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Repressing Islamists is Like Squeezing a Balloon


The Russians have tried to stamp out jihadis in their territories, especially Chechnya, for many years.  A famous series of terrorist attacks prompted the Russian government to strike back by applying their military heavy-handedly on the Chechen populace.  They succeeded in quieting the area, and the terrorist attacks have ceased.  But the Islamists who were left in Chechnya who had not been shot or arrested have been gradually emigrating to Syria and now to the Islamic State.  The potential terrorists who were living in Chechnya under Russian control have simply left town for a more congenial venue.

Australia’s approach has been different; possibly due to the isolation of their island, they have been able to confiscate the passports of known jihadis and place them under close observation.  They respond to these restrictions with an elaborate omission of any direct support for the Islamic State or for emigration there, since that would be against the law.  But the rest of their speech is full of the hate and delusions that characterize their rants.

Another problem is that bombing will inevitably cause civilian casualties because the Islamic State fighters have many hostages, women, and children with whom they mix.  There has been talk of “loosening the rules of engagement”, that is, allowing more civilian casualties, because the strikes so far have hit nothing but empty buildings.   Only the Americans have been precise enough to kill a few leaders, including “Jihadi John”, the notorious narrator of terrorist videos.

According to, there are 1.5 professed Muslims in the world; if 1/10 of 1 percent were committed to violent jihad, that would be 1.5 million people.  The only way to prevent that many people from causing serious damage to the rest of the world without murdering them all is to convince them that it is in their best interests to respect the rights of the rest of the people.  Demonstrating to them that life in the secular world is good is not enough, unless Australia is not a decent place to live, as demonstrated by those who have had their passports confiscated to prevent them from emigrating to the Islamic State.  Military means are clearly necessary but it is possible that there is no completely successful way to eliminate them.


One Comment leave one →
  1. Richard L Steagall permalink
    2015-11-22 8:51 PM


    The Chechens have always been significant powers in the Russian criminal underworld. I have never read of any Chechens going outside Russia because they have a long time hatred of the Russians.

    Moreover, there is very profitable work for them in Chechen criminal organization. The oligarchs who are supported and protected by the Chechens will prevail. It is impossible for the Russian security to penetrate the Chechen mob because of the ethnic solidarity of the Chechens.

    Are you sure Chechens are on ISIS?

    My understanding of the Chechens were they were always being attacked by the Russians, were Moslem, and did not have that Middle Eastern jihad dream. All they wanted was protection and revenge against Russians.

    Check this and let me know.


    P.S. No reason to apologize. You have a life. We had first snow Friday, it was very wet and melted easily and turned real cold so melting snow froze. A mess so I stayed indoors



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