Jehovah's Witness converts to Islamic terrorism

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    Celestial posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 06:21:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 108 of 129
    Joined 2/3/2012

    This was a younger brother in one of my prior congregations that I used to go out in field service with in the early 1990's. We always had the most enlightening conversations and we went out and did recreational things from time to time. He seemed like a normal guy.

    After a while, I moved to another congregation. I lost touch with Jeffrey Battle. The strangest thing happened some years later. Sometime after September 11, 2001 he appeared on national television.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/2300-224_162-524439-2.html

    I was like, “Wow, I went door to door with that dude.” He was clean shaven and well groomed as one of Jehovah's Witnesses, so converting to Islamic fundamentalism didn't do much for his appearance.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeffrey_Battle

    http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2002/10/14/the-portland-six.html

    At 6 a.m. Friday, Jeffrey Leon Battle and October Martinique Lewis were asleep in their Portland, Ore., apartment when the team of federal agents, dressed in combat gear, crept up to the front door. For months, the FBI had been secretly tracking the couple's every move, phone call and e-mail, accumulating evidence to prove the two Americans, both converts to Islam, were members of a cell of Osama bin Laden's followers who planned to join Al Qaeda. Convinced they had enough to make their case, the Feds moved in.

    Quietly, the agents prepared to make what they call a "keyed entry." The key: a battering ram. Crashing through the door, the Feds rushed to the bedroom, where they handcuffed the couple, who had jolted awake but were still in bed. At about the same moment across town, Patrice Lumumba Ford, another suspected member of the group, stepped out of his apartment to discover eight federal agents with guns ordering him to the ground. That same morning, agents in Detroit arrested Muhammad Bilal, yet another alleged member. Two other alleged conspirators remain free.

    Federal investigators are still trying to figure out exactly how the various members of the Portland group came together--and when and why they allegedly decided to turn against their country. All seemed to share an obsession with radical Islam. Battle, 32, was raised in Houston, where he played high-school football and studied to be a hairdresser. Battle's mother, Deanna Douglas, told NEWSWEEK that, as a child, her son was a "jovial, really lovable" prankster.

    Battle says she raised her son to be a Jehovah's Witness. But soon after seeing the Spike Lee movie "Malcolm X," he became "very obsessed" with Islam. Battle and his girlfriend October, now 26, converted and began wearing traditional Muslim dress. The two moved to Portland, married and worked for a time at a nursing home. The couple eventually divorced but, oddly, still lived together. Odder still, in 1999 Battle suddenly announced he was joining the U.S. Army Reserves, telling his mother he wanted to get medical training to become a doctor. But a few months after September 11 he was discharged. Last week Ashcroft charged that Battle joined the military only to learn how to fight against Americans. Neighbors recall that last winter, Battle's 6-year-old son argued with other children about the terror attacks. "He told me, 'I'm trying to tell them that 9-11 is a good thing'," Janette Dean, the mother of one child, told NEWSWEEK.

    Diest posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 06:46:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 655 of 1701
    Joined 6/8/2011

    Crazy but not suprising. In some ways I think being raised to be a JW could send you down a militant path. It trains you to think there is only one truth. If you start to believe that, while not believing thier version of the'truth' you might end up on a nutty path.

    M steve2 posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 08:03:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 4476 of 8589
    Joined 10/31/2004

    Um, one sparrow does not a summer make. In this world of endless possibilities, anything is possible - and the most tedious thing is to read too much into rare events. Just don't wheel out any "experts" on how his JW upbringing primed him for terrorism. The last time I looked, the JWs were oozingly content to leave the terrorism of Armageddon to the hordes of heavenly angels under Jehovah's command. Unless the GB have spiced up the message by throwing in a few virgins for men who successfully kill themselves to get through to paradise.

    Diest posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 09:59:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 665 of 1701
    Joined 6/8/2011

    My only point is that fanaticism breeds fanaticism. I know many JWs will stick to christian beliefs when they leave, but there are plenty of times where a fanatic goes from one extreme to the next one.

    WTWizard posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 13:46:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 13085 of 15032
    Joined 5/10/2007

    This move did nothing. You go from spiritual terrorism to physical terrorism, and from one cult in one platform to another cult in another platform.

    How much better if they looked at mainstream Islam, which does not promote blowing things up. Or, going to another mainstream religion. Or, looking at some of the ancient religions--even if diametrically opposite to the witlesses. Or, no religion at all.

    TOTH posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 14:53:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 450 of 662
    Joined 1/9/2012

    It is like watchterrorism is just like spiritual terrorism to me. When I was a little boy I read the Paradise Lost book and it was filled with horrific imagery of burning churches and terrified, dying people. I went with my dad to his job one day cutting down trees up in the mountains and he was driving with me and a coworker. I was about 6 years old at the time. The man's wife was a jw but he wasn't. We drove passed a church and I asked my dad if we were going to stop and burn it down. My dad looked at me like I had two heads or something. He could tell I was getting the wrong idea but what could you expect from a kid sitting in meetings where all they did was cut down religions and put THAT sort of imagery in their stupid books! The guy we drove with said nothing....

    I can see how this friend of yours could take such a leap of faith as he did.

    Broken Promises posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 15:05:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 5271 of 5156
    Joined 3/7/2010

    We don't know the guy's mental state so it's not fair to speculate but I will say, I can see how someone who sees things in black and white and raised as a JW could transfer that fundamentalist thinking into fundamentalist Islamic beliefs.

    When 9/11 occurred I said the same thing. I can see how someone who is that way inclined could go to a way of thinking most of us would automatically reject.

    James Penton posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 15:23:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 16 of 29
    Joined 8/2/2007

    I disagree with this analysis completely. There are lots of things I blame the Witnesses for, but not for someone joining the army and becoming a militant Black Muslim. Surely to God, if we're going to blame religious movements for fanaticism, we should look at the fundamentalists who want to support Israel in attacking Iran. Some of their leaders have wanted to practice the assassination of foreign leaders such as Hugo Chavez, something the Witnesses haven't done. And the Witnesses have never lynched blacks in the south as have those good "Christians" such as Southern Baptists, members of the Chruches of Christ, etc. And if you want to talk about fanatic nuts, just take a look at the Republican race to choose a presidential candidate.

    sabastious posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 15:28:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 7449 of 9407
    Joined 2/3/2010
    Surely to God, if we're going to blame religious movements for fanaticism, we should look at the fundamentalists who want to support Israel in attacking Iran.

    Hello James, attacking Iran is an extremely risky idea, but Iran would like Israel and America to go away entirely. If they could they would erase us from existence. I don't blame Israel for being nervous enough to strike first, but that doesn't make it the best decision to make.

    -Sab

    James Penton posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 18:58:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 17 of 29
    Joined 8/2/2007

    Iran isn't in any position to attack Israel or the States. Netanyahu is a nut like George Bush and wants to start a war which could lead to extreme problems for the west and the U.S. in particular. You think the cost of gas is high? Well attack Iran and see it go into the clouds. That could mean the end of any possible economic recovery. Interestingly, there are protests in Israel against such an attack, and according to the latest news only 13% of Israelis want to go to war. They know the real probable effects on the U.S. economy and feel that if Israel were blamed for it, they could lose the support of the American people. But getting back to the topic of this thread, don't you think that being black and feeling discrimination in the United States is enough to make a person want to join a movement that strikes at the country? Surely, stand your ground legislation, various attempts to prohibit blacks from voting through recent state legislation, the killing of Trayvon Martin in Florida, the murders in Tulsa, and the fact that blacks have been hit hard by the recession is enough reason to want to hate the country. So to blame Jeh0vah's Witnesses for a person's choice to become a radical black Muslim is just not on. Let's censure the Witnesses for what they are really guilty of but not try to blame them for everything.

    JustHuman14 posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 19:19:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 646 of 733
    Joined 3/24/2009

    I guess there is not a lot of difference between, Spiritual terrorist groups...

    sabastious posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 20:00:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 7460 of 9407
    Joined 2/3/2010
    Iran isn't in any position to attack Israel or the States. Netanyahu is a nut like George Bush and wants to start a war which could lead to extreme problems for the west and the U.S. in particular. You think the cost of gas is high? Well attack Iran and see it go into the clouds. That could mean the end of any possible economic recovery. Interestingly, there are protests in Israel against such an attack, and according to the latest news only 13% of Israelis want to go to war. They know the real probable effects on the U.S. economy and feel that if Israel were blamed for it, they could lose the support of the American people. But getting back to the topic of this thread, don't you think that being black and feeling discrimination in the United States is enough to make a person want to join a movement that strikes at the country? Surely, stand your ground legislation, various attempts to prohibit blacks from voting through recent state legislation, the killing of Trayvon Martin in Florida, the murders in Tulsa, and the fact that blacks have been hit hard by the recession is enough reason to want to hate the country. So to blame Jeh0vah's Witnesses for a person's choice to become a radical black Muslim is just not on. Let's censure the Witnesses for what they are really guilty of but not try to blame them for everything.

    America can't afford a third war, but Israel may be able to. I am against war with Iran from any turf, but I can see why Israel is extremely uneasy about Iran's nuclear medical isotopes. I don't believe Netanyahu is war mongering, he's just concerned with Iran and company. A legit concern. How would you run Israel right this minute if you don't mind me asking?

    -Sab

    sabastious posted Sun, 08 Apr 2012 20:04:00 GMT(4/8/2012)

    Post 7461 of 9407
    Joined 2/3/2010
    But getting back to the topic of this thread, don't you think that being black and feeling discrimination in the United States is enough to make a person want to join a movement that strikes at the country?

    To take over the country you graduate from law school and join a secret society. Just look at Barack Obama.

    -Sab

    M steve2 posted Mon, 09 Apr 2012 05:17:00 GMT(4/9/2012)

    Post 4479 of 8589
    Joined 10/31/2004
    It is like watchterrorism is just like spiritual terrorism to me.

    Ask someone who has been caught up in physical terrorism if they'd prefer "spiritual terrorism". There's no comparison. If you add the word "spiritual" before a list of crimes, you could have a field day comnig up with new crimes: Spiritual murder, spiritual grievous bodily injury, spiritual shop-lifting, spiritual burglary.

    To take a fundamentalist spiritual concept such as waiting upon Jehovah to bring justice to the world and warp it in a mind set in which believers stop waiting upon Jehovah and start bringing justice to the world is totally unjustifiable.

    We can accuse the Watchtower and its loyal rank and file of many,many, many things. Terrorism is not one of them. To even try to fly the idea of spiritual terrorism makes a mockery of actual terrorism.

    Broken Promises posted Mon, 09 Apr 2012 06:52:00 GMT(4/9/2012)

    Post 5272 of 5156
    Joined 3/7/2010

    steve2,

    I agree with you that on the surface Watchtowerism doesn't support terrorism.

    However, the black-and-white thinking, the idea that 99.99% of the world population deserves to be killed for being God-hating heathens is something that could be taken to the nth degree by someone who for whatever reason entertained such ideas that were originally started by the WTS.

    I am not saying that the WTS teaches such an idea, just as mainstream Islam doesn't teach about killing infidels. BUT... it's the non-mainstream, black-and-white thinking that takes things out of proportion and becomes a fundamentalist terrorist.

    M steve2 posted Mon, 09 Apr 2012 07:00:00 GMT(4/9/2012)

    Post 4481 of 8589
    Joined 10/31/2004

    I hear what your saying BP. However, with that sort of reasoning, we could make a case against a significant slice of Christianity, especially the nuttier variants such as that group in the States who publically and with ridiculous media-enflamed fanfare sought to burn the Koran and the other similar group who hold protests at the funeral services of American troops killed in Afghanistan. JWs, by contrast, are more bland.

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