In op-ed, Obama lays out ideas for beating ISIS, al Qaeda by winning 'hearts and minds'

President Obama.
(Image credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

This week, the White House is hosting an international conference on how to counter terrorism and other forms of violent extremism. President Obama previewed the global summit, and his ideas for it, in an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times. "We know that military force alone cannot solve this problem," and neither can the U.S. alone, Obama writes. "Our campaign to prevent people around the world from being radicalized to violence is ultimately a battle for hearts and minds." How do you win that battle? Obama writes:

Groups like al Qaeda and ISIL promote a twisted interpretation of religion that is rejected by the overwhelming majority of the world's Muslims. The world must continue to lift up the voices of Muslim clerics and scholars who teach the true peaceful nature of Islam. We can echo the testimonies of former extremists who know how terrorists betray Islam. We can help Muslim entrepreneurs and youths work with the private sector to develop social media tools to counter extremist narratives on the internet. We know from experience that the best way to protect people, especially young people, from falling into the grip of violent extremists is the support of their family, friends, teachers, and faith leaders. [Obama, LA Times]

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