US military group sees Canada Muslims as potential security threat

For the past two months, I have been reporting that the US intelligence community sees the radical fringe in Britain’s Muslim community as “the most likely source of another terrorist spectacular on US soil”. It turns out that the US Pentagon’s Joint Task Force-North, a group that provides military support to federal agencies in domestic security operations, has a different opinion. For it, Muslims residing in Canada present the “greatest potential for foreign terrorists’ access to the homeland”. This is according to a briefing document that the group inadvertently published on the reading room section of its website a couple of weeks ago, only to abruptly remove it last Wednesday. According to InsideDefense, which noticed the report before it was withdrawn, the internal document blames Canadian immigration policies for “creating a favorable environment” for “foreign terrorist opportunities”. It specifically focuses on the country’s eastern Great Lakes area, which lies immediately north of New York, New Hampshire and Vermont, where intelligence operatives have allegedly detected “the largest presence” of “support networks and extremist organizations”. The document also focuses on what it calls “special-interest aliens”, from predominantly Muslim countries, such as Afghanistan, Somalia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, who are singled out in what appears to be an ethnically-based policy of discrimination in counterterrorist investigations. It has been reported that the view of Britain’s Muslim community as “the most likely source of another terrorist spectacular on US soil” has led the CIA to launch an “unprecedented intelligence-gathering operation in Britain”. This inevitably raises the question of the magnitude of similar CIA intelligence operations in Canada’s urban centers. Incidentally, the Joint Task Force-North report, parts of which are marked “for official use only” (FOUO) and “law enforcement sensitive” (LES), also mentions that “Hezbollah presence” has been detected in areas of Mexico.

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Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

4 Responses to US military group sees Canada Muslims as potential security threat

  1. Allan Green says:

    This is very informative, but the tone is offputting. Instead of focusing on the issue – threat posed by networks – we wade into “discrimination” based on ethnicity.

    This is politicizing intel. The only one doing the discriminating, are the Jihadi networks.

  2. intelNews says:

    I may be misinterpreting your comment, but I am personally not in favor of racial profiling in intelligence (or any other kinds of) investigations. Moral issues aside, it doesn’t work. It tends to create more problems than it solves, i.e. inspiring entire ethnic/racial groups to adopt criminal behavior, as well as leading jihadist groups to resort to “substitution”, namely recruiting from population groups that do not fit the racial/ethnic stereotype. There ought to be a lot more discussion about this in law enforcement and intelligence policy circles. [JF]

  3. Allan Green says:

    1) You are assuming this is racial profiling.
    2) Any activity by a distinctive network, is vulnerable to the charge of racial profiling
    3) its a charge loaded with intense political value
    4) hence its not a charge that should be thrown around lightly

    As for the question of does racial profiling work?

    It can work. And it has worked. But it can also not work, and often it has not worked. Again, groups bear traits, if those groups are violent, and the traits can be used to identify them and hence track violence, too bad, if it amounts to racial profiling.

    Now racial profiling gone amok, or done in an abusive way – is wrong.

  4. intelNews says:

    Thanks for your response. I think you’re making some very good points on what is a controversial and complex issue. I guess my main apprehension when it comes to racial (or ethnic) profiling is that it more often than not ends up going “amok, or done in an abusive way”, especially when it is carried out in the shadow of massive security breaches, like 9/11. In essence, it is crucial to avoid criminalizing an entire race or ethnicity, while maintaining control over security. [JF]

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