Rep. Peter King
said in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Belgium Tuesday that given the encryption of communications apps, authorities may have to rely less on intercepting terrorists’ messages and more on human intelligence and undercover work.
“I think we need more surveillance,” King (R-Seaford), a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, said in a telephone interview.
But he rejected Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz’s call for police to go into Muslim communities to patrol and secure their neighborhoods.
“I think what we need is police surveillance. I don’t like the idea of having uniformed police going through the neighborhoods,” King said. Plotters see a uniformed cop and they’ll hide, so what is needed is “more sophisticated undercover work,” King said.
King also renewed his call for U.S. Muslim communities and their leaders to cooperate more with law enforcement by reporting radicalized individuals and paying attention to what is going on inside their mosques and community centers.
He said in the five years since he held hearings about the responsibility of Muslim communities to help stem terrorism in the United States, “I don’t think there has been enough improvement.”
He cited the failure of a mosque to report how radicalized one of the Boston Marathon bombers had become.