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JV Editorial

Having Succeeded Against Terrorism, the NYPD Faces New Enemies: The AP, and NJ Politicians

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Since, under the leadership of Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the New York Police Department has gotten so effective at thwarting terrorist plots, the media have apparently decided they needed something else to complain about. Since they could not argue that the NYPD had dropped the ball, they cried foul instead, accusing the department of “unnecessary roughness.”

The Associated Press has griped continuously about the NYPD’s innovative intelligence and counterterrorism operations.  Take for instance an article dated Monday, February 27. It starts by saying that the Obama administration has no control over how the New York City Police Department spends White House grants that helped pay for programs that “put entire American Muslim neighborhoods under surveillance.”

“In New York,” AP says, “the police commissioner said he wouldn’t apologize.”
The implication here, of course, is that an apology is owed.

I am reminded of the words of comedian Brad Garrett. You may know him as Robert Barone, the big brother of the Ray Romano’s character in the popular sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond. Ironically enough for our purposes, Garrett ‘s  character is a cop. Also, fun fact:  Garrett’s Real name is Gerstenfeld; I saw him do this bit at a show benefitting the Hillel Foundation at my alma mater. But I digress.

Garrett was describing a past experience (real, or imaginary, it doesn’t really matter for our purposes) at an airport, where the man in front of him in line was pulled aside by security personnel for additional screening. The man, who happened to be of Middle Eastern extraction, protested: “You cannot do this to me! Thees is racial profiling!” To which Garrett claims to have quipped: “No, Achmed. It’s called an educated guess.”

I know it’s become something of a cliché, but I feel obliged to point out that that while the vast majority of Muslims are not terrorists, the majority of terrorist threats being leveled against New York City are Islamist in nature.

The aforementioned AP article goes on to say that the White House grant money being used to fight terrorism was originally allocated for combating the drug trade. Obviously, a grave error has been committed here. And that error is that the White House didn’t set aside the funds for local police to combat terrorism in the first place! To their credit, the Obama administration has managed to do one thing right, by thus far taking a neutral stance on how the NYPD (who probably have a better feel for the situation on the ground than those sitting in the White House) allocates these funds. It seems that the AP are the ones with the axe to grind.

They aren’t the only ones, though.  New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, Senator Robert Menendez, and Newark Mayor Cory Booker have jumped on the bandwagon as well. Or as the AP put it, Police Commissioner Kelly said they “were wrong to question the department,” as if we were already living in a police state.  Christie claims to be “appalled” at the NYPD’s new strategies, which have helped them nab terrorists based in New Jersey as well.  But wait a minute… didn’t 9/11 hijacker Mohammad Atta meet with his co-conspirators in Newark? Governor Christie, you may want to put down that stone. The house you’re standing in, it appears to be made of a transparent, fragile substance.

Here’s the thing – my colleagues and I, here at the Jewish Voice, you may be interested to know that most of us are Jewish. As Jews, we have a unique sensitivity to things like fascism. The Jew is to government oppression in the area of law enforcement what the canary is poisonous gas inside of a coal mine. We’re sensitive to it because we’re usually the first ones affected, is what I’m saying. And here’s what we’ve seen:

Under the NYPD’s watch, there have been no successful terrorist attacks in New York City for a decade, and crime rates are the lowest they’ve been for quite a while. We’ve reported on several terror plots thwarted, in the last year alone, where the FBI refused to take on the case because it didn’t fit their official definition of terrorism. Remember that synagogue in Manhattan that was blown up last May by Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh? You don’t? That’s probably because the NYPD apprehended them before they were able to carry out their nefarious, if poorly conceived plot. Again, the feds wouldn’t pursue the case because it lacked the political agenda necessary for them to classify it as terrorism. It was just a couple of pissed off Muslims, after all, looking to exterminate the worshippers at a synagogue. How could one possibly misconstrue that as terrorism?

Frankly, it’s the least the White House can do to look the other way when the local cops take some of that federal grant money and use it to do the FBI’s job for them!

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