Captured caches of terrorist material often include pornography. Could pornography pose a risk to national security?
A federal grand jury recently indicted Army soldier Naser Jason Abdo, age 21, on three charges related to a plot to attack soldiers near Fort Hood, Texas. When authorities arrested him, they found in his possession bomb-making materials, a gun, ammunition, and the article ”Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom,” from a recent issue of al-Qaeda’s English online journal Inspire. Initial questioning of Abdo indicates that his intended targets were U.S. military personnel.
Much of the attention on this case so far has focused on Abdo’s religion—Islam—and his refusal to deploy to Afghanistan. As Rep. John Carter, whose 31st District in Texas includes Fort Hood, announced, “We may well have averted a repeat of the tragic 2009 radical Islamic terror attack.”
Any effort to make sense of this troubled young man will need to include understanding how he chose to approach and interpret his religion, and perhaps most importantly, why he adopted the interpretation he did. Any effort to understand Abdo without considering this question would be profoundly incomplete.
Yet tucked away, often near the closing paragraph of the articles about this case, is mention of an issue that I believe warrants more attention than it has received in the past decade of terrorism studies: namely, pornography. And in Abdo’s case, child pornography…
Read on here.