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President Al-Assad: the Warrior against Terrorism (7)

Terrorism is has never been a Syrian Phenomenon; extremist Islamic matrices have characterized this unfortunately international phenomenon. Syria has faced and defeated a frenzy terrorist phenomenon by Moslem Brotherhood gangs by the end of the seventies and beginning of the eighties of the last century. Actually some of those who supported such a frenzy phenomenon are themselves the same now who support the ongoing terrorism against Syrians, particularly some ewes, Jordan and the USA. The Late President Hafez Al-Assad was able to lead the battle of all Syrians against terrorism and to put an end to terrorism against Syrians.

Syria, a secular peaceful country under the only secular leadership in this part of the world, since the beginning of the 21st Century once more has been the target of terrorism. This very terrorism under many forms: occupation, threats, sanctions, derailed the ambitious plans of reforms and modernization, not to mention the heavy losses inflicted on all sectors of Syrian life. The US-made terrorism and Wahabi exported terrorism from dozens of countries mushroomed and escalated. Foolishly, Israel the occupier of the Arab land, embraced, hosted and sponsored by itself this terrorism! Here comes the historic role and leadership of the Syrian Army and its Supreme Commander, President Bashar Hafez Al-Assad, the man who has been defending heroically not only his country, the region but the whole world against terrorism.

H.E. President Bashar Hafez Al-Assad is indeed the world number one man in combating terrorism; he has been in words as well as in deeds leading every effort as to outline, define , combat and eradicate terrorism. Among the points to be highlighted to this effect and for this noble purpose are:

 “The Syrian role in combating terrorism is well-known for decades and not for years. As a State, Syria rejects terrorism and has the experience, which is at the disposition of whoever wants truly combat terrorism in the world.”

 On the issue of terrorism, President Assad renewed condemnation of terrorism saying that all Arab countries condemned what happened on September 11, out of many motivations " the moral one, we as Arabs, with all our religions, reject terrorism'', secondly for '' human motivations, '' we are the largest people in the world who can feel what it means when a certain people are exposed to terrorism, '' We have been exposed to terrorism with the form presented now, and to the Israeli form of terrorism, '' and to terrorism through its meaning of occupation, oppression and killing throughout history. "Arabs have always been against terrorism, and are the first to combat terrorism,''

“For example, the first lesson that we had learned from dealing with terrorism in the 1980s is that terrorism has no borders, and that terrorists are not related to any religion or nationality. In 1985 President Hafez al-Assad sent a delegation to visit Europe to ask them to define terrorism and to combat terrorism through convening an international conference on terrorism. But they did not pay attention to this at that time. Now, the entire world is asking for combating terrorism. As precisely you have said we do have an experience in this. But now in the west they are talking about Islamic extremism, and I think the picture is not clear in the minds of people. They are confusing three things: Islam, Islamic extremism and what they call in the West Islamic terrorism. Islam is like Christianity, like Judaism, it is a monolithic religion. All religion are moderate religions in the texts, and speak about love, tolerance and forgiveness. As for religious extremism, it is done by people who like to exaggerate their adherence to religion in their practices. And therefore they are locked in their mentality and their practices. Usually, an extremist person is far removed from rationale and closer to passions and emotions, while the moderate person is someone who enjoys more reason and wisdom.”

“The terrorist person is someone who always wants a cover to take as a pretext for his acts. And therefore the terrorist would always choose the extremist rather than the moderate because it is easier to deceive the extremist than to deceive the moderate. So, the moderate person will be able to uncover this terrorist person and not fall as his prey. This is the most important factor that enabled Syria to control and end terrorism in the 1980s. The way we were able to overcome terrorism in our country is by giving support and increasing the moderate voices that are traditionally present in the country. Therefore, to be precise, to be an extremist does not mean to be terrorist as some people believe. But we do not encourage extremism because we think it is far removed from the moderate and real text of Islam. Therefore, the conclusion we can arrive at it is that moderation is the enemy of terrorism. Now, can we consider what is taking place as a combating of terrorism? No. Until now the operation of combating terrorism has not started. Now, there is only a military war against a supposed enemy whom we do not know. I think the Americans do not know who this enemy is! And the proof for that is that all the detainees, whom they call detainees, who had been interrogated did not give any evidence or clear information. But the other question is: Is this war going to help moderation or extremism? I tell you, it is going to help extremism. And therefore, this war is providing a more fertile ground for terrorism. We expressed our opinion that we support combating terrorism but we did not say we support the war. The war against terrorism is an ideological war but not a military one. And therefore, I have always emphasized the importance of supporting moderation because it is the moderate voices that can combat terrorism. We also say we have an experience in combating terrorism, and therefore we would like to contribute to combating terrorism through our experience rather than through the experience of others who had just begun to combat terrorism. I don't think we can allow them to lead us in a battle we are more experienced than them in it.”

 Dr. Mohammad Abdo Al-Ibrahim