CNN’s advice to Trump essentially boils down to this: Keep on applying the failed policies of the past that you campaigned on rejecting. Keep employing the same failed analysts, the same false diagnoses of the problem, the same wrong solutions.
CNN: “There’s no benefit in frightening Americans by leading them to believe that their way of life is threatened and the jihadists represent a strategic or existential threat to the country…”
The Islamic State issued this threat in September 2014:
O crusaders, you have realized the threat of the Islamic State, but you have not become aware of the cure, and you will not discover the cure because there is no cure. If you fight it, it becomes stronger and tougher. If you leave it alone, it grows and expands. If Obama has promised you with defeating the Islamic State, then Bush has also lied before him. Indeed, our Lord, the Mighty and Majestic, has promised us with victory, and here we are now victorious. He will grant us victory at every event. He is glorified and He does not fail in His promise.
And so we promise you by Allah’s permission that this campaign will be your final campaign. It will be broken and defeated, just as all your previous campaigns were broken and defeated, except that this time we will raid you thereafter, and you will never raid us. We will conquer your Rome, break your crosses, and enslave your women, by the permission of Allah, the Exalted. This is His promise to us; He is glorified and He does not fail in His promise. If we do not reach that time, then our children and grandchildren will reach it, and they will sell your sons as slaves at the slave market.
How much of a threat do jihadis have to be before CNN deems them a “strategic or existential threat”? Will Islamic jihadis really destroy the West and enslave our children? Probably not. Will they kill a great many people trying and cause immense disruption to our way of life? Absolutely. Look at air security, look at the huge barricades around government buildings (and now around Christmas markets) and tell me that government and law enforcement officials don’t regard jihadists as a strategic or existential threat to the country, even as they deny doing so.
CNN: “Don’t stigmatize Muslims. In America, the 1% of the country that is Muslim will be a core part of the front-line defense against homegrown radicalism and terror. You can’t even begin to think about pre-empting the threat of terrorism at home without Muslim cooperation and without building trust and confidence between law enforcement and this community.”
The problem with this one is that CNN and others in the Left media, as well as the entire Leftist political establishment, have bought into the claim that to be speak honestly about the motivating ideology of jihad terrorists is to stigmatize Muslims. This is not so, and there is no reason why it should be so. But as for the necessity of Muslim cooperation, this has been the line that government and law enforcement officials have taken since 9/11. What has it gotten us? Where is the large-scale Muslim pushback against jihad terror? Where are the programs in mosques and Islamic schools teaching young Muslims why they should reject and oppose the version of Islam proffered by the Islamic State and al-Qaeda? What’s more, a California chapter of Hamas-linked CAIR distributed a poster telling Muslims not to talk to the FBI, and a Florida chapter distributed pamphlets with the same message.
CNN: “Do not push provocative ideas such as a Muslim registry or peddle the notions that Muslims in America want to supplant the Constitution with Islamic law and practice. One of your first public outreach initiatives should be an effort to engage this community.”
There is actually no evidence that Trump has any interest in establishing a registry of all Muslims. Maybe of jihad terror suspects. But the rest is just media attempts to discredit him. Meanwhile, politicians and law enforcement officials have been working to “engage this community” for years, with hardly anything to show for it. And no Muslims in America want to supplant the Constitution with Islamic law and practice? Really? In “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North America,” the Muslim Brotherhood declared that Brotherhood members in the U.S. “must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” All the major Muslim organizations in the U.S. have links to the Muslim Brotherhood. Should that be a matter of no concern?
CNN: “Don’t turn this into a war or clash of civilizations. With a billion plus Muslims in the world, the vast majority of whom do not ascribe to the radical strain of Islamist ideology powering the jihadists, America can’t afford to.”
This is not entirely up to us. As is clear from the Islamic State quote above, Islamic jihadis are busy turning this into a war or clash of civilizations. The longer we ignore and deny that fact, the more difficult it will be to counter the threat they pose in all its forms. The vast majority of Muslims who do not ascribe to the radical strain of Islamist ideology powering the jihadists have shown themselves to be singularly ineffective in countering them. In November 2015, only 30 Muslims protested against the jihad massacres in Paris. In July 2015, a Muslim rally in Ireland against the Islamic State drew fifty people. In October 2014 in Houston, a rally against the Islamic State organized by the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) drew the grand total of ten people. In August 2013 in Boston, about 25 Muslims rallied against “misperceptions” that Islam was violent. About the same number showed up in June 2013 at a progressive Muslim rally in Toronto to claim that their religion had been “hijacked.” Contrast those paltry showings to the thousands of Muslims who have turned out for rallies against cartoons of Muhammad or against Israel. In January 2015, after the Charlie Hebdo jihad massacre, 800,000 Muslims protested against Muhammad cartoons in Chechnya; there were protests also in Iran, Pakistan, Ingushetia, elsewhere. In Pakistan, 10,000 Muslims protested against Muhammad cartoons. In Australia, 1,000 Muslims rallied against Charlie Hebdo and the freedom of speech. In Kyrgyztsan, 1,000 Muslims rallied, chanting: “I am not Charlie, I love my Prophet.” How long do we wait for the moderates?
CNN is pushing policies that have been shown to be wrongheaded again and again. If he sees the CNN article, President-elect Trump should take it as a guide to what not to do.
“Can Donald Trump defeat jihad?,” by Aaron David Miller, CNN, December 21, 2016:
(CNN)Americans love going to war, particularly against big challenges they want to overcome.
We have wars on poverty, mental illness, cancer, drugs, and, over the past decade, terrorism. Indeed, President-elect Donald Trump has declared war on ISIS and has vowed to destroy the jihadists — and fast….
Trump has talked tough about ISIS and what he describes as radical Islamic terrorism, but has said very little about how he’s going to deal with the challenge of actually destroying the threat it poses.
Interestingly, he has ruled out nation building, spending vast amounts of taxpayer dollars in Iraq and Syria, and has hinted that he may even suspend the US effort to support the Syrian opposition to Assad.
Still, what a President Trump will actually do about ISIS remains a mystery. But as he formulates his strategy, here are a few don’ts worth keeping in mind:
Don’t overpromise or scare. Presidents need to be honest with the American people, particularly if there’s no quick or easy fix. And this is going to be a generational struggle. There’s no benefit in frightening Americans by leading them to believe that their way of life is threatened and the jihadists represent a strategic or existential threat to the country or, on the other hand, that you can effectively eliminate them. More than likely Trump’s successor will be dealing with the jihadi challenge as well.
Don’t stigmatize Muslims. In America, the 1% of the country that is Muslim will be a core part of the front-line defense against homegrown radicalism and terror. You can’t even begin to think about pre-empting the threat of terrorism at home without Muslim cooperation and without building trust and confidence between law enforcement and this community. Do not push provocative ideas such as a Muslim registry or peddle the notions that Muslims in America want to supplant the Constitution with Islamic law and practice. One of your first public outreach initiatives should be an effort to engage this community.
Don’t turn this into a war or clash of civilizations. With a billion plus Muslims in the world, the vast majority of whom do not ascribe to the radical strain of Islamist ideology powering the jihadists, America can’t afford to. We play right into jihadist hands if we paint the world the way they see it — as an unbridgeable, zero sum game conflict between Islam and the rest of the world. ISIS and its ilk would like nothing better than to draw us into this clash of worlds because they know it will lead to alienation and discrimination against Muslims, which will only help their recruitment efforts….