Cutting off the Recruitment Pipeline – Go for the minds & Spirit of the disfranchisement young people

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Photo credit ABC7NEWS - Je Suis CharlieAs the world wonders and mourns the death of innocent people during the unfolding nightmare in France, questions are being asked how people born and raised in the west would turn around and join organizations that are bent on destroying the civilization that they belong to. Put another way, why do some young women and men think that the American or western system is so unattainable to them that they can get acceptance elsewhere?
We may not fix those eggs that have already gone bad but we need to find the conditions that enable the eggs to go bad instead of hatching into good chicks. The short term solution is to toss the bad eggs as quickly as possible, the long term solution is to tackle the conditions that produce the bad eggs. This long term solution needs all of us to stop and look ourselves in the mirror. Second we need to faithfully answer the question, “What do we see and think, when we look at an American who does not look or speak like ourselves, do we repel or attract them to ourselves?” In our own small, every day in our dealings with people we consider difference from ourselves, from daycare through school and various workplaces we make decisions that make it either easy or difficult for terrorist recruiters online or in person to succeed or fail. In all communities with at risk children, like the shoe bomber or underpants bomber, we have first crack at making them our friends and defenders or potential murderers. The US has gone through periods where a section of its populations is looked at as having divided allegiance to the flag: After Pearl Habour, Japanese Americans were treated as suspect, the country learned its lessons. During World War II, genern Americans were treated like suspects, a few lived upto the profiles but the majority were as American as pie! Now were have Muslim Americans : – we should pull out a templet of what worked successfully and it was not mass physical and psychological separation although its tempting.
There is a pattern developing that every westerner knows but refuses or is uncomfortable to wake up and face. Black Americans in the projects and inner cities join gangs, the white young white men become mass school shooters and the young Muslim diaspora turn into terrorist recruits. The conditions of alienations and disfranchisement that lead these young people to seek solace in being outlaws is something we all should try to reduce.
We know that lack of parental and family support in inner cities coupled with poor schools, poverty and the disfranchising Environment provides a breeding ground for gangs. We have reacted to this by the prison industrial complex, it’s profitable but does not solve the problem. Those who are targeted by this condition have resigned to it because they think there is no alternative.
Second generation Somalis and other Muslim immigrants may not take the route of resigning themselves. It’s everyone’s self-interest to ensure that all recent immigrant children are fully assimilated into the Western system and not treated as the other. The easy street is to establish a large war and security industrial complex as fortress Western hunting down the spoiled eggs amongst the recent immigrants but in the long run, just like the prison complex, it will be a self-perpetuating profitable enterprise to a few but wrong for the rest of the country.
As the new Republic Congress takes power in Washington, I have been thinking about the ultimate result of defunding food stamps, eliminating the school lunch program, defunding head-start, reducing or completely eliminating social security, ensuring that everyone who needs a gun for their fourth amendment’s gets one, reducing federal college loans or eliminating them, defunding Medicaid, Medicare and Obamacare, ensuring that the increasing minorities don’t get to vote, and finally militarizing the police.
In a utopian world, under these conditions, the USA will have an army of hungry people working very hard to put food on the table knowing that there is no nanny state, in the natural order of things we shall produce a very large underclass with no vested interest in the USA system. An underclass with no vested interest in the system who think success is unattainable is not something the privileged few would want to consider. A large underclass citizenry feeling disfranchised is something every American no matter what origin, persuasion or class should work to avoid.
Whereas the current republican stated of shutting off the spigot may have the best interest of the country to reduce the deficit and teach good old hard work to looters but it may have the unintended consequences of producing a recruitment pipeline for terrorists. The best defense against these recruitment is to have well assimilated Muslim youth and other immigrants ready and willing to defend their country and the way of life.
I grew up during the Cold War. My country of birth was in the thick of the ideological war. The thing that won the minds of young Kenyans for west was not the threat of detention from “an African socialism” government but the Christian tracks that went into every primary school, the young American Peace Corps that worked in villages in nutrition, agriculture, and education. If the US could win a war for young minds against the USSR without firing a gun overseas, we sure can do the same with young minds born and resident within our communities. We should not concentrate on the trees and forget to look at the whole forest, go for the mind and spirit not body.

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