The segment hosted by Pete Hegseth was about why terrorist groups like Al-Shabaab (Al-Qaedaâ€™s branch in Somalia) and the Islamic State have an exceptional level of success in recruiting Somali-Americans.
CAIR-MN Executive Director Jaylani Hussein answered by saying:
â€œThe Minnesota Muslim community has been working hard to address recruitment by the Al-Shabaab terror group and has achieved results, in that there has not been any new known recruits in the past few yearsâ€¦Treating the Muslim community as suspect only harm relations with law enforcement and alienates and stigmatizes our community.â€
The spin lies in that CAIR is talking only about Al-Shabaab to give the impression that the Somali terrorist recruitment problem is a thing of the past. What it didnâ€™t mention is that the reason the radicalized Somalis arenâ€™t going to Al-Shabaab is simply because they are going to the Islamic State instead.
A bipartisan House Homeland Security report in September states that â€œradicalized individuals who were once intent on traveling to Afghanistan or Somalia are now traveling to Syria.â€
That same report found that Minnesota is the origin of 26% of the American â€œforeign fighterâ€ recruits who join Islamist terrorist groups overseas. The second state was California, the origin of 12%, followed by the New York City/New Jersey area with another 12%.
To put that in perspective, Minnesota has about one-ninth of the population of California, New York City and New Jersey combinedâ€”but has produced more than twice the amount of recruits of those three areas combined.
The ability of Al-Shabaab to recruit Somali-Americans, particularly in the Minneapolis area of Minnesota, has long been acknowledged by counter-terrorism experts. The danger is heightened by the extremist preaching from within the Somali communities in Minnesota and Tennessee.
Ironically, a Somali activist has blasted CAIR for marginalizing Muslim moderates and failing to combat the ideology that feeds terrorism. Now, the Islamic State has replaced Al-Shabaab as the most common destination for American recruits, including Somalis.
CAIR knows that the Islamic State is recruiting disproportionately from Somali-Americans. CAIR, ever so desperate to downplay the problem and avoid accountability for Islamic leaders, obviously made a calculated decision to try to deceive the audience by commenting only on Al-Shabaab.
Contrast their reply with what Somali community activist Omar Jamal said in the clip. He warned that Somali youth are being radicalized and recruited at this moment, facilitated by a lack of integration into American society and a failure by the U.S. government to combat extremism.
The only types of problems that can be fixed are the problems that are acknowledged.