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May 21, 2009

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what REALLY dooms us is LINKROT!!!

ooohhhh noooo!!!!! Yglesias's link is like two sites ago!! Ezra's promotion to WaPo goes unrecognized!!!!

[ahem. sorry. we will shortly regain control of Francis's fingers.]

oh look! TNC now blogs at The Atlantic!!!

[please read the foregoing with the voice of Mr. Bill running through your head. The nice men who have the really long-sleeved two-button white coats will be here shortly to take Francis's doppelganger away for a nice long rest.]

oooh noooo!!!

.....

"Earlier, I thought we should send prisoners into space, but that was before I realized that that would allow them to join forces with the Klingons."

But eventually we become friends with the Klingons.

That isn't possible with Islamosupervillains.

The true worry is that these hypersuperterrists are really Borg: they're relentless, unstoppable, and resistance is futile. And their robotic side is allied with Skynet. Oh noes.

Ha Ha Ha! An attempting bombing of my synagogue! Oh what a great opportunity for satire and jokes!

What's new? Isn't it 35 years ago? I mean, the NYPD has a Radical Squad, which breaks with tradition by not only acknowledging but cooperating with federal law enforcement. The locals get all the nuts into one corral, like iron filings on a sheet of paper being dragged around by a magnet underneath, and then a Fibbie stands up during open meeting and smacks his fist into his palm over the need to bomb the Jews. NYPD supplies bogus explosive, bogus blasting caps and bogus fuses, and then at zero hour a million lights go on and the two agencies round up everyone they've managed to identify and throw them directly into prison.

I take it back. I see no mention that the bombs were sabotaged so that the moment they were armed, they'd go off, and THEN everyone would be arrested. So things have changed from back in the olden days.

Serious trouble is what you get when D-FENS from Falling Down decides to blow up a synagogue, and having nothing better to do after being laid off, road-trips around New England picking up parts and ingredients, assembles the device himself, uses it, and never writes or speaks a word about any of it because he trusts no one and has no sense of personal ego. THAT'S bad times.

This is more like Different Day, Same Stuff... "Remember when nutbags used to form clubs, and elect officers, and use Robert's Rules to decide when potty breaks were to be scheduled? Man, we busted buku domestic terrorists, tell you what."

Surely the solution is obvious: we must find the unlikeliest of heroes, someone small of stature but stout of heart, able to withstand the whisperings and blandishments of the accused supervillains, and they, accompanied by a motley band of heroes and comic relief, including at least one particularly stalwart and possibly romantically connected companion, must then bear the accused supervillains through unknown perils and cast them into the fires of Mount Doom.

I suggest that we start looking for likely candidates in New Zealand; in fact, I volunteer to go looking for volunteers in return for my expenses.

If it wasn't ObWi I'd think it was an article from The Onion, that's all I'm saying. One of the first national security jokes I remember hearing was "How can you tell the Fibbie at an open community meeting? He's the one with the ponytail down his back, a gorse bush on his chin and a lit stick of dynamite in his hand, yelling 'I'm falling asleep with this sewing circle crap! Let's go identify a target based on ethnic, racial, or religious criteria, and blow it up! I got all the boom-boom we need! Who's with me!"

Basically, in other news, a hundred thousand petty larcenies weren't committed, hundreds of miles of levees didn't fail, and tens of thousands of buildings across America weren't reduced to rubble by ACME No-Physics-Required terrorist devices. Right? I could be wrong about this, it's early yet, but so far I'm correct, yes?

I assume that if it's too dangerous to move people at Guantanamo to the United States, it must be much too dangerous to allow these jihadists to run loose in our prisons.

"In fact, I can't think of a single thing to do that would not make matters worse. "

Congratulations! You're a libertarian!

Fence off half of Alaska and turn it into a Gulag.

But then they would conspire with the Russians (one can see Russia from Alaska, you know). They'd be given access to some rusty Russky subs and attack the petting zoo in Power Cable Nebraska with Islamofascist Coranic Bearded Missiles. The only safe way is feeding them to a shoggoth (ask Chain-Eye for the key to his undisclosed location where he should keep some).

ZOMG! These terrorists are so devious that they've been able to convince POTUS to fly them into the United States:

"A top Al Qaeda suspect held at Guantanamo Bay will be sent to New York for trial, an Obama administration official said Wednesday."

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2009/05/20/guantanamo-detainee-come-nyc-trial/

More seriously, WTF is Obama thinking?

"President Obama told human rights advocates at the White House on Wednesday that he was mulling the need for a “preventive detention” system that would establish a legal basis for the United States to incarcerate terrorism suspects who are deemed a threat to national security but cannot be tried, two participants in the private session said."

Super.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/21/us/politics/21obama.html?hpw

Ha Ha Ha! An attempting bombing of my synagogue! Oh what a great opportunity for satire and jokes!

Well, this one could prove legit, but it sounds awfully like yet another case of the FBI "informant" using fabrication and entrapment to hype up some random bunch of weirdos. For all we know, they thought they were humouring a lunatic -- it's happened before.

I've yet to see the slightest indication of a domestic terror threat in the US, other than far-right nutjobs that is. And long may that be the case (apart from the far-right nutjobs).

The problem is that we're treating this as a law enforcement issue, like the effete, limp-wristed liberals we are. Well I say enough of that.

We need to invade upstate New York, kill its leaders, and convert its people to Christianity.

We'll be out in 6, 8 weeks, tops. It'll pay for itself. We'll be greeted as liberators.

Some reason why my markup isn't recognised? I meant to italicise AJ's comment.

Obama is sucking balls on the single most important issue in American politics today: the not-so-slow and steady construction of a security state. What a disappointment he must be to his friends.

"and then a Fibbie stands up during open meeting and smacks his fist into his palm over the need to bomb the Jews."

That's probably why my buddies in the Michigan Militia told me, "Just look for the idiot who's urging you to rob a bank; That's your FBI mole, right there!" Made them really stand out among all the guys who just liked to go out in the woods and play soldier in cammo.

I hear this really caused problems during the OK bombing investigation; The bombers had gotten help from an Aryan nation outfit called "Elohim City", but they had to downplay it, because it turned out the help had come from the government's own fake nutjobs, not the real ones. Really embarrassing.

"Some reason why my markup isn't recognised?"

new rules: HTML is all stripped out, now. welcome to this week's Obsidian Wings!

Anyone check with Guam? America Samoa?

The cutting people up idea only works with certain crimes ... see the Book of Judges.

"he was mulling the need for a “preventive detention” system that would establish a legal basis for the United States to incarcerate terrorism suspects who are deemed a threat to national security but cannot be tried"

also of note:

"They said Mr. Obama told them he was thinking about “the long game” — how to establish a legal system that would endure for future presidents."

Crikey, that's worse than Bush.

Brett Bellmore and byrningman are right-- it's too early to know in this instance, of course, but in the past a lot of this stuff has been driven by government agents getting stupid people to do crazy things.

If they wanted to, they could get about 1/3 of Republicans in Congress to agree to blow up Planned Parenthood offices. What would be the point?

"I can't think of a single thing to do that would not make matters worse."

Strange how that leaves you with what we're doing now; even stranger is taking the Panglossian application to the Bush Administration of all places* as legitimate news discussion.

*I mean, for christ's sake...

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/enemywithin/view/

That's a good Frontline piece on a previous case in CA a few years back, showing how a dodgy informant under immense pressure to find hard evidence can lead you to a farcical conviction.

The FBI pays some guy for months on end to be an informant, and up the food chain somebody wants a result for that expenditure and potentially wasted man-hours. The pressure to make a case becomes enormous, and if the suspects are oddball down-and-outs who can't afford a decent lawyer, as they probably are, it's pretty easy to get some kind of 'confession' out of them through 'strenuous' interrogation.

Certainly the haste with which politicians from the mayor up to the governor are scrambling over each other to deny these suspects the presumption of innocence is not a reassuring sign. That also is a hallmark of previous contrived investigations, as in the CA one, above.

Eh, with conspiracy law in this country, they don't need a confession: They can nail you if you do anything to materially advance the 'conspiracy', even if it's something perfectly legal, and you did it for perfectly innocent reasons. They just have their informant say you did it for the conspiracy, which he never bothered mentioning to you.

Bought a ticket to fly to Pheonix for the weekend? You were going there to rob a bank. Prove you weren't.

"We need to invade upstate New York, kill its leaders, and convert its people to Christianity."

No way, man. The staties will give speeding tickets to all our Abrahms Main Battle Tanks and we'll spend the next decade paying them off. Better off nuking them from orbit, it's the only way to be sure.

I'd suggest killing them, cutting them into pieces, and shipping their parts to parts unknown immediately

You obviously haven't obtained sufficient nethack-fu, or you would know that "shipping their parts" is just storing up trouble for later.

The cut up parts need to be eaten to really get rid of them. Otherwise you risk a generation of Zombie/Troll-terrists, which is 'way worse.

Now, which patriotic GOPer will step up and volunteer for their part in making the USA safer? Ketchup optional.

Josh Marshall's breezy acceptance of the recent conviction of the "Liberty Six" is really offensive, given that he's making the point that their case was entirely a cobbled-up entrapment of goofs compared as distinct from this recent case.

And AJ: Only someone wilfully obtuse and completely ignorant of Hilzoy's posts could even imagine that this post is making light of the idea of bombing your synagogue. Lose the fake outrage, please.

"This raises the difficult question: what should we do with these would-be terrorists while they await trial? And if they are convicted, what then?"

Well, if one is inclined to believe Elisabeth Bumiller's anonymous sources, the recidivism rate for prisoners released from Guantanamo is only 1 in 7. So maybe the morons who planted the fake bomb by the synagogue would stand a better chance of becoming productive members of society if we sent them to Guantanamo instead of Singsing?

If I were a cynic, I might note that occasional "terrorist scares" like this one are great for keeping the public submissive to the unjust activities of the "national security" apparatus.

The best response? Keep it in perspective, don't wet your pants, and yes, mock the cartoonish machinations of the "terrorists" and the cops who managed to trap them.

Let's bury them with the nuclear waste in Yucca Flats and see what Harry Reid has to say then.

Nell: I feel compelled to point out that the AJ-without-punctuation isn't me. Seems to have been a drive-by.

"If I were a cynic, I might note that occasional "terrorist scares" like this one are great for keeping the public submissive to the unjust activities of the "national security" apparatus."

Today's a big day: a (black!) muslim bombing plot, and we got treated to some Pentagon FUD by the Times.

Thanks for the clarification, A.J.

With all due respect to hilzoy (and regular ObWi visitors/readers by now know the full measure of my respect and admiration for hilzoy), AJ at 2:29AM, "Ha Ha Ha! An attempting bombing of my synagogue! Oh what a great opportunity for satire and jokes!" has a point. It doesn't diminish the surreal head scratching of where-oh-where to put dangerous terrorists, but, speaking as an American Jew, the humor's been pretty much completely wrung out of anybody planning to blow up a temple.

Ok, completely.

OT, but related. I don't know where else to put it, and I think it needs to be shared:


Obama apparently is considering creating the legal framework for a system of "preventative detention." No habeus corpus for those so seized!

http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/05/21/obama-preventive-detention/


(I had to include the link separately because TypePad is being very cranky at the moment.)

Let's bury them with the nuclear waste in Yucca Flats and see what Harry Reid has to say then.

No, no! Don't you know anything about science? Nuclear waste would cause mutations, which would give the terrorists even more dangerous super powers. Of course there's always the danger of radiation in space doing the same thing. OTOH, I don't think I've heard of any super villain who got his powers by being thrown into an erupting volcano, so maybe that will do the trick.

xanax: I did not mean to kid about the actual plot. If these guys had not in fact been accused of anything serious, I would not have written this post the way I did. But I'm really sorry if it came off that way.

[[ a (black!) muslim bombing plot]]

Except I'm not sure it was "muslim" in any significant way. One of the "conspiritors" was from Haiti, which is hardly a hot-bed of Islam. The only connection to Islam I've heard of is that one of the men lived in Afghanistan and was appalled by the bombing of civilians by the US military.

Is there any other evidence making this a "muslim" plot?

"Brett Bellmore and byrningman are right-- it's too early to know in this instance, of course, but in the past a lot of this stuff has been driven by government agents getting stupid people to do crazy things."

I'm actually quite sympathetic to the idea that the FBI and/or other law enforcement agencies shouldn't be greasing the skids for other folks to do crazy illegal stuff. No matter how weird they are.

That said, the "crazy things" in this case are "blow up a synagogue" and "shoot down military aircraft".

The folks in question own some responsibility for their actions. When someone says "Let's blow up some Jews, look I have a bomb right here", you can always just say "No, thanks".

"The cut up parts need to be eaten to really get rid of them."

Actually: no. It might be catching. I think they need to be launched into the Sun, so that their body-part-bits will dissociate into individual atoms. Hopefully, at the atomic level, this won't be catching.

But likely, we'd all be irradiated by light coming from electron transitions from those body parts, and then we'd all be converted into Islamofascist zombies.

Personally, my sense of the Lurking German Cattle Cars -- you do know that the war's been over for longer than the USSR existed AS A COUNTRY, right? Does threescore and ten ring any bells? -- has worn so thin that physicists at CERN keep borrowing it to run experiments in their particle accellerators.

Exactly how many American synagogues have been levelled by high explosives in the last decade? No pipe bombs need apply. If you saw the before-and-after photos of the Golden Mosque, that's what I'm talking about. Scores of worshippers homogenized and a building reduced to some kind of ancient library recently uncovered by archaeologists. Actually blown to bits. Is the number trending up or down? Cause if it's going up, I apologize for my levity.

I have to agree with Brett on the topic of government moles as potential instigators.
We had the same problem over here. There are organized neonazis over here who are perfectly willing to commit violent crimes especially against Jewish targets (that often are now fortified for that reason). The Verfassungsschutz (literally 'Constitution Protection') planted so many moles in some of those groups that it became virtually impossible to (legally) prosecute them. At some time up to a third of the leadership of the NPD (the by now oldest and most influential Neonazi party*) was rumored to be moles. Given the real threat posed by these groups the state preferred to keep the (still undetected) moles in place and to abandon the formal party ban process** for the time being

*it claims not to be because that would make them automatically illegal (we still follow the Nuremberg precedent there)
**Parties can only be banned by our Supreme Court and only in cases of proven intent to overthrow democracy***. This happened only two times since the war. The 'victims' were the SRP (effectively a refounded NSDAP) and the KPD (the communist party. This decision remains still controversial and newfounded commie parties are not seriously considered for banning).
***the Weimar constitution offically allowed a democratic suicide, the Grundgesetz explicitly forbids it.

Oh, yeah, I very much agree that, even at the urging of federal infiltrators, people should not commit acts which are malum in se. (Wrong in and of themselves.) If they do, they should be held accountable. If they do at the urging of federal officers, those officers should be viewed as co-conspirators, and held responsible, too. Urging somebody else to rob a bank, or blow up a building, is very much the sort of think which ought to be strict liablity, after all. If it does blow up, the fact that you meant to stop them just in time shouldn't count for squat.

OTOH, I very much dislike the tactic of infiltrating groups with politics out of favor with whoever is running the Justice department at the moment, having your infiltrator initiate some kind of criminal conspiracy, and then arresting the members of that group on the basis of a conspiracy they didn't originate.

And for which we have only the infiltrator's word they were even aware of...

We had some highly embarassing occasions were an already running investigation or even trial had to be abandoned because suddenly the police began to withhold evidence in order to protect the identity of its infiltrators* or it turned out that the crimes were instigated by them (or it could not be proven that they were not). Unlike in some other countries our officers of the law are not allowed to participate in any actual criminal activity (even if they have no part in coming up with the plans). The use of agents provocateur is strictly forbidden (does not change the fact that it sometimes happenes anyway).

*or true criminals that went on the payroll for extra gain but are not formal state employees/officials.

"Except I'm not sure it was "muslim" in any significant way. One of the "conspiritors" was from Haiti, which is hardly a hot-bed of Islam. The only connection to Islam I've heard of is that one of the men lived in Afghanistan and was appalled by the bombing of civilians by the US military.

Is there any other evidence making this a "muslim" plot?"

It's not clear to me if you're aiming this question at me, or at the police officers and journalists who thought it was important to discuss the religions of the men accused.

FWIW, I don't trust the timing of these arrests any more than I trust Bumiller's sources.

By the way, while the comment itself is superficially topical (though in fact it's just a reasonably clever choice of two sentences from the original post to use as a comment), the 4:40 AM post appears to be sp@m, an attempt to increase the Google ranking of the commenter's linked website for their commercially relevant pseudonym.

"I very much dislike the tactic of infiltrating groups with politics out of favor with whoever is running the Justice department at the moment"

I have friends, anti-war and peace activists, who have run into this from the other side of the fence.

I suspect I've run into "moles" in political work that I've done.

All of that said, I hope that groups whose idea of meaningful and useful action is blowing up a synagogue are, and always remain, on the list of those whose politics are out of favor with whoever is running justice.

Feel free to expand that to targeting anyone based on race, religion, what have you.

If your idea of a solution to your problems is terrorizing other people, you'll find my sympathy quite limited.

One other thing: Russell is, of course, right* that these idiots are responsible for their own actions. No one is, or should be, debating that. That said, I'm not entirely happy with the FBI for allowing these guys to take the plot along as far as they did. No one got hurt, which is great, but that's not the sort of thing you can guarantee. (Two bystanders just died here in Berkeley when a police car chase got out of control.) What might have happened if one of these synagogue bombers decided to bring along his gun, or sweeten the pot with a few extra bombs of his own?

*this phrase should probably be promoted to acronym.

"Exactly how many American synagogues have been levelled by high explosives in the last decade?"

The path to the German Cattle Cars didn't require high explosives, arson and good old fashioned thuggery did the trick just fine.

Arson against synagogues, black churches, and other similar targets is far from uncommon. Over the last decade, you're probably talking about incidents numbering in the low hundreds.

Why not just load them all into ships, and maroon them somewhere, like Australia.?

Speaking as another American Jew, I think Hilzoy's post is funny and does not in any way belittle the threat posed by synagogue bombers, any more than Mark Twain belittled racism by satirizing white interactions with a character named Nigger Jim.

I have observed that many non-Jews get very embarrassed when they, e.g., innocently serve non-kosher food, schedule a meeting for Kol Nidre, or mention the Shoah in less than hushed tones. My impression is that they have been bawled out for such things by oversensitive members of my tribe. Some of my fellow Jews need to get over themselves. Standing up for your rights is one thing, demanding that everyone share your priorities is quite another. There is no reason to think that Hilzoy is any less horrified than the average Jew by the idea of blowing up a place of worship -- no matter whose.

Just to add to the emerging chorus, I also detected in the post no belittling of the threat posed by domestic terrorists or by other people inclined to commit murderous outrages. I say this as one of the many Jewish commenters here, but of course the threat and its seriousness is in no way contingent on how it might apply to my fellow Red Sea Pedestrians. And I think that Hilzoy's rebuttal at 1:54 PM, in which she points out that her satire of the Senate's Gitmo position only makes sense if the people arrest are viewed as dangerous, should suffice for anyone still confused.

Also, while I find Bony Baloney's posts largely incoherent and have been reluctant to criticize what I don't fully understand, but to the extent that the meaning I can extract from Bony's 3:10PM comment is that we should disregard the threat posed by violent antisemitism in the modern world, I am restrained by the posting rules from expressing the full extent of my disagreement.

First, I thought hilzoy's post was entertaining, and imagine she'd have written the same if the target of these guys had been Grand Central Station.

Second, there are ALREADY lots of Muslims in our prison-industrial gulag. The Nation of Islam is popular among the African-American population, for those who "get religion" whilst serving time. (Whites get religion often enough as well -- just not usually Islam.)

:: As part of the plot, the men intended to fire guided stinger missiles at military aircraft at Stewart International Airport, officials said. ::

Uh huh.

The gap between their intentions and any actual threat to those military aircraft being...

that little detail of the guided stinger missiles.

"you do know that the war's been over for longer than the USSR existed AS A COUNTRY, right?"

Actually, no. From Wikipedia: "The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia from 1922 to 1991." Subtracting 1922 from 1991 produces the number 69.

WWII ended in 1945; subtracting 1945 from 2009 produces the number 64.

(Admittedly, this is a nitpicking point compared to everyone else's points on the subject, but I'm too obsessive to leave such an obvious nit unpicked.)

All of that said, I hope that groups whose idea of meaningful and useful action is blowing up a synagogue violence are, and always remain, on the list of those whose politics are out of favor with whoever is running justice.

Feel free to expand that to targeting anyone based on race, religion, what have you.

Fixed that for you. I see no reason that any kind of political violence should be tolerated. It doesn't matter if it targets some specific group or is completely random. It doesn't matter how well justified the perpetrators think they are. Violence isn't, and shouldn't be, part of the political process.

@Jeff: "Is there any other evidence making this a "muslim" plot?"

Hmph. Plainly, someone needs to work on their reading comprehension. I mean, Hilzoy spelled it out plainly enough - these are would-be TERRORISTS...

Nell @5:21 PM:
I'm sure you're aware of the proud tradition of FBI sting operations in which nudniks mouthing off about their terrorist ambitions are offered high-tech guided missiles with which to carry them out. This American Life had a very good episode on one such incident four years ago (episode 292, from July 2005, in the event my html hyperlink goes kablooie as they so often have lately).

The problem being, as many people in this thread have already pointed out, that just because the FBI is making it as easy as possible for them to apparently realize their previously absurd and possibly insincere terrorist notions doesn't absolve them from having such notions or from leaping at the chance once it is dangled in front of them. Where to draw the line between entrapment and exposure of the accuseds' true natures is not an easy question.

@Mona: "Second, there are ALREADY lots of Muslims in our prison-industrial gulag. The Nation of Islam is popular among the African-American population, for those who "get religion" whilst serving time. (Whites get religion often enough as well -- just not usually Islam.)"

This is could be viewed as nitpicking, and perhaps shouldn't be seen as detracting from the general point, but there are sufficient doctrinal differences between NoI and orthodox Islam for the argument to be made that NoI is not Islamic. NoI teachings are flat-out heresy from a mainstream Islamic perspective, in that they deny core tenets of the faith. There is a great deal of shared liturgy and tenets, but many can and do argue that NoI is not Islam.

One can argue we're in No True Scotsman territory here, and I suppose we are, but NoI is to Islam very much like a sect denying that Jesus was God incarnate would be to Christianity. It's debatable if that's a bright enough line to make distinctions with, but a the very least one ought to be very aware that "NoI is Muslim" is not a non-controversial statement.

@Warren Terra:

"The problem being, as many people in this thread have already pointed out, that just because the FBI is making it as easy as possible for them to apparently realize their previously absurd and possibly insincere terrorist notions doesn't absolve them from having such notions or from leaping at the chance once it is dangled in front of them. Where to draw the line between entrapment and exposure of the accuseds' true natures is not an easy question."

This is very true, but I think it understates the problem with such sting operations. I grew up in the rural Midwest. At a high school graduation party of a friend, the following joke was told, and greeted with a round of appreciative laughter:

Q: How do you keep niggers out of your back yard?
A: Hang one out front.

I personally have zero doubt that neither the teller nor the laughers shall ever commit or even conspire to commit race-based murder. I also have zero doubt that they could be cajoled into entering into such a conspiracy, or even the act itself, by convincing enablers (sincere or otherwise) under the appropriate circumstances. While it's true that they would presumably always have the option to just say no, it's also true that without a provoker their deep-rooted prejudice would not gain outlet. One can argue that these sting operations are a firebreak, and in some cases providing an entrapping enabler will remove willing cannon fodder from a sincere one yet to come... but this sort of law enforcement seems dangerously close to attempting to circuitously punish thought crimes.

(Yeah, yeah, I've got moral luck in mind when writing the above.)

@NV: The suspects in the NY case are Muslims, period, not Nation of Islam.

Your comment on Mona's comment seems to assume that all or most prison conversion to Islam these days is to the NoI. It's not, and it hasn't been that way for decades.

Never mind, disregard my previous comment, or re-direct it to Mona; I somehow skipped over her reference to NoI and thought she was referring to Islam in general.

My point, to the extent I had one, is that it is no longer a rarity for African-Americans to be traditional Muslims rather than members of the Nation of Islam.

Nell wrote: My point, to the extent I had one, is that it is no longer a rarity for African-Americans to be traditional Muslims rather than members of the Nation of Islam.

First, let me say I am perfectly aware that NoI is considered heretical by many Muslims. (Elijah Mohammed was way, way out there vis-a-vis mainstream Islam.)But African-Americans convert to multiple species of Islam while in prison -- the NoI was just preferred for the past several decades among many blacks who -- just as white prisoners so frequently do, see, e.g. Charles Colson -- turn all religious once locked up.

But what is the fear among the wingnuts? That NoI Islam will be totally displaced by the "orthodox" version if we lock up convicted Islamic terrorists in supermax prisons? That is preposterous, given the extreme isolation and insanity-inducing conditions of these prisons.

I wasn't addressing the fear of wingnuts. I was only addressing the actual situation of many African-Americans, who are converting to real Islam inside and outside of prisons in larger numbers than they did when Malcolm X was in prison.

Will we ever tolerate each other? Ever?

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