Look to the prisons to find out where our next terror cell may be created.
The spread of an especially virulent form of Islam within American prisons is obvious to those of us who have spent time in these prisons. Itâ€™s the rest of American society that is in denial. Now, thanks to a new study, ignorance is no longer an option.The study, titled â€œOut of the Shadows,â€ concluded that â€œthe U.S. . . . is at risk of facing the sort of homegrown terrorism currently plaguing other countries.â€ The source of that risk, according to researchers from George Washington University and the University of Virginia, is â€œ[Americaâ€™s] large prison population.â€
â€œRadicalized prisonersâ€ within this population â€œare a potential pool of recruits by terrorist groups,â€ the study says. The sources of radicalization are incarcerated Islamic extremists and outside organizations that support them. The report notes that the absence of â€œmonitoring by authoritative Islamic chaplainsâ€ permits â€œmaterials that advocate violence [to infiltrate] the prison system undetected.â€
Some of this material is provided by known al-Qaeda affiliates. It â€œ[urges Muslim prisoners] to wage war against non-Muslims who have not submitted to Islamic rule.â€ As a former employee of a radical Islamist group who is now a Christian told a Senate committee, â€œI know of only a few instances in which prisons rejected the literature we attempted to distributeâ€”and it was never because of the literatureâ€™s radicalism.â€
Would it surprise you to know that a program that’s been successful in curbing this radical form of religious zealotry is under attack? The Left in this country just can’t abide success when Christianity’s involved. And Chuck Colson’s Prison Fellowship is feeling the heat, although it may be the rest of us feeling it if they are shut out from the countries prisons.
The study recommends the creation of a federal commission to â€œinvestigate this issue in depth.â€ It says that an â€œobjective risk assessmentâ€ is â€œurgently neededâ€ so that â€œofficials [can] address this issue now, rather than [managing] a crisis later.â€I agree wholeheartedly, but letâ€™s get on with this. We already know what the study has concluded. Iâ€™ve been telling â€œBreakPointâ€ listeners and readers and Prison Fellowship supporters about this for years. Now we have more than anecdotal evidence. We have a study from two prestigious universities on our side.
Still, I canâ€™t help but note an irony here: The largely unimpeded spread of radical Islam through our prisons coincides with increased opposition to the one really successful antidoteâ€”that is, the presence of Christianity.
Americans United for Separation of Church and State are so concerned about the spread of Christianity, and apparently not so concerned about the breeding of new terrorists, that they’re suing Prison Fellowship in Iowa. They’re trying to remove a successful program that is 60% funded by private money. Fortunately, PF has a number of folks in its corner, including the Attorneys General from 9 other states who are more concerned with our safety than they are with a misreading of the First Amendment (essentially the elevation of a phrase in a private letter to that of constitutional law).Here’s to PF’s success. It may well be a matter of national security.