EU Unfair To Turkey Over PKK

29 05 2016

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by Harun Yahya

The refugee deal between Turkey and the EU has been in effect for several months now. Under the deal, in return for the refugees sent back to Turkey, a fund of 3 billion euros shall be provided to Turkey so as to spend on the refugees and a visa-free travel shall be granted for Turkey in Europe.

Turkey has met all but five of the 72 criteria stipulated by the EU for a visa-free travel. The condition of “the amendment,” in other words, “the alleviation of anti-terror laws in line with EU standards” has surprisingly become one of the terms of the deal. Turkey has been expected to tolerate the PKK terror organization. Turkish President Erdogan issued a harsh response to the EU: “Then, we’ll go our way, you go yours.”

Volkan Bozkır, Turkish Minister for EU Affairs, responding to the issue with a similar reaction, stated that it was not possible for Turkey to put the EU’s request on its agenda in the midst of ongoing operations. As far as the minister is concerned, Turkey may reconsider the Readmission Agreement and the fund of 3 billion euros, still not provided to Turkey, if necessary. In this way, the leadership of Turkey articulated that tolerance is not an option in fight against terrorism.

These reactions are all pretty reasonable and proper. The EU countries are already NATO members. For that reason, they are obliged to support their NATO ally Turkey in the fight against terror. However, Europe has yet provided no support to Turkey in its fight against terrorism, on the contrary, some EU countries are known for their public support for the PKK. The PKK terrorist organization is allowed to have television and radio channels in a number of European countries and also publicly supported by some European politicians.

In Belgium, where the Turkey-EU negotiations were held in March, the Belgian authorities allowed the PKK to pitch tents in front of the European Parliament, which has stuck in our minds ever since. The support for the PKK terrorist organization has been always there and on the agenda by Europe since the foundation of the PKK in the 1980s.

When European countries faced the scourge of terrorism for the first time they took extraordinary precautions to suspend some provisions of the Declaration of Human Rights as long as desired. This kind of precautions is still enforced in France and Belgium following the Paris attacks. The suspension of the provisions of the Declaration has been so far most employed by England and included in “fight against terrorism.” These countries ask a country like Turkey, where people suffer from terrorism every day, to make concessions with regard to terrorism. This suggests one possibility: The PKK terrorist organization is still being protected by Europe.

We should ask ourselves one question: To what extent is the EU a potential ally with Turkey?

It would be beneficial for Turkey to make amendments in line with the EU standards, to carry out reforms on the issue of human rights, and to ensure a better understanding of democracy to defend the fundamental rights and freedoms. Turkey is a part of the Middle East but also a European country. The country, on one hand, should protect the beautiful traditions of the Middle East, on the other hand, should rely on the popular values of Europe.

The EU is an important community, which has managed to stay together despite all the differences of opinion. It is beyond question that having a relationship with such a community would be always in favor of Turkey not only in regard to full accession and but also in relation to its borders. However, the EU accession or a visa-free travel is not mandatory for the improvement of fundamental rights and freedoms in Turkey. Turkey could easily live up to the reforms required for democracy without the need for a guide. As a matter of fact, we have an important value, which Europe lacks of, in regard to freedom of thought, democracy, fundamental rights and freedoms: The Qur’an. In fact, fundamental freedoms and liberties may prevail in a community in the light of our holy book. Even Europe does not have such a democracy described in the Qur’an.

As things stand, Europe is required to take into consideration an important issue: Europe is urgently in need of Turkey in regard to the law of refugees. On the other hand, Turkey does not need Europe for development and Europeanization. The country, by itself, could certainly achieve that by strengthening its own values. The EU has actually crossed the red lines of Turkey by proposing changes to the anti-terrorism law. The EU authorities made a huge strategic mistake this time.

The anti-terrorism law in Turkey should be in force in the strictest and most binding terms so as to include stronger precautions now and then, when necessary, and implemented by making no concessions. The communist terror should be ended by means of the implementation of the provisions of the law without any concession and an educational campaign. While our own soldiers lose their lives in the southeast of the country, we cannot afford to give precedence to the requests by Europe on the issue of fight against terrorism.

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com


Key facts about homosexuality misrepresented to the public

22 05 2016

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by Harun Yahya

Families are the fundamental building blocks of society. In order for a society to flourish and remain healthy, the family should consist of a father and a mother who are able to produce and give rise to children. However, there is a rising trend in many Western countries, which is intrinsically in contradiction to what is considered a normal society: same-sex marriage. As of late, being modern and classy in society requires freedom, which is definitely true, but according to the changing western cultures and values that includes acceptance of same-sex marriage. Furthermore, many activists promote homosexuality as another human rights issue that must undeniably be protected. Some endeavor deliberately to oppose religious values and merits while some are misguidedly following them in order to be hip, modern, trendy and in tune with their notion of what a new modern culture should consist of. They are usually unaware of the damage it is imposing on society, especially on children and the young generation.

Accordingly, homosexual activists use every opportunity they get in order to spread their homosexual lifestyles both within their communities and outside their communities. The media seems to be the leading tool used to disseminate and justify their argument. Homosexual lifestyle and those promoting such rights are increasingly finding support and legitimization in the US via Hollywood movie and television shows, TV programs, reality shows, fashion related shows, news reports, columns, music videos, books, magazines and the list goes on. They intend to portray homosexual behavior as quite ordinary, healthy, and culturally hip. To intensify their argument, some activists depict homosexuals as very healthy, fit, good looking, classy, and successful people with executive professions within communities and societies. With the effect of these tools supporting the culture of homosexuality, 20% of Americans claim TV has shifted their opinion on the side of new form of marriages. Regrettably, in film and in the fashion industry people support homosexuality in order to get higher positions. The fact is however that reshaping marriage and marketing homosexuality are a grave danger to society via morality, physically and economically.

I feel it is important to remind the readers why I write this article. As a matter of fact, the purpose of this article is to remind young people not to fall into this brainwashing trap and to keep the strong spiritual values to have for an honorable life; in this way the members of society who pay heed to morals will respect them in the appropriate way. Therefore, it is everyone’s responsibility to disclose the heinous and abhorrent acts that are deemed to be in compliance with this “new way” of life style all wrapped up in the name of human rights. Most importantly, homosexuality is strictly forbidden in the divine religions (Koran 7/80-82, Bible Romans 1/24-28) and in the stories of the holy books people who engaged in such indecency mentioned in the holy books were penalized (Koran 15/68-75, Bible2 Peter 2/6-10).

Considering the matter in terms of morals and ethics, we encounter a higher rate of child molestation in same-sex couple households. It is a moral obligation to protect the interests of helpless children in our society. Extensive researches show that children of same-sex parents are more likely to experience sexual confusion and to engage in homosexual activities themselves that will eventually cause them to suffer from psychiatric disorders, substance addiction, sexual assault, suicide, and sexually transmitted diseases such as AIDS. In the US alone, government investment in the domestic response to HIV has risen to more than $24 billion per year.

For this reason, it is alarming to view the statistics in terms of same-sex marriage and the increase in the number of children they adopt. For example, 94,627 children live with homosexual couples in the US and the estimated total number of children living with at least one homosexual parent range from 6 to 14 million. Similarly in the UK, as of March 2015, the number of adopted children by gay parents skyrocketed in the last 12 months reaching a record high. There have been many recorded cases of sexual molestation of boys by their homosexual parents and many more unrecorded because they are ashamed or afraid to report it. Thus, it is important to note Pavel Astakhov’s – Russian Ombudsman for Children’s Rights – evocative comments regarding the molestation cases of same-sex couples in an interview: “Russian orphans always attracted foreign perverts because of accessibility. The foreigners were simply coming and taking children for money.” In conjunction with this report, Russia made some adjustments on adoption of Russian children by foreign families banning American citizens from adopting Russian children in 2012 and in the following year the State Duma passed a law that banned the adoption of Russian children by foreign homosexual couples. It makes us wonder about the psychological trauma these little children suffer. The first step to overcome this situation is to train children in terms of this threat they may experience. Children starting from the age 4-5 should be informed very meticulously regarding this issue; they should learn to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves and never hesitate to report the sexual abuses they undergo as it is not their fault and not an act they should be ashamed of.

In order to receive acceptance and compassion from society, homosexuals argue with some illogical excuses to justify their indecent acts such as claiming they have high estrogen levels or that they are genetically born that way. Yet, all these assertions have been refuted through scientific studies. There is no significant difference of estrogen or testosterone levels between homosexual and straight men. Also researchers have not found any supporting evidence that people who are homosexuals are somehow genetically dispositioned to be so. There is no genetic evidence whatsoever. Eight major studies of identical twins in Australia, the US, and Scandinavia during the last twenty years all conclude the same point, that homosexuals are not born genetically that way. It should be kept in mind that even if they were right, none of these would justify their indecent behavior. A person may be born without any sex or with two sexes or with some physical sexual defects but they do not constitute justification to behave in an indecent way. A person is responsible to keep their chastity on every occasion in order to live an honorable life.

Everyone should feel the responsibility to raise public awareness in order to have a better social and living environment by considering the examples and evidence enumerated in this article. It is crucial to inform and educate people about the serious negative effects of homosexuality on them and their environment. Besides, the activists should end promoting it as if it is something enviable because the truth is indeed on the contrary. However, it is important to stress that I am completely against violent and barbaric actions against homosexuals since what we are opposed to is only the abnormal acts they do. Therefore, people of good should join forces to protect against the damages which homosexuality inflicts on society as a whole.

Adnan Oktar’s piece in Pravda.ru:

http://www.pravdareport.com/opinion/columnists/12-05-2016/134394-homosexuality-0/

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com

 


Child Soldiers Are the Ones Who Suffer the Most in Many Conflicts

30 04 2016

Child Soldiers members from the SLA gerrilla. One of the rebel groups against the goverment in Jartum Two hundred thousands dead, six millon internally displaced, and nearly 800 refugees. this is the reality that ravages western Sdan because of the armed conflict between the goverment and the christian  gerrillas of the darfur region.

by Harun Yahya

Children are the future of our world; they are our progeny. Minors are dependent on us, the adults, no matter where they live and who their parents are. They are the innocents who have a long way to go to be able to separate the grain from the chaff. They are the pure souls who believe in a bright life.

However, there is a mindset that tries to blacken these pure souls with the darkness of war. According to a statement by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, about 12,000 children have lost their lives since the beginning of the civil war in Syria. Tens of thousands of them who survived lead their lives severely injured or have lost their eyes, their ears or other organs. Furthermore, there is the issue of child soldiers, who are forced to learn how to use weapons and to become a part of these wars at a young age. They are being trained to fight in the front line, to serve as suicide bombers or human shields.

In many civil wars, particularly in Africa, children are abused by armed groups. It is known that children are extensively recruited in armed conflicts in countries such as Mozambique, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Uganda. Reports show that child soldiers are forced by non-state actors to participate in the civil wars that broke out in countries such as Libya, Syria and Iraq. For instance, during the civil war in Libya, it was claimed that child soldiers were responsible for the security of the buildings together with Zwaya and Tabu units in Kufra and carried weapons.

There are at least 300,000 child soldiers being forced to fight in 30 different conflicts across the globe.

During the 17-year long war in Afghanistan, many children were used as soldiers as well so much so that 45 percent of the soldiers were children under the age of 18. 20 percent of the soldiers in Myanmar’s Army are under-aged. One third of the soldiers in Yemen are known to be children and there are currently 16,000 child soldiers fighting in South Sudan.

‘I became a good person’

Anyone can read the pain that surfaces in Simon’s eyes, a 12-year-old former child soldier from South Sudan, when he utters the following words on his years of service in the army:

“Being back home is better than being in the military because in the military, when you make a mistake, they take you to jail and they beat you for weeks. I was cooking and washing clothes, I became a bodyguard. So, when I was released as a soldier and they (UNICEF) took me to the care center, I became a good person. There, no one disturbed me. No one beat me. And I received food. I do not think small children should be soldiers.”

Although extensive initiatives are carried out later on for these children who are forced to fight, it is not possible to completely remove the scars of violence. Therefore, serious efforts should be made by political leaders and social authority figures to find immediate solutions to ongoing political conflicts, to make sure that civilian populations and particularly children are kept out of these conflicts and to prevent the outbreak of any new wars.

According to the Paris Principles, child soldiers are defined as “children associated with armed forces or armed groups.” This definition includes not only the children who are directly involved in armed conflicts but all of those children who are abused for various support roles, such as cooking or portering, reporting, laying mines, spying or for sexual purposes. Consequently, all of the children who are associated with armed groups meet this definition.

According to the First Article of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, “a child means every human being below the age of eighteen years.” The definition of “a child” is crystal clear in international law; however, such definitions do not change the reality of the world. There has been a significant increase in wars, and more and more children are being recruited in armed conflicts. Their young minds, easily intimidated by fear, threats or any other reason, are recruited as soldiers not only by armed insurgency groups but also by some governments. This increases the number of children who are orphaned, who witness the death of their families and friends, and who suffer the fear and misery of war every day.

Despite international actions and the sincere efforts being made by the international law, the use of “Child Soldiers” is still on the agenda as an unresolved issue. However, it is of course not possible to accept abandoning our children, who are our most precious treasure and our future, to such horrors.

Everyone should work together to resolve this problem and conscientious people, who certainly imagine a world in which all children, without any exceptions, live a happy life, should endeavor to rectify this terrible situation at once. International commissions should be established regarding this issue and campaigns should be carried out together with the media on all fronts. The non-governmental organizations, already striving hard to achieve world peace, should deal with the issue as a priority as well. Institutions such as the United Nations should place the solutions to this terrible situation experienced by child soldiers at the top of their agenda.

It should be noted that this is not a problem that can be solved by a single state or a community. Carrying out worldwide campaigns on this issue — and if necessary, imposing sanctions on those countries which insist upon the use of child soldiers — are some of the solutions that could be offered immediately. The meetings in which world leaders come together, such as the G-20, for example, are important opportunities to take concrete steps and precautions in this regard.

Everyone should go the extra mile to press the issue and mold public opinion so that children do not become the soldiers of violence. Certainly, what should really be done is to be determined to put an end to ever-increasing conflicts, wars and disturbances and resort to diplomatic solutions.

No issue has ever been resolved by military methods thus far, nor could anything ever be resolved in that manner. All those people who dream of a world in which children will grow up in love, kindness, compassion, peace and brotherhood and be happy, should strive together to wipe this affront from the face of the Earth forthwith.

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com


Middle East’s Incessant Wars Must Come to an End

23 04 2016

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by Harun Yahya

Since the second half of the 20th century, the Middle East has been trapped in a vicious cycle of war, the likes of which it had never seen at any point in history. Arab-Israeli Conflicts, Iran-Iraq War, the Civil Wars of Jordan, Libya, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen, the Egyptian Revolutions, Shiite-Sunni conflicts, and the minority genocides have all engulfed and inflamed the oldest regions known on the earth. More than 10 million Muslims perished in these seemingly endless wars while millions of others were left permanently disabled and millennia-old cities were destroyed. Mosques, schools, hospitals, factories were razed to the ground.

The most technologically advanced armies of the world employed their most powerful war machines upon these lands. American F-22 and F-15’s, Russian MIG-29 and SU-24 war planes, American Nimitz class and Russian TAVKR class aircraft carriers, Tomahawk and Cruise missiles, Russian S-400 missile systems, state-of-the-art tanks, light infantry weapons, heavy machine guns, bomber aircrafts, mustard gases, chemical weapons all had a helping hand in carrying out the most horrible massacres these lands had ever seen. These multi-billion dollar killing machines escalated the economic cost of the wars to astronomical amounts. Specifically the first period of the 21st century will go down in history as a dark period during which trillions of dollars were wasted on war.

In a state of panic caused by the September 11th terrorist attacks, the US administration first invaded Afghanistan, which was followed by the invasion of Iraq, under the guise of “War on Terror”. To convince the public of the necessity of Iraq, the US vice president at the time Chaney claimed that the cost of the operation would not exceed 100 billion Dollars. Today, many studies estimate the cost of the operations of Afghanistan and Iraq for the American public to be 6 trillion Dollars. When the indirect expenses such as the interest of the war debts and the post-war care of soldiers are added to the direct costs of war, the figures reach incredible heights.

The report published by the World Bank in 2016 revealed that 87 million Muslims were directly affected by the civil wars in 4 different countries. As a consequence of these civil wars, 80% of the population of Yemen now lives below the poverty line, 21.5 million people in Syria are in need of humanitarian aid. And 12 million people living in Iraq and Libya are counting on foreign aid for their survival.

These wars also hold the futures of the Muslims in the region hostage. The Lebanese economy was only able to mend the devastation wrought by the civil war that lasted 20 years. It is impossible to even give an estimated time for Syria and Iraq. An India-based think tank named Strategic Foresight Group pointed out an important matter while estimating the cost of the conflicts in the Middle East. The wars that had taken place in the region had a shocking ‘Opportunity Cost’. In other words, if all the material and moral resources of the Middle East wasted on wars had been used for the welfare of Muslims and the development of their countries, a profit of 12 trillion would have been made. This is the true cost of the conflicts that have been going on for 25 year since the first Gulf War.

Actually calculating the costs of wars financially is a great shame in itself. Every bomb that hits a city means children and women are about to be martyred. Every bullet that finds its target means leaving little souls fatherless, motherless and hungry out in the streets. Every massacre, every invasion stands for the millions of lives that will be wasted in pursuit of revenge. The people who lost their lives and are confined to clutches, who had to leave their homes behind and immigrated towards the unknown and who wait for their death in the refugee camps and, constitute the greatest cost of the war in the Middle East. It is impossible to justify and pay back the cost of such bloodshed, sorrow, and difficulty. These ceaseless wars in the Middle East have to come to an end. Otherwise, with every passing day, the world will become an even more dangerous place.

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com


In Search of a Strategy to End Suicide Attacks

13 04 2016

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by Harun Yahya

The successive and outrageous suicide bomb attacks taking place over the last month in various places, from Iraq to Yemen, from Nigeria to Pakistan, and from Turkey to Brussels, seem to be the precursor of a new wave of global terrorism. The significant increase in the number, frequency and severity of suicide attacks makes us think that ordinary people may be facing this ugly face of terrorism in the near future far more often.

On March 27, a suicide attack targeted a park in Pakistan’s city of Lahore, killing 72 people, many of them women and children and leaving nearly 350 people injured as well. It has been reported that the suicide bomber came near children’s play area and exploded the bomb he was wearing. Only two days before this incident, a suicide attack at a stadium in the Iraqi city of Iskandariyah, also known as Alexandria, killed 41 people and wounded 105 others. And three bomb-laden cars exploded in different checkpoints at the Yemeni city of Aden a few days ago, killing 26 people.

On March 16, an attack by two female suicide bombers, claimed to be proponents of Boko Haram, targeted a mosque in the Nigerian city of Maiduguri during the prayer time, killing 24 Muslims and wounding 23.

Also within the month of March, suicide bombings in the cities of Ankara and Istanbul in Turkey, carried out by the terrorist organisation PKK, killed nearly 50 people, wounding dozens.

These are only a few examples of suicide bomb attacks that occurred only in March. There has been a suicide attack almost every day around the world in the recent times.

The suicide attacks martyr thousands of Muslims every year in Islamic countries and are inhumanely considered as “the natural dynamics of the Middle East region” by some Western circles. Upon the acknowledgement of the indecent nature of these statements since the Paris attacks in 2015, the recent suicide attacks on March 22 at two different places in Brussels, considered the heart of Europe, alarmed the Western world.

Western society has now faced the fact that terrorism is not something that only the Middle East has to put up with, but a disaster increasingly engulfing the world.

Since the 1980s, many ideological groups have begun to embrace the suicide attacks as a method of terror; foremost among them are Marxist-Communist terrorist organisations and radical religious terrorist groups.

These terrorist organisations motivate their suicide bombers in line with the so-called values of the ideology they subscribe to, then persuade and prepare them for these violent actions. Such motivation comes from emotional and idealistic indoctrinations in Marxist-Communist groups.

Accordingly, whereas individuals are considered ordinary, worthless and insignificant people, they are talked into “being a hero of freedom who would become immortal by leaving their mark on the world and having their names written in the history of revolution”. In radical religious groups, the motivation for suicide attacks is achieved by the abuse of  religious values such as “jihad, martyrdom and attaining Heaven”. As a matter of fact, there is no basis for this to be found in the Holy Qur’an; there is no theological basis to justify these dastardly attacks.

Quite the contrary, suicide attacks are haram (forbidden) according to the Qur’an and these attacks are nothing but mass murder, intentionally killing not only the attackers themselves but also innocent people. This must be remembered that ending one’s own life is also a homicide.

God, in the 32nd verse of Surat Al-Ma’ida, says that “…if someone kills another person, it is as if he had murdered all mankind”. For that reason, the idea that God would like such a brutal action committed without distinguishing between babies, children, elderly people, women and innocent people can only be the product of an ignorant, unconscious, irrational and misdirected mind, unaware of the Qur’an.

These ignorant and unconscious individuals are sometimes brainwashed by ignorant religious scholars and sometimes by deceitful and fanatical religious hucksters drawing their strength from radicalism. Under such pernicious influences, some people become prepared to carry out all kinds of violent and fanatical acts.

Occasionally the young children in poor families, who are in need of free education and accommodation, are considered as the most favoured candidates for becoming suicide bombers by radical organisations. Indeed, according to the testimony of a 12-year-old child who was recently recruited to carry out a suicide attack in a camp near Peshawar but surrendered himself to the security forces of Afghanistan, there are many children trained by their handlers who promise them “that they will go to heaven and be freed from all their problems by carrying out a suicide attack”.

People who are encouraged to be a suicide bomber in Marxist-Communist groups are also deceived by the lies of anarchism-communism and are subjected to a serious ideological training.

That being said, there is no point in intimidating those misdirected people who are happy to run the risk of death in the cause of fake or false ideologies with death threats, bombs, weapons or operations. These methods have caused nothing but an increase in the number of suicide bombers until today. Violence always begets more violence.

Indeed, the information gathered by various intelligence sources tells us there are hundreds of suicide bombers trained by various factions and believed to be operating as independent cells right now in Europe and the US, waiting for the time to make their moves. The majority of them were born and raised in those countries, are going to good schools and have no criminal record; as a result, it is nearly impossible to identify them.

These ignorant and deceived people become more and more excited to experience the feelings of panic, helplessness, fear and intimidation that arise in society every time a new suicide attack is made. Therefore, what needs to be done to reverse this dire situation is very clear: The ideological falsehoods behind these suicide attacks, regardless of the philosophy they advocate, should be explained in schools, at conferences and exhibitions through scientific evidence by any means necessary and kept on the agenda by politicians and opinion leaders; in short, everyone, whether young or old, in a leading position in the society.

The only solution is to explain these crucial facts, to intellectually refute this fanatical radical ideology by means of Qur’anic, rational and reasonable explanations with the aim of rooting out terrorism, and to urgently launch an extensive campaign for providing education and raising awareness.

The anarchist-communist ideology, on the other hand, can also be ended by revealing the fallacy of the materialistic mindset. If societies would like to end suicide attacks, they need to enhance their education systems and respond to the wrong ideologies with the right ones instead of laying the foundations for further violence or restricting the freedoms of their citizens.

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com


Is the War on Terror on the Right Path?

21 03 2016

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by Harun Yahya

The attacks in New York and Washington on 11 September, 2001 resulted in the immediate loss of around 3,000 lives. That was the worst terror attack ever at the time. In the 15 years since 9/11, however, some 150,000 people have lost their lives in terror attacks worldwide. The 3,500 global death toll in 2000 rose to 7,000 in 2011, and 32,985 in 2014. The number of countries exposed to terror attacks stands at 62. Terror has grown and spread, and taken ever more lives since 11 September. The world is clearly now a much more dangerous place than it once was.

In the wake of 9/11, President George W. Bush and his staff initiated the “war on terror”. First Afghanistan and then Iraq were invaded and occupied. The aim was to eradicate terrorism and those encouraging it, particularly Al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden, in a sudden and violent knee-jerk response. The plan backfired, however. Although Bin Laden has been killed and Al-Qaeda weakened, there are now 170 known terrorist organisations in the world. The number of militants is expressed in the tens of thousands.

Before 11 September, global terrorism was largely limited to Al-Qaeda operations, and a few organisations in Algeria and the Caucasus, as well as some smaller groups on the Arabian Peninsula. Today, however, it exists from Indonesia in the East to Africa’s Atlantic coast in the West. Pre-9/11 terror was in the hands of “professional” terrorists; Al-Qaeda consisted of a small number of fighters trained during the Afghan-Soviet war. The way that the US brought war to the streets of Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and most recently Syria, has brought terror down on the population.

Classic terror organisations operate with a hierarchical chain of command; today we see attacks by independent, “lone wolf” cells. In 2014, 70 per cent of attacks in the West were perpetrated by these “lone wolves”. The Tsarnaev brothers, for example, were two university students who carried out the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013. In January last year, the Kouachi brothers apparently took the decision to attack the Paris office of Charlie Hebdo magazine themselves. With this development, the surveillance of terrorists has become more difficult, if not impossible.

Terror organisations also changed after 2001. Al-Qaeda used to be a limited organisation living in an Afghanistan under the control of the Taliban. Today’s terrorist groups, however, possess stores of weapons looted from the collapsing regimes in Iraq and Syria; they even control oil refineries and reserves. Terrorists engage in daily propaganda via social media and sophisticated production techniques and facilities.

The Western world has failed to enrol civilian populations as allies against terrorism. Evil committed in the name of the “war on terror” — including the killing of hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians, the torture perpetrated at Abu Ghraib and the CIA’s black sites — has prevented ordinary people from signing up to the counter-terrorism drive. The failure to distinguish between good and bad, the guilty and the innocent, further discouraged the population from supporting the “war on terror”. Being unable to make such important distinctions has lost the West its potentially most important ally.

Rising hostility to Islam has also led to millions of Muslims feeling alienated. They are being singled out in the fight against terror in their own countries. The Terrorist Detection Centre in the US has 1.2 million Muslims listed in its database; five years ago, that figure was 230,000. A good many Americans have reduced to a minimum contact with their Muslim neighbours, workmates and friends in order not to appear on the list themselves. A further 47,000 people are banned from boarding aircraft under the “No-fly List”. Many US citizens are only able to fly after undergoing Secondary Security Screening Selection. Bearing in mind that only around 250 Americans have gone or tried to go to Syria to fight it is, of course, unacceptable for millions of Muslims to be regarded as potential terrorists.

Today in the US, basic human rights, such as the right to a private life, freedom of expression and freedom of movement, are violated by terrorist watch lists. Drone attacks which kill innocent people are corrupting the legitimate US fight against terrorism. This has lost America many friends among Muslim populations around the world. It should be understood that millions of Muslims are just as keen as the US to fight radicalism and terror.

Western policies implemented after 11 September have led to terrorist organisations gaining the upper hand ideologically. People are joining them every day. Some 25,000 to 35,000 fighters rushed to Syria between 2011 and 2015. That figure is greater than the total number of potential terrorists from Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan over the past 20 years.

The FBI’s “Most Wanted Terrorist List” was first published in 2001. Nine of the people on the first list have been killed, and three captured. They have been replaced by 18 new terrorists. There are now many more terrorists on the list. Indeed, almost all countries now have their own “Most Wanted” list. Far from ridding the world of terrorism, the “war on terror” has made it a far more dangerous place than it was in 2001.

The world, particularly the US and the West, must learn from what has happened. It is impossible to fight terror through war, guns, rifles, drone strikes and watch lists. Twenty-first century terrorism is an ideological movement dominated by a grotesque misinterpretation of Islam. The only way to defeat that ideology is through a campaign of ideas. Any other method will serve little purpose other than nourish, expand and strengthen terrorism. The antidote to radical terror is genuine Islam. The destructive philosophy of terror can be eliminated only when the Islam of the Qur’an is encouraged to spread. Today, the radicals who resort to violence and kill civilians in the name of Islam are under the influence of non-Qur’anic, violence-promoting sources. The fire of violence and pain can be extinguished only when the morality of the Qur’an is explained by the right people. For this reason, it is important that the Western world channels its efforts into the spreading of real Islam; terror will be eradicated if people are told about — and live by — the true faith.

 

The writer has authored more than 300 books translated in 73 languages on politics, religion and science. He may be followed at @Harun_Yahya and www.harunyahya.com


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