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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The Fallacy of Focusing on Islamic Radicalization

There are Jihadists from dozens of countries who have joined ISIS. What do they all have in common?

The official answer is radicalization. Muslims in Europe are “radicalized” by alienation, racism and unemployment. Neglected by governments, Muslim youth band together and become terrorists. Muslims in Israel are responding to the “despair and hopelessness” of the “Occupation”. Muslims from the rest of the Middle East are angry over their “dictators”. Muslims from the Ukraine? Who knows.

Radicalization comes packaged with a set of local grievances and explanations. It contends that all Muslim terrorism is a response to local conditions and that we are responsible for those conditions. Even though the “radicalization” is Islamic, it denies that Islam plays a positive role as a Jihadist goal. Instead, like Halal liquor or hashish, it’s what Muslims turn to when they have been disappointed in the West or in their own governments. Islam is just what happens when a Belgian Muslim can’t get a job.

And yet Islam is the only positive uniting factor for Islamic terrorism.

Why otherwise should a Moroccan youth from a French suburb who works at a nightclub, the son of a rural Saudi farmer who has never been outside his country and an American teenager who converted to Islam all risk their lives to form an Islamic State? The Jihadis of ISIS are a truly multinational and multicultural bunch. They have traveled to two foreign countries that most of them have never been to.

What else unites them into a common identity that they are willing to kill and die for if it isn’t Islam?

Radicalization favors local explanations. But those local explanations don’t add up nationally or globally. Europe spends a fortune on social services and yet Muslim terrorism has only grown worse. Other immigrant minorities in Europe have lower unemployment rates and aren’t blowing things up.

Removing Muslim dictators in the Arab Spring didn’t lower terrorism; it vastly increased the power and influence of Islamic terror groups. Nor have changes in American foreign policy and greater outreach lowered Islamic terrorism. If anything the scale of the problem seems to have only become more severe.

The Israeli peace process with the PLO likewise vastly increased the terror threat and no amount of concessions has brought peace any closer. There are stateless Muslims throughout the Middle East. Jordan is filled with the same exact “Palestinians” as Israel, many of whom are stateless and have few rights, yet terror rates are far lower. Instead Muslim violence spikes where there are religious differences.

As we see in Iraq, Syria and Israel, religious differences are more explosive than political ones. And where religious differences don’t exist, Jihadists create them by denouncing their Muslim enemies as un-Islamic. ISIS is the culmination of a process that you can see among “moderate” Islamists.

The official explanation is that a multitude of local factors cause Muslim disappointment leading to some sort of irreligiously religious radicalism which can be cured by preventing that disappointment.

We are expected to believe that there are hundreds of explanations for Islamic terrorism, but not one. And while no doubt individual choices and emotions play a role in the making of a Muslim terrorist, the same is true in the making of a soldier. An army exists as part of a positive national ethos. Reducing an army to a series of personal dissatisfactions is absurd. So is reducing ISIS to individually dissatisfied people while ignoring what its members actually believe. It’s as absurd as believing that Hitler became a monster because he couldn’t get his painting career off the ground.

Islamic terrorism is a positive ethos. It is horrifying, evil and brutal, but it is not some nihilistic void. You can look at unemployment rates in Brussels or dissatisfaction in Saudi Arabia, but nobody decides to fight and die for a Jihadist group because they’re having trouble applying for a job at McDonald’s. They join because they believe in its mission. Ignoring the organizing principle of Islamic terrorism while focusing on local conditions that might make Jihadist recruitment easier misses the forest for the trees.

Radicalization programs, under euphemisms such as CVE or Countering Violent Extremism, assume that Islamic terrorism can be countered by forming a partnership with Muslim groups and social services agencies. While the West will ease Muslim dissatisfaction by providing jobs and boosting their self-esteem to make them feel like they belong, the Muslim groups will tackle the touchy issue of Islam.

These partnerships achieve nothing because social services don’t prevent Islamic terrorism; they enable and fund the very no-go zones and dole-seeker lifestyles that are a gateway to the Jihad. Meanwhile the Muslim partners are inevitably Islamists looking to pick up potential recruits for their own terror agendas. Western countries fund terrorism to fight terrorism and then partner with still more terrorists to train their homegrown terrorists not to be terrorists, or at least not the wrong kind of terrorists. This is what happens when the “Islam” part of Islamic terrorism is ignored and outsourced to any Islamist who can pretend to be moderate in front of a television camera for 5 minutes at a time.

None of this actually stops Islamic terrorism. Instead it empowers and encourages it.

The Islamist alliances suppress any discussion of Islamic terrorism as “harming” national security. Condemn the Muslim Brotherhood and you’re interfering with CVE efforts to stop terrorism by “educating” Muslims on real Islam and helping the Brotherhood take over entire countries to address the political anger of Muslims. At least the anger of those that are part of the Muslim Brotherhood.

And yet without discussing Islam, there is nothing to discuss.

There are plenty of unemployed non-Muslims in Europe. There are lots of bad governments all over the world. The non-Islamic factors on which Islamic terrorism is blamed are not unique to Muslims. Only Islam is. Islamic terrorism is unique and so its causes cannot be reduced to joblessness or bad governments. A unique outcome suggests a unique cause. And Islam is a unique cause. Islam is the unique cause of Islamic terrorism. There is no way to fight Islamic terrorism without acknowledging its organizing principle, its objective and its worldview.

You cannot fight “radicalization” without dealing with what Muslim terrorists are “radicalized” to do. Without Islam, all that’s left is the political and sociological hunt for individual motives while completely ignoring what unites these individuals together. And so CVE plays the seven blind men while ignoring the elephant in the room. And the terror attacks and the futile efforts to avert them continue.

The issue isn’t radicalization, it’s Islamization.

Islamization is what happens to individual Muslims and to Muslim communities. Islamization is also the goal of Islamic movements, overtly violent or covertly subversive. Islamization is not the answer of some radical preacher, but of the Islamic religion. This is not about jobs in Europe or democracy in Egypt.

Islam is not radicalized. It is radical. Like Communism or Nazism, it offers a totalitarian answer to everything. To truly believe in Islam is to possess the conviction that every country in the world must become Islamic and be ruled by Islamic law. Islamic terrorism is one tactic for realizing this conviction.

We cannot and will not defeat Islamic terror without honestly and bluntly confronting Islamization.


  1. As Islam only started being successful after Mohammed started both peddling his new religion of Islam under threat of violence as well as promising his followers to be allowed the use of almost unlimited rapine and violence on non-believers, violence has been paramount in this "religion of peace". The problem is that there are a billion and a half muslims and laws of inertia make it virtually impossible to ever change the percentage of radicals to an "acceptable" number by application of either carrot or stick. The percentage of radicals might have changed very little during the 1400 years of the spread of Islam but until the last decades their aggression was limited to the Middle East & North Africa so the west did neither care nor felt it sufferd the last few hundred years conveniently forgetting it barely survived the Islamic onslaught in 732 and 1683. Since 1996 however the west gets affected and it sees only one way in handling this threat to enlightenment: accepting unlimited amounts of immigrants and undoubtedly converting to Islam in the foreseeable future as the alternative would be a war on such a scale that it is unthinkable to the ever less inclined to fight for it's values, liberal mind.

  2. So, let's talk about Moderate Nazism and Moderate Communism. Nazis are "radicalized" by a host of internal conditions unique to Germany. Communists are "radicalized" by a host of conditions and problems unique to Russia (or to Eastern Europe, or to South America). These "radicalized" Nazis and Communists have nothing to do with Nazism and Communism. Their ideologies have nothing to do with their basic ideologies. These "radicalized" Nazis and Communists do not adhere to genuine Nazism and Communism. You can't claim that they're Nazis or Communists because that would be defaming Nazism and Communism. Makes sense, right? Blame the violent extremists who wrongly quote Mein Kampf and Das Kapital! They have no right to quote those sacred texts! We've got to root out the violent extremists without quoting or denigrating Nazism and Communism! That's what CVE is all about. It's a very successful program in nurturing "violent extremism," but that's another story and irrelevant here. Don't change the subject. That's just Naziphobia and Communophobia! You ought to be stood before a firing squad!

  3. Y. Ben-David20/4/16

    Another factor to consider is how Islam operates internally, among its own followers. I once questioned a Muslim about how it is possible that devout Muslims are slaughtering each other in devoutly Muslim states like Syria, Iraq, Pakistan, Algeria, Libya, Yemen, and other places? After we are told constantly that Islam supposedly means "peace" (it doesn't, it means "submission") and useful idiots like Bush and Obama try to convince us that Islam is a religion of peace. So how can countries that have overwhelming majorities of Muslims and in which Islam is the official religion and the members of the public were raised in an Islamic educational system, end up tearing each other apart? The Muslim answered "It has nothing to do with Islam, it is due to LOCAL FACTORS", just like Daniel mentioned. Well, even if there are "local factors", the public's Muslim values seem to be completely ineffective in deterring them from butchering one another, not to mention infidels in Europe. Thus, we can ask what value there is in Islam as a supposed "religion of peace" if it can't bring peace among its own believers.

  4. Y. Ben-David20/4/16

    Another question that can be raised about Islam's supposed command for peace is the indifference Muslims in the West show towards the fratricidal slaughter their brother Muslims are carrying out in the Middle East. Have we seen any sort of Muslim "peace movement" in the West calling for an end to the killing? Even if we say that in the Middle Eastern countries themselves, where all the governments are dictatorships of one sort or another, that people can not organize 'peace movements' or demonstrations without the regime's permission, this is most definitely NOT the case in the West. Whereas when Israel is attacked by Palestinian terrorists and then defends itself, we see large anti-Israel demonstrations in places like London and Paris, we DO NOT see any comparable demonstrations denouncing intra-Muslim slaughter with scenes like Shi'ite and Sunni leaders marching arm in arm saying that those who are carrying out the violence are a disgrace to Islam and that all true Muslims should condemn them. All we hear is SILENCE. They simply do not care. All we can deduce from this is that Islam DOES NOT educate its followers to an abhorrence of violence. I am well aware that Western Muslims will say "those who are being violent are not 'real' Muslims" but this then leads us ask these pious Muslims about what they are doing to stop these people from killing in the name of their religion. All we see is NOTHING. Indifference.

  5. Every Islamic terrorist movement is said by dweebs in high places to have a "political wing." They can then talk to, cater to, or fund the "political wing" without soiling themselves, as they see it. Magically, the "political wing" then delivers all the goodies to that other wing lurking in the shadows. We can have moderate Palestinian murderers, moderate Iranian murderers, moderate ISIS murderers, you name it. To deny their moderation is to admit that dealing with them on these terms is treason to America.

  6. Read Nonie Darwish's "The devil we don't Know"

  7. Infidel21/4/16

    Excellent points, although I was already converted to your view some time ago :)

  8. Anonymous21/4/16

    How about starting with the term: "Palestinians" that was hijacked by the Arabs, specifically Arafraud, who immigrated to "Palestine" with the help of the Brits. I would use the term: Paliestinians or Fakenstiniens but definitely not Palestinians.

  9. Exactly!!! And we didn't knowingly and willingly 'import' Nazi's and Commies by the 10's of thousands into the US ...ever! Yet Islam, an ideological belief system of conquest, hiding behind a fig leaf of religiosity, is many times the threat to world peace that either the Nazi's or Commie's represented. And still the left works to bring that rot into our culture at a dizzying pace!
    The only logical explanation is what Andrew McCarthy outlined in his best seller 'The Grand Jihad'. Islam and the Left are in a partnership, the agenda of which is to destroy what is left of Western Civilization. Personal Freedom & Individual Responsibility, Capitalism, Christianity and Judaism, Nationalism, Federalism, the Nuclear Family, the Rule of Law, etc. are being killed off in favor of their twin tyrannical goals ... a Worldwide Caliphate and/or a New World Order. Within the notion that 'the enemy of my enemy is my fried', Islam and the Left together play this dangerous and ultimately self defeating game, the end of which can lead only to total annihilation of us all... the Armageddon that Islam's adherents so stupidly are striving for!
    Greenfield is spot on and the sooner we realize that Islam and the Left are the two greatest threats to America, and give them the political, economic and spiritual beating they so richly deserve, the sooner we can get back to being that 'Shining City on a Hill', again!

  10. Anonymous21/4/16

    Muslim/Islamic, tomato, tomatoe are one and the same.
    If one reads middle eastern history back to at least the era of Abram (Abraham)one can clearly see , the mentality of every tribe from any of the countries, nations or states are almost exactly the same. whether, Jew, Hebrew, Arab, Syrian, Turk or dukes mixture. They all have a strong tendency towards physical violence, slaughter without mercy and rebellion against everyone, including their own relatives.

  11. CVE is a lousy, dangerous joke, rather like the entire Mobama administration and its Lemming Leader. It was never meant to curb or stop moslem terrorism, but just to bullsh*t us.

  12. "To truly believe in Islam is to possess the conviction that every country in the world must become Islamic and be ruled by Islamic law. Islamic terrorism is one tactic for realizing this conviction."

    Thank you for the article. Islam demands of its followers that they murder or enslave anyone who disagrees with them. That some followers of Islam do not follow this commandment explicitly means nothing since they are enablers for those who do.

    Islam will continue to ruthlessly attack the West because Western culture is based upon freedom and individual rights, both of which are anathema to followers of Islam.

    We have to recognize that we have no choice. As long as Islam exists, we will be at war with Islam. Until we take the proper actions to defend ourselves and our culture, people in the West will continue to die at the hands of the vicious tyrannical followers of Islam.

  13. Anonymous21/4/16

    Our Western cultures have been indoctrinated by the
    notion of granting unconditional acceptance of all
    other cultures. So, not to accept is denounced as
    bigoted, racist. A daunting taboo.

    Without these blinders, a rational human can see
    Islam as the horrible derangement it is.

  14. Anonymous21/4/16

    All this justification of Islam ... oh, pardon me, I meant radicalization of Islam, of course, is yet another example of the Blame the Victim attitude so characteristic of the Political Correctness Gestapo.

    Just like they justify black crime by going back to slavery, 100+ years ago; and illegal immigration by going back to the Conquista, 500+ years ago.

    Whatever your problem is, just make sure you blame Western Whitey and you'll get away with murder. Literally.

  15. Anonymous21/4/16

    I don't know about Islam, but let me tell you what I know about fellow Christians. There are 3 kinds. Cultural Christians change what they believe to fit the culture they live in. Fundamental Christians believe what they read in the Scriptures. Radical Christians read into the Scripture and go beyond what is clearly written. Using this as a template, your Jihadists are not radical, but fundamental, since they are only doing what their book (and history) clearly tells them. This is why Islam can never be "reformed". You can't change what the Koran clearly states. They are the forever enemy.

  16. We should no more 'analyze' the why any more than we try to plumb the motivation of Charles Manson. Crazy is as crazy does. It's unimportant whether it comes from a book 99% of all Muslims can't read or because mommy touched them funny.

  17. Anonymous22/4/16

    Liberal elites have granted muslims the ‘natural being condition’ so that, they don´t bear any responsibility for their acts. You can’t blame a snake when it bites. The sensible thing is to become a jihadi whisperer. Pure logic.

  18. Anonymous22/4/16

    There is no Good Islam and no Bad Islam, as Muslim leaders occasionally trouble to tell us. The distinction that our leaders make between Good Islam and Bad Islam is not theological, but pragmatic. They dub whatever is shooting at us right now Bad Islam and assume that everything else must be Good Islam. That is the fallacy which they used to arrive at their Tiny Minority of Extremists formula.
    There is no Tiny Minority of Extremists. Behind the extremists are countries and billionaires, global organizations and Islamic banks. Outsourcing our counterterrorism strategy to the countries and ideologies behind the terrorists we’re fighting isn’t a plan, it’s a death wish.

    The Jihad isn’t coming from some phantom website. It’s coming from our Muslim allies. It’s coming from Pakistan, Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. It’s coming from the Muslim Brotherhood and its front groups. It’s coming from the moderate Muslim leaders that our leaders pose with at anti-extremism conferences. And it’s coming from the mosques and homes of the Muslims living in America.

    There is no Good Islam.
    There is no Bad Islam.
    There is just Islam.
    There is just the Quran.


  19. The correct terminology, if we want to be accurate, is not radical or moderate, but active or passive. Those we call radical are the ones who are acting out. Because Islam is Islam and they all share the same doctrine the ones who do not act out are not moderate but only passive, not currently inclined to act on their beliefs.

  20. Not possible to combat 'Islamic radicalisation' without considering Islam as a possible cause...could be because once that's done there's no need to look any further.

    Interesting that honesty has become grounds for ridicule, in a mad world going proudly madder.

  21. Anonymous2/5/16

    Daniel, you are dead on the mark...Pity so few see this...unfortunately the solution is pretty grim but nevertheless necessar



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