It's more than strange when a former CIA director and the head of an Islamic advocacy group arrive at the same place on profiling terrorists -- or, rather, not profiling terrorists. I refer to ex-spy chief James Woolsey and executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) Nihad Awad, whose post-Abdulmutallab (the so-called "underwear bomber") statements are startlingly similar.
First, Awad's statement. It is pointed as befits a media-trusted quote-meister - a gig unchanged, shockingly, by Awad's past links to Hamas and other jihadist groups, and CAIR's status as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terror financing trial and Muslim Brotherhood affiliate. "First look at behavior, not at faith or skin color," Awad told the New York Times. "Then spend what it takes to obtain more bomb-sniffing dogs, to install more sophisticated bomb-detection equipment and to train security personnel in identifying the behavior of real terror suspects."
Operative message: Ignore Islam. Watch for suspicious behavior and beef up the security gauntlet. That's a sure-fire way to deny the existence of jihad and never end it, choosing instead to submit indefinitely to its untenable siege, equal parts frightening, humiliating and inconvenient. But -- and this is where things get really disturbing -- Woolsey's idea of deterrent strategy is no different.
"I don't think we should focus just on people from the Middle East," he told National Review Online, euphemistically dismissing the heart of the Islamic world. "But generally speaking, we are talking about males in their late teens to 40 or so. I don't see any reason why one shouldn't put young men under particularly rigorous scrutiny and double-check all of them."
All of them? To Woolsey, this counts as being tough-minded. "You really have to be an extremist with respect to political correctness to think you can't treat young men differently from grandmothers."
He added: "My family, we're all WASPS. All three of my sons say we should be scrutinizing people like them: guys in their 20s and 30s. They say they'd be glad to go through three checks at the airport."