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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 167819 Find in a Library
Title: Muslims in America Are Not a Terrorist Threat (From Urban Terrorism, P 66-74, 1996, A E Sadler and Paul A Winters, eds. -- See NCJ-167808)
Author(s): M Nimer
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: Greenhaven Press
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
Sale Source: Greenhaven Press
P.O. Box 9187
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
United States of America
Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A history and review of the religious, social, and political activities of Muslim groups and Islamic organizations in the United States shows that they are not terrorist cells.
Abstract: Mainstream American leaders and officials have dismissed the notion that the Islamic revival constitutes a security threat to the United States. Even in the domain of foreign policy, American leaders have stated that they do not envision a "global Islamic threat" to U.S. security. Still, some cling to stereotypical images of Muslims, who are often portrayed as "hotheaded fanatics bent on waging holy wars against infidels." Although alarmists warn Americans against possible threats posed by the Muslim presence in the United States, they seldom discuss who Muslims are and what they do. The organized expressions of Islam in America have been intertwined with ethnic affiliation. Primary organizations comprise mosques, Islamic centers, and schools. Every city has at least one mosque or Islamic center. The institutional development of Shiite Muslims in America is not very different from that of their Sunni counterparts, because its primary concern has been the inculcation of Islamic teachings. Writings on the "Islamic threat" tend to blur the distinction between the millions of mainstream Muslims and the elements in this community who act violently to press for their perceived grievances. Every community and every cause has its radicals. Educating the public about Muslims and their activities by focusing on fringe elements at the expense of the mainstream will only reinforce stereotypical images, hurt community relations, and create hostilities at odds with the values of tolerance in the pluralistic American society.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Domestic terrorism; Religiously motivated violence; Threat assessment
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