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How to Lose the War Against the Islamic State

2015-11-23

And that’s because ISIS isn’t about a finite pantheon of ruthless puppeteers. It’s about a region in violent disarray, a culture in crisis and all sorts of brutal crosscurrents that no drone alone can address. Our assault on ISIS must be multifaceted, and it was good at least to hear an appreciation of that in Hillary Clinton’s speech on Thursday.

We lose the war against ISIS by being simplistic. We lose it by letting emotion overtake reason.

via How ISIS Defeats Us – The New York Times.

ISIS is as good an acronym as any– we forget that an acronym, by definition, must be pronounceable and ISIS certainly is pronounceable, unlike DAESH– but it’s a mistake to try to sum this phenomenon up in words of two syllables.

The way to beat this threat to secular society is to make society so good that its allure is unbeatable.  The tactics we need to use most are propaganda.  Flooding the connections with propaganda about the good life– we are already doing that with our commercial programming today.  That is why the Islamic State, in its founding document, bans satellite TV as an agent of the devil.

It is only a short step to developing deliberate propaganda such as was used during the Second World War against Hitler.  In fact, there is an odd parallel between Hitler and the movement of violent jihad.  Both looked back to ancient precedents for their ideology.  Nazism has never been completely stamped out and there are pockets of Nazis in the guise of white supremacists living in the United States today.

It is time to resume the production of deliberately propagandistic films such as Casablanca, All Quiet on the Western  Front, and the like.  Repeated play of films such as these online and distribution of DVDs to follow.

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