Enter your email address to subscribe to Irregular Times and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 448 other subscribers

Irregular Times Newsletters

Click here to subscribe to any or all of our six topical e-mail newsletters:
  1. Social Movement Actions,
  2. Credulity and Faith,
  3. Election News,
  4. This Week in Congress,
  5. Tech Dispatch and
  6. our latest Political Stickers and Such

Contact Us

We can be contacted via retorts@irregulartimes.com

No, Actually, Most Terrorists Threatening the USA AREN'T Muslims

“Most terrorists are Muslim,” say the ultraconservative supporters of religious-based profiling and surveillance in America. The claim is resurfacing in the last week:

Christopher Cook, April 19 2013:

Whatever the specifics, the general fact is always the same: Not all Muslims are terrorists, but nearly all terrorists are Muslims…. Islamist terrorism is now a fact of life. The left would like to create an alternate reality in which they were not the perpetrators of most of the domestic terrorism in United States’ history, but they cannot. So they do the next best thing: they lie.

Craig R. Kelso, April 21 2013:

We were attacked again by terrorists; Muslim terrorists. I know that not all Muslims are terrorists, but most terrorists are Muslim.

Pappy’s Rants, April 22 2013:

I read recently………not all muslims are terrorists but most terrorists are muslim.

Ruth King, April 23 2013:

Unfortunately, Obama seems driven by a desire to befriend Muslims and demonize those who recognize that, while not all Muslims are terrorists, most terrorists are Muslims and that radical Islam is a clear, present, and dangerous threat…. Many analysts are now questioning whether the atrocity that befell the citizens of Boston will become the “new normal.” It is clear that future attacks are inevitable as long as our government and the president in particular do not call a spade a spade and begin to take all necessary measures to protect American citizens from the evil deeds of Islamists.

Not one of these claims is backed up by an actual count comparing the number of terrorist threats by non-Muslims to those made by Muslims. That’s what you’d need to be able to make a claim like “most terrorists are Muslims”, at least if you cared about facts. These posters don’t care about facts. They just know what they know because they think they know it, facts be damned.

The rest of us who do care about facts can refer to Alejandro J. Beutel’s yearly report, Data on Post-9/11 Terrorism in the United States. Beutel stacks the deck in favor of finding more Muslim terrorists by including both American and foreign Muslim threats against the United States, while only counting American non-Muslims and leaving foreign non-Muslims out.

I last looked at this dataset two years ago, but with data in through June of 2012 and the war-on-Islam freakout voices rising again, it’s time to take another look. The following are the latest available year-by-year statistics on Muslim versus non-Muslim terrorist threats against the United States:

2002
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 5
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 6

2003
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 2
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 8

2004
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 3
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 4

2005
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 2
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 3

2006
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 7
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 2

2007
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 3
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 4

2008
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 3
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 9

2009
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 11
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 19

2010
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 11
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 32

2011
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 10
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 19

First half of 2012
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American or foreign Muslims: 3
# of terrorist threats against the United States by American non-Muslims: 11

The actual, observable and sourced facts show that in every year, the majority of those making terrorist threats against the United States have been non-Muslims.

5 comments to No, Actually, Most Terrorists Threatening the USA AREN'T Muslims

  • Bill

    Jim, looking over the data set you cite (nice catch, by the way!) I note that the vast majority of non-Muslim terror actors are classified there either as “anti-government” or “white supremacist.” This explains a lot. The usual formal definition of ‘terrorism’ one hears is something along the lines of Politically motivated mass violence perpetrated by a non-governmental group or individual (not sure why governments should get a free pass here, but they do). However, this leaves out fully half of the full definition, which should go on to say where the perpetrator isn’t one of us. By my read, most virulent Islamophobes are also either openly anti-government or implicitly white supremacist, or both (viz Pamela Geller, Alex Jones, or pretty much any tea-bagger or Republican you care to name). Thus, when these people look at the recent history of terrorism in America they don’t count all those many incidents perpetrated by anti-government or white supremacist actors, who are ‘patriots,’ not ‘terrorists.’ When viewed in that twisted light, the data do indeed indicate that the vast majority of terrorist acts in the U.S. are perpetrated by Islamists.

  • Tom

    “There will be, in the next generation or so, a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude, and producing dictatorship without tears, so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies, so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them, but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda or brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution” -Aldous Huxley, 1961

  • BW022

    And your source… the Muslim Public Affairs Council. The paper then lists two original sources and the statement: “Both datasets are supplemented by MPAC’s additional research”. In other words… they took original resource and altered the numbers. It did so without listing the modification or applying them to Muslim groups which the original sources didn’t include.

    Why not just publish the original sources>… oh they both show that Muslims commit most terrorism in the United States? Why not repeat both original studies using the ‘new’ methodology of including non-violent plots?

    Finally… why not divide by the population? Muslims are less than 1.6% of the US population and they still commit more terrorist acts than the other 98.4%?

Leave a Reply

  

  

  

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>