Faisal Obaid Al-Ayyan, Vice-President of Rabdan Academy, to “Aletihad” daily newspaper:
Terrorist Organizations Manoeuvre to Recruit Young People under the Pretext of Religion
Dr. Faisal Obeid Al-Ayyan, vice president of Rabdan Academy, declared that the “Leaders’ Conference: War in the 21st Century” is an important event as it has raised numerous issues. The most significant issue raised shed light on the concepts of struggle having changed and are not any longer the same concepts of the traditional military struggle since the challenges have become more complicated than the 20th century’s, which was marked by intensive blood shedding. Consequently, the 21st century would not be better.
“The most important issue reviewed in the conference was the present situation in the region and the many areas that are exposed to dangerous threats for the number of military militias in the Middle East is more than that of the Arab countries. Terrorism is overwhelming and operates to destabilize most of the Arab countries, turn them into non-national countries, trying to rob them, control them, undermine governments or create chaos,” in a special speech to “Aletihad” daily newspaper coinciding with the conference, Dr. Faisal Al-Ayyan clarified.
He added that the goals of such militias vary depending on each region, from one country to another and from one perspective to another. However, all of them end up with the same objective, which is to disintegrate and destabilize the Middle East region and to shake its peaceful status. When we talk about the future wars, the fourth generation wars, or asymmetric wars, we realize that all lead to the same end as the instruments of today’s wars versus wars of the past are note alike any more. The potentials of these terrorist groups, although very poor, are able to destroy entire societies. Today, one individual with the least funding can kill hundreds of thousands of people. September 11th 2001 assault is an example for this argument, where a group of terrorists, modestly funded, was able to petrify the corners of the United States of America.
“We used to mention Al-Qaeda in the past, and none imagined another terrorist organization like “Da’esh” (ISIS) would come into existence. “Al-Qaeda”, depending on its old approach, was able to carry out significant strikes across many countries. Similarly, “Da’esh”, managed to take hold of large parts in both Iraq and Syria and established training camps in Libya. In other words, wars in the 21st century are very complex while known and unknown changes are occurring in the region. Our institutions in the GCC countries, those in the Middle East or those across the globe must be flexible to adjust and restructure to deal with such emergency variables all over the world”, he clarified.
“We must be completely aware that governmental institutions have the aptitude to tackle the current changes. However, in the future, we must acquire totally different tools from today’s, because unethical groups would not be challenged in the traditional manner, considering the fact that they operate unlawfully and their measures and theories of profit and loss in such battles are different from the past. Besides, such terrorist groups are patient, and have a long record of hit and run and have a different financial system from that of “Al-Qaeda”, which used to depend largely on sympathizers and donations for funding. Unlike “Al-Qaeda”, the current groups have other multiple resources of funding, and consequently, they became more cohesive than the organizations that existed in the twentieth century. They have a tax system, female captives, unethical trade, oil trade, seizure of banks, countries’ revenues, and antiquities trade. Added to that, they have the support from some countries as well as proxy wars and hidden agendas. All the above-mentioned elements sustain the continuity of these organizations”, he added.
“It became essential for us to come together, unify efforts and engage in new alliances to confront these organizations. The world should realize that the occurrence of such tensions in a certain country somewhere away from them might be limited, yet, there is great possibility that such groups can emerge and attack other countries in the neighborhood as well, and may even move to other regions across the oceans. For example, “Da’esh” (ISIS) moved from North Africa and reached the core of the continent, then moved towards the Middle East and some parts of Europe. That is to say, such terrorist organizations’ way of thinking is not any longer as it was in the past. Nowadays, each individual of them can work with decentralization, and fulfill operations without referring to their leaders or even communicating with them. They became able to weigh the situations and create disasters anywhere in accordance with the “lone wolves” theory”. Dr. Faisal Al-Ayyan added.
Terrorist Organizations Manoeuvre
Dr. Al-Ayyan warned of the manoeuvres of terrorist organizations; ISIS for instance and its supporters who operate to engage young people under different slogans. Afterwards, they proceed to create disturbance, spread tension and sow trouble in safe communities. Then, the newly formed organizations follow the same procedures in recruiting others. The terrorist groups involve new young followers, who are well equipped with better technology and possess notable ability to break through the means of social communication. Moreover, the terrorist organizations tend mainly to involve young people between 16 to 20 years of age due to their knowledge and fondness of advanced technologies. This ultimately leads to the capable creation of a similar world and an exceptional media instrument to achieve effective social communication. These newly adopted trends are totally different from the ones adopted by the previous generation as they relied mainly on the distribution of traditional recorded cassettes. Currently, groups of young people are exploited by the terrorist organizations and work out to demolish the area, threaten its stability and lead it towards lawless state, chaos and confusion.
He also emphasized that the terrorist groups exploit religion as a cover and operate underneath to involve and recruit the targeted young people. Furthermore, they have the tendency to read the religious texts and interpret them in a totally different manner based on their extreme beliefs. Besides, they are characterized by immorality. For example, they prefer punishment to rewarding and resort to destruction rather than developing. In addition, they managed to deprive religion from its well-known tolerance and leniency. They, also, have new mechanisms that are convenient to them in the present circumstances and effective enough for handling the changing situation that persists in the region. There are specific objectives carefully planned to be achieved through such terrorist groups whose existence is not unintentional.
He also emphasized that the international community must adopt a definite stance towards the terrorist groups and against the supporting countries which fund them. Hence, to hinder the dominance of these groups, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Bahrain have started some procedures to confront the countries, which finance and support terrorist organizations. Such terrorist organizations overlap and cooperate with one another and this is a very serious issue.
He pointed out that the UAE passed new legislations to restrain religious excess, extremism, and intolerance. The UAE devoted special efforts to keep terrorism away of the community and prevent its intruding in official channels. He also expressed his aspirations that the world would work together to achieve this objective as it will ultimately lead to demolishing extremist terrorist groups. He stressed that concrete actions should be brought into practice to ensure a real exchange of information among countries as an effective means to deal with these organizations. Countries that work together to confront the terrorist groups should take a decisive stance so as to oppose countries that support terrorists and adopt extremist attitudes aiming at destroying the stability and peace of other countries and thus forcing people to emigrate to other destinations. The UAE, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Bahrain have set a role example as they joined together to boycott Qatar because of the constant and unlimited support it provides for the terrorist organizations. The international community must adopt a firm and unified strategy to oppose the countries that provide financial support to terrorists till they are forced to relinquish and restrain from supporting these groups. He also clarified that the attitudes of the four countries are definite and indisputable and that they will not accept the existence of terrorist organizations in the region, and that they all adopt the same attitudes and strategies to demolish these organizations that are outlawed in origin and lack ethics and morals. He added that it is not possible for anyone to start negotiations with them due to the fact that these criminal groups can’t be granted legitimacy. This definitely means that no negotiations or reconciliation will ever take place with them.
“During the next period, our efforts will be devoted to obstructing the progression of extremist organizations in the region, while numerous apparent successes have already been achieved at the international level. The situation in Yemen represents an apparent instance, in terms of pursuing “Al-Qaeda” towards their shelters particularly in the southern part of the country and bearing in mind the successes that the legitimate and coalition forces managed to achieve in Yemen against “Al-Qaeda”, the “Houthees” and “Ali Saleh’s militias”, who operate together to spread confusion in Yemen. Therefore, more efficient strategies and efforts must be adopted due to the fact that the problems can be furthered and prolonged. Therefore, more intensive efforts must be placed in this direction accompanied with sincere faith, enactment of evident legislations and establishing mutual cooperation in sharing intelligence information among the countries that have come to a unified national agenda to encounter terrorism in its variant and changeable forms. If we aim at ensuring the safety of the Middle East to come out without harm of this dilemma, there must be no room for compromise or reconciliation with these organizations”, based on a thorough reading of the coming phase, Dr. Al Ayyan said.
“The region must resort to united efforts and to abandon fragmentation. This notion is recently adopted by the Kurdistan Region as it started to reevaluate its attitudes and stance on its move towards separation from Iraq. As a consequence of separation, the Kurdistan Region realized that they will be compelled to face “Da’esh”, other organizations and the “Al-Hashid Al-Sha’abi” (Popular Mobilization Forces), besides the regular forces of Iraq that will definitely attempt to preserve the unity of the state and prevent the split of any part of the land. It is clear that the Kurds’ haste to resort to the referendum for separation will never strengthen them but rather will have a negative impact on them and will ultimately lead to initiate conflict in the area due to the existence of terrorist organizations, which are waiting to capture such an opportunity. The efforts dedicated by both Saudi and UAE to tackle this issue are part of their endeavors to restore Iraq to the Arab family in the context of unification, aspired for, to face the dangerous consequences of terrorism, proxy war and fragmentation of the region. In fact there is no previous enmity prevailed between the Arab countries and Iraq whereas there is definitely pre-existing enmity between Iran and Iraq”, he concluded.