TERROR HOTBEDS IN AMERICA ARE GROWING DANGER
POLIZETTE — Sheer numbers of radicalized Muslims make Europe an easier target for terrorism, but the United States faces a real and growing threat from “sleeper cells” and lone wolves, according to security experts.
Europe has become a hotbed for radical Islam over the last two decades, as immigrants hole up in hovels outside major cities. Molenbeek is one such slum, in the outskirts of Brussels — home to the terrorists who attacked Tuesday, killing at least 30 and wounding hundreds. Militant Muslims are also in the ghettos outside Paris — the perpetrators of the massive attack that killed 130 this year were traced there. And Germany is battling a huge influx of Muslims; many Germans now fear attacks from radicalized Islamists.
The United States has no clear counterpoints to Europe, but there are cities with large Muslim populations, like Detroit, Minneapolis and New York City. Last year, the FBI probed an area of Phoenix, and reports emerged the agency was investigating reports that the area had become a hotbed for terrorist recruitment at an ISIS level.
All five presidential candidates on Tuesday weighed in on the Brussels terror attacks, but Ted Cruz went a step further, saying U.S. law enforcement should step up efforts to secure the homeland.
“We need to empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized,” Cruz said. “We know what is happening with these isolated Muslim neighborhoods in Europe. If we want to prevent it from happening here, it is going to require an empowered, visible law enforcement presence that will both identify problem spots and partner with non-radical Americans who want to protect their homes,” the Cruz campaign said in a statement.
While the United States has not experienced the level of terrorism over the past couple of years that has afflicted Europe, Kyle Shideler, director of the Threat Information Office at the Center for Security Policy, said the number of plots uncovered by law enforcement officials indicates that the threat remains high.