Converts, reverts, New Muslims, whatever they are called, often come from the ranks of the psychically marginal, the people whose oddness, whose inability to accept or adapt to or even haughtily mock, their lot, whether earned or unmerited, makes them vulnerable to the siren-song of a Total Regulation of Life.
There are elements of Huey, Dewey and Louie joining their secret boys’ club — no doubt about it. And if it were not so dangerous to Infidels, one might overlook the mental and moral damage to the converts themselves. They are self-conscious Spiritual Searchers, palpably discontented with — you name it: the System, Amerika, Kapitalism, the Confusion and Anomie and Decadence and Unhappiness of Life. They are attracted to the whole business of the Collective, the Ummah, the “Brothers,” in their longing for some prefabricated, ready-made society. They also get all those special phrases to drop into their English or French or German conversation — alhamdulillah and all the rest of it. They get a new Arab name and a secret decoder ring. And they get, of course, those Manuals for Living — Qur’an and Hadith — that provide the Total Regulation of Life, the Complete Explanation of the Universe. And Allah Knows Best. And Muhammad is his Prophet and, not surprisingly, the Perfect Man, uswa hasana, al-insan al-kamil.
No thinking required. No thinking desired. Just keep following what Allah set out long ago, and what has been The Way, The Path, from which no deviation is permitted, ever since.
Of course the ranks of converts at this point contain far more dangerous people, on the whole, than would a similar sampling of those born into Islam. For the converts willingly embrace this belief-system, and at this point there can be little confusion (as there might have been once) as to what that implies and entails. Those simply born into Islam, some of whom may be fearful of getting out, may include a larger number of people who are less enthusiastic about what is theirs by forced birthright than are those who willfully embrace the cult of mental submission that is Islam.
Unfortunately, the security services of the Western world, in choosing to use undercover agents, will often have to choose those who would not arouse suspicion. And who might such people be? They would have to be chosen from among the kind of people who do convert to Islam. The problem is that such people, in “pretending to convert to Islam, might find genuinely attractive that offer of a belief-system that offers a Total Regulation of Life (and isn’t life just a bit too unstructured, these days?), a Complete Explanation of the Universe (and isn’t life getting just a bit too complicated these days?) and a ready-made Ummah (and isn’t life just a little too lonely these days, in those Durkheimian anomie-filled cities, where we wander lonely as clouds, and isn’t it wonderful to have a society of fellow Muslims with whom to form that special bond?).
What should the security services do?
Well, they should find those who have suffered from within Islam, or whose families have done so. Think of Berbers who might be disaffected from Islam because of the Arab supremacist ideology. Or Kurds. Or a Hindu who might have been driven out of Bangladesh, and who, properly schooled, might be able to pass as a Muslim. Think of Arabic-speaking Jews. Think of the pool of Christians from the Middle East — Maronites, or Copts, or an Armenian from Haleb or Beirut, who suffered along with other Christians during the Civil War. A Christian from the Moluccas, whose village was attacked by Muslims. Find these people. Train them, slowly. Give them the kind of training in Islam that the KGB used to provide for spies going to the West — you know, with those mock-American cities, and every detail of the New York Subway system, not to mention what Yogi Berra or Jimmy Durante said, by way of preparation.
Understand that it is not enough to call yourself a Muslim. You have to have that entire set of allusions to the life of Muhammad, to the history of Islamic battles, that any Muslim would know. Are the Americans up to this? Do they possess a cadre of teachers? Have they called in the French counter-intelligence? Or the Israelis? Or the Indians?
Lots of arms, those Americans. Hundreds of billions of dollars worth. But most of it irrelevant to Da’wa, demographic conquest, the money weapon, and terrorist units, outside any larger organization, all over the Western world.
Arms, arms. All kinds of American arms, at the ready.
But still, when compared with those to whom deception comes naturally, that is simply a matter of habit, that is imbibed with a Muslim mother’s milk in the Middle East, the roughest toughest of Rangers or of Navy Seals are, trying to deal with someone like Hani Ramadan or his much more sinister and dangerous brother Tariq Ramadan, mere Babes in Arms.