Thursday, September 18, 2008

Former Terrorist’s Advice for Fighting Jihad: Think Globally, Act Locally

CQ Politics | Former Terrorist’s Advice for Fighting Jihad: Think Globally, Act Locally: "The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee received a first-hand account of how young Muslims become radicalized when a former member of an Islamist extremist organization testified Thursday that a combination of a personal crisis of faith and racism he faced as a British teenager steered him toward that ideology.

“The question arose in my mind — was I British? Was I English? Was a I Pakistani? . . . Was I Muslim?” Maajid Nawaz told the committee. Eventually, he said, he met a medical student who introduced him to the idea that he had no national loyalties; he was a member of a worldwide Muslim caliphate.

At 16, Nawaz became a member of Hizb ut-Tahrir, a group associated with the planning and execution of terrorists acts. Nawaz became a leader and recruiter in the organization, and was arrested in Egypt in 2002. He spent four years imprisoned there until Amnesty International arranged for his release as a “prisoner of conscience.”"

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