Slander, Blasphemy & Censorship

Homeland Security Chief: ‘No Idea’ Who Scrubbed Islam from Counterterror Materials

Sen. Cruz Blasts DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson for ‘Willful Blindness’ to Jihadi Red Flags in Terror Cases

BY Paul Sperry · @paulsperry_ | June 30, 2016

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson pleaded ignorance Thursday when asked during a Senate hearing about a massive purging of counterterrorism materials that cite Islam and jihad at his agency.

Specifically, Johnson was grilled over a DHS whistleblower’s explosive charge that his agency ordered hundreds of classified counterterrorism files containing key intelligence data deleted or altered to avoid offending Muslims.

“Was that testimony accurate?” Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, asked the secretary, who was called to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee concerning Homeland Security oversight.

“I have no idea,” Johnson claimed, shrugging off the controversy as an issue of semantics not particularly relevant to fighting terrorism.

“I find this whole debate to be very interesting,” Johnson added, echoing former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s indifference when she exclaimed, “What difference does it make!” regarding the Benghazi terrorist attacks.

Cruz swiftly disabused him of the notion that terminology doesn’t matter in combating jihadists.“You suggested just a moment ago that it’s essentially a semantical difference, but I don’t believe it is a semantical difference,” he argued. “When you erase references to radical jihad, it impacts the behavior of law enforcement and national security to respond to red flags and prevent terrorist attacks before they occur.”

Indeed, federal case agents have complained that censoring Islamic terminology handicaps them from investigating Islamic terrorists because they can’t even use the language of the suspects they’re investigating. And by bleaching jihad and and other Islamic references from training materials, it prevents rookie agents from asking the right questions of both terrorism witnesses and suspects. In effect, they say, their superiors are blinding them to essential investigative clues, putting political correctness over public safety.

On Tuesday, a Homeland Security whistleblower testified before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee chaired by Cruz that he was ordered to purge intelligence data dealing with jihadists and Muslim Brotherhood suspects from some 815 records within a classified database accessed by US Customs and Border Protection agents. [CounterJihad had full coverage of that hearing.]

Former DHS counterterrorism analyst Philip Haney added that DHS also scrubbed references to jihad and Islam from all its counterterrorism training manuals, while firing trainers who focused on jihad as a motivating factor in terrorism cases. This second major purge of materials occurred in 2011, after DHS invited several individuals linked to the radical Muslim Brotherhood to join a special advisory task force called the Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.

In September 2011, moreover, Muslim Advocates President Farhana Khera demanded in a letter to the Justice Department that the FBI remove “highly offensive counterterrorism training materials about Muslims and Islam used to train its agents and law enforcement.”

As a result, Cruz said, holding up a chart, Islamic references have been scrubbed from Justice Department, defense and intelligence documents, as well, under the Obama administration.

What’s more, the FBI has been ordered to cancel contracts with counterterrorism trainers who cite Islamic warfare doctrine in their presentations.

Cruz argued that the administration has been throwing sand in the eyes of federal agents and preventing them from “connecting the dots” in major terrorism cases, which explains why homegrown attacks by Muslims are growing in both frequency and body count.

“Mr. Secretary, the concern is this pattern of failing to connect the dots keeps occurring over and over and over and over again,” the senator asserted.

Cruz noted that federal investigators failed to see blatant red flags indicating jihadist activity prior to not just the Orlando terrorist attack, but also the attacks in Fort Hood, Texas, Boston and San Bernardino, Calif.

It appears Johnson is more interested in fighting “right-wing extremist groups,” while ignoring the clear and present threat from Islamic extremism.

Less than two months after last December’s San Bernardino attacks, DHS and the Justice Department reverted back to combating “domestic anti-government extremists” as the primary threat.

At the same time, the FBI stripped all references to Islamic extremism from a website it launched to counter radicalization of Muslim youth. Instead of focusing on Islam and jihad, the bureau’s anti-terrorism “Don’t Be a Puppet” website suddenly and illogically shifted focus to “White Supremacy Extremists, “Militia Extremists” and “Anarchist Extremists.”

The changes came after President Obama met in the White House with the Council on American-Islamic Relations and other Islamist pressure groups, even though the FBI has suspended relations with CAIR until it can resolve its association with Hamas and other terrorist groups.

Just days before the Islamic terror attack in Orlando, moreover, DHS released a report by a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) advisory group that stressed the importance of avoiding terms that may offend Muslims.

“Reject religiously-charged terminology … like ‘jihad,’ ‘sharia,’ ‘takfir’ or ‘umma,’” the report advised. “Sharia” is the authoritarian Islamic law that codifies the prosecution of jihad, or holy war, among other things. “Takfir” is the practice of declaring non-observant Muslims heretics or infidels, while “umma” refers to the global Muslim community, or nation of Islam.

Johnson thinks focusing on Islam is tantamount to racial and religious profiling. His sympathy stems from his family’s own communist ties. That’s right, Johnson sees growing suspicions cast on Muslims akin to the scrutiny given his communist kin during the Cold war.

While speaking to Muslims after the San Bernardino attack, Johnson likened the current climate of “fear, suspicions and prejudice” against Muslims to the Red scare and McCarthyism he complains his grandfather, Charles S. Johnson, lived under in the 1940s and 1950s. Turns out Johnson’s grandfather was investigated for hiring communist professors and speaking out on their behalf even after their communist loyalists were exposed.

“In 1949, during the McCarthy era, my own grandfather was called upon to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee, to deny he was a member of the Communist Party and defend the patriotism of African-Americans,” Johnson said in a speech to the ADAMS Center in Sterling, Va., a mosque founded by Muslim Brotherhood leaders.

“Today his grandson is responsible for the homeland security of this entire nation,” he boasted.


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