4 Standout Points From Obama's Terror Op-Ed
We must address terror at its roots, president writes
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Feb 18, 2015 9:59 AM CST
President Barack Obama meets with Secretary of Defense Ash Carter in the Oval Office of the White House, Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015, in Washington.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

(Newser) – As Washington prepares to host a global summit against terrorism, President Obama is outlining his own strategy in a Los Angeles Times op-ed. In the piece, Obama calls not only for ridding the world of extremists but of addressing the forces that lead young people toward extremism in the first place. Among the op-ed's key quotes:

  • "We know that military force alone cannot solve" the problem of terror, Obama writes. "Nor can we simply take out terrorists who kill innocent civilians. We also have to confront the violent extremists—the propagandists, recruiters and enablers—who may not directly engage in terrorist acts themselves, but who radicalize, recruit and incite others to do so."

  • Instead, "the best way to protect people, especially young people, from falling into the grip of violent extremists is the support of their family, friends, teachers and faith leaders," the president notes. "Groups like al Qaeda and ISIL exploit the anger that festers when people feel that injustice and corruption leave them with no chance of improving their lives. The world has to offer today's youth something better."
  • We must not target our anger at Islam itself: "Groups like al Qaeda and ISIL promote a twisted interpretation of religion that is rejected by the overwhelming majority of the world's Muslims. The world must continue to lift up the voices of Muslim clerics and scholars who teach the true peaceful nature of Islam."
  • And in the meantime, let's remember that America's strength comes through its diversity. "Our campaign to prevent people around the world from being radicalized to violence is ultimately a battle for hearts and minds. With this week's summit, we'll show once more that—unlike terrorists who only offer misery and death—it is our free societies and diverse communities that offer the true path to opportunity, justice and dignity."
Click for Obama's full piece.