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ONE week before the anniversary of the Sept 11 attacks, American President Barack Obama realized his country needs a new strategy to confront terrorism and that air strikes will not destroy DAESH. Yet, his recent speech was full of ambiguities, to the extent that observers may think he was talking about a golf match, not a terrorist group which was born and raised under the patronage of the American occupation of Iraq. The group is treated like a pet whose actions, no matter how harmful, are tolerated.
 
Obama’s policy is not different from the American political heritage, because Washington has been dealing with incidents which threaten its interests since World War II in a manner that can be compared to using painkillers to treat chronic disease. In the recent years, the situation deteriorated as the policy which Obama has adopted since reaching the White House includes internal settlement of positions in countries where America has essential interests. This was manifested when America occupied Iraq and left it without taking serious steps to establish a strong country. 
 
In addition, America left the issue in the hands of some sectarian heads linked with some points against it. This led to the collapse of the country and its army, as well as the emergence of an organization composed of thousands of fighters who occupied one third of the country. With this kind of behavior, Washington is like the owner of a shop made of glass who enticed a wild elephant to his shop. This is Iraq today. It also happened in Afghanistan after the Soviet forces withdrew from the country without completely implementing the plan and controlling the fighters or Jihadists, leaving the nation to determine its destiny. Thus, the price it paid was the Sept 11 attacks.
 
America launched air strikes targeting centers of DAESH in areas where the terrorist group threatens its interests like Kurdistan. Nevertheless, America’s top military officials have realized the air strikes strengthened the group, instead of making it weak. This is what Obama discovered recently — like what happened to al-Qaeda in Yemen where the aircraft without pilots made the group more powerful and enabled it to gather more supporters. The same happened in Somalia where limited air strikes were launched as if the USA gave the al-Qaeda branch in Somalia a chance to gain more supporters and occupy new areas in this country.
 
Unfortunately, the world superpowers do not know how to protect their interests, so they have attracted hatred. They are so obsessed with illusion and they never bothered to listen to the wise advice of many world leaders, mainly Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz. 
 
Since his time as Crown Prince in 2002, King Abdullah has been striving hard to find suitable strategy for countering terrorism. The strategy is not limited to security and military solutions as it also covers the psychological, social and cultural aspects of the issue. The Saudi experience caught the attention of the entire world, including the US which showed a carefree attitude as if it has not benefitted from the lesson. The same mistake was committed in the African continent which paid attention only when it was too late. Discussing the Iraqi and Yemeni model is just like pouring fuel on fire. The international community must quickly form a global alliance against terrorism and fully benefit from the successful experiences of some countries in this regard. 
 
The global strategy should not serve interests of the US, which must play a balanced role in executing the strategy since the current terrorism is more brutal than before. Thousands of Americans, Europeans and other westerners are fighting for militias. The US has continued associating with some groups being used as tools of intimidation, forgetting that the same monster it is using to scare countries in the region is now on its doorstep or even inside its territory. The situation is different from that of al-Qaeda in 2001.
 
The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques recently made a point as he warned against downplaying the group’s threats. He said the wrong policies of the US and other countries in the West have attracted the monster. If the US and European nations continue to limit their actions to taking palliative measures and launching air strikes, the cancer of terrorism will reach them sooner than their leaders would have envisaged. For this, they should take the warning seriously by working on the real treatment for the disease or stop playing certain roles in the world to avoid a situation whereby citizens pay for mistakes whose repercussion threatens the existence of some countries.
 
We will not repeatedly mention errors of the US in terms of sponsoring the Muslim Brotherhood Movement which is the mother of terrorism or ignoring activities of the gangsters it has created. We urge the US to ponder on the gravity of its disastrous policies a few days before the anniversary of the most painful terrorist action in its history. Failure to heed the advice means recurrence of the incident and this is tantamount to putting poison in its own cup as if it is addicted to suicidal policies.
 

 By Ahmed Al-Jarallah

Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times

By: Ahmed Al-Jarallah

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