The recently acknowledged ‘radicalisation problem’ in NSW once again has emphasised the volatile intersection of disordered thinking, social exclusion, and an insidious belief system which emphasises existential threat. The experience of working with young men who meet the criteria of having been radicalised provides unique insight regarding the power and influence of messages that are selectively reinforced, none more so than the centrality of exclusion. The evolution of Australia’s current experience of Islamic extremism has its genesis in a small, nondescript prayer hall located in the Sydney suburb of Lakemba, where a cohort of disaffected Muslim men sought to differentiate themselves on the basis of their effort to exclude themselves both from Australian society in general, but also from the overwhelmingly moderate community from which they derived their ultimate identity. The experience of the Islamic community at the time remains instructive of the challenges that remain, albeit on a larger scale. Brawling at prayer time, capricious threats of violence, accusations of apostasy; Sydney’s Islamic community remained under constant pressure from within, held hostage by a small but disproportionately influential group of men, many with strong criminal conviction. Most of those within the group are currently serving lengthy prison sentences having been charged with terrorism-related offences. Their legacy and twisted ideology, however, has evolved and remains omnipresent; most recently we saw its manifestation by virtue of the cowardly murder of NSW police employee Curtis Cheng. Unsurprisingly, given the nature of what was presenting, the Islamic community and its fractured leadership struggled to contain, let alone overcome, what was a particularly virulent ideology. Socio demographic features within the Islamic community, along with a pervasive social media platform, provided a fertile environment for charismatic Sheikhs, often self-proclaimed