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Against All Enemies: Inside America's War on Terror by Richard A. Clarke

By Richard A. Clarke

Examines America's warfare on terror, either prior to and after September eleventh, together with what went wrong or right, the operations of al Qaeda, the dept of place of birth protection, and different an important activities of the Bush management.

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In 2003 thirteen Malaysian students who had been studying at madrassas in Pakistan were arrested and accused of being groomed to be future militant leaders. All of them had been students at the al-Tarbiyyah al-Islamiyaah Luqmanul Hakiem madrassa in Johor, and the fathers of four of them were already in detention in Malaysia (New Straits Times 2003g). Overall, the direct role of the media in facilitating communication between the KMM, its constituency and Malaysian society is questionable. In a sense though, it does not matter what the media reports since the KMM and JI are not mass movements but rather small, close knit clandestine organizations that can survive with a very small support base.

Therefore the various labels attached to the KMM and JI can be argued to both legitimize and de-legitimize the two groups. Reporting the government message In order to counteract the potential negative effects of publicizing the causes which militants groups champion, the government uses the mainstream media to communicate its counter-terror messages to both public opinion and the militants. Its counter-terrorism policy focuses on addressing the root causes of violence in order to win the hearts and minds of the militants and their potential supporters (Mahathir 2002).

The impact of publicizing this message was negated by the fact that all four expressed remorse and asked forgiveness from society for their involvement in JI. They stated that JI had deviated from true Islamic teachings and called on their colleagues to leave the group and return to the true path (Bernama 2004). It is an interesting question as to whether this interview would have been broadcast if the four had not recanted in this way. Some elements of the media however, have tried to play down the links between JI and al Qaeda.

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