Between Trump and ISIS or Obama and Nusra

Prof. Ghassan Murtada 2016-05-09 16:31:00

expressive image

After Syrians lost the hope which was not even pinned on a political solution to end the bloodshed, displacement and destruction and after the Americans shut the door in the face of the revolutionary fighters denying them military logistics and preventing those willing to do so from among brothers and friends from extending a helping hand to them, all doors are closed in their faces of those who are protecting their people, and they had no one to turn to except God. They had nothing to pray for except for God to end Obama’s term during the next elections and that those who succeed him do not cause harm and damage.

Unfortunately, that seems to be wishful thinking because the candidates who are most likely to assume Obama’s post will be either Republican Donald Trump or Democrat Hilary Clinton; in both cases, the American bee will produce poisoned honey.

The Syrians’ hope in Obama’s successor is no different from their hope in ISIS or Nusra Front. What is the difference between Trump and al-Baghdadi? Or between Obama (or Clinton) and al-Jolani?

If we agree that ISISism is – above all – thinking mechanisms producing ideas transformed into behaviour and actions, then Mr. Donald Trump is an ISIS member par excellence as his thinking mechanisms are no different from those of ISIS. He does not hide his ideas; instead he is quiet blunt and outspoken about them day and night without considering any kind of social etiquette or political diplomacy, similar to the ISIS militants who flaunt their actions in Mosul, Sanjar, al-Shaaitat, Paris and Brussels. 

Trump likens some to pigs and others to stray dogs. He wants to build a great wall with Mexico and force the Mexicans to pay for it. He wants to prevent Muslims from entering America and to expel those who are inside as he accuses them of only believing in Jihad and lacking any respect to human kind. Further, he blames the current US administration, because it seeks to get rid of Assad – I wish it were a fact – and he sees that America’s problem is not with Assad but rather with ISIS, and that it is foolish to fight both.

In such a manner, Mr. Trump makes his daily comments, which involve a clear amount of audacity and frivolity and which are recovered from ISIS’ ideology based on eradication, the sanctification of hatred and a burning desire to root out the other.

Trump’s most dangerous creation – the most violent and ISIS-like – was his statement about the possibility of using nuclear weapons to eliminate ISIS. He publicly announced during an interview with the American NBC Network on 29/04/2016 that even though he finds nuclear weapons an alarming matter, he would not exclude using it against ISIS.

Where will Trump strike his nuclear bombs? Will he drop them in Mosul or Raqqa? Or will he fund the creation of nuclear weapons and hunt each ISIS member individually without killing thousands of civilians? It may seem ridiculous, like a Hollywood movie or a legendary myth, but despite that it is scary and the Syrians must expect anything.

I do not know where Trump learnt the art of public speaking. Did he learn it at the hands of Churchill? Did he receive his political studies in one of Kissinger’s schools? Or is it possible that Obama’s speech was true when he learned foreign policy at the hands of Miss World? I wish he did that, then at least he would have been less aggressive and foolish and more beautiful, elegant and subtle.

But what is the difference between the thinking mechanisms of Trump – owner of the logo “America first” and who is vindictive on Muslims and on many others – from the mechanisms of ISIS which hates Christians (Crusaders) and is also vindictive on those who share its same ideology like Nusra Front and others? While Trump’s style, which intends to follow ISIS, is not at all different from the method adopted by ISIS in dealing with its enemies. The difference between the two is only in the possibilities.

The Syrian people’s problem with Trump or ISIS will not be grave because they possess enough frivolity and extremism to overcome them and their ideas. However, the Syrian people’s problem would be grave if Hillary wins, for her policies won’t be any different from her predecessor so we can already assume the results in advance.

Obama sells Saudi Arabia sweet talk and then allies with Iran under the table. He threatens by drawing red lines then wipes them off. He attacks Russia’s policy in Syria and then in line with Putin on the complete eradication of the Syrian people. He brags about supporting the Syrian people who suffer from huge amounts of debt, but he prevents opposition fighters from gaining bullets, not to mention quality weapons. If Obama’s administration adopted the precautionary principle in its dealings with the Syrian revolution in its first early years, then it has taken in recent times a more visible and less shy manner.

This administration tricked the Syrian people and is still tricking them by empty promises. It is hurting them using certain mechanisms in thinking and dealing with the Syrian affairs similar to the mechanisms used by Nusra. Al-Jolani and his “princes” also seem honest in their statements to the Syrian people, appearing on the screens like innocent people! Perhaps the best example of this is al-Jolani’s meeting with TV presenter Ahmed Mansour on 3/6/2015 in which he said: “We’re not trying to rule the country, but rather seek for Sharia law to control the country.”

But he did not say that without the Sharia law – which he wants with his leader al-Zawahiri – a grave massacre to take place. He did not also say that his front for that reason did not miss a single opportunity at attacking and denouncing the true representatives of the Syrian people from the Free Syrian Army but also from Islamic factions, just to gain money or ground. Further, he was able to split the job with ISIS of completely ending the presence of the FSA in Qalamoun, to infiltrate its factions in Idlib and Daraa, and to fight Jaysh al-Islam in Ghouta. He did not also say that his front with ISIS was the direct cause of world loathing.

Al-Jolani and his front’s “princes” are still giving out mellifluous statements, claiming to bring victory to the Syrian people like Obama brought them victory, promising to adhere to the Sharia law and justice, etc., while they point their guns at the revolutionaries of Ghouta, knowing that Assad’s army is but a few meters away.

Perhaps Nusra Front and Obama (Clinton) might not agree on their primary concerns, but they absolutely will agree later, as their last concern is the innocent Syrian blood. Nusra’s primary concerns and its main target is the infinite Jihad against America, Russian and the Western infidels and all of the world except for the faithful Muslims, while the main concern for Obama (Clinton) and their first priorities is to fight terrorism and extremism (as they claim) and jihad against the never-ending ISIS even if entire countries were wiped off the map. Of course, they exclude secular terrorists who put dead bodies on trailers made specifically to carry tanks.

God be with the Syrians. Death follows their every step, coming at them from every direction, except from down below. They are waiting an earthquake to erupt from under them, so the scene can be completed. 


Professor Ghassan Murtada is currently the head of Arabic Language Department in a Turkish university. He was an ex-dean of the Faculty of Letters at Homs University, Syria.