Muslims Fight Terrorism: Congressman
WASHINGTON – US Muslims have been one of the nation’s biggest intelligence allies who helped in countering terrorism, a Muslim congressman set to be appointed to the House intelligence committee revealed.
“We want to see relationships where trust can be built and the relationship doesn’t feel purely transactional,” Congressman Andre Carson told USA Today on Friday, January 16.
“I’ve said time and time again that one of the biggest allies our intelligence has is the Muslim community. They know their communities better than anyone.
“I just had a meeting with the FBI, and (the National Security Agency) and Justice Department and we were talking about the efforts that the Muslim community have really contributed collectively in terms of thwarting potential attacks that you’ll never even hear about in the media.”
The Indianapolis Democrat, Carson, stressed that building relationships with the Muslim community through law enforcement is essential. Carson also criticized mosques surveillance by police, unless it’s expedient.
Carson’s remarks followed his appointment this week to the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He became the first Muslim lawmaker to join the committee.
The appointment of the Muslim Congressman, who already serves on the Armed Services Committee and worked for the Department of Homeland Security’s Fusion Center, is based on an individual commendation that doesn’t reflect his religion, according to Rep. Lee Hamilton, who has chaired the committee.
“The intelligence committee deals with top national security issues and has very good access to highly classified information. You want somebody that can be trusted,” Hamilton said.
“It’s obvious that the Democratic leadership thinks he meets that requirement.”
The Congressman comments came two days after a court hearing on New York City Police Department (NYPD) surveillance of New Jersey Muslim community case, ten months after dismissing the case by a federal judge.
During the hearing, civil rights groups asked a panel of federal judges to revise a lower court’s ruling that allowed NYPD surveillance of mosques, businesses and community centers owned by Muslims.
Since 9/11, Muslims, estimated between six to seven million, have become sensitized to an erosion of their civil rights, with a prevailing belief that America was stigmatizing their faith.
The appointment of the Muslim lawmaker has been praised by the Muslim community, who said they are “proud” of his achievements.
The group is “proud of this great American, former law enforcement officer and member of the Muslim community, on his appointment to such an important committee,” spokesman for the Islamic Society of North America in Plainfield, Ind., Edgar Hopid, said.
For Carson, serving in Congress on the intelligence community is significant to show a different face of Islam at a time when “Islamophobia has reached an apex of sorts,” he told Huffington Post after announcing his appointment.
“Because we live in a sound-bite society and, as people, we are heavily influenced by images that we see on television, it’s important to have a broad array of professionals who happen to be Muslim in different positions,” he said.
In 2008, Democrat Carson was elected to the House of Representatives, becoming the second Muslim Congressman in the country.
Carson, who graduated from Arsenal Technical High School, has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice Management from Concordia University-Wisconsin and a masters degree in Business Management from Indiana Wesleyan University.
The father of one daughter served as a board member for the Citizens Neighborhood Coalition, an umbrella organization representing all neighborhood organizations within the council’s boundaries.
Democrat Keith Ellison became in November 2006 the first American Muslim elected to Congress in US history.
Posted on January 19, 2015, in NEWS and tagged communities, congressman, fbi, Intelligence, justice department, media, mosques, muslim community, muslims, muslims fight terrorism, muslims in america, news, read, terrorism, time, today, us muslims, usa. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.