By Souad Sbai
Unfortunately, the security alert is no longer news. Extremism, radicalization and terrorism have become common terms; they are part of everyday life and today, it seems that they indicate a normal situation. Talking about a further worsening of the security alert could be more effective in getting the institutions, the world of politics and specialists to take decisive action to solve the problem.
This worsening has been highlighted by Morocco, a country of fundamental importance in the international fight against terrorism and a reliable indicator of the level reached by the threat. In Morocco, the security issue is today at the center of the political debate and not only due to the brutal beheading of the two Danish tourists that took place last December and whose authorship was claimed by ISIS. In fact, Rabat looks with growing concern at a broader context and the jihadist groups shuttling among North Africa, Sinai in Egypt and sub-Saharan Africa, crossing the porous borders, often returning from Syria and Iraq. In addition to the Libyan chronic instability and the Tunisian fragility, it is added the Algerian crisis that could favor an increase in the room to maneuver of terrorism within the country, affecting the western Mediterranean.
For this reason, the Moroccan Minister of the Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, at the opening session of the 36th Arab Interior Ministers Council that took place on Sunday, March 3, in Tunis, invited his colleagues to “give the necessary attention to collective security in order to strengthen the stability and security in the Arab States.” Laftit has called for greater cooperation among the countries of the region to fight against the common threat of terrorism that is increasingly moving from the Middle East to North Africa. It is necessary “to go beyond national borders and the internal security situation,” said the minister, underlining Morocco’s willingness “to join any initiative that can improve the collective security in Arab countries in the context of international legitimacy.”
Laftif did not limited himself to indicating the way that must be followed to make the fight against terrorism more effective but he also dealt extensively with the question of the “ideological sources” that feed terrorism and that must be “dried up” to stop the spread of extremism and society’s immunization against the dangers derived from the use of religion for destructive purposes “. An implicit reference to the Muslim Brotherhood, the ideology that generated the contemporary jihadist terrorism, from Al Qaeda to ISIS, and that continues to cultivate its ambitions to rule in the Arab world and beyond. It is explained in my latest book “The Muslim Brotherhood and the Conquest of the West.”
From this point of view, however, there are still many steps ahead that must be taken. Drying the source means preventing the Muslim Brotherhood from carrying out proselytizing activities in the mosques, maintaining strict controls over sermons and over the religious discourse as a whole, as Egypt is doing. It means to outlaw Muslim Brotherhood because it is a terrorist organization, as the countries that form the Antiterrorism Arab Quartet, which in addition to Egypt includes Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. And it means to fight, together with the Quartet, against the rogue States that finance the Muslim Brotherhood: Emirs Al Thani’s Qatar and Erdogan’s Turkey.
With the Algerian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood – ready to take advantage of the anti-Bouteflika to establish its own fundamentalist dictatorship, repeating the script already staged during the so-called Arab Spring – the security alert seems to have worsened in Europe and especially in Italy. If the Algerian powder keg exploded, due to its geographical proximity, the Italian security would suffer the most serious consequences of the terrorist threat. Trusting the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood has not been a winning movement for Italy given the multiplication of armed militias and jihadist groups that represent the Muslim Brotherhood, which still prevent the stabilization of the country. Italy should not make the same mistake in Algeria.
Of course, the call made by the Moroccan Minister of the Interior to strengthen cooperation in security matters is also addressed to Italy and Europe. This strengthening can lead to a real qualitative leap in the fight against terrorism but only if it is aimed at achieving a single objective: the defeat of the Muslim Brotherhood, their ideology and the terrorism they generate.