New breed of terrorists are from cities: Pakistani daily

The life imprisonment sentence for Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistan-born American who tried to detonate a car bomb in New York's Times Square, "is a reminder of how the stereotypes and political discourse surrounding militancy and extremism are out of sync with reality", the editorial in the Dawn said.

The newspaper observed that traditionally, "militancy of the variety witnessed in Afghanistan and Pakistan has been understood as a phenomenon linked to poverty and political disenfranchisement".

"Extremist ideologues...use these social issues as pegs to challenge existing power structures and view the ranks of the poor as recruiting grounds. This may still be true but it does not apply to persons such as Faisal Shahzad with roots in the secular, upper middle class who first went to the US in 1998 to study for a university degree."
Expressing concern, the editorial observed that in terms of his background, "Faisal Shahzad is not alone. Young men with similar profiles have been found to have participated in a number of terrorist attacks in recent years, including 9/11".
It stressed on the point that "clearly, extremism is an issue that is no longer confined to minds that have been rendered susceptible by poverty, or the lack of awareness and education".

"This aspect of the matter merits attention, because the new breed of terrorists comes not from the tribal areas but from cities, including western ones."

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