Salma Hassaballa has produced two documentaries and written books in multiple genres. She is a member of the Egyptian Writers Union.
The War on Terror, also known as “the global war on terrorism,” is a term that refers to the ongoing campaign led by the United States and its allies to counter “militant Islamic” terrorism. This campaign started after the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States.
It is undoubtedly the case that the Middle East today is facing deep crises and instability. This started at the beginning of this century with the United States’ declaration of war against terror in Afghanistan. Ever since then, the Middle East has been trapped in a cycle of wars. But does the war on terror have any legitimacy? Does it make any sense? Let's evaluate the so called “War on Terror.”
Who Are the Terrorists?
We have to know who we are fighting in the war on terror for proper evaluation. By looking up the meaning of the word "terrorist" in the Oxford Dictionary, we find that it is defined as “a person who uses unlawful violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.” There is no mention of terrorism being affiliated with a specific religion.
Today’s terrorists are portrayed as Muslim criminals who perpetrate crimes while any other criminals belonging to any other religion or belief system are just called “murderers” or “offenders” and they are not labeled by their own beliefs, whether they are Christians, Jewish, Buddhists, or whatever else. As long as a perpetrator is not a Muslim, the media does not care to mention his religious affiliation. In April 2017, a Muslim woman was stabbed and beaten in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. No arrests were made in response to the assault and that incident showed that many people don’t pay much attention to a Muslim when he or she is the victim, but their attention is drawn if he or she is the criminal!
Additionally, many innocent Muslims are unjustifiably considered to be terrorists. Abu Traika is a retired Egyptian football star who was chosen as Africa's Best Player of the Year four times in 2006, 2008, 2012, and 2013. The award is given by CAF for the players based in Africa. He was loved and respected by all Egyptians. He was dubbed the "Prince of Hearts" and "The Magician" during his playing days. Then overnight, his name was added to Egypt’s terror list and his assets and shares in a number of companies were seized by Egyptian authorities for publicly supporting President Morsi, who lasted just one year in power. President Morsi was representing the Muslim Brotherhood party, which is an Islamic political party. As a result, his supporters were labeled "terrorists" and they suffered persecution and detention as punishment for their political views.
The word “terrorist” has an elastic denotation that can encompass anyone who doesn’t share the views of the mainstream media.
Many people may disagree with me because they have experienced real terror incidents as a result of the events of 9/11, but was the official story of 9/11 true? I refuted this claim in my article, “Evaluating the Credibility of the 9/11 attacks.”
What About Other “Islamic” Groups That Are Spreading Terror?
I find it ridiculous to put all groups in one basket and name them “terrorists." The Hamas group, for example, are considered to be a terrorist group, however, with a closer look at both recent events and history, we can see that what is going on in the land of Palestine, which is now called "Israel," and the neighboring areas is a conflict caused by the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land since 1948 and their successive invasions of the neighboring areas (including the Israeli invasion of Southern Lebanon in 1978). Hamas is not even remotely a threat to the West. It is not by any means devoted to harming Americans or Europeans, but it aims to protect its citizens against colonization and deprivation. Former President Jimmy Carter said when he was commenting on his book “Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid," that the basic cause of the conflict is the sustained occupation of Palestinian land by the Israelis. This is a direct violation of the United Nation resolutions and commitments that leaders of Israel have made. Promising that Israel will withdraw from the occupied territory and failing to do so causes Hamas to carry out acts of violence.
Jimmy Carter Slams Israel's Occupation of Palestine
President Carter also shed light on the unequal circumstances and losses by mentioning that a year before the ceasefire he was orchestrating, there had been one Israeli killed by rockets and on average there had been 49 Palestinians killed every month. He also declared his trust in Hamas by saying Hamas obeyed the ceasefire completely as they never betrayed any commitment they had made to him (please watch the video below for President Carter's statement).
President Carter Speaks About Hamas
To be fair, we have to fight double standards and ask ourselves why the Israeli occupation's army can kill thousands of Palestinians and claim that they are defending themselves, but when Hamas tries to fight back to defend their nation, they are called terrorists? In all cases, I denounce killing civilians, but I will never deny the Palestinians' right to struggle for their freedom and independence.
Regarding the ISIS group, I believe that it is part of a plot to support the presence of "Islamic terrorism” in people’s minds. I mentioned ten reasons that drove me to this conclusion in an article entitled “An Entity With a False Identity.”
What Is Going on in the Sinai Peninsula?
The Egyptian Bedouins of Sinai have been exposed to tremendous discrimination and racism. They have been treated like second class citizens by the Egyptian government and left without schools, factories, and job opportunities. Many of the hospitals in the area have been abandoned or remain understaffed and they lack the necessary equipment. Egyptian Bedouins don’t have the right to own land and they barely have access to potable water! As a result of this neglect, acts of violence have evolved . Of course, I am not trying to justify violence, but I'm trying to understand and explain why it initially erupted.
We should not disregard the penetration of the Israeli intelligence (the Mossad) in the region. The so called “War on Terror” is forcing events to take a turn for the worse, as it deepens the suffering of the Bedouins and increases their disloyalty to the Egyptian state. In order to end the ruthless extremism in the area, Egyptian Bedouins need to feel respected, appreciated, and supported through a comprehensive development program that would serve the region.
Does Waging a War End Extremism?
In reality, the term “War on Terror” is a romantic rhetoric compared to the true causes of waging war. It is similar to terms like “war against starvation,” "war against bureaucracy and routine,” “war against corruption,” and so forth. We can use these terms for the sake of clarification, argument, elaboration, explanation, and eloquent expressions in literature, but they don’t have tangible and physical meaning in reality. We cannot kill starvation, bureaucracy, or terror. We only end up killing living beings! Also, we shouldn’t ignore the fact that violence only begets more violence.
Generally, a healthy environment doesn't breed extremism. I believe that extremists only flare up in a land that is in great need of social and political reformation. I also believe that extreme thoughts and ideas (if they exist should be opposed by moderate opinions, critical thinking skills, and objective arguments. This means much work is required in education and media. Weapons and bullets have no role in such a battle. There is no law in the world that states that one should be punished or assassinated for holding certain thoughts, ideas, and beliefs, (even if they are extreme). Offenders should only be punished for crimes they've committed with their own hands, and this should be supported with evidence. Besides, there is no consensus over the charges that may be held against the “person who commits terror.” However, there is a clear tangible charge against any criminal who murders, who steals, who spies, who embezzles, and so forth. The sentence to go to jail for life or any other kind of penalty usually comes after proper evaluation by the judge of the allegations and evidence provided by the defense, the witnesses, and the prosecutor. And this may take several court sessions and appeals that could last months or years. Accordingly, there is no legitimate reason to wage war and kill people as a punishment for alleged crimes of “terror.”
The Aftermath of the War on Terror
Throughout human history, a nation typically waged war against another to gain power and control over new lands and resources. A reason for modern war is to keep the gigantic weapons and surveillance equipment industries thriving. This may result in control of smaller nations by bigger powers. Accordingly, maps may change, countries may decay, and others may evolve. Even in civil war crises, power interests have always played a major role.
Not only Muslims are suffering from invasions, genocide, torture, displacement, stereotyping, etc., the West is also negatively influenced by the increasing number of immigrants due to the instability in the Middle East, and this may cause many massive conflicts. It can result in an imbalance between the demand for consumption and sustainable resources. Also, major cultural conflicts may arise as a result. For example, France banned the wearing of the hijab (veil) in schools and stopped the wearing of large crosses and the yarmulke too, completely unaware of the fact that the hijab (veil) is not a declaration of identity, but rather an abidance by the Islamic teachings.
The following video is the testimony of an American soldier who participated in the invasion of Iraq and found a great discrepancy between the values he was raised with and what he encountered in the War on Terror. Please watch the video.
The Testimony of a Former American Soldier
Another testimony of a former FBI secret informant shows who they are fighting in the so called “War on Terror.” His testimony matches current events and pieces of evidence leave me wondering why a war would ever be waged against a religion that teaches love, freedom, and justice. Please watch the Video.
The Testimony of a Former FBI Informant and the Reality of the War on Terror
It is easy to see that the most favorable political approach used by governments worldwide is false flag terrorism. It influences elections and national and international policy, but it is also cynically used to formulate propaganda and shape public opinion as nations go to war.
Today, people who are influenced by the mainstream media are mobilized to accept waging war against militant Islamic terrorism. The centralization of power has led the dominant countries to control the minds of people around the world. However, with a contemplation of events and history, it is easy to see that the “War on Terror” is a plot intended to allow the implementation of the Zionists’ wider plans in the region, and it surely doesn’t appeal to rational thinking and human rights standards.
 English Oxford Living Dictionaries. https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/terrorist
 BBC News
 Ahram Online
Salma Hassaballa (author) from Egypt on August 15, 2017:
Dear Ashutosh, thank you for your comment. Regarding religious wars, please read my article entitled bridging the Gap between the East and the West as I discussed the Islamic view on this issue. Of course I can't deny extremism of few Muslims , they are the concern of the mainstream media, which make people feel that they are huge in number, completely ignoring the fact that extremism is a flaw in humans, not a flaw in religion, you can also encounter a secular extremists. when we talk about a war, this means that we are NOT talking about an individual action, rather an organized movement declared by governments, so it is a totally different issue. Also, I would like to add that there are many fellow citizens in the region who are deceived by the so called war on terrorism and I have met others in the West who totally see that it is a hoax, so the location is irrelevant
Ashutosh Joshi from New Delhi, India on August 15, 2017:
I completley understand where you coming from and I am with you on the unjustful part. Again about the relgious affiliation bit, its an opinion and I am open to feedback.
From what I see, there are allies even in middle east who are immune and yet there are nations reduced to rubble. Ironically both being Muslim, with or without a past record, needless I even take names. I guess there are a lot of dimensions to this, besides the common narrative peddled through our msm.
Salma Hassaballa (author) from Egypt on August 14, 2017:
Dear Ashutosh Joshi, thank you for your comment, I really do appreciate your input and understand your skepticism regarding current events. However, I still don't see that Muslims are waging a religious war as they are the victims, the wars are taking place on their lands, they are the ones who suffer invasions, occupation, and genocides. meanwhile, I cannot call dispersed "individual" crimes as religious wars, bearing in mind the involvement of state intelligence.
Ashutosh Joshi from New Delhi, India on August 14, 2017:
I agree with a lot of what has been mentioned above. One cannot deny that terrorism is increasingly being used today for political gains.
Unless we open our minds to the various possibilities, be a little skeptical, there would be a limited scope for a rational explanation. Whether 911 was a false flag or not but what it brought upon the middle east cannot be justified in any way. Similarly the truth about ISIS is yet to come out. Having said that I do think that religious affiliations or influence still cannot be brushed aside when it comes to terrorism. Sometimes you have to call a spade a spade!! The fact that people do get brainwashed to wage religious wars is equally true and the underlying factors there cannot and should not be used as a cover up.