Generation Kill

By Bill Maher

Omar Mateen was born in New York to Afghan migrants. Syed Farook, the San Bernardino shooter, was born in Chicago to Pakistani migrants. Nidal Hasan, the Fort Hood shooter, was born in Virginia to Palestinian migrants.  Other "lone wolf" attackers like Dzhokar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev (the Boston Marathon bombers), Muhammed Youssef Abdulazees (the Chattanooga Navy Reserve shooter), Naveed Afzal Haq (the Seattle Jewish Federation shooter), and Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar (drove his car into a group of North Carolina college students) are children of immigrants. The threat isn't Muslims coming to America, it's their kids. And according to Professor Olivier Roy, a world-renowned specialist of Islam, generational conflicts could be at the root of their fury.

In response to the Paris attacks, Roy wrote that the cause of globalized jihadism is a deep generational fracture. In other words, young men are committing mass murder and suicide in the name of Allah as a revolt against everything their parents represent. In an interview with Quartz, Roy goes on to say, “The issue is not that the Muslim population is turning jihadist. The issue is that there is a big generational gap which is stronger in Muslim societies because these communities are experiencing a sudden change–cultural, sociological, political–in a very short timespan of 30 years."  Roy continues,“(The younger generation) reproach (their parents) for not having passed on ‘good’ Islam, for having become Westernized, for accepting their life as migrants slipping down the social ladder, and for not having revolted. They are living in a myth and are not political militants who want to create a new society.”

Again, Roy was referring to the Paris attackers when he made these comments. But imagine if they applied to the Orlando attack, too. How do you stop that?