Homegrown Bombers, ID Cards, Intelligence Activity, and Profiling
The folks over at The Counterterrorism Blog have been doing a great job the last week or so. Lots of very high quality posts, good roundups around the London attacks. I wanted to point and comment on several of their recent posts.
First is Where do Homegrown British Suicide Bombers Come From?, a first person account of the spread of hate in Britian by Evan Kohlmann. The entire article is worth reading, but I want to excerpt a little and then comment.
At a local community center not far from the Bethnal Green Underground station, I found exactly the answers I was looking for. After having attended a series of events hosted by the fanatical British Al-Muhajiroun movement and its leader Shaykh Omar Bakri Mohammed, we had finally received an invitation to a more intimate gathering of local militants. […]
Needless to say, I was a bit shocked and dismayed when we arrived at the community center that afternoon to discover an audience of approximately twenty young British kids of Bengali origin mostly between the ages of 12 and 20. My heart sank as I realized that any hope of maintaining anonymity in this utterly homogeneous crowd was quickly dashed. In the end, I suspect we were only allowed to stay because the organizers recognized us as recent guests of Shaykh Omar Bakri Mohammed and thought us fairly harmless.
Now, if Evan Kohlmann can get to this gathering, and if John Walker-Lindh can meet bin Ladin, why haven’t we penetrated and shut down more groups which are openly calling for murder?
Related, if there are so many of these misguided people who are British, or American citizens, what good will a national ID card do? (Related, Privacy.org points to another DMV official arrested.)