We should not distinguish between “foreign” and “domestic” violence against citizens.
When detectives from the New York Police Department’s intelligence bureau arrested Jose Pimentel on Nov. 20, 2011, he was in a Washington Heights apartment putting the finishing touches on a pipe bomb he was building in an Al Qaeda-inspired plot to attack military and police targets in the city. On March 22, 2017, James Harris Jackson was arrested for the racially motivatedsword killing of Timothy Caughman. Mr. Jackson, a white supremacist, said he had planned to kill more people of color in New York, hoping to start a race war.
Mr. Pimentel and Mr. Jackson were charged under the New York State antiterrorism law. Enacted shortly after Sept. 11, it allows New York to bring terrorism charges regardless of whether the ideological motive is “foreign” or “domestic” or whether the weapon is a bomb or a sword. This approach is a model for tackling today’s terrorist threat.
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