Nearly ninety-five percent of individuals on a Justice Department list of “terrorism and terrorism-related convictions” from 2001-2010 included some elements of preemptive prosecution, according to a study by attorneys which they say is the first to “directly examine and critique preemptive prosecution and its abuses.”
The study is called “Inventing Terrorists: The Lawfare of Preemptive Prosecution” [PDF]. It was released by Project SALAM, which stands for Support and Legal Advocacy for Muslims, and the National Coalition to Protect Civil Freedoms (NCPCF), a coalition of groups that “oppose profiling, preemptive prosecution and prisoner abuse.”
What does “preemptive prosecution” look like? Well, try to put yourself in the shoes of a young Muslim. 18, 19, or 20 years old. You watch the news. You may be more politically literate the most, particularly on foreign affairs. And you see Muslims getting killed by the United States overseas on a daily basis.
Naturally, over time you begin to develop radical feelings. (This is now known as blowback.) You join an Internet forum of people who share your newly developed radicalism. And the topics of discussion bolster the collective ire and radicalization of all involved.
Eventually you make a good friend. You meet in real life. Coincidentally (wink, wink) he just happens to lives in your city. He may have an interesting background. For example, he may be a refugee. He may be the relative of a martyr. He or his family may have been victims of the American war on terror.
You and your new friend start attending a mosque and praying together. You continue your discussions on the unjust wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen. You read about innocent people killed daily by drones. And the media inundates you with reports of torture and abuse out of Guantanamo Bay. The environment you have been inducted into is a further breeding ground for radicalism.
Then one day your new friend suggests that you commit a violent act. You may not even want to. But the rationale is sound: the United States has committed war crimes. The act would be legitimate. You would be a martyr. The response would be justified. Your new friend also says he knows people affiliated with real terror group. Militants that can provide explosives. After a long period of rage, ire, abuse and feeling powerless you decide to commit to an act of war. You consent to the violent plan. The trap is set.
Your friend talks to his foreign contact to acquire the materials. The explosives are delivered. You take them to an agreed point to carry out your attack: a public gathering, a park, or a mall. Upon your arrival the police rush in. They are sporting black balaclavas pointing rifles in your face. You’re under arrest.
You’re a terrorist, now. Your life is over. Your friend was an informant all along. There were no explosives. They were an inert dummy. Even the forum where you met your friend — the place that contributed most to your radicalization — turned out to be an FBI honeypot.
The entire terror plot, from the planting of radical seeds, to singling out vulnerable individuals, to religious rhetoric and the focus on (justified) feelings of abuse, have all been set up and fostered by the FBI. They pulled the long con with a finesse that would put the professional grifter to shame.
That’s the modus operandi of the FBI. This, more or less, how 95% of “terrorist attacks” have been prevented. Few of these individuals would have engaged in an attempt at violence if not guided by the bit by the FBI.
That is your “terror threat.” That is how the state manufactures terrorism.