Letter to South China Morning Post [288 words]:
Trust a professor of social sciences to befuddle us with a word-salad of jargon only to close with a glimpse of the obvious.
Professor Sundramoorthy runs through a long list of "sociodemographic profiles" which could create a terrorist, before landing on the "ideology of terrorism". (Profiling ideology the best way to combat terrorism, letters 10 April)
But this is only a glimpse of the obvious, for nowhere does he say what that ideology is. He fails to name the one clear connection between all these terrorists — that they are all votaries of Islam. There are plenty of poor and disaffected youth in the world. But only those who believe in the sanctity of jihad and the certainly of martyrdom (those virgins in paradise) can be tempted to strap on a suicide vest to kill innocents.
Sundramoorthy is not alone in this failure to name the obvious link in modern terrorism. Plenty of other observers name a myriad causes — grievances, poverty, lack of education, disenfranchisement — while ignoring the common thread in all: islamist-jihadi ideology.
They would all do well to study the words of Adam Deen, an ex-Jihadi and now counter-terrorist outreach worker in London. On 10 April he said "the predominant factor in radicalisation is the ideology [of Islam] — it is the ideas that move people. I didn't come from a poverty-stricken background or broken home. I went to university, I didn't feel angry and I was apolitical. Yet, I was indoctrinated with a radical Islamist ideology and became impassioned with the idea of an Islamic state".
If we, non-Muslims and moderate Muslims alike, are to face down the terrorist threat, we need to counter the plain truth in front of us, the threat of radical islamist ideology.
9 Siena One