Donald Trump is an inelegant speaker with a crude vocabulary and a simplistic attitude about nearly everything, but if you hone and de-generalize and re-phrase what he said to ITV’s Good Morning, Britain about Muslim complicity in terrorism, you have to admit that he has half a point. I don’t like admitting this, but not everything Trump says is 100% nutso.
Trump basically told the ITV guys that Muslims in Britain and the U.S. are purposely ignoring suspected terrorists or fugitives. I’m sorry but he’s almost certainly not wrong when it comes to the tiny but not insignificant portion of Muslims who support or sympathize with ISIS goals.
Trump’s broad-brush thinking and sloppy sentence construction implies that many if not most Muslims may be guilty of looking the other way, which is an undoubtedly wrong and unwise conclusion, but there seems to be little doubt that a tiny sliver of persons within any average Muslim expat community support ISIS, and that these persons are almost certainly keeping quiet about what they may have seen or heard about the activities or whereabouts of the “wrong” ones. It follows that friends and family of these persons would probably also keep mum.
To say there are considerable feelings of tribal loyalty among Muslims living in non-Muslim countries is not an unreasonable assumption. Not every expression of concern or caution about the doctrine of Islam is necessarily synonymous with bigotry and Islamophobia.
As I reminded a few months ago, “An 11.17.15 Pew poll states that a small but noteworthy percentage of Muslims in nations with significant Muslim populations support ISIS.
“4% of the Arab population in Israel, or roughly 42,000 souls, have a favorable view of that fiendish organization. 5% and 8% of Arabs in Gaza and the West Bank are also pro-ISIS. Positive ISIS numbers among Nigerian Muslims is around 20%, and 12% of Malaysian Muslims feel the same way. And you know that a certain percentage of the ‘don’t know’ crowd are also pro-ISIS — they just don’t want to lay their cards on the table.
“The bottom line is that a very small percentage of Muslims in any region support ISIS, and that the possibility of a Muslim community harboring or shielding ISIS militants is not, at the very least, a crazy racist notion.”
Remember the summary that “Waking Up” author Sam Harris offered last year on Real Time with Bill Maher, which is that 20% of the 1.6 billion Muslims in the world are composed of Islamists, who hold with the Jihadists in some ways but don’t believe in terrorism. Within this 20% you also have your actual nutty Jihadists, who comprise a micro-thin slice of the pie.
Beyond those two groups you have conservative Muslims, many of whom apparently believe in subjugating women, persecuting gays, committing honor killings of women who’ve been raped and even murdering Muslims who abandon the faith.
Trump quote: “They’re protecting each other, but they’re really doing very bad damage — they have to open up to society and report the bad ones. When they see trouble, they have to report it. They are absolutely not reporting it, and that’s a big problem.”