This week has provided yet more proof that in Washington at least the battle against Islamic terror is at best half-hearted and at worst magnificently muddled.
Muddled I suspect does not really adequately describe the situation. A more apt analogy would be “appeasement agenda” of the most discredited variety. What other conclusion can one reach when surveying this week’s pronouncements?
The US State Department’s latest pearls of wisdom stated that the root cause of ISIS and other (unmentionable) terror is poverty and a lack of opportunity. The spokesperson went on to declare that “we cannot win the war on terror, nor can we win the war on ISIS, by killing them. We need to find them jobs. We need to get to the root cause of terrorism and that is poverty and lack of opportunity in the terrorist community.”
So there we have it straight from the corridors of power in the country which was once touted as the leader of the free world and upholder of democratic & liberal values. They have already thrown in the towel by declaring for all (including the terrorists) to see that the war against terror groups is lost before it has even started. The script on this subject and the percolating policy on Iran are taken directly from the Chamberlain textbook on appeasement and surrender to dictators.
The claim that all those flocking to the banners of ISIS and similar groups are unemployed individuals looking for alternative employment and presumably a steady income and perhaps a pension is so wide of the mark that one wonders what sort of unreal universe those promoting these fantasies actually live in.
Osama Bin Laden came from a wealthy and privileged background and quite a fair number of all those men and women flocking to the current ISIS campaign against infidels similarly hail from well-educated and comfortable families. It is certainly not a lack of jobs which propel them into the ranks of groups seeking to establish a Caliphate or which promises them rewards in heaven stacked with virgins.
So what is it that causes British schoolgirls to join up and countless other volunteers from many countries to enthusiastically embrace these cults of evil? There must be a common denominator somewhere. The anti Israel brigade of course has a ready answer – it must be Israel. Needless to say this conclusion is facile and false because neither Boko Haram Taliban nor Sunnis & Shiites murdering each other care two hoots about us. The deniers of reality love to be able to pin the cause on anything other than the real answer. What all these murderous groups have in common is Islam. We can argue until the cows come home whether they are perverting Islam but the undeniable fact is that all of them claim to be carrying out their agenda in the name of their religious faith. That is what unites them and the refusal by Western leaders to acknowledge it is the reason you hear such drivel.
Have a look at this video and see for yourselves how the indoctrination of jihadists in the name of Islam starts at a very young age, well before job employment is relevant. It demonstrates the absurdity of frantic attempts by certain politicians to distance these terrorists from any connection to their religion.
During the great depression when millions were unemployed, there may have been food riots but there was no mass murder and beheadings. In the shtetls of Europe where masses of Jews were out of work and discriminated against there were no defections of Jewish youths to terror groups. Likewise Buddhists and Hindus are not known to have joined campaigns to eradicate unbelievers. Likewise since the Crusades & Inquisitions we have not seen in our time Christians burning heretics at the stake. This message does not seem to get through to those who should be leading the fight against Islamic terror. The NZ Prime Minister got it right when he said in Parliament this week that there comes a time when one has to stand up and be counted in the face of unmitigated barbarity. Those who think that humanitarian aid by itself can turn the tide against ISIS are living in the same delusional world as the appeasers of the 1930’s.
In another blow to those who maintain that all jihadist recruits come from disadvantaged backgrounds it has been revealed that “Jihadi John” who featured in ISIS videos at the beheadings of western hostages is none other than a graduate of computer programming from the University of Westminster in the UK and hails from a comfortable background.
Those who flock to the ISIS banner are doing so because they have become brainwashed. As can be seen, young children, teens and adults alike, are seduced much in the same way as the Hitler youth of another generation were poisoned. Nazi hatred of Jews and others produced a generation capable of the most heinous genocidal crimes. Those who today employ the same methods are producing mass murderers also in the name of a perverted ideology.
Like Chamberlain and his supporters it is easier to try to avoid the hard truths. That is why the war on terror is seriously flawed from the start. Back in the 1930’s the established Churches and political players did nothing to stop the rising wave of hate and in fact in many cases actively assisted its growth.
Unless Islamic leaders in the first instance tackle this terminal malady in their midst, the virus will multiply until it is out of control and untreatable. Likewise, unless politicians in all western democracies take the politically correct blinkers off their eyes and seriously tackle the root causes as well as the end results, we are doomed to be held hostage to a regime of terror unprecedented in its scope and lethal consequences.
So far, the omens are not promising. Declarations and parades are great media material but do nothing to defeat the haters. Is there a Churchill waiting in the wings?
If we are not careful it will be too little too late.
Michael Kuttner is a Jewish New Zealander who for many years was actively involved with various communal organisations connected to Judaism and Israel. He now lives in Israel and is J-Wire’s correspondent in the region.