9/29/15, "Cameron slams Obama: ‘Barack, biggest problem we have is Islamist extremism’," Washington Times, David Boyer
"British Prime Minister David Cameron challenged President Obama with
some blunt talk on Islamist extremism Tuesday during a gathering of
world leaders at the United Nations to develop an international strategy
for defeating the Islamic State and other terrorist groups.
aware that Mr. Obama shuns the term “Islamist extremists,” the
Conservative British prime minister reacted strongly at the meeting when
the president, who chaired the session, advised the assembled foreign
leaders to avoid profiling Muslims because “violent extremism is not
unique to any one faith.”
you said it and you’re right — every religion has its extremists,” Mr.
Cameron said. “But we have to be frank that the biggest problem we have
today is the Islamist extremist violence that has given birth to ISIL,
to al-Shabab, to al-Nusra, al Qaeda and so many other groups.”...
Mr. Cameron on Tuesday said Western governments must “root
out the extremist preachers that are poisoning the minds of young
Muslims in our countries.”
“We need to make sure we don’t allow
the incubation of an extremist worldview even before it gets to
justifying violence,” Mr. Cameron said. “We’ve got to get it out of our
schools, get it out of our prisons, get it out of our universities. I
believe in freedom of speech, but freedom to hate is not the same
Having recently embarked his government on a five-year
plan to defeat home-grown extremism, Mr. Cameron went on as Mr. Obama
listened: “The boy who straps a bomb to his chest and blows up an Iraqi
town, the guy that stands in the desert with a knife, having just
beheaded a British hostage or whoever, they don’t get there from a
standing start. They have extremist views and an extremist mindset
before they make that final decision to be an extremist terrorist.
have to stop this process at the start, not at the end,” Mr. Cameron
Before he left the meeting, Mr. Obama conceded that the British prime minister had made some good points.
thought David Cameron’s point [on radicalization] was excellent, that
we are focused on violent extremism, but violent extremism is emerging
out of an extremist worldview that has to be counteracted,” Mr. Obama
Without getting specific, the president said such an effort
should result in “good governance and political settlements…so that we
don’t have incubators for expressions of violent extremism.”
Seeking a ‘global movement’
A day after his
tangle with Mr. Putin, Mr. Obama said he is leading a global movement to
defeat the Islamic State and repeated that his strategy includes the
removal of Mr. Assad, a Russian ally.
Defeating the Islamic State in Syria “requires, I believe, a new leader,” Mr. Obama said. “We are prepared
to work with all countries, including Russia and Iran, to find a
political mechanism.…It is not going to be enough to defeat [the
Islamic State] on the battlefield.”
During their closed-door
meeting Monday, Mr. Obama and Mr. Putin disagreed sharply on the best
way to take on the Islamic State in Syria.
is arming the Syrian military and sending troops, and Mr. Putin said
the Assad government is the only effective force fighting the extremist
group on the ground.
Mr. Obama told the U.N. that military efforts
alone won’t defeat the Islamic State and said the international
coalition must offer citizens in the region “a more attractive and
“This is not going to be turned around
overnight because it is not just a military campaign that we are
involved in,” Mr. Obama said.
“There are problems that have been built
up over decades that are expressing themselves.…Even if we were to
wipe out the entire cadre of [Islamic State] leadership, we would still
have some of these forces at work.”
As Mr. Obama was speaking, his
administration was announcing sanctions Tuesday against 25 people and
five groups connected to the Islamic State, effectively acknowledging
that the deadly jihadi movement had established more links across
Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
The State Department designated
as foreign terrorist organizations Islamic State regional spinoffs in
Russia’s Caucasus region, Algeria, Indonesia and Egypt’s Sinai
Peninsula, The Associated Press reported. Among the individuals
designated as terrorists was Sally Jones, a British native and the widow
of an operative killed recently in an American drone strike.
world leaders at the summit agreed that the solution to countering
terrorist groups must include military, political, economic and media
campaigns. But as Mr. Obama continued to call for Mr. Assad to give up
power, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius warned against “fake magic
solutions” to the crisis in Syria.
will have to find a political solution which will allow us to find the
exit strategy and which will further allow a government which has some
elements of the present government but other elements of the moderate
opposition,” Mr. Fabius said. “There isn’t a magic formula here that’s
going to allow us to avoid the long efforts necessary to fight Daesh."...King Abdullah II of Jordan said Muslim nations must lead the fight “to protect and show the true nature of our religion.”...
He also said world powers must work more effectively toward a solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
such as the clashes over the historic Al Aqsa mosque in East Jerusalem
only contribute to the aims of extremist groups, he said.
cannot tackle this threat in a vacuum,” the king said. “A world that
allows the Palestinian-Israeli conflict to move further away from a
two-state solution is a world that fuels extremists’ recruitment. The
world should not be silent to violations of the sanctity of Al Aqsa
mosque in Jerusalem, as this will only empower those who seek to wage a
⦁ This article is based in part on wire service reports.
Comment: David Cameron has proved over many years that he doesn't have the slightest intention of getting incipient violent extremism “out of our
schools...out of our prisons...out of our universities."