Homegrown Jihadists

September 3, 2010 • Volume 20, Issue 30
Can Muslim terrorists in the U.S. mount serious attacks?
By Peter Katel


Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, a U.S. Army psychiatrist (Getty Images/U.S. Government Uniformed Services/University of the Health Sciences)
Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, a U.S. Army psychiatrist, is charged with a shooting rampage at Fort Hood, Texas, last Nov. 5 that killed 13 people and wounded 30. Investigators say he left a trail of clues indicating his jihadist sympathies. (Getty Images/U.S. Government Uniformed Services/University of the Health Sciences)

Recent jihadist attacks and plots by American citizens or longtime residents of the United States have dramatized the danger from domestic terrorism in the name of Islam. The United States once was considered by many as virtually immune from the type of violence associated with alienated immigrant communities in European nations. But the immunity — if it ever existed — has worn off, judging by recent events, including the killing of 13 people at Fort Hood, Texas, allegedly by an Arab-American; guilty pleas by a Pakistani-American who tried to detonate a car bomb in Times Square and an Afghan immigrant who planned to bomb the New York subway system. Still in dispute, though, is whether the motivation lies in personal problems, social discrimination or an imported ideology that has grafted itself onto Islam, a religion practiced today by 1.6 billion people, including 2.5 million in the United States.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
May 14, 2021  Domestic Terrorism
Apr. 09, 2021  Targeted Killings
Apr. 01, 2016  Defeating the Islamic State
Jan. 29, 2016  Unrest in Turkey
Jun. 27, 2014  Assessing the Threat From al Qaeda
Sep. 02, 2011  Remembering 9/11
Sep. 03, 2010  Homegrown Jihadists
Mar. 12, 2010  Prosecuting Terrorists Updated
Nov. 2009  Terrorism and the Internet
Feb. 13, 2009  Homeland Security
Apr. 21, 2006  Port Security
Oct. 14, 2005  Global Jihad
Apr. 02, 2004  Nuclear Proliferation and Terrorism
Feb. 22, 2002  Policing the Borders
Oct. 12, 2001  War on Terrorism
Jul. 21, 1995  Combating Terrorism
Aug. 26, 1988  New Approach to Mideast Terrorism
May 30, 1986  Dealing With Terrorism
Oct. 08, 1982  Prospects for Peace in Northern Ireland
Mar. 27, 1981  Anti-Terrorism: New Priority in Foreign Policy
Dec. 02, 1977  International Terrorism
Jan. 26, 1973  Control of Skyjacking
May 13, 1970  Political Terrorism
Jul. 24, 1952  Red Terrorism in Malaya
Terrorism and Counterterrorism