The Federal Bureau of Idiocy

The complete failure of our law enforcement agencies to protect us from real threats of terrorism was confirmed on September 11, 2001, when – in spite of plentiful warnings, including from field offices of the Federal Bureau of Idiocy Investigation – nineteen hijackers armed only with box cutters commandeered three airliners and drove them into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.  

No one paid the price for this – except, of course, the victims of the attacks. No high-ranking US government official, including the head of the FBI, was fired or even called on the carpet.  

Instead, our law enforcement agencies were given a free pass – and a blank check. Billions were poured into "anti-terrorist" programs, as a terrified and prostrate Congress authorized unprecedented intrusions into the lives of ordinary Americans. The Surveillance State, already growing at a rapid pace, grew to gargantuan proportions, employing tens of thousands of professional snoops and sneaks to spy on the legal, constitutionally protected activities of American citizens. 

The first, but far from only, targets of this massive escalation of spying were Americans of the Muslim faith – and, while the neocon media salivated at the prospect, mosques, religious leaders, and ordinary people were put in the government’s sights. The wholesale targeting of Muslims has become so egregious that agents inside the FBI rebelled, and leaked documents to’s Spencer Ackerman which reveal the craziness that has not abated since 9/11. 

The documents are dozens of pages out of "training" manuals which posit that Islam, per se, is inherently and inescapably violent and subversive. As Ackerman reports

"The FBI is teaching its counterterrorism agents that ‘main stream’ [sic] American Muslims are likely to be terrorist sympathizers; that the Prophet Mohammed was a ‘cult leader’; and that the Islamic practice of giving charity is no more than a ‘funding mechanism for combat.’ 

"At the Bureau’s training ground in Quantico, Virginia, agents are shown a chart contending that the more ‘devout’ a Muslim, the more likely he is to be ‘violent.’ Those destructive tendencies cannot be reversed, an FBI instructional presentation adds: ‘Any war against non-believers is justified’ under Muslim law; a ‘moderating process cannot happen if the Koran continues to be regarded as the unalterable word of Allah.’" 

This is craziness, and it’s not the craziness of the Bush era, either – Ackerman reports that the last "training session" that utilized these nut-job materials was in March of this year. Yes, folks, it’s all about hope and change – from bad to worse. 

Go here and feast your eyes on the actual materials used to "train" FBI agents involved in "counterterrorism" operations in the US: Mohammed, according to the FBI, was a "cult leader," and torture is part of the Muslim religion, mandated by the Prophet – a weird accusation coming from the US government, which infamously institutionalized torture techniques borrowed from the Communists and the Nazis. Much space is given over to characterizing the prophet Mohammed as psychopath who "heard voices," "contemplated suicide," and plotted heinous murders. In short, he’s a medieval version of David Koresh – another FBI target – whose followers presumably deserve the same fate

The theme of this material is simple: Islam is not a religion but a military-political formation whose goal is world conquest, whose methods are utterly ruthless, and whose followers are mad dogs who can only be shot down with relentless ferocity.  

As Ackerman points out, al-Qaeda couldn’t agree more. 

The lunacy doesn’t end there, however: a document entitled "Militancy Considerations" has a graph that charts the violent tendencies of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. According to this work of graphical genius, Judaism underwent a very brief period of orienting toward violence that began to be ameliorated starting in 1400 B.C. – a factoid the Palestinians will be thrilled to hear about. Christianity, in contrast, started out pretty violently – which should be news to fans of the Sermon the Mount – and only started to approximate the relative peacefulness of Judaism around the year 1900, where the two lines on the graph representing the two religions meet and merge.  

Islam, however, is an entirely different story: here the line goes up very briefly, charting the course of what the FBI describes as the "Meccan period," but then goes sideways – toward increasing violence – in a straight line, after entering what is termed the "Medina period."  

We have heard all this before, of course – in the ravings of Robert Spencer, Pamela Geller, and David Horowitz. Indeed, the author of at least one of the FBI "presentations," one William Gawthrop, was interviewed by WorldNutDaily – birther headquarters – in which he attributed radical Islamist terrorism to the prophet Mohammed’s "mindset." In the interview, Gawthrop is described as someone "who until recent months headed a key counterintelligence and counterterrorism program set up at the Pentagon after 9/11." Islam isn’t really a religion, according to Gawthrop, but a "military doctrine." The Koran is not only a sacred text but also a manual for world conquest: 

"’Today the United States and an increasing number of other governments are beleaguered by an expanding array of states, groups and individuals whose goals, actions and norms are animated by Islamic values,’ Gawthrop said. ‘This places the defenders in the unenviable position of having to fight, at the strategic level, against an idea.’ 

"How do you attack an idea? By hitting ‘soft spots’ in the Islamic faith that, once exploited, ‘may induce a deteriorating cascade effect upon the target,’ Gawthrop says." 

"’Critical vulnerabilities of the Quran, for example, are that it was uttered by a mortal,’ Gawthrop said. ‘Similar vulnerabilities may be found in Muhammad’s character.’" 

This reads like a rationale for the worst sort of hate-mongering of the kind one sees on far-right-wing blogs, and the obscene excesses of wackos like Pamela Geller, who ascribe every sort of moral and sexual perversion to the most revered figure of one of the world’s three great Abrahamic faiths. The idea is not to win over Muslims, at home and abroad, to the anti-terrorist cause, but to insult and provoke them to higher levels of violence. 

Somewhere close to the lowest rung of Hell, Osama bin Laden is smiling. 

Gawthrop criticizes the Pentagon for lacking his own "strategic" understanding of Islam, and predicts that: 

"As the jihad spreads …  the government eventually will have to get involved in a such a controversial national education campaign, politically incorrect as it may be. ‘If the United States, moderate Muslim governments and the non-Muslim world seek to engage ideological adversaries on their own ground,’ he said, ‘they will have to develop, use and maintain the full range of capabilities in the ideological component of national power, and address Islam’s strategic themes directly.’" 

In other words: hire him to direct a national – nay, international – hate campaign directed at Islam, per se, and the memory and image of the Prophet Mohammed. 

The anti-Muslim business is one of the few that is booming in Obama’s America, along with the arms manufacturers and the hedge funds. "Homeland Security" is a growth industry, with the prospect of huge amounts of government money flowing into the coffers of frauds like Hawthrop. This is welfare for nut-balls.

See hereherehere, and here for reports on the growing infiltration of Washington’s "counter-terrorism" efforts by Anders Breivik look-alikes. As Dana Priest pointed out in her comprehensive series on the gargantuan "anti-terrorist" bureaucracy that has mushroomed since 9/11:

"In their desire to learn more about terrorism, many departments are hiring their own trainers. Some are self-described experts whose extremist views are considered inaccurate and harmful by the FBI and others in the intelligence community." 

This is the inevitable result of any government program designed to "study" a religio-ideological phenomenon – an entire industry grows up in the lush atmosphere of plentiful and lucrative government contracts, flowering into the likes of Hawthrop and other crackpots who pose as "experts." It happened during the cold war, with neoconservative "experts" arising to push their extremist policies – and the same thing is happening today in our endless "war on terrorism."

These snake oil salesmen gain surface credibility on account of their background in government and the military, or due to their association with a whole sub-universe of fringe "thinktanks," such as Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy (CSP). Gaffney’s CSP is a key node in the nut-job network, and one indication of their credibility level is the fact that Gaffney has endorsed the laughable "intelligence" expertise of Walid Shoebat, who claims Obama is a Muslim. Gaffney and Shoebat once appeared on a panel together discussing the question of whether – or when – Obama became a Muslim. Gaffney, for his part, along with David Horowitz, is convinced that the Republican party – and the US government – have been infiltrated by Islamists due to the efforts of Grover Norquist! Shoebat is also a favorite of the International Counter-Terrorism Officers Association (ICTOA), which publishes Hawthrop’s drivel in their journal: he appeared, with Robert Spencer and William Boykin — the "crusader" General — at a "Ft. Hood Memorial" hate-fest. The wacko circle-jerk of cross-endorsements and interlocking organizations serves to buttress the "credentials" of these "experts."  

That they have infiltrated law enforcement at the local, state, and federal level, is horrifying – and unsurprising. They’re just going where the federal dollars flow, springing up like weeds in a sparsely-grown patch of ground. Tax dollars spread generously around breed these phonies like flies after a summer rain: it’s a built-in feature of our bureaucratic approach to "fighting terrorism." 

What’s scary is that the FBI is supposed to be protecting us from "terrorism" – but who will protect us from our protectors? These lazy dolts have nothing better to do than sneak around "investigating" Americans who have broken no law, accusing even this web site – and this columnist – of being "a threat to National Security" and in all probability an "agent of a foreign power." 

The foreign power is in Washington, D.C., where parasites like Hawthrop & Co. feed at the public trough. It’s more than past time to clean the Augean stables of our "counterterrorism" bureaucracy and start defending the nation in a credible way.  

Author: Justin Raimondo

Justin Raimondo passed away on June 27, 2019. He was the co-founder and editorial director of, and was a senior fellow at the Randolph Bourne Institute. He was a contributing editor at The American Conservative, and wrote a monthly column for Chronicles. He was the author of Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement [Center for Libertarian Studies, 1993; Intercollegiate Studies Institute, 2000], and An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard [Prometheus Books, 2000].