Minneapolis receives aid to fight terror

The United States Department of Justice has selected Minneapolis to be one of three cities that will receive federal funding to combat terrorist recruitment. 

The program is called “Building Community Resilience,” and it will allocate $15 million in federal grants and private donations toward deterring Minneapolis youth from joining foreign terror organizations.

For years, Minneapolis has struggled against terror recruitment, especially in its Cedar-Riverside neighborhood. In total, more than 20 Minneapolis residents have joined the Somalia-based terror organization al-Shabaab, and several others have joined the Islamic State.

Under the new program, federal officials will work alongside youth leaders, police officers and Somali community members.

Not everyone in Minneapolis is impressed by the new program, however. Jaylani Hussein, executive director of the group Cair Minnesota, expressed concerns to the Minnesota Daily that too much mistrust exists between the DOJ and local communities to ensure cooperation between the two.

We feel positive about the prospects for Building Community Resilience, and we commend its emphasis on cooperation between DOJ workers and local community leaders.

Without meaningful dialogue between communities and law enforcement, it can become easy to typify members of a certain race or ethnic group as terrorists. It goes without saying that this mindset is absolutely inimical to combating terrorism. In working to circumvent it, we feel Building Community Resilience has started off on the right foot.