A Struggle of Ideologies

The spread of international terrorism and extremism, as noted in the Military Doctrine of Kazakhstan, represents the greatest danger among the new risks and threats to our security.

“Terrorism has become the most dangerous challenge to the international security system. Today the scale of the threat has surpassed all expectations. The range of issues related to terrorism has also increased. In particular are conflicts emerging on the basis of nationalism, interethnic and religious conflicts, organised crime, drug and arms trafficking and money laundering,” said President Nursultan Nazarbayev, in a message to the Fourth Counter-Terrorism Committee of the U.N. Security Council.

Many countries in the world are facing this evil as a result of various extremist political, nationalist and religious movements and organisations that have developed their own ideologies. These ideologies rest on violence and the violent intimidation of populations through terrorist attacks advocated by spiritual leaders and destructive elements.

So what do they offer to their followers? The ideologists of terrorism present utopian projects and primitive calls for the complete destruction of existing community foundations, instead of seeking the personal involvement of citizens in the complex and painstaking process of economic, political and social development of their countries. Instead of complicated, long and thorough studies of religion and theological science which form a complete picture of peace and faith, they offer the public a set of quotes from the Koran and Hadith, taken out of context, to try to explain the necessity of constant struggle against “infidels” and “betrayers of the faith.”

According to experts, extremist ideas offering simple solutions to urgent problems are a special danger, particularly for young people with immature spiritual and moral values. It is therefore necessary to debunk the cult of violence and hatred and the false romanticism of “martyrs” fighting for “higher justice” that can penetrate the hearts and minds of young people, and to explain the failure of the ideology of enmity of classes and religions, social groups and races. In a word, it is necessary to fight terrorism, as a socio-political phenomenon, as an ideology hostile to the people of Kazakhstan. Indeed, the ideology of Kazakhstan is, above all, constructed to prevent war and to ensure the peaceful course of our sovereign state and our national and international security. Our state ideology is one of tolerance and peace.

Now it’s high time to organise a common, universal and directed fight against terrorist ideologies. The president’s recent signing of the law “On amendments to some legislative acts of the Republic of Kazakhstan on combating terrorism” is a logical and important step.

Deputy Chairman of the National Security Committee Kabdulkarim Abdikazimov, in his clarification of the law in Parliament, offered to revise the concept of counterterrorism by the legislative formalisation of its three directions.

First is preventing terrorism; that is, eliminating in all areas of society the conditions which give rise to terrorism and terrorist attacks. The second is the detecting, preventing and suppressing terrorism and investigating terrorist offenses. The third area includes minimising and eliminating acts of terrorism by the use of all available forces and means.

It was noted that today terrorism must be seen not only as a specific criminal offense, but as a complex sociopolitical phenomenon.

The main advantage of the law is its emphasis on the prevention of terrorism. Speaking of the need to prevent terrorism, we should also take into account such factors as the huge economic imbalance when comparing the cost of a terrorist attack and expenditures on its consequences. It must be clearly understood that the ideology of counterterrorism is not only the implementation of proper ideological actions. It is also the creation of a reliable shield of security in the military sphere and the minimisation of economic and social conditions that lead to the emergence of dissent.

Events of recent years have shown that the ability of states to defend national security and the inviolability of their borders is one of the main foundations of global and regional politics. The most powerful ideology to counter terrorism is the cohesion and unity of our people and the reliability and power of our military forces.

The author is a Doctor of Military Sciences and an Honoured Worker of Education and Science of Kazakhstan.

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