Saturday, June 18th, 2016

Does Donald Trump have any idea what radical Islam is?

Narada Desk | June 18, 2016 5:07 pm Print
Or he has any realistic idea of or interest in what action America needs in terms of facing its problems and opportunities?

After frittering away the last forty years in international politics, including as a US Senator and Secretary of State, and being constantly briefed on all available intelligence and analysis, including classified information, how could she possibly have as much understanding as a reality TV star?

Trump is shockingly out his depth, here. There is nothing in his life, his history or his experience that would give him any kind of understanding of issues related to extremism, Middle Eastern politics, or Islam in general.

Whether you like Hillary Clinton or not, basic intellectual honesty would compel anyone to acknowledge that she knows far more about Islamic extremism, and terrorism in general, than does Trump.

Trump is, presumably, throwing accusations to distract from his total lack of competence on the subject.

Hillary understands that there are murderous non-state actors who use their perverse interpretation of Islam to advance their agenda. She also understands that states such as Turkey, Jordan and Indonesia are key allies in our struggle to defeat and eliminate these non-state actors.

Trump’s plank to ban all Muslim immigration will not only poison our relations with these governments but other governments such as India, France, Great Britain, which have sizeable Muslim minorities.

One more time: our war on this terror is worldwide, and we simply cannot win the war on terror without the cooperation of Muslims throughout the world. Demonizing, scapegoating our fellow Muslim citizens and putting them under surveillance is simply feel-good backlash that is wasting valuable law enforcement resources and is not advancing anyone’s security in any way. Our Muslim allies are just as frustrated with ISIS, AQ and others as we are. At a time when we are all threatened, we will not achieve security let alone win the war on terror by turning on each other.

The Orlando shooter was a lone operator. He had a vicious streak. He had no known connection to terror groups, which is why the FBI investigation fell flat. He did not act like a devout Muslim either, being the last one to show up at his mosque and the first to leave, so any investigation of him as a Muslim believer and potential terrorist would have drawn a blank. He did not declare his allegiance to ISIS until he started shooting. He went ballistic when he saw two gay men kissing. His murderous bigotry against gays was the prime driver. He used ISIS as a flag of convenience for his action. In return, ISIS used him for its propaganda.

ISIS, Al-Qaeda , Taliban, Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab etc. are not Radical Muslims or Radical Islam groups, They’re Islamists.

Islamism is a political ideology founded by Muslim thinkers in the 20th century.
One of the leading Ideologues was the Egyptian scholar Sayyid Qutb who directly inspired Osama Bin Laden.

Qutb lived under corrupt government his entire life, once he was arrested and sent to prison (the photo above shows him during this time). He saw torture, abuse, beatings & suffering in Prison. It was because of this that he came to the conclusion that in order for Muslims to live in peace and be prosperous, they need a theocracy. an Islamist state.

Qutb’s teachings became prominent (thanks to the Muslim Brotherhood) and inspired Islamist movements all around the Muslim world, including Osama Bin Laden & Al-Qaeda.

Neither Qutb or Bin Laden were Islamic scholars or clerics.

Islamism is not Radical Islam, because Islamism is a political ideology without any relation to Islam.

If you’d like to learn more about Islamism, wikipedia has a fantastic page including a section discussing Islamism’s relation to Islam: Islamists.

On another perception by giving a slight chance to Trump as some one with basic common sense, this could be like

“What radical Islam is” in this context is threats posed by the radical Islamists that radical Islam has broad and deep — though not universal — social roots in places where Islam is the primary religion (just in case anyone is thinking “what radical Islam is” in the context of our safety connotes Islamic scholarship, the thought is absurd).

The thought that Hillary Clinton does not understand this is absurd. But it’s not Donald Trump’s agenda to be correct in such matters. Demagoguery and appeal to visceral emotion is Donald Trump’s approach.

Does Donald Trump have any idea of what radical Islam is? Of course he must have some idea. Operationally, however he would seem to have no idea. We cannot — as some liberals do — blame the rise of radical Islam entirely on the history of Western Imperialism and subsequent Western Policy and Action in the Middle East. Yet we cannot ignore those factors either — as conservatives seem to want to do. We can only do what we can do and it is therefore counterproductive to follow a military shotgun approach to the issues of militancy in and terrorism stemming from the Middle East. History shows us the error of a massive military solution. History also shows us the errors (plural) of sanctions against an entire group of people (e.g. the Japanese in WWII).

The real question is “Does Donald Trump have any idea at all regarding National Policy?” The answer ought to be that he obviously must have some idea. But his whole approach is that it is not the rational idea that counts. Effectively therefore, based on the evidence, Donald Trump has no idea.

Regarding the Orlando shooting, the suggestion of a material connection to radical Islamic operations in the Middle East (ISIS / Daesh) has no basis so far. Donald Trump is not insensitive to the tragedy. But it’s not a human sensitivity. It’s a sensitivity that here’s another opportunity to use tragedy and dishonesty to advantage.