“Terrorism: How to Understand and Defeat It,” by Andrew Schatkin

The mainstream media employ many words to explain terrorism. They may say the person is radicalized; an extremist; mentally ill; that what happened is explained as a van attack or knife attack. For me, these perhaps politically correct terms could serve to explain these attacks and events that have gone on for some years worldwide. The attack may be explained as an isolated incident.

Let me say that as a Lutheran Christian, I have nothing but love, concern, and consideration for my Muslim brethren, most of whom are simple hard working citizens who wish to support their families and themselves in peace and harmony with their chosen country and environment. Yet I now choose to explain the historical and religious and cultural roots of these criminal murderous acts.

When Islam was founded, it expanded by force and conquest through North Africa which had been Christian and Jewish and in fact those religious communities were decimated and killed in the Islamic expansion. Islam attempted forcible expansion from the conquest of the Iberian peninsula or Modern Spain to a battle at the border of France about 750 AD. Islam was at the gates of Vienna in the mid-16th century and finally at the conclusion of the First World War it conducted a genocide of the Armenian Christian community in which two million Armenian Christians were killed and tortured.

I say of course that there have been similar acts of violence and genocide by the Germans in the Second World War in the Holocaust and in the Inquisition. These historical events I think serve to explain the acts of terrorist violence presently occurring on an ongoing basis. These acts have been directed to the US in Boston, NY; a gay nightclub in Orlando; San Bernadino, California; and others. The acts and plots are continuing and are not stopping. There have been attacks in Nigeria, in Egypt directed toward Coptic Christians and their churches, Indonesia, and in many European countries such as the UK, France, Germany, Belgium and Spain. They are the product of a minority, but these actions are in some sense the product not of an isolated act, extremism, radicalization, or the other terms and words I mentioned, but are the product of what could be a minority within this Muslim cultural/political/religious system.

It is noteworthy that in some ways the Muslim political and religious system is oppressive in their countries. No church or bible distribution is allowed in Saudi Arabia and only recently were women permitted to drive in that same country. Also, Christians and their churches have been persecuted in Pakistan.

The terrorist attacks are continuing. Let me give a few examples from 2018. Recently, in August of 2018, two women—one a mother the other a sister—were knifed and killed in France The Islamic state took credit and the killer was heard to shout “Allah Akhbar.” On June 20, 2018, a Queens man was attempting to sneak into Syria to join Isis and for this he pled guilty in federal court. Again, in June of 2018, the French police stopped a suspected terror attack on a swingers club. In Indonesia, in May of 2018, the police killed four men behind a terror attack on a police station wielding swords. The Islamic state took credit for Toronto shooting in which two people were killed in June of 2018. In August of 2018, a US soldier pled guilty to trying to help ISIS. In Sept of 2018, a German teen was arrested for plotting a bomb attack on a gay nightclub. The FBI stated in October of 2018 that a man planning to bomb the National Mall on Election day. In September of 2018, FBI director Christopher Wray warned that the current terrorism threat in US is everywhere. These are examples of what is a continuing situation which is a threat to our country and other societies and countries. I do not have hostility or seek to target out Muslim neighbors who as redeemed and saved by the Christian God. I can only cherish and respect them, but the facts must be dealt with and understood: these attacks, which are unremitting and continuous, can and are only explainable as coming from the Islamic religious/cultural/political system, and if we as a nation and other nations are to prevent and contain this, it is only with this understanding that further attacks on all countries can be stopped.

I note that with the Koran which perhaps many Muslims do not know since it is in Arabic and whose only contact with it as it is chanted in the Mosque, there are specific directions to attack and harm unbelievers, oppress women, and kill apostates to other religions. Let me give some examples: Koran 24;31, women are to lower their gaze around men; Koran 4:24 and 33:50, a man is permitted to take sex slaves outside of marriage. There are Koran verses that establish the death sentence for apostates (Koran verses 2:217; 9:73,74; 88:21; 5:54; 9:66). The following Koran verses are relevant to urging jihad: Koran 8:65 (Allah urges war, slay non Muslims) Koran 9:5 (beheading), and also Koran 47:4. I cite these sections of the Koran to give some possible further explanation for acts of terrorism. In fact, since the Koran is in Arabic and the terrorists could be illiterate and not able to read or read Arabic, they may be unknown to them. I can only say that I hope in this little essay I have attempted to explain and handle an ongoing political, religious, and cultural series of events that with time will end and dissipate. I can only urge that political correctness is not helpful to any sort of solution of this problem, but rather facts and truth must be honestly faced by Muslim and non-Muslims alike.