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Al-Qaeda is Not a Competing Political Party

Posted By Conn Carroll On January 30, 2009 @ 11:08 am In Security | Comments Disabled

Heritage Senior Research Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs James Phillips watched President Barack Obama’s first televised interview [1] and comments [2]:

President Obama offered a new tone but little substance. He proclaimed that “we are ready to initiate a new partnership based on mutual respect and mutual interest.” But he displayed amazing naivete in defining what those common interests are, suggesting that al-Qaeda leaders “seemed nervous” because their ideas are bankrupt: “There’s no actions that they’ve taken that say a child in the Muslim world is getting a better education because of them, or has better health care because of them.”

This statement reveals an enormous misunderstanding of the ideological roots of Islamist terrorism and a shocking lack of respect for the powerful motivating force of the idea of jihad for al-Qaeda supporters. The President implies that a better education policy or health care plan will inevitably doom al-Qaeda, as if that terrorist network is competing like a political party to benefit Muslim voters rather than trying to violently impose its radical ideas on people that it views as misguided Muslims.


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URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2009/01/30/al-qaeda-is-not-a-competing-political-party/

URLs in this post:

[1] first televised interview: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/01/obamas_interview_with_alarabiy.html

[2] comments: http://www.heritage.org/Research/MiddleEast/wm2255.cfm

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