Fast Facts
Press Releases

  Spiritual Journey
  Media Pioneer
  Military Service


The Roots of Terrorism and a Strategy for Victory

Thank you so much. It's a great pleasure to be here with you again. I'm going to talk about a subject that I hope you don't find controversial.

Back in 1982, CBN began operating a television station Middle East television Channel 12 on the border of Israel in South Lebanon, and we began to experience first hand terror that we had never known in this country. Our studio was car-bombed twice by a group called the Hezbollah. I must say that these people had a certain panache because they didn't blow up old Chevrolets, they blew up Mercedes Benz. Our microwave link to Beirut was the victim or a mortar attack by Hezbollah. Our transmitter was the victim of a rocket attack by the Syrians. And then when Israel withdrew from South Lebanon.

Our facility was overrun by Hezbollah guerillas. Some of our staff, at least seven, were able to flee across the border with a hail of bullets behind them leaving all of their possessions. I was interested to learn that the head of Hezbollah in those days when we first started had a home in Dearborn, Mich. So I would think that somebody who had accepted American values wouldn't make that kind of attack on fellow Americans. But that certainly happened there, and I saw it.

But for the last 30 years, like it or not, America has been at war. We haven't acknowledged that fact until Sept. 11 when for the first time since the war of 1812 our nation was attacked by a foreign power on our soil. America was shocked to realize there were people who wished our destruction. But if I could just go through briefly some of the things that have happened.

  • On March 28, 1970 U.S. targets in Beirut were attacked by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

  • In 1973 the U.S. ambassador in Sudan and a. diplomat George Moore were murdered by the Fatah, a Palestinian organization.

  • In 1977 the U.S. ambassador to Lebanon was murdered by the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

  • In 1979 in Tehran Iranian radicals seized the American Embassy.

  • In April 1983 in Beirut a truck bomb killed 63 at the U.S. Embassy. That was Hezbollah funded by Iran.

  • In 1983 in October a truck bomb killed 241 U.S. Marines. Hezbollah, Iran, and Syria were involved.

  • In 1984 in Beirut, the head of the American University, Malcolm Kerr, was murdered by the Hezbollah.

  • In 1984 in Beirut an American diplomat William Buckley was believed murdered by the Iranians.

  • In 1984 a suicide bomb attacked the U.S. Embassy, killing 23.

  • In 1985 a cruise ship was taken and an American was killed.

  • In 1985 in Rome 13 were murdered including five Americans. That was done by a Syrian.

  • In 1986 in Athens four Americans were killed in a plane bombing. This was the responsibility of Palestians called the Fatah.

  • In Karachi 22 were killed on a Pan Am flight, including two Americans.

  • In 1988 in Lebanon U.S. Col. William Higgins was murdered by Hezbollah.

  • In 1988 in Lockerbie, Scotland, a Pan Am flight was blown up in mid-air, killing 270 people. These were Libyan terrorists.

  • In 1993 in Langley, Va. a Pakistani gunman killed two CIA employees.

  • In February 1993 a massive bomb exploded in the basement of the World Trade Center, killing six and wounding 1,042. The mastermind fled to Pakistan and was later arrested.

  • In 1993 in Kuwait there was an attempted assassination of President Bush by Iraqi intelligence.

  • In 1995 Pakistani gunmen killed two U.S. diplomats.

  • In November 1995 a Saudi Arabian car bomb killed five Americans.

  • In June 1996 in Saudi Arabia, a truck bomb killed 19 U.S. soldiers wounded 515 of them. That was the Saudi version of the Hezbollah.

  • In 1998 in Nairobi, Kenya a car bomb at the U.S. Embassy killed 292, including 12 Americans. That was al-Qaeda.

  • In October of 2000 in Yemen a suicide squad rammed the U.S.S. Cole, killing 12. Again al-Qaeda.

  • And then on September 11 we know the tragedy that took place.

That last incident at the World Trade Center and then the Pentagon has cost the United States economy $640 billion, and that number is still going up as our entire economy has been ground somewhat down by the delays in air travel and the other things that are before us.

And as we are looking at what is going to be happening in the future, we're told by the government, the FBI, the head of our Homeland Security that we are on a yellow alert.

Last night on CBS' 60 Minutes, there was a report detailing the danger to our ports. I personally have felt that they are the most vulnerable parts of our society right now. And I am personally knowledgeable of the fact that one of the pilots of the planes that hit the World Trade Center spent time in my city of Virginia Beach. He actually dined at an Italian restaurant where I go from time to time. He made reconnaissance of the Naval base in Norfolk, and somebody else was seen on a boat outside the Fort Monroe headquarters of the Continental Army Command .

But according to 60 Minutes, we have only 2 percent of the containers that are brought into the ports of America that are actually searched by the Customs. That means 98 percent of all the containers that come in are uninspected and there are 40,000 ships that come into our ports every day. And the likelihood of tracing some kind of nuclear material if it was given a lead shield even in a tanker or freighter carrying bulk chemicals or bulk supplies would be virtually impossible.

And all of our seaports, all of the ports, are vulnerable, including this area here which is part of the Great Lakes system. So every major port city, whether it's on the West Coast or East Coast is potentially vulnerable.

Interestingly enough, in this morning's paper the report was that 48 percent of the trials against our airport security were successful carrying guns, knives, and explosive-type material. And an equal number of people were able to gain access without authorization onto the tarmacs of our nation's airports and also to gain entrance into the airports and the airplanes themselves. That's U.S.A. Today.

Ladies and Gentlemen: We as a nation are still extremely vulnerable. And people say and I'm sure you've heard it said and our president said it -- we have just a few terrorists who are engaged in this type of activity.

We can't understand why they want to do this to us. What is there about America that incites this kind of hatred? Because a Gallup survey made among the leading Muslim countries indicated that about 52-53 percent of them did not like America. Why not? What is it that is inciting this?

Well over the last 30 years during this time of violence that has gone on, the birth rate has exploded in these countries. There's a tremendous amount of poverty, but the well over 60 percent of the people in these countries are under 30 years of age. Where are they getting their training? They are being trained in mosques by radical clergy who think that Osama bin Laden is one of their heroes and they feel, as the Ayatolla Khomeini, used to say, that America is the great Satan. They feel somehow that we are the enemy and they have therefore a spiritual duty to overcome us. Now it's been said of the Islamic faith that it is a peaceful religion. Obviously, there are millions of people in adherence to Islam who are very peaceful. They are lovely people. I have known many in dealing in the Middle East and you know many in America. So I would never begin to indict an entire religion. But I do think we need to step back in history because George Santayana said those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to live them again.

Go back to the year 632 when Mohammed the progenitor and prophet of Islam died. Islam means submission -- it doesn't mean peace. And he said the duty of his followers was to wage jihad against those who were not adherents to Islam. I have taken down some of the quotes in the Quran. And you'd be interested to know that in this holy book there are 120 references to warfare against the infidels. Mohammed himself was a warrior. He organized at least 50 raids in Saudi Arabia and personally was involved in warfare in 27 of them.

And these are just some of the quotes from the one who founded this particular religion.

He said in the Hadif: The best deed of man is to believe in Allah and his Apostle. The second best deed is to participate in jihad in Allah's cause.

He also said in the Quran: Fight and slay the pagans wherever you find them. Seize them, beleaguer them and lie in wait for them. Fight them. Allah will punish them by your hands and bring them to disgrace.

He also said in the Quran: Oh ye that believe, take not Christians and Jews as your friends and protectors. Fight with them until there is no more persecution. Religion should only be for Allah.

And he also said: The last hour will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and the Muslims kill them.

And you say, "Well this was very extreme," but I have before me a report from Fox News that is quoting the Washington Post. And this says, "Can it be true that Islamic schools in the U.S. teach hatred toward Americans, Christians, and Jews. The Washington Post on Monday revealed that one such school outside Washington D.C. uses textbooks teaching 11th graders that, 'The day of judgment can't come until Jesus Christ returns to earth, breaks the cross and converts everyone to Islam and until Muslims start attacking Jews.' At the same school they are taught that Osama bin Laden is 'simply the victim of prejudice against Muslims in America.'

And the Washington Islamic Academy that teaches about 1,300 children and is founded by Saudi Arabia has a textbook that says 'One sign of the day of judgment will be that Muslims will fight and kill Jews who will hide behind trees and say 'Oh Muslim, oh servant of God there is a Jew hiding behind me. Come here and kill him.'"

Now Ladies and Gentlemen, that is not a peaceful religion. And it's not something from ancient history. It's something from now. But if you go back in 632 with the death of Mohammed, he urged his followers to begin a jihad against all those who were not part of the Islamic tradition. He first of all took all of Saudi Arabia and waged war against it until they converted to Islam. He then moved across the formerly Christian populations of North Africa, and Islam spread as far as northern India to the east and all the way up into Spain. They then moved from Spain into southern France in the area of Bordeaux. And in 732 in something called the Battle of Tours a man named Charles Martel organized the French Knights and they stood against the Muslim invaders and repulsed them. They went back into Spain where they had domination over Spain for about 760 years.

And finally in 1492, the last of this influence was removed from Spain and there was a victory. But shortly thereafter on the other side of Islam came the Ottoman Empire which in 1492 overwhelmed the last Christian bastion in that Middle East area, the city of Constantinople, and installed their government and went from there up into the Balkans. In the Battle of Kosovo they defeated the European Christians and began to brutalize the population until such time as they went all the way to the gates of Vienna in Austria where they were finally repulsed at the Battle of Vienna. And then in a great sea battle, they were finally overwhelmed. Otherwise, we all would have been speaking Arabic and the entire United States of America and Europe would have been given over to Islam. Now that is the history of so-called jihad. That is the war against the infidel that was preached by Mohammed and that is the history.

The Christians in the European areas had to fight for their lives lest they were forcibly converted to this religion.

In the Islamic teaching, once the Islamic people overcome a country, it is given to them by Allah. If someone takes it away from them, they are stealing from Allah. So guess what, there's a country in the Middle East called Israel, and it is the belief of the entire Islamic world that this country is illegitimate that they have stolen Allah's territory. And it must be gotten back. I submit to you today that any peace negotiation that is being carried on right now is illusory. And whatever promises are being given by heads of state about peace will not last because in the mosques the people are being taught that Israel is illegitimate. Yasar Arafat is the grandson of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. The Grand Mufti back in the days of World War II said, "Adolf Hitler only went part of the way. I want to finish what he began in regard to the Jews ."

Now this is not peace. I believe those of us who love peace have to understand what we're up against. Again, I want to repeat, we're not looking at a huge group. There's a billion 200 million people who subscribe to Islam. Many of them don't understand these teachings. Many of them don't subscribe to them. Many of them have different points of view. I'm sure many of those adherents to Islam in the United States of America don't understand them. But in the radical Middle East these are the teachings that are being taught to millions of people. And if you estimate 250-300 million people subscribe to these extreme points of view, you have a very serious situation.

In the Islamic tradition everything that is taken by Islam is called the land of peace. Everything that is not taken is called Dar al-Harb. That means the land of war and you are sitting today in Dar al-Harb. Detroit Dar al-Harb. We are the land of war, and anyplace not under the land of peace is fair game for the land of war. This is why people will fly into buildings and kill themselves. This is why people will not have any compunction whatever to blow up innocent women and children. This is why extreme car bombers will go into a shopping center in Israel or a pizza parlor or a bar mitzvah and kill themselves in order to take thousands or hundreds of others out. Because they are told if they die in the cause of jihad, they will go immediately to paradise, and therefore they will be given 72 virgins as their reward.

We must understand what we are up against. We must understand the history.

I might add that in 1095 one of the popes said we have to fight fire with fire, and he authorized the Crusade. And he said those who participate in the Crusade against the Muslims will gain access to paradise in the event they are killed. So he launched on the side of Christianity a jihad comparable to what had been launched by the Muslims. And so when the president mentions a crusade, you can see everybody's back get up. Because these folks in the Middle East remember that. They remember. They remember history. They consider Spain as part of their territory. They consider Palestine as part of their territory. In the schools mentioned in the Washington Post article on the maps of the Middle East, there is no word for Israel. That whole section is called Palestine. Because that didn't belong to anybody except Allah.

Ladies and Gentlemen: This is a religious struggle we are involved in. It is a clash of cultures. It is a clash of opposing points of view. It is a clash of different ideologies. And we need to understand what we're dealing with and how to deal with it.

I would submit to you several things in closing of what can be done because I think there are some things. First of all, I applaud our president. He has taken forthright action against terrorists. He's identified the terrorists. He's made it clear we will go after terrorists and deal with them. And I think as it says in the Archives Building, "Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty." And we as Americans must be diligent.

The second thing I believe we need to do is to support insurgencies in Iraq and Iran. The Iranian people are tired of a theocratic rule under the Ayatollahs. They want to be free. The women want to be free. They want to have a chance to live a normal life, and if we play that right, there will be insurgencies against that theocracy that is controlling the country and ruining it.

As far as Iraq, we've missed two opportunities to get him. We should have gotten Sadaam Hussein after the Gulf War. We had him on the run with the Republican Guard, and we missed a golden opportunity. In the Clinton Administration a CIA agent told me we had an insurgency going in Iraq that would have taken out Sadaam Hussein but that on orders of Bill Clinton and Anthony Lake they were told to stand down. The United States would not support it. We could have won that.

The last thing I think we need to do is to go to war with Iraq because it will be perceived in the Arab world as an attack on Muslim people by the United States and it will not be won.

But there needs to be a targeted action against Sadaam Hussein himself because he is a source of terror. Just like the Hezbollah is funded by Iran and through Syria so also Iraq is a source of terror and deadly terror with biological, nuclear and chemical warfare.

The next thing that I recommend is that we shut off the flow of hostile immigration in the United States. We cannot let people who are our avowed enemies come in and enjoy the privileges of citizenship in this country. There has to be some stop at our borders. Our borders are very porous and there has to be some control over who comes in as students and who comes in, in whatever capacity.

The next thing that is very important is that we dramatically build up our counterintelligence capability with the authority to bring to justice known terrorist operatives. The CIA was literally gutted during Stanfield Turner's administration under Jimmy Carter. And subsequently, according to Robert Baer who wrote a book called See No Evil, the leading politicians wanted to keep this business under the rug. They did not want to bring the American people the terror that was building in the Middle East because it wasn't politically advantageous to do so. So the CIA has become complicit in allowing these things to happen. We must have so-called human intelligence on the ground in the Middle East and other parts of the world. And we are sadly lacking in our intelligence-gathering capabilities. And these people have got to have the authority to bring to justice known terrorist operatives.

The next thing we need to do is implement port security as a federal priority.

Another thing that is needed is a crash program to provide computer redundancy and fail-safe mechanisms against cyber terror, which may be the other thing that they are going to do as well. If they could disrupt the computer systems that deal with our financial networks, our bank computers and our intelligence gathering computers, we would be in a very serious way. We need redundancy and we need fail-safe mechanisms that I doubt are totally in place right now.

And from my standpoint, above all, we as a nation as vulnerable as we are in a free country, we need to humbly come before Almighty God and acknowledge our sins and ask for His mercy and ask for His protection. He has graciously protected us since the War of 1812. America has prospered and flourished because God has put a hedge of protection around us. This has been a special country to Him. It's been a land of His choosing. And we need as a people to turn from the way we're going and to acknowledge His sovereignty and to humbly beseech Him for protection from what may be coming from those who are our enemies and those who wish to destroy us. And then by God's grace and by the united action of all of us, this great country is going to overcome whatever terrorism is coming against it. We may have some hits in various places that will be very painful. But we are not going to succumb to terror. We're not going to knuckle under to terror. We are going to win the battle against terror, and we'll come out of this together and stronger. And I hope and pray that out of some difficult days that may be ahead of us we can once again say, as we do in our pledge of allegiance, we are part of "one nation under God."

Thank you very much.

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
—Philippians 4:13

  © PatRobertson.com