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Old 09-26-2014   #61
slapout9
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http://news.msn.com/crime-justice/po...homa-workplace

Police: Woman beheaded at Oklahoma workplace





I'm sure there will be much to follow about this apparent lone wolf attack. There is an element of psychology that we seem to be missing, and one you have one attack, just a like a school shooting, there will likely be others.
It's already happened. This is the second radical Muslim attack in about a month or so. It only received limited media coverage. I think this is the first actual beheading and it is getting some widespread media attention.

Last edited by slapout9; 09-26-2014 at 08:28 PM. Reason: fix stuff
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Old 09-26-2014   #62
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Bill,

The beheadings in Syria of three victims gained massive, global publicity and no doubt the worst imagery will remain online for a long time.

As a Pakistani writer remindes us beheadings are not new:

I will post her commentary elsewhere in a moment as it relates to another topic:http://strifeblog.org/2014/09/26/the...the-caliphate/

How many other murder victims in the USA have been beheaded, say in the last year?

About a month ago a mentally deranged man beheaded an old lady in north London. No-one has commented since on his motive. First link is to her funeral:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-29343759 and an earlier report:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-29068391

Leaving media hype aside I think it best to wait today before deciding what the man's motivation.
I'm relaying what was written, so it may or may not become major news. I suspect Fox News will blow it out of proportion scale wise. I suspect since he was trying to convert people at work it is fair to make an initial assumption extremist views had something to with it. The Europeans for the most part have moved past their state of denial and accept that the threat is very real.

For these lone actors I think it has more to do with psychology than religion. People are searching for meaning in their lives, which is why some of these kids (and some aren't kids) are buying books like "Islam for Dummies," and then convert and commit a crime supposedly in support of a higher cause.

I read some of Sayyid Qutb's writing, and his comments about our society being morally bankrupt has a touch of truth to it, and if someone is at angry at the world they can identify with the message, and of course the messages of the more current radicals who are basically insane. It only needs to sound rational to the person who wants to believe it.

We don't need people telling us to relax, we need people to tell Americans to remain vigilant, to look for signs of radicalization (and hopefully intervene), and to keep it in perspective. You're still much more likely to get shot going to 7/11 at night by a robber than killed by a lone wolf in America, and damn it we want to keep it that way.

Controlling social media is insufficient, the fact is that the conflict is playing on the T.V. media 24/7 is enough to inspire some of these people seeking something more in their meaningless lives to do something idiotic, and just like other crimes such as school shootings there is the risk of it going viral.

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Old 09-27-2014   #63
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It is worth noting that the only reason more women were not beheaded is because the business owner had a gun and shoot the bast#$%$# while he was in the act with his second women victim!
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Old 09-27-2014   #64
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The crime, while sensational, is not important. The motive is important for the reasons Bill stated. Apparently the perpetrator's firing from his job was the trigger. So is this a case of Islamic extremism or another case of workplace violence?
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Old 09-27-2014   #65
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The crime, while sensational, is not important. The motive is important for the reasons Bill stated. Apparently the perpetrator's firing from his job was the trigger. So is this a case of Islamic extremism or another case of workplace violence?
He was reportedly fired because he was arguing at work in favor of stoning women for violating the Koran. Obviously that would result in a hostile work environment and the firing would have been justified. What will be interesting is to see how people with different worldviews interpret this event. We see two on this discussion already. One is basically is sticking his head in the sand denying there is a threat. The other wants to wage a religious war. Other's will see this as a case of racism although if a white male would have made those comments they would have demanded he be fired.

It is hard for us earthly humans to interpret these events objectively. My subjective opinion based on what I think I know is that he was a troubled individual, who was fired for inappropriate behavior at work, so he sought revenge. It is clearly workplace violence. Based on his arguments and his Facebook comments his motivation was also based on his extreme interpretation of Islam and his desire to support terrorizing non believers. So at least two issues converge into motivation for a specific act. I'm sure other factors played a role that we will never know.

Like it or not it is now a national issue that cannot be swept under the rug. How we perceive and respond to this as a nation will in part define who we are. Hopefully not cowards acting out in fear against Islam writ large, and hopefully not embracing denial there is a threat we need to address. Can we as a nation develop appropriate and nuanced approaches or will mass media drive us ineffective extremes?
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Old 09-27-2014   #66
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The other wants to wage a religious war. Other's will see this as a case of racism although if a white male would have made those comments they would have demanded he be fired.
Bill,
I have never said thatnor do I want that. I do want my Government to recognize and respond appropriately to the fact that the enemy has declared a Religious war on us! whether we choose to recognize that or stay in denial is part of the problem.
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Old 09-27-2014   #67
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Slap your proposal for so called counter value targeting was nothing short of declaring war a religion by attacking their holy sites. You are right we have to recognize the character of the war we are in. Our adversaries are trying to impose their will upon us through the use of both organized and unorganized violence, and what they are attempting to impose is their religious world view. We are trying to impose our democratic and human rights values. They are not compatible, and that has implications that should make us rethink the underlying logic of the war.
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Old 09-27-2014   #68
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it seems that there is some phenomenon wherein some mentally ill people (hard to see how this person was "sane" by any measure) find ISIS-type Islamism very attractive. An interesting topic and thinking about it rationally (as rationally as possible?) may lead to new insights, but what will those insights be? I don't think it is immediately obvious.

There can be no doubt that there are some Muslims who have declared war on the United States and some of those Muslims are in the US (likely very few..though the qualification "very few" may not apply equally to the UK), but what to do in response is still an open question.

Given the current state of Western civilization, it may be necessary to discuss "counter-value targeting" much more before it is implemented. For example, the targeting of cities and sacred symbols of the Nazis or the Japanese occurred in the context of total war and clearly defined enemy states..and in a setting where the culture broadly accepted that A. We are at war B. Our enemies are evil and ruthless and have attacked us first. C. This is what one does when fighting evil enemies who are equally determined to do this if they had the chance (and in fact have already done so at places). All three elements are currently disputed at home; This may be a bad thing, but it is a thing. It may have to change before such targeting makes sense...and, more to the point, before it works (instead of splitting apart the home front or the allies, for example).

Just a thought.

PS: what is disputed is not the fact of an attack on the US. After 9-11, obviously US has been attacked.... But by whom? Bin Laden and his group were not a state. If the cities and symbols of a state have to be attacked in response, then which state? (Afghanistan was already attacked for harboring him, Pakistan was spared for various reasons, Saudi Arabia as a state was not really harboring or supporting his network...and of course, Iraq or Syria had nothing to do with that particular attack). Mecca (for example) is a central symbol for many who had nothing to do with him, or actively opposed him. If the government of Saudi Arabia is fully on board with attacking Bin Laden (and it probably was), is it OK to attack Saudi cities? ..and so on.
Suppose ISIS manages an attack on the US. Would it be OK to carpet bomb cities under their control? Mosul? Raqqa? Much less bomb Mecca (whose controlling state is actually bombing ISIS?).. (I bring up bombing Mecca because I think slapout may have mentioned that as an option at some point. My apologies if my memory is faulty)
Leaving aside any moral objections, wouldnt it be desirable to spell these options out in advance, to make such deterrence work? (if it works at all). Could the US and its allies really spell such things out in their current incarnation?
I think the US is capable (as in able and willing) of bombing cities right now, but not capable of saying it out loud and clear before or after the fact, which makes it rather less effective as a threat, no?
They really didnt have to spell it out in 1944, likely because times were different?
Thinking out loud.
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Old 09-28-2014   #69
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Thinking out loud with you. We're not fighting a state and we're not waging war on Islam. We are waging war on extremists who happen to be Muslims. Our critical alliances in this fight are the 90% of Muslims who don't support the extremists, so how would we conduct counter value targeting without alienating our allues?

We need to kill terrorists on a larger scale, but in a way that doesn't make the situation worse, which means getting the narrative right first and then attack hard, versus attacking and then developing a narrative to explain it. We are closer to doing that in the fight against IS, but unfortunately the killing part is falling way short. We have a green light from the Arab world and beyond so we should have our foot on the gas pedal and be much more aggressive to include using ground troops to rapidly degrade them. I think we are leaving too much space for IS to regain the initiative.
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Old 09-28-2014   #70
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Slap your proposal for so called counter value targeting was nothing short of declaring war a religion by attacking their holy sites. You are right we have to recognize the character of the war we are in. Our adversaries are trying to impose their will upon us through the use of both organized and unorganized violence, and what they are attempting to impose is their religious world view. We are trying to impose our democratic and human rights values. They are not compatible, and that has implications that should make us rethink the underlying logic of the war.
Bill,
I didn't say that..... I said retaliatory equivalence counter valuetargeting.......### for tat after an attack. In other words if the enemy wants to make this a holy war and they attack us then we attack back in kind or if we dont want to do that then at least attack something equal in value according to what the enemy values not necessarily what we value.
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Old 09-28-2014   #71
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Suppose ISIS manages an attack on the US. Would it be OK to carpet bomb cities under their control? Mosul? Raqqa? Much less bomb Mecca (whose controlling state is actually bombing ISIS?).. (I bring up bombing Mecca because I think slapout may have mentioned that as an option at some point. My apologies if my memory is faulty)Leaving aside any moral objections, wouldnt it be desirable to spell these options out in advance, to make such deterrence work? (if it works at all). Could the US and its allies really spell such things out in their current incarnation?
I think the US is capable (as in able and willing) of bombing cities right now, but not capable of saying it out loud and clear before or after the fact, which makes it rather less effective as a threat, no?
They really didnt have to spell it out in 1944, likely because times were different?
Thinking out loud.

omarali50,

Yes I said that but please read what posted for Bill Moore. It would only be done in special circumstances.
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Old 09-28-2014   #72
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Like it or not it is now a national issue that cannot be swept under the rug. How we perceive and respond to this as a nation will in part define who we are. Hopefully not cowards acting out in fear against Islam writ large, and hopefully not embracing denial there is a threat we need to address. Can we as a nation develop appropriate and nuanced approaches or will mass media drive us ineffective extremes?
Workplace violence has been a problem, and a growing one, in the U.S. since at least the middle of the 20th century. And the causes have nothing to do with ideological extremism; the origins are in decreasing job security, diminishing benefits, increased stress and demands placed on employees. Obviously this incident has an outward religious component to it, but is religion the cause, trigger, or mechanism? Far more people are killed for reasons of workplace violence than religious extremism (of any religion generally but specifically Islam) in the U.S. every year.

This was a similar major controversy with Nidal Hasan and the evidence clearly indicating that a hostile workplace encouraged his radicalization. That radical Islam may emerge as an outlet for frustrated and alienated segments of the populations is a problem, sure, but it's a symptom of the underlying disease in the American workplace of increasingly difficult conditions. Some turn to racism and white power; others to violence; still others to radical Islam. This case in OK may turn out to be different but that's the general trend in workplace violence.
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Old 09-28-2014   #73
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AP

your an economic determinist and Bob is a political determinist, and you both blindly cling to your models as simplistic views to explain the world. Just because you reject idealism as motive doesn't mean everyone does. Our arrogance is insisting the world conform to our democratic and economic views, so we continue to make policy decisions on our rather naive views because we can't perceive that others may actually be inspired by ideology. I guess in this case because he convert his coworkers or convince them that stoning women to death made it a hostile work environment?
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Old 09-28-2014   #74
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AP

your an economic determinist and Bob is a political determinist, and you both blindly cling to your models as simplistic views to explain the world. Just because you reject idealism as motive doesn't mean everyone does. Our arrogance is insisting the world conform to our democratic and economic views, so we continue to make policy decisions on our rather naive views because we can't perceive that others may actually be inspired by ideology. I guess in this case because he convert his coworkers or convince them that stoning women to death made it a hostile work environment?
There's a fine line between determinism (economic or other) and agency. For investigative and criminal justice purpose, the focus will be on the suspect's agency in order to establish culpability. But if we're concerned about identifying the root causes of this problem (whether it's religious extremism or workplace violence) to reduce future incidents, then we also need to investigate all of the contextual factors that led to this incident. As I said, it may or may not be related to a hostile workplace. That information is not yet available. But it has some of the indicators of other workplace violence incidents. And workplace violence already has well-researched and established causes.

And since you mentioned idealism and ideology; the general consensus in academia is that ideology emerges from social practices and human activity not vice versa. So we can grant that an individual may act on idealism, but to understand the specific ideology, its characteristics, and its appeal, it's also important to explore its relationship to the material world. Why radical Islam and not radical Christianity? Why beheading and not shooting? Why target the workplace and not neighbors? Why did the suspect feel compelled to promote conversion at his workplace in the first instance? People do not behave in a vacuum and they are constantly responding to and assessing their material conditions.
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Old 09-28-2014   #75
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But if we're concerned about identifying the root causes of this problem (whether it's religious extremism or workplace violence) to reduce future incidents, then we also need to investigate all of the contextual factors that led to this incident.
Agree, and it is seldom one thing that leads to a behavioral change. This is my concern with what I'm calling deterministic models. They attempt to isolate a specific variable, and then context is lost and the truth is in the larger context. There is also a good chance that the truth can't be determined.

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And since you mentioned idealism and ideology; the general consensus in academia is that ideology emerges from social practices and human activity not vice versa. So we can grant that an individual may act on idealism, but to understand the specific ideology, its characteristics, and its appeal, it's also important to explore its relationship to the material world. Why radical Islam and not radical Christianity? Why beheading and not shooting? Why target the workplace and not neighbors? Why did the suspect feel compelled to promote conversion at his workplace in the first instance? People do not behave in a vacuum and they are constantly responding to and assessing their material conditions.
I'm not yet convinced by academia's chicken or egg claim. Ideology is a worldview, and regardless of the character of the material world the will perceive it and act upon it through that lens. Is their an interdependence between the material world and ideology? Most certainly, and each shapes the other, but to claim ones must first doesn't seem provable to me.
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Old 09-28-2014   #76
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Bottom line for me at this point is I'm not comfortable ascertaining underlying causes, and since every actor is different I think the utility of attempting to do so beyond academic study is limited and could be dangerously misleading.

Just out curiosity I viewed recent shooting news for 5 cities, and over well over 30 people have been shot in the past 24 hours in those 5 cities alone, so needless to say we have a high level of violence in some segments of our society. If those shootings stay in certain segments of society, then America largely turns a blind eye. I think we do so at our own risk, moral and otherwise, since we are allowing this norm to perpetuate into the future, yet none of this is newsworthy because it is so common.

The beheading, like a mass shooting at a school, is newsworthy, and that is where the risk is. As indicated by a recent FBI report on the increase of mass shootings, the copy cat syndrome is real. If you put it in perspective it was one of many murders, and while a beheading does have some shock aspect to it, I think many Americans would be shocked if they were aware of the torture that some of the organized criminal groups put their victims through before they kill them. They do it for the same purpose, to instill terror to enhance their control of the their target audience.

http://dfw.cbslocal.com/2014/09/25/f...ass-shootings/

FBI Report Examines Mass Shootings

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Law enforcement officials who specialize in behavioral analysis say the motives of gunmen vary but many have a real, or perceived, personally held grievance that they feel mandates an act of violence. Though its hard to say why the number of shootings has increased, officials say they believe many shooters are inspired by past killings and the resulting notoriety.

The copycat phenomenon is real, said Andre Simons of the FBIs Behavioral Analysis Unit. As more and more notable and tragic events occur, we think were seeing more compromised, marginalized individuals who are seeking inspiration from those past attacks.
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Old 10-02-2014   #77
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Bill,

I think you're right with regards to the copy cat syndrome. The media plays a major role in this although there is a fine line between free speech and responsible reporting (which can be a code word for self-censorship).

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Just out curiosity I viewed recent shooting news for 5 cities, and over well over 30 people have been shot in the past 24 hours in those 5 cities alone, so needless to say we have a high level of violence in some segments of our society. If those shootings stay in certain segments of society, then America largely turns a blind eye. I think we do so at our own risk, moral and otherwise, since we are allowing this norm to perpetuate into the future, yet none of this is newsworthy because it is so common.
That's part of the problem. And violence is not limited in "some segments of society"; it affects every segment of society. But it's normalized, as you've mentioned, through a mainstream narrative, at least when it fits into those preconceptions about which "segments" 'deserve' the violence visited upon them. Where does a workplace beheading fall into narratively speaking? The narrative about the threat of radical Islamic terrorism or the one about workplace violence?

Now what's interesting to me about terrorism in the United States is just how widely the media actually ignores self-proclaimed terrorism. Militant right-wing populism has been the largest source of violence in the U.S as far as terrorism is concerned. Just recently, a self-proclaimed survivalist targeted police officials, killing one of them, in the mid-West somewhere I believe. This did not receive widespread media coverage, however. These kinds of acts have all the conventional components of a terrorist attack, including most importantly a political agenda (what's the OK attacker's political agenda?). As we've seen in Iraq and Afghanistan (and in previous terrorist campaigns), the aim is not always a spectacular attack to scare the public at large. But often is directed at local officials and institutions with the aim of subverting government authority.

So if we're to be concerned about terrorism in the U.S., let's focus on the actual perpetrators of terrorism in the country.
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Old 10-02-2014   #78
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Just some statistics of terrorism in the U.S. from the Global Terrorism Database between 2006 and 2013:

Year: # of attacks (# of deaths)

2006: 6 (1)
2007: 9 (0)
2008: 19 (2)
2009: 11 (18)
2010: 17 (4)
2011: 9 (0)
2012: 13 (7)
2013: 15 (7)

Of the 99 attacks, 68 (68.69%) were conducted by individuals or an unknown group. of the remaining 31 attacks with a known perpetrator, 7 (22.58%) were conducted by anti-abortion activitists, neo-nazis, the KKK, or a militia. And of the 68 individual/unknown group, 21 (30.88%) were directed at the government or abortion providers. And out of general interest, of the 99 total attacks in the time period, 20 (20.20%) involved firearms while 62 (62.62%) involved incidenaries or explosives. Only two attacks were conducted by an Islamic group (AQ or TTP).

The top five deadliest incidents:
o Fort Hood shooting (13)
o Sikh temple shooting in Milwaukee (7)
o attack on church in Knoxville, TN (2)
o attack on a Mexican family (2)
o Plane crashing into IRS building in TX (2)

Of the 15 (15.15%) attacks that caused a fatality, 12 (80%) were perpetrated by firearms.
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Old 01-15-2015   #79
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Default Unemployed Ohio man allegedly planned bomb-and-shoot attack on U.S. Capitol

He's a big mamma's boy.

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(CNN)For months, 20-year-old Christopher Lee Cornell had been on the FBI's radar. Authorities said he left alarming posts on social media, talking about violent jihad.

On Wednesday, agents arrested the Cincinnati, Ohio, man before he could put his alleged plot into action.
Authorities say Cornell, who ostensibly tweeted under the name Raheel Mahrus Ubaydah, hatched a simple scheme. It was similar to the Paris attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, but at a key location -- the U.S. Capitol, said a criminal complaint filed by an FBI agent.
http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/15/us/capitol-attack-plot/
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Old 01-16-2015   #80
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A rather sad account of the suspect, which appears based on his parents explanation to AP, hence the title 'Parents of terror defendant say they saw a change in him':http://bigstory.ap.org/article/6ff9d...kill-officials
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