Tuesday, September 20, 2011

F.B.I. Chided for Training That Was Critical of Islam

Arab-American and Muslim groups deplored on Friday the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s use of training material that characterized the prophet Muhammad as a “cult leader” and linked Muslims’ religious devotion to a potential for violence.

“It’s really troubling,” said Abed Ayoub, the legal director of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

Mr. Ayoub said the use of the material in counterterrorism training — first reported in a blog post on Wired.com — was only one of numerous cases in which training materials for law enforcement agencies have portrayed Islam or Arabs in a negative light.

“The bigger question is how did this material get in there in the first place?” he said. “Do you not have rules or guidelines that will prevent this from happening?”

In a training segment called “Militancy Considerations,” posted on Wired’s Web site, a chart correlated a steady level of violence with “adherence by pious and devout” to the Koran. In contrast, the chart showed violence decreasing with “adherence by pious and devout” to the Bible or to the Torah.

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