tv Quadriga - The International Talk Show LINKTV November 21, 2015 2:00pm-2:31pm PST
>> this week on "quadriga." terror in paris. is it war? after the devastating attacks on the french capital, the country is in mourning and watching to see how french president francois hollande will react. he says france is now at war and has asked other european nations for military backing. france has declared a state of emergency. raids are taking place across the country. the french air force has also
dramatically stepped up strikes against i.s. positions in syria. but can i.s. terror really be stopped with military force? coming to you from berlin, "quadriga", the international debate. your host, melinda crane. melinda: hello and welcome to "quadriga." is the rhetoric of war suitable and useful or counterproductive? that is one of the questions we want to talk about today on "quadriga" with three people who are following the incidents in france and their aftermath very closely. it is a pleasure to welcome ulrike guerot. she is a political analyst and the founder and director of the think tank european democracy lab. she lived for many years in paris and has family there. she says the decisive question is do we defend our values or our security. and very glad to have asiem el difraoui on the show. he is a german /egyptian expert on islamism. who is working with the can dade -- candid think tank based here
in berlin. he is currently living in france, and he says the fight against i.s. cannot be fought solely with military resources. and finally, great to have alan posener back on the show. he is a british-born commentator for the british newspaper "die welt." he says of course it is war and it has been since the fatwa issued against salman rushdie 25 years ago. radical islam wants to eradicate the west, and the west will not have peace until radical islam has been eradicated. asiem el difraoui, your opening statement says military resources alone won't defeat isis. would you nonetheless agree with the pope when he says that we are in a piecemeal world war iii? asiem: i wouldn't call it world war iii. let's not exaggerate. we are confronted with the global ideology. that's true. which needs to be -- i don't want to -- we need to find a new terminology. we are in a global conflict against an ideology which we can't win only militarily.
if france is bombing raqqa, fine. might be necessary. if we liberate territory out there under isis control, very important. but there is not only isis. we have a very short-term memory, it seems, in a sense that all that started in the afghan war against soviet empire where we used the most reactionry elements, elements of the muslim world to defeat the russian empire. we defeated the russian empire, but now those elements might defeat us. jihad is an ideology which has a foothold all around the world. places like libya, yemen, indonesia. look what happened in our society. if you wanted to defeat jihadism, we need to have a really comprehensive approach in the sense we need to defeat them
intellectually, idealogically. we need to eradicate the social-economic misery on which those people feed. in the middle east, we have real huge socio-economical issues hich we need to eradicate. ord isis or the other jihadi movements can't cause many problems. melinda: many thanks. alan posener, you say this is a war between radical islam and the west, but most of the pieces. asiem: i need to interrupt you. let's talk about jihadism. what is radical hristianity? let's find the proper logic. sorry about that. melinda: ok. let's let alan posener first of
all tell us what he thinks about radical islam. alan: i agree with that. it is a war. let's not talk about a war of words when we all know what this is about. there is a certain -- shall we say, someone said in the christian context you might say islam has a problem with sects. radical sects. melinda: right. asiem: better. alan: let's not get into definitions when we basically know what we are talking about. i agree with you. this is like confrontation with communism. again, i agree. we had a world conflict with communism which had to be confronted militarily. hich had to be confronted. it was a war of ideas and communism fed at least in the third world also on poverty and the feeling of disenfranchisement and the west had to confront it in all france. we called this the cold war. the cold war. this is what the war against radical islam jihadism is. t is a cold and hot war.
melinda: alan, your opening statement said it is a war between radical islam and the west. if i look at the different pieces in this piecemeal of world war iii if in fact it can be called that, most of them are in europe. e have seen the recent attacks in beirut and sinai assuming that the russian plane was in ct brought down by i.s., and by far the most victims from most jihadist attacks are in the countries of iraq, syria, nigeria, afghanistan and pakistan. so is it really a war with the west? alan: i totally agree again with what you said about the fact that muslims are the main victims of jihadism or radicalism. whatever you want to call it. they are the main victims of error. these muslims -- it is not -- these are people who i include in the west.
i'm not excluding them as the other, as people who don't belong to us. they do belong to us. they want the same things we want. they want democracy. they want a say in the running of their country. they want a similar way of life. t is no accident that beirut was known as the paris of the -- they wanted to be like paris. this is why people in beirut were so hurt by the attacks in paris even more than the attacks of their own city because this was their dream city. the west is much more than this island of europe or the united states. it is an idea. melinda: and that was exactly what ulrike guerot was getting at when she talked about the tradeoff between our values and our security. but again, if in fact most jihadist attacks are taking victims in the middle east and africa, is our security truly so threatened that we must e prepared to trade off our civil liberties?
ulrike: first i wouldn't say that we should trade out our liberties. i'm pretty concerned with what is actually going on with this exception state of france, which is basically eroding liberties. we have no more assembly freedom in france. you can arrest people. we have seen a clear erosion of security liberties that we have and we shouldn't let go. we have seen in germany for instance we didn't have a football played. which is basically going into the trap of isis, which is what they want. we are stopping our lives in the way we lead it. that is the first thing. but i would like to come back on that because i do think that is what matters. i agree that we are not in a war because we are perhaps in an ideological warfare but we need to frame what is really the thing here. i think what is the thing here is that we give signals that we want to protect our security. that the west, however you want to call it has a pretty relative notion of -- which is that our lives stand much over other lives. which is we don't look at the victims in other parts of world but we look pretty much at the
victims in our part of the world. now we have a whole discourse in which we say we defend but actually we are arming ourselves to defend our security and our wealth for ourselves. i would like to come back to what has been said here with asiem. if we do not go back to the misery at the roots of all of this radical emergence then i think we have no chance. the question is can we fight this with military means? how much money are we going to spend on military means now instead of tackling it at the ront and putting all of this money into paris and where the misery is? melinda: i want to come back to that point a liberty later on in the program. we have a report about those districts of belgium and france. first of all, back to a point that ulrike just made. she said it often looks as if people in europe believe european lives matter more. now with all due respect to the
suffering in paris, asiem el difraoui, how do you feel when you witness this immense outpouring of solidarity and alarm after the attacks in france and the comparative indifference in which the recent attacks were met in beirut? asiem: i feel very badly about it, but i also feel very badly about the fact that for example, the huge show of solidarity which we have seen from the last attacks is not as much as we believe. a huge friction. that's why i would like to come back to the war of words. those people don't want to live life in the west. they want to have human rights, people outside of europe. they feel very much categorized if we talk about radical islam. t is polarizing. and that is the link -- what you just said. french society at this stage risks major frictions because
french society itself is not very coherent. isis knows very well where the fault lines in european societies are. there hasn't been a huge solidarity movement in france so far. ven around the memorial, of vidse memorial in front the bataclan. french society is really on the fringe of -- it is not true. there is a huge rift. if you use words like radical islam, then all of those french muslims feel stigmatized. we want to avoid stigmatizing them. alan: we spent in europe decades arguing and examining ourselves for instance for the responsibility of christian anti-judaism, for the rise of fascism and nazism and so n.
there is whole libraries of that. just say once, radical islam, you have a feeling all of the muslims in the world. no, this has nothing to do with us. this is part of problem. people are saying you mustn't say radical islam. somewhere someone is going to say i feel alienated by that so i'm going to blow you up. no! asiem: there are better words. if you talk about the responsibility of the muslim community. if you talk about root causes, you need to talk about this. but you need to be very -- alan: i'm talking about radical islam. melinda: clearly it is part of i.s.'s strategy. to exploit exactly -- asiem: i would like to know. explain to me. melinda: we will come back to the question of how to deal with the domestic potential for recruiting and lack of integration. but again, i would like to talk about the i.s. strategy first. clearly a strategy that aims to exploit exactly the kind of
divisions that you're talking about in western societies. interestingly enough, many experts believed for a long time that i.s. wasn't interested in exporting either jihadism or revolution, but in fact, in establishing a territorial -- in the middle east. do the events in paris represent a shift in strategy by i.s., and if so, what implications does that have for the fight to contain i.s.? >> i.s. controls the territory it occupies with fear and intimidation, and it is lo -- no longer limited to the theater of war in syria and iraq. part of its new strategy is sowing terror in other parts of the world. no one should feel safe. the locations of the paris attacks were chosen deliberately. many of the victims were young, ost under the age of 30. islamic state is fighting a war against the western way of life and the values it represents.
terrorist attacks are a way for the group to rally supporters and recruit new militants as military pressure rises in syria and iraq, there is little doubt i.s. will seek to strike back with more attacks in the west. melinda: ulrike guerot, the french are stepping up their air strikes against i.s. they are asking their e.u. partners for support. russia apparently has seized on the opportunity to redeem itself and also wants to get into the fray, but nobody is talking about boots on the ground. can we really defeat i.s. by preceding as we are? ulrike: probably not. that is not to say that i'm against all military solutions. i think what i.s. wants is us to move out of that asymmetry. what's happening is we are placing -- i think the framing is what they call in the eyes of the isis is structural inequality and structural violence. right? structural violence of society, they go against what is
basically direct violence. which is we have diffused violence and they have direct violence. i think this is the asymmetry to understand. i think what they want to provoke us with is that we are the cowards. which is we are flying with drones and airplanes which have no basically people. we put money in it but no lives and i think what they want to provoke us is that we basically go on a very sort of like in ancient societies where pride played a role, what is the word? honor. all of these words count. i think there is the cowardness of the west and that is the -- of the west. it is precisely that we don't go with troops and we don't fight this war on the ground. we are just sort of flying above the war. melinda: asiem el difraoui, interestingly enough, the attacks in paris come at a time when i.s. has actually reached the limits of its territorial
expansion. it is even looking at a rollback in some areas. it is basically siegristance on resistance on every border of the territory it has so far. is this a shift in strategy? a report implied that the french attacks are of a grand recruiting campaign. do you think that is right? asiem: i think we set a fairly honest -- with our conversation. i will continue with that. i'm extremely shocked by our short-term memory generally peaking. and by the superficial analysis. we don't know. this is pure speculation. secondly, they shifted tactics. it might be a minor shift in tactics. dangerous globalized ideology. if they decide to construct their territory foothold pausing themselves to invade better
somewhere else, we shouldn't take the conservation into account. what is important and what makes me a little upsets in terms of people saying all of this hyper isis specialist, saying well, they would not have attacked europe if they would have let them build their territory and let them manage their own territory. no, the worse thing would have happened. we reacted much too late instead saying, well, leave them alone if they do their own thing. no, the contrary would have happened. we would have seen what happened later. so we cannot tolerate it. it is irrelevant. jihadism needs to be fought whenever we find it, not only military but with all other means at our disposal. i didn't finish this one. i really didn't finish this one. we need to see jihadism as a long-term problem, which has been there for a long time and stop focusing on hey, there is a
new threat. the threat has been there for the last 15-20 years. don't let's focus on isis. look what is going to come out of yemen tomorrow. look what is going to happen out of libya tomorrow? melinda: what does that tell us for strategy? can we fight that militarily? barack obama said that many times. even if we put boots on the ground in syria and iraq? what are we going to when it shifts to yemen? are we going to send ground troops to yemen? are we going to send them into libya? is this really a problem that can be solved through military measures? asiem: we need to mobilize all the western world in the sense that everybody who shares our values in this conflict and maybe the yemen situation can be solved with local allies, can be solved by negotiation, same for libya, but we need to be aware that we can't wait any longer and we can't treat this in a piecemeal way.
we need to work together with all means at our disposal to fight jihadism. melinda: alan posener, germany's foreign minister said this week that without a really effective political strategy for the region, all the military measures in the world are going to have limited effectiveness. he has a point, doesn't he? alan: of course he has a point. and of course what he means is for instance, one of the main creators of isis was assad, the syrian dictator who has claimed many more lives n syria than i.s. has. isis is a reaction so there is a difficulty there. the problem is although you say asiem that there is no piecemeal solution, there is no other than a piecemeal solution. we have to defeat i.s. now so they realize that we are not cowards. and then we have to go to
solving the syrian problem and then we have to turn to the other problems. this is -- asiem: we need a comprehensive strategy for very specific tasks hich are multiple. ulrike: and then i think it is beyond strategy. it is also inclusiveness. whether we are ready to share these values and integrate the others in these values and offer them the same nice life that we have. it is much about inclusiveness and sharing and i think we don't get there if we are 7% of world 0.7% of n spenting .d.p.. about the bitterness and this sort of relativity of values which are we are carrying on with us. so i think then that is an ideological warfare but it has
much to do about otherness, accepting otherness, about sharing and about getting very different policies so that the -- of our own wealth are not thrown out on the rest of the world. melinda: let's come back to the point of inclusiveness, a point all you've made earlier and take a look at those districts in paris and belgium in which inclusiveness clearly isn't happening. clearly, if we want to cut back on support for isis, we have lots of work to do right here at home. >> in the search for terrorist suspects, special forces raided locations in mollenbeek. this district of brussels is viewed as a breeding ground for radical islamism. many migrants reside here with little or no perspective for a better life, and there is even less hope in the suburbs that surround paris. youth unemployment is over 40% here. marginalization and exclusion contribute to an underlying rage. it exploded in 2005 when riots and unrest shook the french capital for weeks. politicians promised improvements but little has
changed for the people of these rim suburbs. they are still glaring reminders of the utter failure of french integration policies. fighting terrorism has to begin ere. melinda: asiem el difraoui, the one thing that francois hollande didn't mention in his speech was integration. have the french more or less given up? is france on its way to becoming an apartheid state? asiem: the french prime minister said a couple of months ago it is an apartheid state. t is true. hollande, not -- including -- the word integration is just very cowardice. he is paralyzed by the fear of the international front there is an election coming up knows it is about integration. he just didn't want to mention the word. it shows you how french politics are paralyzed by the events.
together with the fact that the national front is most likely the party in france which gets the most votes. political courage is lacking. that is a huge thing. instead of making visionary statements, he does this military vision. but he doesn't provide a huge vision for french society, which is one part of the problem. why french society is lack coherence. melinda: ulrike guerot, it is of course not only the far right for the national front that is a potential threat. we're also hearing a lot from the conservative rival nicolas sarkozy. among other things he suggested that perhaps all of the 10,000 people on the french terrorist watch list might be in detained, perhaps in some form of house arrest. is france on its way to having its own guantanamo? ulrike: i agree. there was an opinion poll that said 67% of french are basically
ready to trade a change of the political system against more security. so we see a clear erosion of civil liberties in france. i agree with asiem that the implosion of the party system and the whole political landscape is an acute danger. we are basically one year and a half in front of french elections, may 2017 which will be a really political mess not only for france, but for germany especially. wear partner of france in the european setting. melinda: alan posener, francois hollande also wants to expel the radical imams, close down radical mosques. but if we really want to fight jihadism, as you said in your opening statements, mustn't we start out by talking o to our good friends, the saudis and the gulf states who are supporting wahabi, islam, radical islam with islamic schools, with
jihadism itself? alan: we have to talk to saudis in no uncertain terms. yes, you're being discriminated. yes, you're being marginalized. as has every minority. t is a terrible thing. ut juice for centuryries were -- jews for centuries were marginalized. they didn't start blowing people up. the blacks in united states have witnessed slavery and they are still not -- still don't have equal rights but they are not blowing people up. so for allah's sake, stop this. you have to do something about this cancer in your midst. melinda: thank you very much. afraid we have to stop right there. thanks to all of you for tuning in. we leave you with images of some of the destruction that was wrought in paris and elsewhere. asiem: let's talk about moderate fascism. ññóóóó ú
damien mcguinness: hello, and a very warm welcome to "focus on europe," with some of the best human stories behind the headlines from all over europe. i damien mcguinness. am great you could join us. and on today's program -- romanians take to the streets against corruption. uncle joe's legacy in russia -- heroic or heinous? and why there's just too much monkeying round in gibraltar. but first, to romania's capital