Colucci on Islamic extremism

Lamont Colucci, associate professor and chair of politics and government and interim director of the Center for Politics and the People at Ripon College, wrote an opinion piece about Islamic extremism that was published by U.S. News & World Report. Click here to read the full article.

In “This is War: The Obama Administration needs to stop fooling itself when it comes to Islamic extremism,” Colucci declares, “Historians may judge that January 10, 2015, was when western Europeans became serious about the war the West is in. It has also exposed the doublespeak from the Obama administration, which, out of fear, avoids using the proper language to describe the war we are in and propagates a dangerous myth about the cause of terrorism.”

He writes that French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has stated what many in the United States government and some in Congress refuse to acknowledge. This is not a war against terrorists; terrorism is a tactic to achieve a political end, not an end in itself. This is a war against Islamic extremism, representing a fundamentalist, large minority of Muslims worldwide.

He writes that the Obama administration has exhibited two fallacies: continuing to foster the fantasy that the prime strategy for the United States is counterterrorism operations, and therefore avoid any declaration of war against the world of Islamic extremism; and adopting a view propagated by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and President Bill Clinton, which argues that American foreign policy actions cause terrorism.

“The Bush administration made the same case against Islamic extremists as the Reagan administration had made about communism: Until you view this as a long war that is as much about ideology as it is about bullets and bombs, there will be no victory,” Colucci writes. “Islamic extremism is the enemy of the United States and the West. The extremists will not cease until they are victorious. There can be no concessions; there is no ability to make peace with them. The Islamic extremists’ political goal to seize territory and governments must be thwarted, reversed and decimated. The inability or unwillingness of leaders to recognize this has cost us and the world thousands of lives and untold misery. Stopping the Islamic extremists is the real cause of human rights, but it is one that actually has a price.”


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Lamont Colucci