Terrorism: leading challenge facing the world

Today terrorists struck again, this time in Brussels, Belgium. ISIS is taking credit for a series of explosions which rocked both the airport and the subway in Brussels. These attacks have killed at least 34 and have injured at least 200 more.

Again, a horrible tragedy has been perpetrated by radical terrorists.

This attack reinforces that terrorism is a leading international issue; I would contend that terrorism is the number one problem that our world faces today. With the major attack in France at the end of last year, and 2016 already having a major international terrorist attack, this is certainly an issue in the security of the world.

The attack in Brussels particularly highlighted this for me. I stood in that same terminal this summer, waiting for my boarding pass for my Ryanair flight from Brussels to Dublin. I saw the police standing in the terminal with mid-sized assault rifles and thought, “Wow, this airport isn’t messing around with security.” But today I could have easily been killed in those attacks, only by the grace of God that my timing was not to be in that airport.

While I may be reflecting on that, I cannot claim any sort of connection to the attacks that those who have family members or friends who were killed today. But what this shows is that there is another attack coming, and it could very easily involve our families or loved ones being injured. My heart goes out to all those who lost their lives or were injured into today’s attacks.

It is high time the international community stepped up its efforts to end terrorism, more than ever before. Because it is clear that what we are doing currently is not working. President Barack Obama’s “lead from behind” strategy has failed, similar to the failure of George W. Bush’s large-scale efforts in the war on terrorism.

I am no policy expert, but I do know that what we are doing is not working and that we need more international collaboration to end terrorism for good. The world’s best military strategists, intelligence community experts, and warfighters need to come together to contain and neutralize those who would destroy innocent others.

But war is not the only effort that will solve our problems – the past 15 years have proved that. We also need to provide whatever aid is appropriate to these war torn regions in the Middle East so that more terrorists will not grow up hating the West. Our immigration policies need to be updated and carried out to find the correct balance between humanitarian aid and national security. I personally do not believe that immigration controls are inherently racist –- but there needs to be a balance and it is obvious that what the international community is doing is not enough.

Furthermore, the world and the Muslim community need to stand up together against these radical Islamic terrorists, so that these ideologies of terrorism and jihad will not be passed down to future generations of monsters.

Brussels is a tragedy, along with all of the other terrorist attacks that have taken place in our world over the past decades. This is truly a problem that should be first in our attentions, and dealt with maturely and seriously. I am sure that Donald Trump and the GOP will blast away with political spins and Obama will continue to sit around and offer nice words with little plan for action. Neither of these will move towards the innovative solutions our world needs for this problem.

In order to avoid living in complete fear, just waiting around for the next explosion or gunshot, our world leaders need to do more than they currently are to address this foremost of issues.

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