SAALT on the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism (CVE)

With the open­ing of the White House Sum­mit on the Coun­ter­ing Vio­lent Extrem­ism (CVE) pro­gram this week, SAALT con­tin­ues to stand in oppo­si­tion to this pro­gram. CVE is cen­tered around the prob­lem­at­ic con­cept of requir­ing Mus­lim indi­vid­u­als, insti­tu­tions, and com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tions to ques­tion, spy, and report mem­bers of their own com­mu­ni­ty for alleged ter­ror­ist activ­i­ty. It is also based on the dom­i­nant and flawed nar­ra­tive of vio­lence and ter­ror­ism being patent­ly attached to Islam, which is inac­cu­rate and divi­sive. This nar­ra­tive is espe­cial­ly trou­bling in the face of grow­ing hate vio­lence in this coun­try tar­get­ed at Mus­lims, those per­ceived to be Mus­lim, and com­mu­ni­ties of col­or at large. SAALT doc­u­ment­ed many of these inci­dents, includ­ing those that are under­re­port­ed or ignored in main­stream media, in our recent report Under Sus­pi­cion, Under Attack and many more have been in the news in just the last few months. The exe­cu­tion-style mur­der of three Mus­lim stu­dents in Chapel Hill, North Car­oli­na, is the lat­est in these egre­gious attacks on Mus­lims in the Unit­ed States. It is time to have a rich­er and deep­er dis­cus­sion on the breadth of vio­lent extrem­ism in this coun­try, one that hon­ors the slew of vic­tims of domes­tic extrem­ism.