At work today, I found a copy of the New Yorker this morning. Normally I don’t really enjoy reading that magazine, because it seems to be very snide, but I enjoyed, no, was transfixed by an article the magazine had on the former Adam Gadhan, who is known better by his name Azzam the American, a mouth piece for al Qaeda. Gadahn was born on the West Coast, grew up outside of Los Angeles in a somewhat strict Bible-based family. He converted to Islam at the age of 16, after earning a high school equivelancy.

Gadahn seems like something of a Kool-Aid drinker. Regardless, he’s a force to be reckoned with in the radical Muslim world wherein the sight of a Westerner, albeit an American, talks of a radical jihad and pledges allegiance to Ayman al Zawahiri. His presence may encourage others in those backwaters to take up the cause of violent jihad.

As an American, I’m not so much offended that Gadhan would turn his back on our country, but that he should show such support for killing. It’s said, really. Sad that this man has turned to the dark side of hatred and violence on the scale of terrorism.

Nevertheless, Gadhan does hit on something that Americans from Joe Redneck to George W. Bush don’t seem to get.  Anyone taking a pulse in the Arab-Muslim world  knows that the United States is non-grata for its interventions throughout. The maraschino cherry on the top was the invasion of Iraq, which will be exploited by men like Gadhan and al Qaeda’s shining prince, Osama bin Laden, who can point to an atrocity in their midst.

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