Israeli Druze diplomat: It's time for the world to eradicate terrorism

Terror has to be defined clearly as an ideology against people so that the goal to eradicate it can be clearly defined as well. Then we have to take off the gloves and do something.

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Rachel Avraham,

Rachel Avrahama
Rachel Avrahama
INN:RA

Israeli Druze diplomat Mendi Safadi, who heads the Safadi Center for International Diplomacy and Public Relations, is pushing for the international community to adopt the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism.

Terrorism is a term that means various things to different people. Currently, there is still no generally agreed upon definition for terrorism either between states in the international arena or among academics. While the UN did pass the International Convention for the Suppression of Suicide Bombings four days before the September 11 terror attacks, many academics and statesmen don’t find it to be a sufficient definition for terrorism. 

The lack of an agreed-upon definition for what constitutes terrorism has adversely affected the War against Terrorism, thus making it much more difficult to eradicate terror groups like ISIS, the Al Nusra Front, Hamas, Hezbollah, etc. For this reason, Mendi Safadi, an Israeli Druze diplomat who is the head of the Safadi Center for International Diplomacy and Public Relations, is pushing for the international community to adopt the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism.

Countries that sign onto the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism must legislate a common definition for terrorism, to ban terrorism, to create a common list of terror groups that should be made illegal globally and to work for the eradication of terrorism in the international arena. In addition, states who sign onto the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism must create an ideology that can counter terrorism and to sell it to the public. All countries who are part of the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism must take joint action against the commonly agreed upon terror groups.


My starting point is that it is impossible to fight terror with democratic tools.

Like everyone who has tried to create a common definition for terrorism before him, Safadi has already encountered obstacles. When Safadi was in Moscow, he faced significant resistance from a Turkish group regarding what is the definition of radical Islam “for they deny the reality that Islam has radical sects.” He emphasized that the Memorandum for the Elimination of International Terrorism will have much resistance in the Muslim world but he stressed that it will also have many supporters in general from Muslims and others.  Already, he noted that both Russia and the US are keenly interested in learning from Israel’s experience fighting against terrorism and thus could potentially support the Memorandum for the Elimination of Terrorism.

“The Memorandum on the definition of terror and terror groups is meant to be placed as an international goal and that way, it will be easier to fight against it,” Safadi stressed. “To label that terror is not one incident of one person or group of people that make terror but is an ideology that stands against people and feeds them with hate until a level that they want to have terror. The Safadi Centers acts to put its ideology in front of our eyes so it will be a goal to vanish it.”

In the wake of the London Bridge terror attack, the recent incident outside the Notre Dame Cathedral and other terror incidents in Europe, Safadi explained why the West has failed to stop ISIS from waging terror attacks in Europe and the US: “The Western states in particular became a place that terror groups found easy to infiltrate because of the care-free democracy without any boundaries and the freedom to organize. My starting point is that it is impossible to fight terror with democratic tools." 

 "Therefore, we should define or make rules and goals in the War against Terrorism," Safadi stressed. "The Western world must agree with the fact that democracy without boundaries means anarchy and a surrounding of anarchy leads to negative organizations getting stronger such as criminal and terror groups.  The freedom to organize and to express yourself must be under some regulations. Otherwise, the terror groups will continue to organize and gather from Brussels to London to Paris and to engage in tragic activities against the free democratic world.”

“I always feel that terror is not the people but the ideology,” Safadi noted. “And if you shut down their methods of action, they will not have the ability to gather and to spread their terror ideology so for sure, it will be easy to get over it and to vanish the terror of ISIS. But as long as Western states give them the freedom of action even if they don’t mean it but do it for they are democratic states, this goal of eradicating terror is going to be very difficult or even impossible.” 

This is why he argued that the Memorandum for the Eradication of Terrorism is necessary: “Terror is terror, regardless of whether it happens by states or independent organizations. The idea is to define terror for all of its kinds and to fight it whether it is by Hitler, Bashar Al Assad, ISIS, Hamas and Hezbollah. In my point of view, there is no difference between them. You just need to fight against them and to vanish them completely.” Safadi noted that his agreement will help the struggle against the persecution of minority groups such as the Hindus and Christians of Bangladesh or various minority groups in Syria and Iraq for they will be more protected against state-sponsored terrorism.

Safadi added that there is a strategic benefit for Israel in this Memorandum for the Eradication of Terrorism: “It is not a secret that terror that is against Israel is very intensive compared to all of the states in the world. And like every international agreement that forces all of the states of the world to sign onto it, it will be impossible to ignore the terror when it acts against Israel. And those states will be forced to stand by Israel’s side in her fight against terror unlike today, when many journalists define eliminating a terrorist who is implementing a terror attack against Israeli civilians as an execution of a Palestinian or they don’t relate to the elimination as a response to a terror attack that seeks to stop terrorist activity.”