Advice Goddess Blog
« Previous | Home | Next »

The Scum Of Its Parts
What are all these lovvvvely guys doing in the terrorism business? Robert Spencer writes for FrontPage about all the simply faaaabulous people who turn out to be terrorists:

According to former Detroit Public Schools Superintendent Eddie Green, Kifah Jayyousi is “a great guy, one of the nicest people I’ve ever met.” While Green was superintendent, Jayyousi oversaw the Detroit school district’s capital improvement program, which had a $1.5 billion budget.

Jayyousi is now charged, according to the Detroit Free Press, with “conspiring to kidnap, maim and murder by providing money, recruits and equipment for Islamic struggles in Bosnia, Kosovo and Chechnya from 1993 to 2001.” He could get life in prison.

Christopher Paul, a martial arts instructor at a mosque in Columbus, Ohio, is also a terrific guy. Ahmad Al-Akhras, vice chairman of the Council on American-Islamic Relations chapter in Columbus, said: “From the things I know, he is a loving husband and he has a wife and parents in town. They are a good family together.”

Yet now Paul, a Muslim, has been charged, according to Associated Press, with “providing material support to terrorists, conspiracy to provide support to terrorists and conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction.” He is accused of training with Al-Qaeda in the early 1990s, training people for violent jihad attacks on targets in Europe and the United States, and more.

But another one of Paul’s friends, Hisham Jenhawi, was skeptical: “I don’t think it’s even close to his personality to act upon something like that. He’s a very kind person. You would meet him on the street and he would want to hug you with the heart that he has.” One of his neighbors, Mike James, added: “He seemed like a nice guy, always waving…”

This kind of thing is nothing new. A friend remembered Gokhan Elaltuntas, a Muslim who carried out a suicide bombing on a synagogue in Istanbul in 2003: “We went partridge hunting together. I still cannot believe how such a quiet person could have been involved in an incident like this.” A friend of Naveed Haq, the jihadist killer who murdered one and wounded five at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle in July 2006, described him as “pretty much just a normal guy….He was the kind of guy when you talked to him he was always laughing.”

...Great guys all. Some partied and some embarked on a spiritual search, but they all ended up in the same place, committing acts dedicated to furthering the cause of jihad, or facing charges of having done so.

Spencer compares these Islamic nice guys to the nice guys of the SS:

Today’s jihad terrorists are likewise the adherents of a totalitarian, genocidal ideology that teaches them that murders committed under certain circumstances are a good thing. And those murders, here again, are not committed for their own sake, but for the sake of a societal vision hardly less draconian and evil than that of Hitler, but one also that portrays itself as the exponent of all that is good – as the Taliban showed us. But the continued reference to such people as “terrorists” pure and simple, and the refusal of the media and most law enforcement officials to examine their ideology at all, only reinforces the idea that these people are raving maniacs, interested solely in chaos for its own sake. The society they want to build, and the means besides guns and bombs that they are using to build it, so far remain below the radar screen of most analysts. These people are just “terrorists,” interested only in “terror.” And so we’re continually surprised when they turn out to be nice guys after all. Decent fellows. Like the SS.

Posted by aalkon at April 19, 2007 7:25 AM



> the refusal of the media and most
> law enforcement officials to
> examine their ideology at all

What do you want them to know?

I'd concede that most terrorists are clinically sane. And also that actions follow from rhetoric, and that the language Bush has given to this thing is lame (war on terror, homeland security).

I can't read the meaning in this post. Yes, a lot of workaday folks turn out to be Nazis in that appropriate context, and Nazis turn into regular folks once that context is disrupted. Therefore... What?

Posted by: Crid at April 19, 2007 7:03 AM

Whoops, bad wording: Nazism isn't an appropriate context, I just meant unchallenged fascism nourishes Nazis. Work with me, people, it's early.

Posted by: Crid at April 19, 2007 7:05 AM

Of course. Most evil assholes are "nice guys" on the surface, they have to keep up appearances. My parents had a friend when I was a kid who was a very popular, well-liked guy, he even babysat us for a few weeks when my mom got a job, and was never anything but gentle and kind. Then he committed mass murder- killed a bunch of people at a ski lodge over a few hundred dollars. Just goes to show that temperament isn't a great predictor of morality.

Posted by: Jennifer Emick at April 19, 2007 10:10 AM

The whole U.S. legal system has been turned to trash by putting 'loyalty' above competence and gutting the Constitution. Consequently it is impossible to properly investigate allegations and arrive at a reliable conclusion : the rule of law having been set aside.
What were you saying about religiously motivated terrorists ? I can't tell from that description alone who you are talking about.

Posted by: opit at April 19, 2007 5:46 PM

> The whole U.S. legal system has
> been turned to trash by putting
>'loyalty' above competence and
> gutting the Constitution.

'We're *doomed*, I tell ya, DOOMED!'

When were the Good Ol' Days that this system worked well for people? Clinton era? Johnson administration? Teddy Roosevelt? William Henry Harrison?

Posted by: Crid at April 20, 2007 6:06 AM

Leave a comment