Are Muslims a Threat?

Bill O’Reilly’s incident on The View got me to thinking about this. Is there a rational, logical way to decide if Muslims in general are a threat, and to what level? So, here’s my approach to answering that question: Do research to find out what relation there may be between Muslims and terrorism, and quantify it numerically if possible.

This article on InfoPlease is the source of the list presented here. There are many sources available, so your mileage may vary. My intent was to list all terrorist attacks, from any source, within the U.S. or against Americans anywhere, for some period of time. In the interest of brevity, rather than describe each one here I will simply list the date, location, the number of deaths, and the religion of the perpetrators if known. I have assumed Muslim if it was a suicide attack and the perpetrators were not explicitly identified, since that is one of their modus operandi. The list is most recent first.

May 2, 2010 – Times Square, NYC: Attack failed – no deaths. Muslim.
Dec 30, 2009 – CIA base in Afghanistan: 8 U.S. civilians. Muslim.
Dec 25, 2009 – Flight from Amsterdam to Detroit: Attack failed – no deaths. Muslim.
Nov 5, 2009 – Fort Hood attack by Hasan: 13 U.S. citizens dead. Muslim. (This one wasn’t on the InfoPlease list, for some reason.)
Apr 10, 2009 – Iraq: 5 Americans, 2 Iraqi: Muslim (assumed from context).
Feb 9, 2009 – Iraq: 4 Americans, 1 Iraqi: Muslim (assumed from context).
Nov 26, 2008 – Mumbai, India: 190 dead including 5 Americans: Muslim.
Sep 16, 2008 – Yemen, U.S. Embassy: 16 dead: Muslim.
Aug 18-19, 2008 – Afghanistan: no deaths: Muslim.
Jul 13, 2008 – Afghanistan: 9 U.S., 15 NATO troops: Muslim.
Jun 12, 2008 – Afghanistan: 4 U.S.: Muslim (assumed from context).
Jun 24, 2008 – Iraq: 20 dead, 3 U.S.: Muslim (assumed from context).
May 26, 2008 – Iraq: 6 U.S. dead: Muslim (assumed from context).
Dec 11, 2007 – Algeria: 60: Muslim.
Jan 12, 2007 – Athens, Greece – U.S. Embassy: Attack failed – no deaths. Article did not name the perpetrators.
Sep 13, 2006 – Damascus, Syria – U.S. Embassy: Attack failed – no deaths. Article did not name the perpetrators.
Nov 9, 2005 – Amman, Jordan, at 3 American hotels – 57 dead: Muslim.
Dec 6, 2004 – Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, U.S. Consulate: 5 dead: Muslim (assumed from context).
Jun 11 – 19, 2004 – Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: 4 dead including 3 Americans: Muslim (assumed from context).
May 29 – 31, 2004 – Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: 22 dead including 1 American: Muslim (assumed from context).
May 12, 2003 – Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: 34, including 8 Americans: Muslim.
Jun 14, 2002 – Karachi, Pakistan: 12 dead: Muslim.
9/11/2001 – NYC and the Pentagon: 2,992 dead: Muslim.

This list is not even close to being all inclusive for the time span, and other research shows many, many more than what is shown here.

Continuing down the list, looking for a terrorist attack that was clearly NOT instigated by Muslims, I had to go back to April 19, 1995 in Oklahoma City: Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols murdered 168 people in the explosion. McVeigh claimed to be an agnostic; his act of terrorism does not appear to be motivated by or connected to religion in any way.

About this data: In doing this research, I have looked at various sources. MUCH more extensive lists are available on Wikipedia, and many other places. The list above does not even scratch the surface. It is truly frightening, how many attacks have been made, and how many people have died, and no one list contains them all. Coming up with a number of victims of Islamist Terrorism is extremely hard to do – but it is clearly a very large number!

CONCLUSIONS:

Going back as far as 1995, All these people have two things in common; they are terrorists, and they are Muslim.

Does being Muslim have anything to do with it? I suppose one could make the case that it is just a coincidence; but then you would have to ask yourself the question, “would these people have done these things if they were, say, Christian? Or Buddhist?

I don’t think so. I notice an obvious dearth of terrorists who aren’t Muslim. If being Muslim was NOT a factor, you would expect an even spread among the various religions. I don’t see any sign of any such spread – almost ALL terrorist activity since 1995 has been carried out exclusively by Muslims.

Consequently, it makes perfect sense to be cautious and suspicious of Muslims. How can anyone review the information above and not reach this conclusion? Furthermore, the Muslim community has done very little to counter this perception; there has been no universal condemnation by Muslims of Extremist Muslims, at least not that I have seen. The ‘peaceful’ Muslims have done very little to disassociate themselves with the ‘violent’ Muslims.

I am in total agreement with Bill O’Reilly’s statement that Muslim Terrorism is a major problem now and going forward. And I am 100% on board with Juan William’s statement about being nervous when he sees obvious Muslims on a plane.

My final conclusion: We need to watch Islam and Muslims the way a rabbit watches a snake. And be prepared to defend ourselves as needed.

If peaceful Muslims do not want to be viewed with suspicion, then they need to rise up everywhere and disavow Muslim terrorists, and join the fight to stop them. Which I think they would have done by now, if they were going to.

And one final thought: We need to actively make sure that Sharia Law has NO standing in the United States. We need to squelch any attempt to insinuate Sharia Law into our legal system, as has been allowed to happen in England and other places.

Some (i.e. Whoopi and Joy) will protest that it is not fair to blame all Muslims for terrorism. Please be clear on this – I don’t blame all Muslims for terrorism. But when I see a Muslim, I will be aware that they are a member of a group that is identified with terrorism, and this will affect how I deal with them. How can it be otherwise?

Not all snakes will bite you and kill you dead; but when you see a snake, you treat it like it will – at least until you have identified what kind of snake you are dealing with. This is the correct logic for dealing with Muslims, also, because the situation is similar. Some Muslims are killers, and most Muslims are not; until you can tell the difference, pure logic dictates caution.

-Popgun

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8 Responses to Are Muslims a Threat?

  1. Ali says:

    Hi!

    Out of curiosity, why did you leave the Eric Rudolph bombings off the list?

    They were big news, in my part of the world. (Of course, I was living in Atlanta in ’96; it got a little scary for a while.)

    • popgun says:

      Hi, Ali;

      That one wasn’t on the list at InfoPlease that I was using as a go-by. As I mentioned, it was seriously not-all-inclusive. Also, I quit listing them when I got to 9/11 because there were so many, and the post was already getting kind of long. However, that incident would have been a good example of a non-Muslim terrorist. Now I know of two!

      Thanks for stopping by!

      -Popgun

  2. Dustin says:

    Ok so just to start I see your perspective onto why you feel that “Muslims” are a threat. But I feel that your validation for this reasoning comes from the tunnel vision most Americans have on Terrorism. Take this for example for one we have a definition problem for the words “Terrorist” and “Terrorism” to most Americans especially over the past 9 years since 9/11 those two words have simply become synonymous with Muslim acts of extremism. For example when the Man walked into the church and shot the doctor that preformed late term abortions because of his religious beliefs I don’t remember hearing one news organization saying that was an act of terrorism. Now why is that, is it because it wasn’t or is it because it didn’t fit our definition. Now is that act on the level of say 9/11 of course not but it goes to show that we as a country have come to adopt the notion that Muslims are the only ones that commit acts of terrorism (or at least that is the perception I am seeing from my fellow Americans) . Now one thing that bothered me was your comment that you just assumed that all suicide bombings were Muslim acts, now depending on the country or countries you looked at this may be true, but Muslim terrorist organizations are amateurs at the act of suicide bombings compared to a little know militant group in Sri Lanka that most Americans seem to over look called LITE or Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam which is compromised mainly of Hindu’s. You may or may not already know this but groups like al-Qaeda, Hamas and Hezbollah have gone on to copy their style. Now when you ask most people like you stated who is know for suicide bombs they would say al-Qaeda or Muslim extremist and if you asked them which Terrorist group is the most dangerous they would say reply al-Qaeda, when in actuality our very own FBI named LITE the most dangerous and deadly extremist group in the world. To me this shows a perception issue. Are Muslim extremist groups and individuals dangerous, yes but are they our only threat or are they the world’s only threat? No. I do however believe that if our views in America don’t change from the current state on Muslims it is only going to make this on going tension between our two groups worse expanding the grasps that extremist Muslims have on the every day peace loving Muslims, we have to find a way to bridge the gap and it is not but calling Muslims in general a threat, because they are not. I don’t expect to change your view I just hope it to make you consider things a little more.

    • popgun says:

      Hi, Dustin;

      First, thank you for your comment; I appreciate your input. You did provide me with some information I did not have, particularly regarding the LITE.

      My original assessment remains unchanged, however. The question I wanted to come at a reasoned answer to was essentially: “Are Muslims a thread, and to what level?”.

      Even though it is undisputed that Muslims are not the only terrorists, everything I have been able to determine shows that the great majority of terrorist acts in the last couple of decades have been perpetrated by Muslims. That was the purpose of me constructing my own list, from internet sources. From what I could find, there are a few incidents of terrorism unrelated to Islam, but numerically, the vast majority are Muslim.

      The suicide bombings that I assumed were Muslims, I took into account where and when they happened – the contexts; and based on that, I believe there is a high probability that I am correct in those assessments. I would not expect a Hindu to execute a suicide bomb in Iraq directed against Americans, for instance.

      I never said or implied that Muslim extremist groups are our only, or even biggest, threat. My article really only addressed this one question- can a reasonable person justify being nervous around Muslims? And I believe the answer is unequivocally yes.

      This is especially true since so very few examples exist of mainstream Muslims condemning the actions of the Muslim terrorists, and acting themselves to suppress the violence and make it clear to the world that this is unacceptable to Islam.

      Muslims have allowed this perception of them to develop due to this inaction on their part. It is up to them to correct the situation.

      The logic of the snake analogy in my original post stands; a non-poisonous snake tells me, “Listen, don’t brand all snakes as poisonous – that’s not fair!” If I follow that advise, that is an excellent way to get snake-bit. Ask anybody that lives in the woods. That’s not prejudice, that’s just common sense.

      -Popgun

  3. Dustin says:

    Yes and let me first say I agree 100% that Muslim groups here and abroad could do a ten fold better job in condeming these actions and separating themselves from them. But, having said that I still dont think in our American society no person whether black, white, asian, latino etc… or religion Christian, Jew, Islamic, Hindu etc… should have to fear anysort of persicution because of their race or religious beliefs and my fear is that as a country with this dialouge and thought process of look out there is Muslim there is .00000001% he might blow me up is taking us down and even more dangerous path. I think we can both agree in the last couple years we have see the tension rise between not just the left and the right but against religious groups and my fear is that continuing down this path we are going to start loosing the rational people who have rational fears and start having irrational people that act out violently on those fears. So I guess in sum I am saying we as whole need to do more than just point fingers instead of arming up us against them, when need to ask ourselfs what can we do to bridge that gap…I hope that makes sense lol just my random thoughts

    • popgun says:

      Hi, Dustin;

      Thanks for your comments; we’ve got a pretty good discussion going here.

      I should mention that we are far from any sort of persecution here. I’m not persecuting anybody, nor am I suggesting we should. All I am suggesting is that a state of alertness is appropriate when dealing with Muslims, because of their association with terrorism.

      It is not irrational to note that one group presents a higher potential risk than another. Particularly if you try to base this off of available facts and analysis. Failure to do so, in fact, is a non-survival strategy.

      As regards “bridging that gap” – I’m open to it. But understand this – Muslims created that gap. It is up to them to close it. They could make great strides in this direction simply by calling some sort of global meeting of all major Muslim leaders, and issuing a Fatwa (or whatever they call it) announcing a rejection of all violence and excommunicating all Muslims who do not reject violence from their faith.

      I also have to mention that I have not “armed up against them”. I am armed up against ANYBODY that threatens me and my family, because that is my right and my responsibility. This whole issue is not a commentary on race or religion relations; it is simply a logical assessment of potential risk. The snake analogy is a very good description of my opinion on the matter.

      If you somehow rendered all snakes non-poisonous, then it would not be necessary or appropriate to handle them carefully. In the real world, however, the intelligent thing to do is treat them with respect for their deadliness.

      If Muslims give up their fangs, I’ll be the first on my block to welcome them to the neighborhood.

      -Popgun

  4. Dustin says:

    I hope you dont get me wrong, I am not accussing your or anyone who shares your viewpoint of taking up arms, just the mentality that is behind the viewpoint or at least that is how it comes off. I do get your “snake” analogy and agree to an extent I just don’t feel that Muslims in general are to be feared…I do disagree with the notion that Muslims started this, yes 9/11 was unprovoked and individual extremist from a muslim terrorist group caused it, but did the entire muslim community which makes up roughly .5% of our nation, no. So just from my persepctive on an everyday level right here in American should I be on alert when I see a Muslim on a plane, no… I understand how the attack of 9/11 has awoken this sense of fear or awareness, but I think it is very unresonable to everytime an arab decent person whom may not even be muslim walks on plane or bus or train, especially right here in American to study them to be on alert of their every action they may make in your pressence, put it this way and this might be an extreme analogy but everytime I see a catholic preist I wouldnt grab my son up or lock my doors everytime an African american pulls up next to me (just some common sterotype examples) why? because I know not every preist is a child molester and not every African American is a theif.

    • popgun says:

      Hi, Dustin;

      I don’t think Muslims in general are to be feared either; it’s just that it is pretty hard to tell which ones are which. If the bad guys would just paint themselves blue or something, the rest of them we could relax around; but they don’t.

      In my case, at least, I don’t think it is “9/11 mentality”. You seem to think that everybody is going around being scared of Muslims because of 9/11. I suppose that the events of 9/11 brought the world’s attention to them, but it is all those OTHER attacks that make me think that some of them consistently and with gusto, intend us harm. Because they haven’t stopped trying to kill us – see list and websites referenced above.

      I should probably explain that I don’t normally go around being paranoid about Muslims, or any other group. The level of awareness I have been talking about is perhaps condition yellow, in CHL-land; relaxed, but aware that a problem could develop, and watching out for it.

      Should you be on alert in the presence of Muslims you don’t personally know? Suit yourself, that’s your call. As for me, I will be keeping my eyes open. If I see somebody trying to ignite their shoes or their underwear, I will be noticing that act before you will, because I am on a somewhat higher level of alert than you are.

      And if they don’t do anything wrong, that’s all to the good. No harm, no foul.

      About that Catholic priest; I wouldn’t worry about my son, either – but I doggone sure wouldn’t let him go into the back room alone with the priest. That would be utter negligence on my part, knowing what I know about that situation.

      As to those African Americans; same deal as the Muslims; if I see two or three in an old car, cruising slowly through my neighborhood, I watch them. I notice what they are doing, I even get a mental description in case I need it. Not because I think they have done anything wrong; but because they might, and in the area where I live, that social group is probably responsible for around 70% of all crime. (That’s an estimate based on watching the local news.)

      Note that in none of these cases is prejudice an issue; I don’t know any Muslims personally, but I do know, and have friends, who are Catholic or are black. I also know some Mexicans who (so far as I know) are here legally. Some of them are pretty nice people. I have no reasonable doubt that most Muslims are nice, too, once you get to know them.

      But meeting a stranger? My momma always told me not to trust a stranger; and she was right! And I bet you tell your son the same thing. Why? Because there are child predators out there, and you don’t know who they are.

      There is a world of difference between being situationally aware, based on a rational estimate of threat, and being paranoid, fearful, racist, and hateful. Back to the snakes again: I don’t hate snakes. But when I come across a cottonmouth moccasin (common around here) I kill it, because they can kill people, livestock and pets.

      Intentionally deciding to ignore the possibility that an unknown snake can hurt or kill you is an act of irrationality tantamount to playing russian roulette (in my opinion). Once you know for sure that the snake at your feet is safe, you can relax. Almost any human, however, will get clear of an unidentified snake as quickly as possible, and a lot of people will kill it without bothering to find out if it is poisonous or not.

      I do still think that Juan Williams was completely justified in saying that he is made a bit nervous if he sees Muslims boarding a plane that he is about to board. I think this is a perfectly normal reaction.

      The problem, obviously, is knowing which ones are evil in any group. Some people (like yourself, I assume) believe that it is wrong to make any judgement whatever based on external characteristics such as apparent race, clothing, etc. As it happens, these are often the only clues you have as you enter a situation. I would never make a final judgement based on those characteristics; but you have to have something to go on; and in public situations, those are the clues you get, to begin with.

      If you see (for instance) a big bald white man carrying a shotgun into a store, would you be aware there might be a problem? Maybe he is a wacko white supremacist… How about if the store he was going in to was a gun shop? Maybe just a white middle aged guy like me, taking his gun in for service.

      How about if he was black, and it was a convenience store in a rough area of town, late at night? Different conclusion?

      If you choose to ignore available clues, you deprive yourself of an excellent tool for self preservation. However, virtually everyone actually does use these type of clues, whether they admit it or not.

      Will I be wary of strangers? You bet! If they are Muslim? One notch higher, perhaps. Once I get to know them? That all depends.

      It’s just pure and simple, common sense.

      -Popgun

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