TERRORISM SALON: First Question on “Root Causes”


To begin the online terrorism salon Mark Goldberg of UN Dispatch offers the first question on the relationship between poverty and terrorism:

On Day One is a social media site sponsored by the United Nations Foundation and the Better World Campaign that asks everyday people to offer their ideas about what the next president should do, figuratively “on day one.” In preparation for this discussion, we solicited On Day One users for their ideas on how the next president should take on the threat of global terrorism and a great many people responded by suggesting that if the United States does more to alleviate poverty in the developing world the terrorist threat could be mitigated.
But is terrorism actually linked to poverty? Is it linked to other externalities, like grievances with American foreign policy, perceived humiliation, nationalist political objectives, radical ideology — or all of the above? Which is most dominant? Which is most underestimated in current approaches to terrorism?

As an aside, a number of my colleagues and I have done video op-eds for On Day One, as I have mentioned here. In fact my colleague Nick Schmidle — who has written extensively on “Next Gen Taliban” along Pakistan’s frontier provinces — did a video about dropping the “war on terror” language, something I suspect will get debated during the course of this salon.
–Steve Clemons
This week long terrorism salon will continue to be hosted by The Washington Note and UN Dispatch.


One comment on “TERRORISM SALON: First Question on “Root Causes”

  1. Mr.Murder says:

    So then, LBJ’s War on Poverty was the right idea.
    Kissinger tried to convince him to just blow the poor up overseas.
    Maybe had the LBJ program been part of foreign policy too, we’d not have made the other mistakes in SE Asia.


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