Document Type



Times of emergency may justify certain restrictions on liberties, but the nature of the terrorist challenge calls for a much more measured and nuanced response. Al Qaeda is said to have cells operating in as many as sixty countries. Furthermore, Al Qaeda is best described as a decentralized network of extremist Islamic groups and individuals rather than a unified military organization. To reduce or eliminate the threat they pose requires the cooperation of the governments, police officers, and individual citizens in the countries where Al Qaeda linked individuals and groups operate. Such help is necessary to obtain intelligence, arrest, capture, prosecution, and extradition of alleged terrorists, not to mention to cut off their funds and to confiscate their arms and other assets. The thesis of this article is that to the extent the United States discriminates against or otherwise unfairly treats Arabs and Muslims living here or wishing to visit here, the more difficult it will be for the United States to get the help we so desperately need not only in the United States, but also in Arab and Muslim countries and communities throughout the world.