Moral Outrage
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FBI Entrapment as Government Policy

From Trevor Aaronson’s expose entitled “The Informants” published in the September/October 2011 issue of Mother Jones, we learn the FBI has concluded that Al-Qaeda as an organization is no longer a major threat to the US.

The threat now comes from the “lone wolf,” the person who is angry at or frustrated by their life situation and open to the influence of terrorist rhetoric. Allegedly, the American Muslim community is full of these “lone wolves”. The FBI uses informants is to try and find these folks. Here is a typical scenario:

1. FBI informant “A” is assigned, in Aaronson’s words, to “troll the mosques” of some American Muslim community. They hit upon some fellows living “on the fringes of society, often poor and unsettled, with only a rudimentary knowledge if Islam, and usually quite gullible.

2. Having spotted a candidate B, informant “A” befriends him and encourages B to vent his anger and dissatisfaction. At one point informant “A” might suggest to B that Allah put him on this earth for better things and what would he like to do about all that anger and frustration?

3. Now we are at the seminal moment. What if B has no idea what he would like to do? At this point informant “A” (carefully turning off his hidden recording device) transforms himself into an agent provocateur (with a financial incentive to entrap this guy) and comes up with a suggestion. Why don’t we go blow up an army recruitment center?

4. If B takes the bait, then “A” leads him on, concocting a plot, perhaps informing B that he (“A”) is an agent (not of the FBI of course) of some Pakistani terrorist organization come to the US to wage Jihad. He can supply B with weapons, explosives, vehicles and money. In other words, all the things that B could never have reasonably procured on his own (such as the necessary money or appropriate vehicles). All the things that B has no knowledge how to construct (like a bomb).

5. Eventually B is led to enact the crime, usually using a fake bomb. Then, of course, he gets arrested. Typically, he is sent to jail for decades.

FBI informant “A” gets paid up to $100,000 by the FBI. Voila, another terrorist plot foiled.

[Excerpt of an article by Lawrence Davidson, professor of history at West Chester University]

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One Response to “FBI Entrapment as Government Policy”

  1. […] was involved in one of the most controversial tactics: the use of “confidential informants” in so-called entrapment cases. This is when suspects carry out or plot fake terrorist “attacks” at the request or […]


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