Former Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank has called for “significant surveillance” of the “Islamic element” in the wake of the Orlando terrorist attack at a gay nightclub.
In an interview with The New York Times on Monday, Frank said, “There is an Islamic element here. Yes, the overwhelming majority of Muslims don’t do this, but there is clearly, sadly, an element in the interpretation of Islam that has some currency, some interpretation in the Middle East that encourages killing people — and L.G.B.T. people are on that list. And I think it is fair to ask leaders of the Islamic community, religious and otherwise, to spend some time combating this.” (RELATED: 10 Things We Know About Omar Mateen — The Orlando Shooter)
Frank, who is a Democrat and gay, added that one of his “most controversial views” is that the Orlando terrorist attack “reinforces the case for significant surveillance by law enforcement of people who have given some indication of adoption of these angry Islamic hate views.” (RELATED: FBI Called Off Investigation Of Orlando Shooter Because They Thought His Coworkers Were Racist [VIDEO])
Omar Mateen, the individual who conducted the terrorist attack was interviewed by the FBI two times in recent years, but the investigation was closed after no connection could be drawn between him and terrorism.
“If they had continued to surveil him, that would have led to some A.C.L.U. criticism – and they would have been wrong. I wish they had surveilled him more, not less,” Frank said.