The New York Times reports:
WASHINGTON — The Republican who will head the House committee that oversees domestic security is planning to open a Congressional inquiry into what he calls “the radicalization” of the Muslim community when his party takes over the House next year.
Representative Peter T. King of New York, who will become the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said he was responding to what he has described as frequent concerns raised by law enforcement officials that Muslim leaders have been uncooperative in terror investigations.
He cited the case of Najibullah Zazi, an Afghan man and a legal resident of the United States, who was arrested last year for plotting to bomb the New York subway system. Mr. King said that Ahmad Wais Afzali, an imam in Queens who had been a police informant, had warned Mr. Zazi before his arrest that he was the target of a terror investigation.
But U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said earlier this year:
Members of the American Muslim community have been – and continue to be – strong partners in fighting this emerging threat. They have regularly denounced terrorist acts and those who carry them out. And they have provided critical assistance to law enforcement in helping to disrupt terrorist plots and combat radicalization.
These individuals have consistently – and correctly – expressed deep concern about the recruitment of their youth by terrorist groups. Many members of the community have taken proactive steps to stop the recruitment of their youth by terrorist groups. Just recently, a group of prominent American Muslims joined together in a video to repudiate the tactics employed by radicalized militants to recruit young Muslims via the Internet.
There needs to be more recognition of these efforts and of the losses suffered in the Muslim community here and around the world. Many of the victims of terror attacks by al-Shabaab, al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and other terrorist groups are innocent Muslims.
King's hearings are nothing more than an opportunity to further divide the American people along religious and political lines. These hearings will only create unnecessary fear and mistrust. Democrats and King's GOP colleagues on the committee should consider boycotting any such hearings and the administration should do whatever is legally possibile not to cooperate.
The hearings proposed by King bring to mind the Salem witch trials and the McCarthy hearings, dark periods in this land. We should never forgot the lessons of those experiences. The U.S. House of Representatives should not be used as a venue for religious or political persecution.
As people of faith, we are called to speak out against these kinds of injustices. Call your Congress member, write a letter to the editor, inform members of your house of worship and ask them to take a public stand against these hearings, and use your voice to decry this assault on religious freedom at every opportunity.