Extremism is an addiction, something powerful and overwhelming, addicts can’t control their thoughts or actions. These people are cultural pedophiles, this isn’t a physical disease as some would postulate about alcohol, this is a psychological sickness. Traceable to birth, to sucking the mother’s milk of an abused woman whose life was compressed by a literal , sophistic interpretation of the Koran and unquestioned obedience to Allah and his self ordained disciples. Omar was one of them, an addict in more ways than one.
His private journal revealed a physical interest in men, homosexuality in the Muslim world was punishable by death, usually stoning or having their throat cut. The leaders preferred cutting to beheading, the former being more painful. Being gay was not pardonable under any circumstances. Omar’s journal had links to gay porn and dating sites, he would satisfy a predilection for gay sex in liberal NY undetected. We wanted to know more about this, where did he go, which clubs, bars and bath houses. Did he have a steady lover, where and when did they meet, were others in their circle, did he do group sex, with whom? Omar used an alias on password encrypted dating sites, his handle was Deep Throat, his profile page had dozens of photos, nude and semi-nude in various states of arousal. He checked the “partnered” box on his favorite dating sites. There were closed messenger systems, chat-rooms and review options; the sites were a social media microcosm, a brokerage for anonymous assignations with a nefarious purpose. Omar was active, he built a contact list with ratings for each man he’d been with, the four and five star performers were visited often at their apartments or shared motel rooms on Staten Island. Omar’s death had not been reported to the media, Starbucks was told he was ill and would not be returning for work. Deep Throat was now a CIA agent, we would arrange meetings, we would isolate and interrogate his lovers, one by one by one.
Were there operatives working outside of Omar’s cell in NY, did he communicate with them, were they attracted to him sexually, did they meet; where, when, how? This was an opening to a side of Islam we had not expected. Gay sex was taboo, forbidden, punishable by a long, painful death. Addiction thrives on the adrenalin rush of danger, fear of discovery and consequences of exposure. Abusers of alcohol, drugs, gambling and sex are endemic to our society, we knew that suicide bombers like those plotting 9/11 would frequent strip clubs and bars before their mission. They had a predilection for booze, drugs and porn but we didn’t suspect male sex, we were wrong.
Regardless of race, religion or status, someone living under crushing tension and stress without access to drugs and alcohol will often turn to sex. Drugs and alcohol provide temporary relief but have unacceptable consequences subject to mindless thought and activity, they left a mark that could compromise a mission. Sex is free, anonymous and non-toxic, not detectable by a blood test. It leaves no physical footprint and provide relief for a terrorist planning suicidal murder in the name of Allah. Without a hangover sex gives you a free pass to nirvana, a taste of what’s in store when meeting the quaranic virgins, all 72 of them, ostensibly but inaccurately promised by Allah. Omar’s private journal was a treasure trove, an encrypted database of names, places, dates and reviews of gay sex practiced by a man suffering from a deep, dark psychosis.
Understanding what made Omar tick, how he became who he was and why he persevered in spite of his American experience would give us clues to the extremist state of mind. These men were not foot soldiers following orders, they were anarchists, troops in the service of Allah imbued with a literal and inaccurate interpretation of the Koran.
Some believe we should not use labels when defining extremists. They would argue there are no Muslim terrorists, Jewish terrorists or Catholic terrorists; there are simply terrorists. Murderers, rapists and kidnappers, who act on their own initiative without the aid or inspiration of a deity. The billion plus peace loving Muslims in the world are living testimony to this thesis.
Omar’s personal diary would lead us into an agnostic world of secrecy, fear, violence and sex. An incubator for terrorists, a place where thought becomes reality powered by addiction, the alchemy of terrorism.