Max Abrahms, who describes himself as “#Terrorism Theorist / Northeastern Prof / Council on Foreign Relations / Center for Cyber & Homeland Security,” is the quintessential establishment foreign policy analyst, a hack fronting policies that have failed again and again and again, and that Abrahms, and the establishment in general, don’t even realize have failed.
Yesterday he joined the general establishment pile-on against Donald Trump, belatedly, since his colleagues, friends and allies have been noting this “undeniable” point for weeks and months before Max arrived on the scene, breathless with discovery:
When Trump first proposed his temporary moratorium on Muslim immigration, I was amazed to see otherwise clear thinking writers publishing articles with titles such as, “Don’t Ban Muslims, Just Ban Islamists.” This is is less surprising coming from as muddled and limited a thinker as Max Abrahms, but that he would express this view underscores that it has become the establishment line against Trump’s proposal, no doubt prevailing at the Council on Foreign Relations and at Northeastern University.
The problem is that while it sounds sensible to ban “Islamists” only, or “jihadis” only, rather than all Muslims, or at least those coming from rogue terror states, what none of those who have criticized Trump for this proposal have ever recognized is that it is impossible to distinguish Islamists and jihadis from among peaceful Muslims. This is especially true since the Islamic State has instructed jihadis not to appear overtly religious, but instead to be clean-shaven, wear Western dress, and appear to be exactly the “moderate Muslim” that is the object of all the West’s hopes. And so it’s easy to dismiss Trump as a bigot for suggesting this, but no one has ever offered an alternative suggestion for how to prevent jihadis from entering the country.
If Max Abrahms had a modicum of wit and understanding of the problem of which he purports to be a “theorist,” he would realize that it is not Donald Trump, but Islamic jihadis themselves, who have made sure that there is no distinction between “the vast, vast majority of Muslims who are law-abiding” and “Muslim terrorists.” Trump is not refusing to recognize that there are Muslims who are law-abiding, but acknowledging that it is impossible to identify the jihadis who are among them. Max Abrahms would rather see Americans die in jihad attacks than take politically incorrect steps to try to prevent those deaths.