When Making Assumptions Goes Wrong

This is a really interesting article on ‘reforming’ jihadists, but I think the concept of rehabilitating someone’s faith is problematic. Can we even apply our western concept of the guilt-contrition-penance-rebirth process to something like this?

Once admitted to the center, the jihadis are put through a rigorous program of religious discussion — designed to wean them from misconceptions about what the Koran does and doesn’t permit — and sessions with psychologists and sociologists. Some receive vocational training to prepare them for a “normal” life. The center is guarded by Saudi police, but it doesn’t look or feel anything like a prison. TIME’s Scott Macleod, who visited the center in fall 2007, says it’s akin to a college campus or country club, where the detainees play Ping-Pong and sip Pepsi.

Hmm….

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