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What Do We Have to Offer Them?

ISIS Fighters

ISIS Fighters

By “them,” I mean disaffected teenagers of Sunni Muslim backgrounds. By “we,” I mean Western democracies such as the United States, Britain, and France. Let’s face it, Islamic immigrants are looking for a better life. Many of them find it; but many wind up as dysfunctional families in which the kids want to nullify their parents’ decision to emigrate. These teens are prime candidates for ISIS, and many are trying to make the long trip to Syria—whether they are of Syrian extraction or not—and join up with the violent forces that are wreaking such damage in the Middle East.

In the end, all we have to offer them is a bullet—perhaps the sooner the better.

I am not saying that we should forbid Muslims to enter America: It’s just that we as a society have to be prepared to accept a certain amount of undesirable blowback. Once an American kid has decided to fight in a conflict as a combatant in an organization that our country has designated as terrorist, then he possibility of a good outcome declines to near zero. This is a particular problem in Britain because so many immigrants there hail from Commonwealth countries such as Pakistan that are rigidly fundamentalist. With France, the Islamic population is predominantly North African and therefore less likely to identify with Arab goals.

What can we do? I think that intervening to prevent kids from traveling to Iraq and Syria is a good start, but difficult, especially since there are no direct flights. A teenager could fly to Europe and then enter the combat zone by flying to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, or some other intermediate Arabic destination, and only then crossing the border by land.

Human nature being what it is, we cannot prevent immigrant families from becoming dysfunctional. And, let’s face it, we have troubles enough with our non-Muslim children joining gangs, taking drugs, and committing heinous felonies.


4 thoughts on “What Do We Have to Offer Them?

  1. Jim, you must remember all those old “spy” movies from the late 30s and early 40s, such as Saboteur. We had “fifth column” issues back then, and ended up interning Japanese-Americans in concentration camps. I think, if we insist on being at war and dropping bombs on foreign countries, then, yes, we might restrict immigration from those countries, and deport anyone, living here, citizen or otherwise, that gives any aid and comfort to the enemy. After all, that’s what they want, so let them stay there, permanently. But, we need to define the war, and the enemy, clearly. So far, that is lacking.

  2. Define the war? No, we don’t do that any more. We’re like a drunkard staggering from one disaster to another…. Now, with the Republican senate, replace “staggering” with “reeling.”

  3. Don’t know whither to laugh or cry . define would assume that we were dealing with folks who knew how to read or were in a state of health which would let them . the happy folk in Washington have been trying for years to define the war on drugs gee that turned out well . The idea of these poor souls trying to define terrorism is mind numbing

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