Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Thursday, September 21st, 2017

Terrorism is a Mentality and Must Change

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Terrorism is a Mentality and Must Change

On the grounds of national and international security, terrorism is considered a serious threat to society. Terrorism is resorting to violence or intimidating for gaining political, religious or ideological objectives. Terrorism is a crime in many national laws and international anti-terrorism law. It is a major crime in cases like terrorist attacks against civilians, women and children, war prisoners, etc. It is a fact that a large number of human societies are vulnerable to terrorism and pay large sacrifices and sustain financial harms in this regard. Afghanistan is one of those countries encountering serious challenges and deadly threats. Afghan nation suffers painfully and lose human and financial resources in combating terrorism but there is still no sense of triumph.
Now the questions are that how is it possible to see the political and military strategies adopted by Afghanistan and its allies against terrorist networks such as al-Qaeda, the Taliban, the self-styled Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) meet failure? Where does the problem lie and what is the main reason behind the resistance of these groups? How radicalism is supported and emerged in different frames with the passage of time? This article will answer the questions shortly.
In spite of the fact that some commentators believe that terrorist groups are a project to pursue colonial objectives of powers, a number of individuals are of the opinion that terrorist groups are as ideological issue emerged independently. Their radical and fundamental movements stem from ideology which has been formed as a process. It seems that the might and resistance of terrorist groups lie in their power of thought and their religious-radical ideology rather than financial, military and political powers. This issue has inspired them to the extent that their deadly acts are colored with the nature of sanctity and holiness. The chosen religious texts and magical concepts by their clerics, who inculcate in them the pleasure of heaven and heavenly sexes, fill them with keen interests in death without leaving a vacuum in their minds to accept right. There seems no faintest possibility to teach them the right way.
Their radical ideology is likely to be the main reason as terrorist groups own strong bases and systematic operational organization despite lacking an independent political setup and geography. Seminaries and madrassahs are their training centers and their instructors teach them with developed psychological tactics. This way of teaching prompt their students to get ready for martyrdom (according to themselves) with the desire of embracing heavenly sexes before graduation. Based on such teachings, the students of those seminaries kill people indiscriminately, including combatants and non-combatants, men, women, and children. They resort to violence and suicide bombings so as to join the promised permanence.
What can one do in case of facing with those who have crossed the border of wisdom under the terms of apparently religious knowledge? It is hard to defeat them through military operations although it is a temporary and emergency solution, since terrorists have been formed as ideologue and sacred mentality based on religious teachings rather than political-military teachings. Which is why the large human sacrifices and financial loss have not born the desired result. The only way left to combat terrorism in Afghanistan is bringing change in mechanism and in the minds of the militant groups.
To mitigate insurgency, it will be essential to strengthen religious and intellectual powers against those blood-suckers and ideologues, besides reinforcing the security forces. That is to say, the only power which will be able to combat the ignorant and radical groups is intellectual individuals, namely religious institutions, mullahs and clergy. Therefore, the clergy, including Sunni and Shiite, have to campaign against the enemies with the weapon of pure and human religious texts. The religious activities of Shiite and Sunni clergy in religious places and mosques with the aim of spreading awareness about the ugly face of terrorism and teaching moderate and pure religious concepts to people will be an effective solution to the problem. The mobilization of clergy across the country, including cities, towns and villages will be highly significant, since a large number of people are religious and strongly affected by traditional and religious tenets. Moreover, scores of people, mainly those who live in remote areas, are uneducated – that is why teenagers and youths easily fall prey to terrorist networks and metamorphosed into suicide bombers under the aegis of false teachings.
It is emphasized that bringing change into mentality and mindset will be the right mechanism for combating terrorism and the clergy will play a key role in this regard. They are able to spread public awareness and preach the true spirit of Islam in mosques and social places. They are able to issue religious fatwa (decree) against terrorist activities and boost the morale of security forces through declaring terrorist activities against Islam and religious tenets.

Syed Ali Mutahhari is the permanent writer of the Daily Outlook Afghanistan. He can be reached at the outlookafghanistan@gmail.com

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