Cruz Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Cruz: If I am Elected President, America Will Have a Commander in Chief Committed to Defeating Radical Islamic Terrorism
HOUSTON, Texas - Today, Presidential candidate Ted Cruz penned the following op-ed for the New York Daily News regarding what should be done to keep Americans safe at home from the threat of radical Islamic terrorism and how he as President would make it a priority.
See excerpts below and read the full op-ed here.
There is no better example of these "no go" zones than one neighborhood in the city of this latest horrific attack — the municipality of Molenbeek in the city of Brussels. In attack after attack, from 9/11 to Madrid to Paris to Brussels, the trail seems to come back repeatedly to Molenbeek. At least three of the terrorists of the November 2015 Paris attack grew up and lived there. In fact, one of the key terrorists of the Paris attack, Salah Abdeslam, fled back to Molenbeek where he knew he could find sanctuary. It is telling that Abdeslam effectively hid in plain sight there for weeks in the same city as the headquarters of NATO and the European Union.
Even Belgium's own Prime Minister, Charles Michel, has admitted after the Paris attacks that "[A]lmost every time there's a link with Molenbeek . . . It's been a form of laissez faire and laxity. Now we're paying the bill."
Many European leaders are now recognizing that passively allowing the Islamist threat to fester was a serious error. We cannot make the same mistakes in America.
To do so, we must take a risk-based approach that focuses resources on the enclaves and potential hotbeds of radicalization where terrorists are likely to thrive. Just as with law enforcement's successful efforts against gangs or drug dealers or the Mafia, we need resources and informants and undercover officers placed where terrorists are likely to be. We need lawful surveillance operations. And we need far more engagement between law enforcement and members of Muslim communities who are committed to working to rid their neighborhoods of the scourge of terrorism.
In the wake of 9/11, there was a broad consensus in favor of a common-sense domestic counterterrorism strategy. But over the last seven years, the focus on protecting the homeland has been lost. The Obama administration has even joined Islamist governments in sponsoring a UN resolution that would shred our First Amendment by threatening to make discussion of radical Islamism potentially illegal. And now we are seeing the erosion of our counterterrorism tools here at home, even while we know from successful attacks from Boston to San Bernardino that terrorists are still plotting to strike America.
The hollow argument that ideology has no role in counterterrorism leaves no doubt that politics is afoot here.
I repeat my call for de Blasio to repudiate the dangerous confines of political correctness and reinstate this important unit as the first step towards a more proactive, hard-headed counterterrorism strategy on the home front.
The bottom line is that to defeat radical Islam, we need to focus our counterterrorism resources where terrorists are likely to be. That's not profiling or spying. It's common sense.
An investigation of Wall Street fraud wouldn't focus on community banks in the outer boroughs. If we want to defeat radical Islam, we need to focus on areas that are at risk of being infiltrated by jihadists.
The vast majority of Muslim Americans are law-abiding citizens. Indeed, patriotic American Muslims have provided critical assistance to our law-enforcement, intelligence and military officials to detect and disrupt jihadist plots. And we need their help in the war on terrorism.
These are dangerous times. If I am elected President, every American will have a commander in chief fiercely committed to defeating radical Islamic terrorism. This is a battle we must win. If we don't want to become Europe, we need to put aside the political correctness, focus our efforts on stopping radicalization and do what needs to be done to keep America safe.
Ted Cruz, Cruz Campaign Press Release - ICYMI: Cruz: If I am Elected President, America Will Have a Commander in Chief Committed to Defeating Radical Islamic Terrorism Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/317217