Tags: Iraq in Crisis | ISIS/Islamic State | Middle East | War on Terrorism | Joe Scarborough | ISIS | Marie Harf

Scarborough: Does WH Really Think More Jobs Will Defeat ISIS?

By    |   Wednesday, 18 Feb 2015 10:19 AM

Comments like those by a State Department spokeswoman, who placed an emphasis on job creation to combat the Islamic State (ISIS), were feeding the growing belief that the White House was out of touch with the threat the militants posed, said talk show host Joe Scarborough.

Deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf was criticized after she said "We cannot kill our way out of this war" on MSNBC's "Hardball with Chris Matthews" on Monday, suggesting many people joined ISIS because of a "lack of opportunity for jobs."

"Critics across the political spectrum seemed to bristle at the prospect the State Department believes you can beat ISIS with jobs programs," Scarborough said on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Wednesday. "There seems to be this growing belief in official Washington this administration doesn't understand the root of the problem."

Scarborough, a former Republican congressman from Florida, said many of the militant jihadist fighters were from "middle class families, some from upper middle class families," adding there were many people who believed "we are going to have to kill our way out of this situation, as well as improving the situation on the ground."

"Morning Joe" co-host Mika Brzezinski said the U.S. has a hard enough time with job creation in this country without trying to work on building economies elsewhere in the world, but did feel it was "part of the equation."

"I think it's very difficult to have an argument about combating ISIS with jobs. It's not an argument," she said Wednesday.

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BBC correspondent Katty Kay told the "Morning Joe" panel on Wednesday that dissatisfaction and corruption in the region fed the "anti-Western thing," and maintained ISIS used killing to recruit new members.

"It's a recruiting tool, some of these videos. I think absolutely there has to be a broader, more comprehensive approach. And it's going to take a long time," she said.

"There are lots of facets to this. You cannot just kill, in the sense that, as you kill, you make more recruits."

Scarborough suggested a strategy that went to the heart of the problem would be to "bash the hornet's nest" instead of "chasing down the hornets all over your farm," and said there had to be U.S. as well as Sunni and Shiite boots on the ground to fight ISIS.

There also needed to be an attempt to influence youth in European schools against joining ISIS, he said, since the militants currently appeared to have "the winds at their back and history on their side."

Scarborough said he thought Western values could be problematic in trying to understand the appeal of videos that ISIS has released, which show beheadings and burning people alive.

"I just think when we try to apply Western values to values, people that are attracted to seeing somebody burned alive or 21 Christians having their heads cut off, that our logic is not going to apply.

"This is something much deeper, something much more base," he said. "And, we sound silly when we try to apply Western values to some of these people."

Political commentator Mike Barnicle stressed there had to be an "Arab face" to confront ISIS, and said the campaign against the militants was multifaceted.

"With regard to ISIS, it's so complex — tribal wars, lack of governance, hopelessness, among a median population of about 19 years of age. You want to set your hair on fire it's so complex," he told the "Morning Joe" panel.

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Comments like those by a State Department spokeswoman, who placed an emphasis on job creation to combat the Islamic State, were feeding the growing belief that the White House was out of touch with the threat the militants posed, said talk show host Joe Scarborough.
Joe Scarborough, ISIS, Marie Harf, jobs, Chris Matthews, boots on ground, defeat, jobs
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2015-19-18
Wednesday, 18 Feb 2015 10:19 AM
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