You are here: Home Knowledge Base Polity Dealing with Terrorism Solutions Avoid policies and pronouncements that feed grievance. In pluralistic societies, pursue policies that integrate immigrants, rather than just providing passive welfare support.
Symposium 2008

Solution for Dealing with Terrorism

The Challenge

Over the past years there has been a dramatic increase in terrorism all over the world. At the same time, many governments are at a loss on how to combat terrorism. Despite massive counter-terrorist ...

Over the past years there has been a dramatic increase in terrorism all over the world. At the same time, many governments are at a loss on how to combat terrorism. Despite massive counter-terrorist activities, terrorist attacks in weak states such as Afghanistan and Iraq have continued and the threat of attacks in developed countries remains strong.

Avoid policies and pronouncements that feed grievance. In pluralistic societies, pursue policies that integrate immigrants, rather than just providing passive welfare support.

Terrorist groups are only successful if they enjoy sympathy for their causes. Sympathizers perceive the injustice that such groups claim as justifying their struggle as real and demanding a response. Claims by al-Qa´ida that Muslims have an obligation to rise in a defensive jihad against Western political, economic and social dominance, and corrupt, irreligious Western mores. Broadcasts and websites couch the call in terms that require devout Muslims to respond, claiming that Islam, Muslims and Islamic lands are under attack by the U.S. and its allies. Jihad is said to be imperative “to repulse tyranny and restore justice and rights.” The West needs to refl ect on its own pronouncements and policy to ensure that it does not inadvertently feed these distorted claims.

Some actions taken in Iraq and Afghanistan and more recently in Pakistan and Syria have led those trapped in the crossfire between insurgents and counterterrorist forces to believe that the suffering of innocent victims is seen as mere collateral damage, justified by the West´s concept of a “war on terror.” This strengthens terrorist groups, rather than weakening them. More sophisticated strategies, counterinsurgency tactics and communication
are needed.

Systemic conditions in their societies have made some Muslims susceptible to these messages. The reasons differ from one region to another – Muslims in Europe, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Afghanistan are not all similarly motivated – but many who identify with jihadist causes experience alienation from their secular environments and a sense of hopelessness, and are attracted by the prospect of glory and religious salvation. Prospects for young, poorly educated Afghans, Syrians or Palestinians in the occupied territories have been poor in past decades, and anger and intense frustration can be channeled into radical utopian causes if life holds no promise.

Social and economic development of these communities will create opportunities and reduce the pool of potential recruits. At the same time, many European countries need urgently to develop strategies to integrate their Muslim immigrants more effectively into viable pluralistic societies.

    Related Solutions

    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    In dealing with terrorism, place emphasis on the state´s capacity to protect the public, permit the exercise of its freedoms, and maintain public services.

    In dealing with terrorism, place emphasis on the state´s capacity to protect the public, permit the exercise of its freedoms, and maintain public services.

    In dealing with terrorism, place emphasis on the state´s capacity to protect the public, permit the exercise of its freedoms, and maintain public services.

    Polity
    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    If the government succeeds in protecting the public and maintaining public services, then publicize the impact of terrorist violence on innocent civilians, in order to weaken the legitimacy of terrorist ...

    If the government succeeds in protecting the public and maintaining public services, then publicize the impact of terrorist violence on innocent civilians, in order to weaken the legitimacy of terrori ...

    If the government succeeds in protecting the public and maintaining public services, then publicize the impact of terrorist violence on innocent civilians, in order to weaken the legitimacy of terrorist groups. At the same time, avoid overreaction.

    Polity, Civil Society
    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    Initiate a regional security regime for all the states of the Gulf and the Levant, aimed at mutual diplomatic recognition, gradual withdrawal of foreign forces, and nuclear nonproliferation.

    Initiate a regional security regime for all the states of the Gulf and the Levant, aimed at mutual diplomatic recognition, gradual withdrawal of foreign forces, and nuclear nonproliferation.

    Initiate a regional security regime for all the states of the Gulf and the Levant, aimed at mutual diplomatic recognition, gradual withdrawal of foreign forces, and nuclear nonproliferation.

    Polity, Business, Civil Society
    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    Govern through inclusive, legitimized political institutions, avoiding instrumental justification of violence.

    Govern through inclusive, legitimized political institutions, avoiding instrumental justification of violence.

    Govern through inclusive, legitimized political institutions, avoiding instrumental justification of violence.

    Polity
    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    Initiate a comprehensive international initiative to prevent weapons of mass destruction falling into terrorist hands.

    Initiate a comprehensive international initiative to prevent weapons of mass destruction falling into terrorist hands.

    Initiate a comprehensive international initiative to prevent weapons of mass destruction falling into terrorist hands.

    Polity, Civil Society
    Solution
    Symposium 2008

    Strengthen our ability to manage the financial risks of terrorism through a combination of public and private instruments: terrorism catastrophe bonds, mutual insurance pools, and government insurance support.

    Strengthen our ability to manage the financial risks of terrorism through a combination of public and private instruments: terrorism catastrophe bonds, mutual insurance pools, and government insurance ...

    Strengthen our ability to manage the financial risks of terrorism through a combination of public and private instruments: terrorism catastrophe bonds, mutual insurance pools, and government insurance support.

    Polity, Business, Civil Society