(image via wikipedia/Sebastian Gorka briefing at SOCOM Wargame Center)
By Rick Amato
A radical Islamic attack occurs somewhere in the world every eighty-three hours. Not days, hours. Excluded from that sobering statistic are the war zones of Iraq and Syria. So much for ISIS being on the run or a JV basketball team or whatever it is that the previous administration kept trying to convince us of. Oh yea and something about global warming being a more dangerous threat than ISIS too. While everyone may not agree with everything President Trump has to say, his stated priority of defeating ISIS has to be one of them.
President Trump recently appointed counter terrorism expert Sebastian Gorka as his Deputy Assistant to advise on matters of national security. Gorka, author of the New York Times bestselling book ‘Defeating Jihad: The Winnable War’ joined me as a guest on Politics & Profits the podcast. Sharing President Trump’s vision Gorka minces no words when he says ‘America will eradicate radical Islam’. He laid out in general terms the broad strategy of how this will occur.
“Since 9-11 America has done a great job at eliminating high value targets but a poor job at preventing the global spread of the radical Islamic ideology”, Gorka said. “In fact ISIS now has fully operational affiliates in eighteen countries and a radical Islamic state.”
But it’s one thing to say you are going to eliminate ISIS along with the spread of its radical ideology and it’s another thing to actually do it. The challenge is as it always has been, that this is an asymmetrical war. The enemy has no uniform, no borders to define itself or no tangible recognizable characteristics. Furthermore how do you defeat the spread of an idea? That is precisely the reason why we have been good at eliminating high value targets, like bin Laden, and poor at stopping the spread of his beliefs.
“The Obama administration, like so many on the far left, falsely believed that poverty and lack of education is what leads to terrorism. If that were true then half of the population of China would be terrorists. You wouldn’t have had the Times Square bomber who came from a wealthy, well educated family, or Jihad Johnny who worked in the IT industry.”
For a blueprint of how the administration expects to eliminate radical Islamic ideology Gorka drew parallels between this ideological war and that of defeating communism during the Cold War era. “I am not going to give away our battlefield playbook as the Obama administration used to do but I will tell you our concept. We are going to destroy the brand of jihad. When we manage to undermine the brand of jihad we will end up destroying jihad.”
Gorka whose parents escaped communist Hungary in the 1950’s to London where he was born, gave some examples of which tactics to expect. “Just like communism during the Cold War we will help and support those people behind the lines who share our values. Just as we supported those people behind the lines who undermined communism and what it stood for.”
This of course would be major departure from the previous administration which strategically refused to use the term ‘radical Islam’ or acknowledge that ISIS was even a part of Islam, albeit a radical one. I have had several Muslim-Americans over the years complain to me that they were frustrated over the lack in distinction between Islam and radical Islam by the U.S. media and the previous administration. After all didn’t everyone already know that the terror attacks were being carried out by radical Islamic extremists even if the media and Obama White House refused to say it? Furthermore, I’ve been told, had the previous administration directly taken on radical Islam in the public square- as Gorka tells us the Trump administration is going to do- then more Muslim American citizens themselves would have felt more secure in speaking out against radical Islam. Until mainstream Muslims begin speaking out and condemning radical Islam, as many of them privately want to do, then the spread of its ideology will continue. The new Trump plan of destroying the brand of jihad gives mainstream Muslims the cover so many of them have been anxiously waiting for.
With the likes of Donald Trump, Steve Bannon and Sebastian Gorka at the helm I suspect we are going to see a very effective and successful war of ideas in destroying the jihad brand. After all if Trump and and Bannon know anything they know communications, branding and winning. Just ask Jeb Bush, Hillary Clinton and both the Republican and Democrat parties.
To hear my full interview with Sebastian Gorka CLICK BELOW.