How Bigotry Is Making Us Less Safe

Spencer Ackerman commits journalism, and describes how a culture of ‘fear’–which seems a polite term for bigoted suspicion–is convincing Muslim agents and analysts to leave the FBI. Needless to say, this is very stupid.

One of the reasons the FBI was able to take down the mob (once the leadership decided to focus on organized crime…) is that their agents were not far removed from the communities in which organized crime had its roots. The old saw was that the CIA recruited from the Ivies and the FBI from Fordham (truthfully, the FBI probably got the better end of the deal…). This meant that there were enough FBI agents who knew the ‘hyphenated communities’, that had an understanding of what happened in those communities, and importantly, had bullshit detectors. They could figure out who the knuckleheads were and who the players were. They could also blend in reasonably well in undercover work.

If the FBI is serious about stopping ‘radical Islamic terrorism’ in the U.S., they’re going to need people who know those communities, who can figure out which young guy is harmless and which one is a real threat. Also, the blending in thing too. A moderately conservative white guy most likely isn’t going to cut it.

Those who forget history and all that…

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One Response to How Bigotry Is Making Us Less Safe

  1. anonymous says:

    The primary reason why the mob was defeated was that corporations became powerful enough to displace it from many of its core activities, and that they were even more ruthless than the mob in their practices (the mob is still bound to some set of ethical standards of conduct, but corporations have no such limitations). Infiltration was a tool for achieving it once powerful enough interests were there to drive the process.

    Radical Islamic terrorism will similarly be defeated only when it is in somebody’s actual interest to do so. That doesn’t seem to be the case now, quite the opposite.

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