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April 17, 2007

Walid Phares: 'British Minister Fails the War of Ideas'

"By letting them feel part of something bigger, we give them strength." Hilary Benn
In a speech on British policy on Terrorism, M Hilary Benn, a candidate for Labor Party deputy leadership and currently the international development secretary of the UK, basically spoke the liberal line of our Democratic party when he exposed his deep ignorance of the facts by saying that President George Bush's concept of a "war on terror" has given strength to terrorists by making them feel part of something bigger. This statement, along with other absurdities uttered during the same speech in a New York meeting, prompted a very strong rebuttal from Walid Phares, a Senior Fellow with the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies in Washington, director of its Future Terrorism Project, and author of the newly released "The War of Ideas: Jihadism Against Democracy." Phares's commentary is also a stinging condemnation of the Democrats' entire philosophy for dealing with terrorists and conducting the war against radical Islam: British Minister Fails the War of Ideas.
[...] In a New York meeting organized by the Center on International Cooperation think-tank, Mr. Benn advocated the pre 9/11 idea that Terrorists are reacting to foreign policies and that they function not on the basis of ideologies but on the grounds of economic injustices. Thus in view of the fact that Mr. Benn is a member of a Government involved in the War on Terror, both inside Britain and overseas, it is very troubling to see that in the heart of Western democracies, a deep ignorance of historical and ideological facts still exists, even among leaders charged with the global defense of democracy. 1. Mr. Benn said "the phrase gives a shared identity to small groups with widely differing aims." He added: "And because this isn't us against one organized enemy with a clear identity and a coherent set of objectives."

Mr. Benn should know better. When Jihadi cells grow and operate in London, Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, blow up undergrounds, conspire to destroy airliners over the Atlantic; when British authorities are now monitoring more than 1,200 potential future Terrorists across the isles; that is not a local police issue. When the Salafi Jihadists operate in Morocco, Algeria, India, Russia, Indonesia, Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Holland, France, Canada and the United States, with one ideology, a focused identity, a global strategy and a set of coordinated moves; and when on top of that, their leaders, commanders and emirs clearly state their world objectives, identify their common enemy; when all that is displayed and restated on and on in the media and on internet, it is the most troubling that a member of the British Government, in charge of "international development" fails on guessing who the war is against and who his country and democracies around the world are up against. If this is not a Global War, what else could it be? M. Benn's incapacity to identify the global threat is disturbing, particularly because the enemy isn't secret nor is its ideology confidential. But let's note that US legislators lately have recommended similar mind games.

2. Mr. Benn goes on to say: "What these groups want is to force their individual and narrow values on others, without dialogue, without debate, through violence. And by letting them feel part of something bigger, we give them strength."

These "groups" are not a collection of individuals engaged in personal quest for glory or banditry. The Jihadists who massacred British citizens on July 7, 2005 in London and those who are developing Terror cells throughout England and the rest of the World are members of an international army formed by Salafi ideologues who began their campaign in the 1920s, while the Khomeinist Jihadists joined the fray in the 1980s. They are not just seeking to "impose" values by personal acts, including violence; they are waging a war, a full fledged, carefully planned series of campaigns over the decades to crumble their foes and establish totalitarian regimes. They do not wait for their enemies to describe the conflict for them but they define it by themselves.

Continue reading here.

In his piece, Walid Phares closes with a critical point that appears to totally escape the Democratic leadership. Phares notes how ironic it is that the Jihadist ideologues would find Mr. Benn's statements a perfect fit for their agenda, in that the Terror leaders' main objective is to see their foes learning less and less about their (Jihadists) ideology, strategies and plans. By moving away from the concept of War on Terror, as the Democrats have now done, and not seeing the Jihadists as Global and coordinated, British and American politicians are doing exactly what the Terrorists want and are in the process ushering in our defeat.


Cross posted from Hyscience

Posted by Abdul at April 17, 2007 10:04 PM

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