The FBI believes that 10 percent of mosques in the U.S. are preaching extremism, reports Ronald Kessler of Newsmax.com. The anonymous counter-terrorism official interviewed by Kessler describes the number as a conservative estimate.
Some researchers have estimated a much higher number. A group of experts launched the Mapping Sharia Project, which surveyed about 200 mosques and Islamic institutions.
They found that 80% of the mosques visited had extremist literature.
“Rarely do we have them [the Muslim community] coming to us and saying, ‘There are three guys in the community that we’re very concerned about,” Kessler quotes one FBI agent as saying.
“They want to fix it inside the community. They’re a closed group, a very, very closed group. It’s part of their culture that they want to settle the problem within their own communities. They’ve actually said that to us, which I then go crazy over.”
One FBI agent told Kessler that when he met with the leader of a Muslim organization, he was told by the leader that they wouldn’t inform them about extremists because, in his words, “We would lose our constituency.”
The article was based on interviews with counter-terrorism personnel by Kessler for his latest book, “The Terrorist Watch: Inside the Desperate Race to Stop the Next Attack.”
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Ten Percent of U.S. Mosques Preach Extremism