The hideous burning of the Jordanian pilot is further evidence that our measures to counter radical Islam has failed.
The United States and other free countries have spent trillions on the war on terror as an attempt to end or contain Islamic terrorism. The outcome of the approach, which relied predominantly on kinetic military confrontations, has been a miserable failure.
The West has neither prevented the Taliban from regaining significant power in Afghanistan nor averted ISIS from conducting barbaric terror acts in different parts of the world. The latest beheadings of American journalists and the recent killing on Charlie Hebdo journalists in the Middle of Paris are further evidence of abject failure.
History teaches us that war only ends when one of the combatant groups gives its opponent a strong deterrent that results in surrender.
The failure in fighting radical Islamists so far is fundamentally due to the lack of a sufficient deterrent.
Unlike the emperor of Japan and Nazi leaders in World War II and unlike the Americans and Russians during the Cold War, Islamic radicals want to die for Allah. In other words threatening death is actually a positive reinforcement.
Jordan's killing of Sajida Al-Rishawi, as revenge for the ISIS killing of hostage pilot Muath al-Kaseasbeh is also not a deterrent for the Islamic radicals. In their view she will die a martyr and will inherit paradise forever.
Other tactics need to be implemented.
Denouncing the attacks, demonstrating against terrorism, refusing to call radical Islam by its name, or statements like “we will bring them to justice” just make the radicals fall from laughter. Similarly the recent statement of President Obama (in his comments on the burning of the Jordanian soldier) that the U.S. will redouble the vigilance and determination to defeat ISIS means nothing for Islamic radicals as redoubling an incorrect approach will achieve nothing.
The use of military power is certainly needed; however, the lack of the effective deterrent guarantees the failure of such an approach.
The sad reality is that the West's responses to the problem which relied on many unrealistic perceptions and imaginations worked as a positive reinforcement for Islamic terrorism over the last 10 years.
Some of these positive reinforcements for Islamic radicals included the delay of Apache helicopters to fight the radicals. Many of these radicals trained in Saini and travelled to lead ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Additionally, attempts to punish the CIA officials who conducted waterboarding to gain information from the terrorists, has only encouraged Islamic radicals to continue their war against our civilization.
Despite the fact that death is not a deterrent for Islamic radicals there are certain deterrents that can bring these radicals to their knees and end or significantly diminish their barbarism.
Such deterrents need to be done as part of a psychological operation strategy to deter the Islamic radicals from continuing this war.
Not only a correct strategy and correct tactical implantation of it can deter the terrorists from conducting more atrocities but it can also significantly deter young Muslims from joining radical groups.
Reformation and education are vital components for a long term solution of Islamic radicalism; however, these components have minimal effect on those who have already become radicalized. The only thing that can work with those who are already radicalized or with those who may think in joining a radical group is using effective deterrent.
Dr. Tawfik Hamid is the author of "Inside Jihad: Understanding and Confronting Radical Islam." Read more reports from Tawfik Hamid — Click Here Now.
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