As President-elect Donald Trump put it, “We have spent six trillion dollars in the Middle East; we could have rebuilt our country twice." This extreme lack of efficiency in spending taxpayer money is very closely related to our failure to correctly fight the phenomena of radical Islam and Islamic terrorism.
This situation necessitates a completely fresh approach to tackling this problem so that we can spend our money more effectively. Here are some crucial points that President-elect Donald Trump and his administration absolutely must consider in order to be able to correctly fight radical Islam:
- Define the enemy clearly and fight it correctly. The failure of the Obama administration to define the enemy as the Radical Islamic ideology that leads to terrorism has made all our attempts to defeat it useless and even counterproductive. Since Sep 11, we have been trying to defeat the symptom of the disease (terrorism) without treating the disease itself (Islamic radicalism). Nothing can better describe the reality of the situation than this comment from Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, “Until we go after the ideology which is radical Islamic ideology, until we decide to do that . . . all the tactics in the world . . . actually increase the cost — and that is to the advantage of our enemy.”
- Defeating Islamic radicalism is certainly possible, but it will require a complex strategic approach to cure the world of this disease.
- Label the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. This will significantly decrease the financial, political, and logistical support that this group gives to several other radical organizations.
- Consider the Imams and religious scholars who preach or promote violent principles to their communities as terrorists and hold them accountable.
- Set parameters for and measure the level of radicalism in Muslim countries, and tie U.S. aid given to such countries to their effectiveness in decreasing Islamic Radicalism (not terrorism) in their societies. If the level of radicalism increases, U.S. aid should decrease and vice versa. This will encourage several Muslim governments to start fighting the ideology of Islamic radicalism seriously in their countries, which will ultimately affect global security.
- Empower allies such as President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt — who clearly stands for reformation within Islam. Currently, many in the country are trying to impede his efforts. Supporting him at this crucial time in human history would help him implement his vision for reformation, which would then likely spread to many other Muslim nations because Egypt is — for several reasons — a major thought leader in the Arab and Muslim world.
- Use effective deterrents to dissuade the Islamic radicals and terrorists from conducting more attacks. The imminent threat of certain death (which is an effective deterrent in normal situations, as we saw with the Japanese surrender in World War II) is not a deterrent for the Islamic radicals who actually want to die. Currently, the radicals enjoy a "win-win-win" situation. If they control an area they will implement the barbaric Shariah laws and are thus winners. If they are killed waging Jihad they believe they will “go to paradise” and are thus the winners. And if they are captured by western nations they will not be tortured, and several human rights groups will immediately jump in to defend and protect them. Nontraditional approaches and tactics are needed to deter such ideologically motivated barbarians.
- Stop all support for pro-democracy groups in the Middle East and divert such support to educational approaches that promote values of peaceful coexistence, particularly in Muslim countries that breed radicalism and terrorism. At this stage of human history, the Arab/Muslim world simply needs values of peaceful coexistence much more than it needs ballot democracy.
- Immediately stop granting tax-exempt status to organizations that collect the Zakat (obligatory Islamic taxes). According to current Islamic and Shariah teaching, one portion of this Zakat money must be allocated to support Jihad, and another part must be used to support converting non-Muslims to Islam (“Wa Al-Moallafatu Kulobohom.” — See: "Quran Surat Al-Tawba Verse 60"). It is hard to believe that the American taxpayer would be interested in seeing his/her money supporting such activities. The Zakat has been granted 501(C)3 tax-exempt status by Obama. The newly formed Trump administration must abolish this exemption completely.
- Require all new immigrants to the U.S. to sign a declaration that they will not promote values that contradict the U.S. constitution lest their visa and/or citizenship be revoked. This would allow us to immediately deport Islamic radicals for promoting inhumane sharia principles such as killing apostates, stoning women to death for sexual indiscretions, and violent Jihad.
- Provide substantially better education and training for security people who interview potential Islamic radicals. The inability of law enforcement officers to detect Islamic radicalism and its covert signs has allowed radicals to conduct several terrorist attacks against American citizens.
Dr. Tawfik Hamid is the author of "Inside Jihad: How Radical Islam Works, Why It Should Terrify Us, How to Defeat It." Read more reports from Tawfik Hamid — Click Here Now.
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