Rep. King: Islamic Radicalization Hearings Will Be Fair

WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork) — New York Congressman Peter King was less than 24 hours away from leading controversial hearings on Muslim extremists in the U.S.

He promised they will be honest and fair, and stressed they were about national security.

“The reasons the hearings are focusing on the Muslim community – the president’s own national security advisor said al Qaeda is attempting to radicalize the Muslim-American community,” King said.

The Long Island lawmaker cited recent events such as the arrests of Faisal Shazad, who admitted to trying to bomb Times Square, and Army Major Nidal Hassan, the accused Fort Hood shooter, as proof there are dangerous elements within America’s borders.

A key witness at Thursday’s congressional hearings on the radicalization of American Muslims said the hearings are an important first step in preventing homegrown terrorism, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.

“There are a number if imams that are telling Muslims this government is against Islam,” Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, president of the American Islamic Foundation for Democracy, said.

When he testifies before the Homeland Security Committee, Dr. Jasser said he will demand that Muslim religious leaders foster respect for America, rather than nurturing Islamic radicalism.

On Thursday, King will lead the congressional hearings, and critics within Congress were concerned.

“You’re setting a tone of blame and collective guilt, and you’re thwarting the very thing you say you want to achieve, which is greater public safety,” Rep. Keith Ellison, who will testify at the hearings, said.

The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the ACLU, and other groups held a news conference Wednesday morning to condemn the hearings.

“Rep. King’s two main allegations – that American Muslims do not cooperate with law enforcement, and that 80 to 85 percent of their leadership are extremist – are demonstrably false,” Nihad Awad, national director for CAIR, said.

While some charge that the hearings are a witch hunt, Dr. Jasser said they are the fist step in a public safety campaign to stop homegrown terrorism.

“We have to walk it back, not just from the violence, but from where it starts and at the core,” Dr. Jasser said. “There are some teachers telling Muslims that they can’t identify with this nation, and until we fix that, we won’t see a solution to radicalization.”

The White House was treading lightly, but fears isolating Muslims.

“We are all in this together as Americans, and Muslim-Americans are part of the solution here. They’re not the problem,” said Jay Carney, White House Press Secretary.

King’s supporters said terrorist conspiracies were real and increasing.

“Name another religion where there is an international coordinated effort today, where there can be an imam in Yemen talking to a member of our military in Texas,” said Jordan Sekulow, director of policy at the American Center for Law and Justice.

What do you think? Leave a comment below…

More from Marcia Kramer
  • Eugene

    It isn’t the Muslims it’s Islam and it’s teachings that is at the core of the problem. Islam is about everyone becoming Muslims or else suffer the consequences. This is the bottom line and every Muslim has a duty to do whatever is necessary to do his or her duty for Islam.

  • Murray Hill

    Facts are facts. We need to stop pretending things aren’t facts just because it might hurt someone’s feelings. The lives of thousands of innocent people are at stake. It’s about time someone stood up and starting talking about a FACT: that there are radical Muslims in this country intent on killing as many Americans as possible. No one said that all Muslims are terrorists, but most terrorists in this country over the last 10 years have certainly been Muslim. We should not pretend things are a certain way just because it’s the politically correct thing to do. Thank you Pete King for having the guts to stand up for the American people. Your colleagues who are speaking out against this should be absolutely ashamed of themselves.

  • Irene L Caceres

    First they came for the Muslim, and I wasn’t Muslim so i didn’t care.

    • Josh

      Then they came for the trade unionist. And I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.

  • little star

    Good luck Peter King ! Terrible that it has come to this.

  • William S

    Congressman King is dead on as far as his approach goes. You can’t sugar coat that Muslim extremists will certainly try again(as they did when planning 911) to blend in our society. They learned that it the best weapon that they can use against us. They need to be filtered out and the ONLY way to do that is how Mr. King is dealing with it.

  • Mohammed

    This half breed piece of trash king is trying to incite hate

  • charles smith

    If asking for cooperation offends, so be it. I would be honored that one of our representatives asked me for my help in combatting terrorism in any form. Wake up and act like an American.

  • Robert Senn

    i think this is a great way for the islamic people to show there colors if they love it here okay ifnot o well for mr king how about why obama spent over a million dollers to fly to boston to raise 100.00 00 dem party 3planes 2helicopters atleast 10 cars lots of fuel was wasted last night

  • joseph

    When the night pass, everything hiding thing shall be open; the beginning of turth. a great step to reality.
    Equity,justice, and fairness our pride but their fear. God bless America

  • GL

    Standing with Pete.

  • StormsNYC

    Sounds like a Communist witch hunt to me… better round up all the actors and homosexuals while you are at it and question them.

    Name one Congresssional hearing in history where the collective interrogation of an entire group of people has been accurate and yielded tangilble results. They can’t even figure out which professional baseball players are on steriods…

    Should we put all American Muslims in internment camps like we did with the Japanese and the Germans during World War II? Lot of good that did us. If people would actually read history, they’d know this is a big mistake…. that and Peter King is a grandstanding, rabble rousing douche

  • Harry

    Since when do people have to be recognized by their religion? You don’t hear catholics being call Catholic Americans or any other group doing that in the name of their religion. I think this is the problem. If you are an American, then that is it – you’re American. Our allegiance should be to AMERICA, and not where we may have come from. Whatever religion we practice (Catholocism, Protestantism, Islam, atheism, etc.)should be left on our own conscious and not burdened upon others.

  • Annette

    Since 9/11/01 I have hoped for Muslims in this country to come forward and speak for their people and to promote safety for all This is a great opportunity for them — within the framework of a government in a demoncracy. Bravo!

  • jerseyjoey

    King is a American Hero, Good job.

    • Richard T.


  • mujahid

    we should have more hearing on the war on terror and the collateral damage it has caused due to i think saddam, 9-11, dictator, weapons of mass construction, freedom, anyway whatever the reason was, i know the number of us personnal dead but really need to know the collateral damage, hopefully more hearings on that will clear things up..



  • Josh

    More people die in this country every single year due to gun-related violence. If King really wanted to enlist the help of the American Muslim community, he should try to educate them about extremism, show them the warning signs and make it easier for them to come forward. These public hearings, I think, will do nothing more than further ostracize a community that wants acceptance, but has seen nothing more than fear and hate since 9/11 – when foreigners attacked our country.

  • Cat

    I’m glad to see that this Hearing is taking place. Unless I see ONE MILLION MUSLIM MEN marching to Washington in opposition to Muslim terrorist attacks, I will never trust a Muslim, man nor woman, living in the U.S. If they choose to live in America, then they need to step up for America. Never mind isolating Muslims by having this Hearing, I would like them to isolate themselves right out of America.

  • Bechira

    Christians NEED to stand up against Islam which is an ANTI-CHRIST doctrine of DEVILS! IF you are not for Jesus Christ,then,you are AGAINST him.I,am FOR JESUS CHRIST! CHRISTIANS TAKE A STAND FOR JESUS CHRIST! WE WILL NOT BOW to allah-who is a false god.The ONE true GOD is the GOD of Abraham,Isaac,and,Jacob! The GOD who will defend his people!

  • Josh

    I would like to know where Rep. King was after Timothy McVeigh murdered 168 Americans. Where was King when Columbine, Va. Tech and the Binghamton gun rage murders went down? More people die from gun related violence every single year than have ever died due to a Muslim terrorist attack in this country. These hearings will bring about no changes in the Muslim Community and will cost the taxpayers millions.

  • Arnold

    The hearings will be fair because they will be open. Try that ANYWHERE in the Moslem world where EVEN prayer in public is ILLEGAL for ANY OTHER RELIGION

  • Bob C

    God Bless Rep. King. Good to know someone in this country has the balls to stand up to the ACLU and Cair. Expose these bastards for what they truly are. Make sure to watch your back…

  • Steve

    If Peter King wants to go after certain groups, maybe he should start his investigations by going after pedophile Catholic priests (oops – unlike attacking American Muslims, attacking the church might not be politically popular in his back-water district).

  • pugphan

    I still remember them dancing and celebrating on Atlantic Av on 9/11

  • Robert

    The majority of Americans support Congressman King holding the hearings ! The hell with the ACLU, Muslims, Hollywood nut jobs; we the American people want you to make America safe !

  • Gregg

    Great – It’s about time ! I am glad Congressman King has the balls to approach this real threat head on ! Thanks

    • Ellen

      Gregg, I agree with you 100 per cent. Won’t ever see a fair hearing in Muslim countries if it were about Christian radicals intent on harming their countries. Now would you.

      • Steel

        Well it might help to remember that this is NOT a “christian nation” so don’t compare our government’s actions to those of theocracies regardless of what religion they are based on.

    • NATE


  • greg neagle

    Sen. McCarthy will ask”Are you a member, or have you ever been a card carrying member, of the Muslim community?”

    Ever here of Timothy Mc Veigh, Sen McCarthy? How about the Unibomber?

    what about King’s support of the IRA?


    Typical politician looking for money and votes

    he thinks the CIA, FBI, AND Homeland Security cant do as well a job as he does

    the govt needs another committee hearing from Congress?


    big ego, bigger mouth…

  • Josh

    Way to go Rep. King! Glad you are going out of your way to further alienate a group that has been ostracized since 9/11. While there is a legitimate threat from radical Muslims, the best way to get the American Muslim community involved is to educate them about the threats and show them the warning signs to look for. Make it easier, not harder for them to come forward. Making a spectacle on TV is counter-productive, if not shameful.

  • Manny Khushalani

    Peter King is saying that all Muslims are helping terrorist, but at the same time most of Muslims are not teaching young children against the terrorsim. for example, in how many Temples, Churches or Synogages preaches haterate, but in Masque they are not openly criticizing that what is happening in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq many children women are killed and Holy Masques are burn.

  • GP


  • Cathi D

    Good job

  • Regina D

    You are doing the right thing. Keep at it !

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