Based in Northern Virginia, John Guandolo guides the national security consulting firm Guandolo Associates, LLC, which works with clients in the law enforcement, business, and military communities. John Guandolo is also author of the 2013 book Raising a Jihadi Generation and founder of Understanding the Threat. He recently wrote a blog entry on UnderstandingtheThreat.com titled, “Sharia Adherent Muslims Are Not ‘Extremists.’”
Mr. Guandolo points out that “violent extremism” is a nonsensical term, as it paints with a broad stroke anyone willing to further their beliefs through acts of violence. Under this terminology, members of the U.S. military and other legitimate forces could be classified as such. The correct terminology for those who follow Sharia (Islamic Law) and use violence for their ends is rather “Jihadis.” These Islamists do not consider themselves “extremists” at all. For them, “terrorism” involves the killing of a Muslim without just cause. Mr. Guandolo notes that an Oslo, Norway, Muslim Peace Conference in 2013 made this clear, as participants expressed their support of Sharia and its related punishments.