March 23, 2011 2:59 pm ET - by Matt Gertz
We've long pointed out that Rep. Peter King's (R-NY) hearing earlier this month on the supposed radicalization of American Muslims was fatally flawed because he refused to seek testimony from actual law enforcement officials to make the case that the Muslim American community does not cooperate with the authorities. Instead, King sought to prove his claim with the anecdotal accounts of two people who had members of their families become radicalized.
But we're not the only ones who have made this point. In an editorial published soon after the hearings, the editorial board of the right-wing Investor's Business Daily opined that King "blew it" because he "didn't even come close to delivering what he advertised." IBD explains:
[King] said FBI agents and other cops working terrorism cases constantly complain about the lack of cooperation from the Muslim community. Mosque officials and other Muslim leaders actually encourage such resistance, he said.
These are explosive charges. Basically, he suggested that the Muslim leadership in this country is protecting jihadists, and possibly facilitating another terror attack on U.S. soil. Yet the seven witnesses King called to testify included no national law enforcement officials to back him up. Nor did he subpoena any of the offending Muslim leaders to address these allegations under oath.
Two relatives of young Muslim men radicalized at mosques in Minnesota and Tennessee spoke at the hearing. While compelling, their testimony did not carry the authority of active or retired law enforcement officials who could have provided first-hand evidence of problems in the Muslim community.
King has claimed that he was unable to provide such expert law enforcement testimony because the officers who are allegedly "constantly" criticizing the Muslim community for not being helpful "will say these things privately, but not in public."
Of course, many law enforcement experts — including Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI director Robert Mueller — have had no difficulty publicly applauding the cooperation they receive from Muslim Americans, and pointing to the many terror attacks that have been stopped thanks to tips from that community.
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