Charles Krauthammer, a popular columnist and author, has something to say about President Barack Obama’s position on Islamic terrorism.
For certain, Krauthammer argues that the president denies reality and facts by refusing to identify “the Islamist character” of terrorist “barbarism.” This comes after the president’s praise for a cleric who advocated a fatwa against Americans. Krauthammer spoke on Friday’s broadcast of “Hannity” on the Fox News Channel.
“This is consistent in this administration to downplay the Islamist character of the barbarism that we see around the world … he’s afraid that if he acknowledges the obvious reality people will associate Islam with this barbarism and make them equivalent whereas nobody is asking him to do that.
Charles Krauthammer defined what the president meant about violent extremism.
“He calls it ‘violent extremism.’ He used the phrase three times at the UN as if the violence that we see around the world in Nigeria, in Mali, in Libya, in Kenya, in Somalia, in Yemen, in, of course, Syria, Iraq, in Pakistan. As if all of these by an amazing coincidence are perpetrated in the name of Islam. Of course the majority of Muslims are peaceful. But to deny the roots of this ideology in a great religion is to deny reality and to intellectually and morally disarm those who want to fight it. If you can’t name the enemy, you don’t want to identify the enemy, you can’t correctly fight the enemy. For God sakes, even the United Arab Emirates called ISIS Islamic extremism, and ISIS itself calls itself the Islamic State. They proudly proclaim this, and Obama denies it.”
Those are strong words against President Obama. But it seems as if the president has begun effecting a workable strategy against the Islamic State. True, he’s been driven there by public opinion. If Obama can remain steady through future fluctuations in public opinion, his strategy might succeed.
But success will not be what he’s articulating publicly, which coincides with what Charles Krauthammer is trying to get across. Krauthammer believes that the strategy will not destroy the Islamic State. It’s more containment-plus: Expel the Islamic State from Iraq, contain it in Syria. However, Syria is another matter. Under the current strategy, the cancer will remain.
Charles Krauthammer says President Obama was right and candid to say “this war he’s renewed will take years. This struggle is generational.” But Krauthammer reminds us all that today jihadism is global, its religious and financial institutions ubiquitous, and its roots deeply sunk in a world religion of more than a billion people.