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Iraqi youth movement launching counter-terrorism efforts

by AirTalk®

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Iraqi students attend class in a building, that was liberated by Popular Mobilisation units from Islamic State (IS) group jihadists. AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images

To combat extremist ideology in Iraq, a burgeoning youth group with some help from political scientists from around the world aims to launch an Internet movement - with all the bells and whistles - opposed to "Jihadist" violence.

Eric Davis, a Rutgers scholar focusing on democracy in Iraq, was on the ground in Iraq this month and says, "When we met with the students, we had some apprehensions about how to talk to these students about activism, but it was fantastic, just fantastic. The men and the women were eager." As Davis writes on his blog "The New Middle East:" 

Perhaps in no other country of the Middle East has the issue of national reconciliation ... been so central to the national political discourse as in Iraq.  A true policy of national reconciliation would constitute an important nail in the terrorist coffin. Offering all Iraq's religious sects and ethniocities a place in the political system  would be a sure bet to promote stability and undercut the allure of terrorist groups.

With sectarian-based violence a common occurrence throughout Iraq, how much success are activists for democracy and reconciliation having? How could a website or social media platform gain traction against "Jihadist" violence?

Guest:

Eric Davis, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science at Rutgers University just returned from Iraq; past director of the University's Center for Middle Eastern Studies; His blog is “The New Middle East

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