Friday, March 11, 2011

Keith Ellison's Flawed Testimony

Keith Ellison's Flawed Testimony
During his testimony before the House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Muslim radicalization Thursday, Rep. Keith Ellison continued to repeat the flawed findings and interpretations of two studies issued in recent months.

Ellison, a Minnesota Democrat and one of two Muslims in Congress, cited a study that said 40 percent of terror plots since 9/11 had been prevented by Muslim Americans. That was a reference to a report by the Muslim Public Affairs Committee that actually claimed that almost one-third of al-Qaida-related terror plots were thwarted with help of the Muslim community.

However, as IPT reported in December, that study overstated the role of community assistance and selectively defined a terrorist incident. It also ignored the value of standard law enforcement techniques, such as the role of informants.

Ellison also mentioned another study released last month by the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security in North Carolina. That study said there had been a drop in 2010 in terrorism-related incidents involving Muslims.

But IPT pointed out last month that a closer reading of that study revealed that “with Muslims comprising about 1 percent of the population, it is clear that Muslims are engaging in terrorism at a greater rate than non-Muslims.” Although the number of terror incidents tied to Muslims did decline from 2009 to 2010, the total for 2010 was still higher than in all but one year since 9/11.
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