(No more Olmert! No more Kadima! No more Oslo! )
Unfortunately with a .95 confidence interval you would also mistakenly identify 5000 as terrorists who were not. Actually a Bayesian calculation would give you a better idea of the problem. Most likely if you found a positive on your test the likelihood would be it is a false positive and not a terrorist.
That is one problem. The bigger problem is a cross sectional and laundry list effort in identifying terrorists misses the crucial dimension which is process.
People of faith often develop doubts and uncertainty. One common way to deal with this inner problem is to redouble efforts and become so unquestioning one no longer has to face inner uncertainty. Another way is to "die for the cause." That is to deal with self-doubt you end your life, prove your faith and achieve recognition (Thymos).
If I were a person trying to ferret out terrorists look for those in the group who are prone to doubts. They may be middle class, exposed to Western ideas or failures in their secular lives but the common denominator is their faith has been challenged internally and this becomes their overwhelming problem.
Protestant end-of-the-world sects usually redouble their proselytizing when their date is passed. We lionize martyrs to the faith both in history and in the present. This alone should tell us something about human nature.
The Elias Canetti reference is very good. He wrote "Crowds and Power;" This is certainly a worthwhile book since it received the Nobel Prize in Literature. His morals left something to be desired.
I forgot to add--good post!
He joins DU.
"The Islamists are as unconcerned about this as the Nazis were about the downfall of Germany. As the avant-garde of death, they have no regard for the lives of their fellow believers."
Islam + the left = The avant-garde of death...