that the primary threat of terrorism today is not international terrorist networks, but disaffected local Muslims like those that bombed London and rioted across Europe last year. Muslims in the US, as opposed to those in Europe, Fallows claimed, were highly assimilated and as such provided the US with a significant security buffer. Today the Christian Science Monitor editorialized on a Pew study of American Muslims that echoed Fallows's point, finding US Muslims to be "highly assimilated". CSM argued that the US must be careful to cultivate this identification of its Muslim population with the US and take care not to allow our public rhetoric to alienate young Muslims. I concur fully and hope that our politicians take note of this warning as the 2008 elections heat up. As it stands our Muslim residents are our greatest asset in the war on terrorism and a resource we cannot afford to squander.

Update: Speak of the devil, Fallows himself blogged a few comments on the Pew study today. And what's that at the bottom?? :)

1 comment:

heartlander said...

I firmly believe that friendship and communication can prove to be the first line of defense against hatred and violence. I am happy to see that affirmed in the BWJ.
Midwestern Muslims of my acquaintance (I have many first- generation Pakistani/American friends)want to become fully active Americans both economically and politically. They and their even more Americanized children believe in the American dream and are highly educated. I don't think they are going to sit on the sidelines in the next election cycle. They have the financial strength to be heard. There are some smart politicians who are already appealing to this politically sentitive group.