Before the Boston Marathon bombings, the Obama administration argued for years that there is a big difference between terrorists and the tenets of Islam.
A senior White House aide in 2009 publicly urged Washington to cease using the term “jihadist” — asserting that terrorists are simply extremists. Two years later, the White House ordered a cleansing of training materials that Islamic groups deemed offensive.
Now, some analysts are asking whether the 2009 edict and others that followed have dampened law enforcement’s appetite to thoroughly investigate terrorism suspects for fear of offending higher-ups or the American Muslim lobby.
It is not just the case of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, a radicalized jihadist whom the FBI questioned in 2011 and cleared of terrorism links. At least five Muslims have attempted mass destruction in the U.S. since 2009, undetected beforehand by law enforcement and the intelligence community:
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