Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Islamic nations key to fighting terror

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






A silent march in Washington, D.C., on Sunday, Jan. 11, 2015, to honor those who died during three days of attacks in Paris. (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/TNS)

A silent march in Washington, D.C., on Sunday, Jan. 11, 2015, to honor those who died during three days of attacks in Paris. (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/TNS)

The Western and Islamic worlds have reached a pivotal point in their relationship in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks in France. In one potential scenario, violent extremists will gain greater eminence in the Islamic world, radicalizing more young people and fomenting continued bloodshed. Or extremists will become entirely marginalized within the larger Muslim community, stopping the flow of terrorist recruits and allowing remaining militants to be defeated.

It seems obvious that we should prefer the second choice. Unfortunately, however, a significant segment of Western society has decided that “enough is enough” and that the “Muslim problem” must finally be addressed.

Nowhere is this attitude more prevalent than on Fox News. And while it may be easy to dismiss the bastion of conservative “toughness” as a hotbed of right-wing rhetoric, the network’s ratings (over a million average primetime viewers, significantly more than CNN) speak to its relevance. People watch Fox programs for a reason: they value the hosts’ opinions, which makes their recent tone concerning.

Successive hosts and their guests emphasized the need to “call the problem what it is.” They derided President Obama and French President Francois Hollande for insisting that the terrorists are not representative of Islam. They repeatedly cited the increasing Muslim population in France as a cause for morbid concern. These conservatives believe they have found their enemy, and that enemy is Islam.

Such an attitude is nearly unfathomable in its stupidity. The Western world already has a formidable enemy: violent Islamic extremism. Why would we enlarge our task and cast as enemies our most important allies in the fight? It is the average Muslims, lovers of peace and life, who can stamp out the hateful ideology that gives rise to violent attacks. American bombs can kill individual terrorists. Muslims can foster an environment within their communities that brings about peaceful resolutions to their problems and deconstructs baseless hate, thus fighting extremism at its source.

And the global Muslim population is prepared for the fight. In recent speech to leading Imams, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi called for a “religious revolution” to combat extremism, attacking the violent religious philosophy “that is antagonizing the entire world.” Following the recent Paris killings, French Muslims have vehemently condemned the terrorists’ actions. Islamic groups have asked leading imams to speak out against extremist violence, and neighbors of Said Kouachi, one of the recent attackers, have expressed “aching hearts” and a sense of “feeling dishonored because of what they did.”

These words, along with the sacrifice of countless Muslims who have died fighting Islamic extremism in Africa and the Middle East, should demonstrate that Islam is not the enemy, but the key to an eventual victory in the so-called War on Terror.

Benjamin Clabault is a Collegian columnist and can be reached at [email protected]

2 Comments

2 Responses to “Islamic nations key to fighting terror”

  1. Arafat on January 12th, 2015 9:03 am

    “These conservatives believe they have found their enemy, and that enemy is Islam.”
    +++
    A beheading in Woolwich, a suicide bomb in Beijing, a blown-up marathon in Boston, a shooting in the head of a young Pakistani girl seeking education, a destroyed shopping mall in Nairobi – and so it continues, in the name of Islam, from south London to Timbuktu. It is time to take stock, especially on the left, since these things are part of the world’s daily round.
    Leave aside the parrot-cry of “Islamophobia” for a moment. I will return to it. Leave aside, too, the pretences that it is all beyond comprehension. “Progressives” might ask instead: what do Kabul, Karachi, Kashmir, Kunming and a Kansas airport have in common? Is it that they all begin with “K”? Yes. But all of them have been sites of recent Islamist or, in the case of Kansas, of wannabe-Islamist, attacks; at Wichita Airport planned by a Muslim convert ready to blow himself up, and others, “in support of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula”. “We cannot stop lone wolves,” a British counterterrorism expert told us after Woolwich. Are they “lone”? Of course not.
    A gas facility in southern Algeria, a hospital in Yemen, an Egyptian police convoy in the Sinai – it’s complex all right – a New Year’s party in the southern Philippines, a railway station in the Caucasus, a bus terminal in Nigeria’s capital, and on and on, have all been hit by jihadis, with hostages taken, suicide belts detonated, cars and trucks exploded, and bodies blown to bits. And Flight MH370? Perhaps. In other places – in Red Square and Times Square, in Jakarta and New Delhi, in Amman and who-knows-where in Britain – attacks have been thwarted. But in 2013 some 18 countries got it in the neck (so to speak) from Islam’s holy warriors….

  2. Arafat on January 12th, 2015 9:11 am

    Islam our enemy? Gosh, how is that possible?

    Well, other than the fact that Islam’s holy books and their killer prophet, are filled with admonitions to take over the world so as to create a worldwide caliphate, (and they are doing that as you write your shallow opinion pieces) is one reason why.

    In the past few decades Muslim jihadists have genocidally killed one million Animists and black Christians in Sudan in their expansion of their caliphate there. Muslim jihadists are fighting a war of attrition against the Christians in Nigeria as they expand the caliphate further south in western Africa. Muslim jihadists have taken control over Somalia, they have violently killed off almost the entire Christian leadership in Lebanon and now that country is 30% Christian, down from 60% Christian a few decades ago. Muslim jihadists are fighting a slow war of attrition in southern Russia, NW CHina, northward up the Malay peninsula in southern Thailand, they are wiping out what little remains of the Hindus of Pakistan and Bangladesh.

    Anytime there are American personnel in northern Africa or most anywhere in the Middle East or southern Asia these people are at risk.

    \Muslims have killed innumerable international aid workers and innumerable UN peace workers.

    So you can continue to ignore reality if that is your wont, but it’s your hubris in doing so that really irks me. Nothing more awful than a smug moron.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    Course registration is unnecessarily difficult

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    White nationalists on the UMass campus

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    Americans deserve equal access to voting

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    Celebrate Election Day to make voting cool again

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    The intersectionality of voting

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    PowerPoint is a crutch that shows a failure to teach public speaking

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    The election may be over, but your work isn’t

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    UMass students should learn by doing

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    The divide: How politics is driving us apart

  • Islamic nations key to fighting terror

    Archives

    What happened to ‘the Zoo?’

Navigate Right