Opinion: U.S. Deterrence and Islamic Terrorism

August 8, 2014 10:48 am 6 comments

All these Palestinians want is a chance to form a secular, pluralistic, democracy with their Jewish cousins.

According to the July 30, 2014 Rasmussen Reports, 59 percent of likely U.S. voters ‎believe that there is a global conflict between the Muslim world and ‎Western civilization, only 17 percent disagree and 24 percent are undecided. Likely ‎voters also believe that the Arab Spring does not bode well for the U.S.‎

The U.S. posture of deterrence played a key role in bolstering Western ‎civilization in face of intensifying threats, checking global violence and ‎instability, bolstering the confidence of U.S. allies, and constraining the ‎maneuverability of rogue regimes.‎

However, the current perception of the U.S. posture of deterrence ‎among U.S. Arab allies is reflected by a July 27, 2014 op-ed in the leading ‎Saudi daily, Asharq Al-Awsat, which is one of the most influential Arab ‎newspapers, owned by the Saudi royal family: “Secretary John Kerry is ‎representing a weak U.S. administration. … He visits Baghdad to represent an ‎administration that lacks decision-making. He shuttles between Tel Aviv and ‎Cairo as a mediator with no real clout. … Barack Obama’s weak foreign policy ‎is weighing on the deteriorating situation across the world. … Washington’s ‎position on Egypt has changed over the course of the past three years in a ‎manner which demonstrates America’s confused vision and weak foreign ‎policy. … Obama did not even bother to issue a statement regarding the ‎Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) forcing Mosul’s Christians to flee. ‎Obama’s increasingly isolationist policy is damaging Kerry’s credibility.”‎

In order to improve the U.S. image in the Muslim world, Obama ‎issued a July 27, 2014 statement on the occasion of the Muslim holiday Eid al-Fitr: “In the United States, Eid reminds us of the many achievements ‎and contributions of Muslim Americans to building the very fabric of our ‎nation and strengthening the core of our democracy.” That statement was ‎consistent with Obama’s June 2009 speech at Cairo University: ‎‎”America and Islam are not mutually-exclusive and need not be in ‎competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles of justice, ‎progress, tolerance and the dignity of all human beings. … Islam has ‎demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious ‎tolerance and racial equality. … I also know that Islam has always been a ‎part of America’s story. … Since our founding, American Muslims have ‎enriched the United States. … [The] partnership between America and Islam ‎must be based on what Islam is.” ‎

Obama’s view of Islam has been reinforced by CIA Director John ‎Brennan, who was Obama’s adviser on counter-terrorism: “Our enemy is ‎not ‘terrorism’ because terrorism is but a tactic. Our enemy is not ‘terror’ ‎because terror is a state of mind and as Americans we refuse to live in fear. ‎Nor do we describe our enemy as ‘jihadists’ or ‘Islamists’ because jihad is ‎a holy struggle, a legitimate tenant of Islam, meaning to purify ‎oneself or one’s community.” ‎

While Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab ‎Emirates and Oman dread the clear and present lethal threat of Islamic, jihadist terrorism — initially and mostly bankrolled by Saudi Arabia — ‎Obama claims that there is no Islam-driven terrorism or ‎radicalism, but local cases of al-Qaida, Taliban and ISIS terrorism and Maj. ‎Nidal Hasan’s Fort Hood “workplace violence.” Therefore, he ordered the ‎revision of the U.S. National Security Strategy and the training literature of ‎the military, intelligence and homeland security agencies, deleting all ‎references to Islamic terrorism. Thus, the Los Angeles Times editorial stated ‎on June 8, 2010: “The [Obama] administration has assiduously avoided ‎terms that recognize the distinct threat posed by those who cite Islam as a ‎rationalization for terror.” ‎

Obama’s ideological ambiguity undermines operational clarity in ‎the battle against Islamic terrorism. It further erodes the U.S. posture of ‎deterrence among increasingly vulnerable U.S. Arab allies, who are also ‎concerned about Obama’s core belief in multilateral diplomatic engagement ‎of — rather than unilaterally confronting — rogue regimes, such as Iran. ‎

The anxiety of Saudi Arabia and other pro-U.S. Gulf states — which are ‎afflicted by domestic and regional Sunni and Shiite Islamic terrorism — was ‎expressed by a series of July 2014 columns in Asharq Al-Awsat. For ‎examples, “it is clear that the policy of withdrawal and isolationism ‎practiced by President Barack Obama’s administration has helped set ‎instincts loose, encouraging [Middle Eastern] groups and people who show ‎no respect for peaceful coexistence. …What if Egypt was left to the rule of ‎the Muslim Brotherhood, according to the wishes of the Obama administration? … The Obama administration is still dithering and ‎preoccupied with the illusion of an agreement with Iran on its nuclear ‎program.”‎

The Arab Tsunami-driven threat of Islamic terrorism is not limited to the pro-‎U.S. Arab regimes. It has afflicted India (the largest victim of Islamic ‎terrorism), China (XinjIang province), Russia (Chechnya), Pakistan, ‎Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Thailand, the Philippines and Africa. It constitutes ‎a clear and present threat to Europe and the U.S. mainland, emboldened by ‎U.S. ideological and operational ambiguity and indecisiveness.‎

When it comes to “third down and ten yards to go” in the battle against ‎Islamic terrorism, the U.S. quarterback can rely on the Israeli wide ‎receiver, which provides a uniquely reliable and effective battle-tested ‎laboratory and training ground for America’s defense and homeland security ‎forces and industries — the unconditional and democratic ally of the U.S.

This article was originally published by Israel Hayom.

6 Comments

  • Lauren Goldman

    America has been the laughing stock of the Western world for years. Now, we have verified that status with the rest of the world. This rudderless ship is heading for the rocks, and who is our diplomatic face? Kerry; the man who lied about his military service, can’t keep his position on anything consistent, and has made himself the focus of ridicule. At this point, the best thing the White House can do is get out of the way, and STFU.

  • Again, like Geraldo, Obama was sold like Ivory soap and we bought. He wasn’t of the US history of slavery, but many voters wanted to believe he was and now they could make amends. He hadn’t the requisite senate or governor’s skills
    beyond his unproductive few senatorial months.

    The Congress and world leaders found him wanting. The US found him wanting at a time the highest levels of skills were essential.Ike could play all the golf he wished; his well-honed leadership skills allowed this. We’re not doing a good job of shopping for our candidates

  • Obama version of history is made up as he pontificates. I wish he or someone can please list the ways “Since our founding American Muslims have enriched the United States.” Besides his constant b.s.,. he just proved his ignorance of American history.

  • The Obama admin has either betrayed, alienated or humiliated US allies. Whether making the Dalai Lama enter the WH thru the kitchen, or stabbing Mubarak (who was hardly a humanitarian and should have retired yrs ago)in the back or unilaterally cancelling the Polish and Czech missile defense. Obama lead from behind and we now see islamist extremists dividing Libya ( not much news there). Obama has restored Irans economy by reducing the sanctions (want to bet Iran has the bomb in 1=2 years?) He has encouraged hamas by empowering qatar and turkey (want to bet he will recognize hamas’”political wing?) Obama sees the US as the great neo colonialist that must be punished and he is punishing the US. Wonder what he will do when abbaas/pa moves for recognition in he UN

  • “When it comes to `third down and ten yards to go’ in the battle against ‎Islamic terrorism, the U.S. quarterback…”

    unless, of course, the coach is trying to throw the game

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