U.S. Must Work to Prevent Muslim Radicalization

[Indianapolis Star] Tim Roemer and Lorne Craner - To break the cycle of Islamic radicalization, the U.S. and its allies must engage in a competition of ideas. With the right conceptual approach and concerted action, the Obama administration can set the U.S. on a course to undercutting al-Qaeda's narrative and appeal. This means empowering mainstream Muslims to provide hopeful, practical alternatives to jihadist ideology. It also will require substantial investment in rejuvenating efforts to encourage prosperity, reform and democracy in Arab countries. Persistent corruption is the No. 1 frustration among Arab publics, a factor radical extremists exploit to challenge governmental legitimacy. Encouraging increased transparency would help the U.S. build bridges to a suspicious public. Roemer, a former member of the 9/11 commission, and Craner, a former assistant secretary of state, were members of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy's Presidential Task Force on Confronting the Ideology of Radical Extremism.

2009-05-08 06:00:00

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