What leads our youths to terrorism?
While there is a great deal of debate on what constitutes terrorism and who is a terrorist, there is little doubt that youths are beginning to play a significant role in this particular arena. Structured and deliberate strategies have been formulated by terrorists to radicalize and recruit young people into committing acts of violence. The advantage in targeting the youths into joining terrorist groups are many and terrorist are displaying increased capability and capacity in enlisting them. This coupled with the growing exploitation of technology such as the internet has allowed the terrorist a far and wide reach.
The definition for who a youth is, varies among countries. The UN, for statistical purpose, defines ‘youth’, as those persons between the ages of 15 and 24 years . With no skill beyond that of a fighter, little integration with society, and a tumultuous past with a myriad of psychological and emotional issues, should these children live to reach their youth, what would their future be?
The reality is that while terrorist groups have extensive hard power, they also have considerable soft power, which they have proved to adopt in using. These groups attract youths by exploiting their vulnerabilities and providing them with a sense of identity, belonging and cohesiveness. Over a period of time, in a troubled environment, these youths begin to define their identity with that of the group and its struggle.
When there are a few opportunities to break out of the cycle of poverty, perceived or real, injustice and despair, there is a greater tolerance for violence, Terrorists groups have used these circumstances to their advantage by identifying and offering youths what they are lacking or by even offering them a ‘way out’ of their situation through martyrdom. Youth with no prior police records allow the terrorist group more operational freedom as the involvement of youths would reduce the likelihood of arrest of the more senior terrorist leaders. It is quite possible, that the next battle field in the struggle against terrorism will not take place on a physical plan but in the mental and emotional domains of the youth. Unless, we win the hearts and minds of these young people, not only will we not garner their support but we will also be confronted with the destined possibility of facing them as our future adversaries.
In Japan, there is a saying- “all civilized races are not culturally developed”. They are civilized by money, by fashion clothes, by technologies. But they do not have their rich cultural heritage. They have the nasty history of occupation and barbarism. We are also involving with so called civilization crisis. Now a days, civilization flourishes by muscle power and money. As a result the viral parasites of western culture are haunting us. In Bangladesh, the family is the first barrier to develop culture. To make our children very fast, they are given the extra burden of becoming talent. Virtually, they are losing their soft inward instincts. And becoming hard, cruel and money oriented. Their mentality is captured by capitalistic ideology. They become intolerant, insincere and finally get attracted towards drugs, un-ethics, fundamentalism, violence and act of terrorism. Many of the youths are in the competition of wealth and money. So, to be wealthy and rich in society, they take crash program of exploitation, flattery, forgery etc. They indulge in fake business. And start games of cheating and deceiving others. Youths become dishonest, indiscipline and cruel. The common people suffer for their activities. In our society, a particular group is growing with the so called image of aristocracy. This is happening for lacking of culture. We have a rich culture, but it is not practiced in our day to day life. This culture has been detached from education. Though our government is pro-culture and already cultural ideas are in active mood through different cultural activities, it remains a far cry.People must know the true episode of making our children terrorist. Like other criminals we cannot treat our youths as enemy or we cannot allow them to fall in death squad without extra judicial killing. It is essential for a dialogue between the high officials of police and other agency authorities who work on human and citizen rights. This will reveal the actual picture of any incidence. If information comes out from terrorists, people may warn their children. Terrorism is not an ordinary crime which is not necessary to come under the consideration of policing. The pressure or threat to youths in the name of anti terrorism operation must be well looked in to by police authorities.The youth must be considered so that they do not become trackless. An innocent youth must not be made as agitated for nothing. One must understand that the protest mindset of youths is the formula of terrorist movement. From a security analysis, there is a forecast that anti terrorism campaign is possible by govt. non-govt. and above all community initiatives. As a matter of fact many a people believe that the leaders of citizen organization and human rights leaders should sit in bilateral dialogue. Through discussion, exchanging and sharing views confusion on violence and terrorism will be removed. By shoot and fire terrorism can never be alleviated. And peace will not be established and restored. Everybody wants to live in peace. Nobody wants to die willingly. The spokesmen of international terrorism do not welcome heavenly death after killing. They have the dream to establish Islamic state and hope to achieved justice in this world.
The present leaders in the name of terrorism and Islamic Jihad do not have any sound plan. They are not at all pious and even they are not eager to build image of religion. So these are all fatal fundamentalism. These naked and fatal fundamentalist mind set must be handled very carefully.
Writer, Columnist & Researcher