The role of civil Society Activits in Combatting Violent Extermism (Special Report)

Violent extremism is almost the term adopted by international bodies, especially the United Nations It has emerged for quite some time for more than two decades

It refers to ideas and movement that adopt armed extremism Violent extremism is a very important issue, at least socially, because it is a form of assault It carries so much resentment and so much hatred, which are mostly organized within networks and contracting

What do we mean by the word terrorism? What is the main objective of terrorism? Terrorism is aimed at eliminating the state using citizens in terrorist criminal operations Therefore, the citizen is the main target of terrorism, and hence comes terrorism prevention and the role of citizens in that Countering terrorism is the responsibility of the State, and the citizens and civil society are concerned with terrorism prevention

I have gone through many different phases in my life, and I have learned from my experiences I cannot tell you that ignorance is the reason, but it is poverty I am from an impoverished family

All members of the family are unemployed; my father and mother have no work, and I am also I was sentenced to thirteen months in prison, even though I don’t know the prison and I haven’t been imprisoned before When I entered I the prison, I did not accept the reality On my first night in Kef prison, I thought of committing suicide In prison, I found that in every room there were three or four religious extremists I was happy when I saw them, because I did not know that they were extremists and “takfiris” They asked me about my life; where I was, what I was doing, etc I told them everything and I informed them that I finished my military service, and they were happy with that, especially that I was trained to take up arms

Without any introductions, they asked me for jihad and convinced me of their thought We are behind prison walls, a vacuum, strict laws and an unjust environment All of which make you feel remorseful Then, you will be exploited, they have magic powers of persuasion So that someone who steals abroad when he enters begins to pray And asks the Lord to forgive him and relieve him

We first met them in our neighborhood, At first, you think they are right, or they are conducting trade union activities Or they demand for rights And they focused on young people, perhaps the unconscious youth who do not have clear ideas,… And convince them with a number of idea Because they take the part that serves their interests from the sayings of the Prophet Mohamed Peace be upon him

then they transmit their poisonous ideas in order to attract young people and recruit them in the first degree

then go out with them and recruit them completely In the second stage, they attract another group of people The prevailing idea is that he or she is poor, that is why they joined one of the groups, he has family problems and his or her parents are separated or he or she were subject to violence No I am from an average family, or more than average, thank God No one asked me to join them I am the one who joined willingly, as forbidden fruit is the sweetest… Something new and nonexistent, like fashion, anything new everyone wants to try out People are looking for attention I wanted to wear the Arabian shirt and pants I felt that was something special and I dearly wanted to try The massacres and the crimes committed by the extremist groups gave me pause for thought, to reconsider my ideas, which have always advocated only extremism and do not advocate dialogue

In the religious text there is an invitation to dialogue, God Almighty spoke to Satan, this logic is not found in these religious groups which saw only the issue of jihad and fighting, etc… I have a message for all I want to say it on my personal responsibility that there is a huge difference between Islam as a religion of tolerance and peace and among these extremist groups I was lucky because I was bumped into a road, moderate people with good knowledge of Islam and that is what guided me to the right path They took me on the pretext that they were only a group of "Kharijites", who had nothing to do with true Islam The real war against terrorism is not with weapons, security and armies, as some think, but it is essentially a war of thought Islam as a religion based on the principles of peace and tolerance, Has a major role in fighting extremism So if you want to invite someone to enter in Islam, call him with the medical word, away from the tiredness and oppression … The Qur'anic text is very explicit and clear on this point, Where he says: "You have your religion and i have my religion " What is Radicalism? Is a localization of the English term "Radicalism" It refers to Intellectual inertia and extreme direction of social and political change order Each denomination, party or group has constants in the subject of political belief The meaning of the word varies from one country to another, In the Occident Countries the Radicalists support the Socialists, while in Eastern Europe for example, this term is called to who opponents her Muslims who advocate the application of Sharia, and terrorist groups calling for extremism and violence, are also called radicals Radical & Polarization Extremism that interests me here is fanaticism, which means “radically”adhere to “radical ideas” In our hearts, we are all radicals that is to say that we all adhere radically to certain ideas That is good for democratic life for example I condemn, and I think everyone among us condemns slavery, Unconditionally, so I adhere radically to this idea, its was not always the case, because in the history of ideas, since even Aristotle condemned slavery, but that there were economic iinterests for that

Today it would be inaudible to defend slavery on the pretext of economic interests In terms of the link between extremism and violent extremism, there is certainly a causal relation in the sense of introduction and consequence, there are forms of extremism that may be subjective, such as faith, or groups that believe in flying saucers, groups with potentially strange perceptions that do not harm others However, there are also forms of non-subjective extremism, the collective ones as for example the Ultras groups in sports teams, or some rap groups, etc There is, of course, collective extremism that targets others This is what we call collective violent extremism This second category often gradually turning into a more serious extremism I will tell you from my own experience

I have witnessed how my friends were recruited on social media The first thing the recruiter presents himself as a celebrity and has a lot of fans and that it is the leader of the group Hence, recruitment through statuses, images, etc to get their attention, to see youth reaction, Everything is public,and happens through sharing and writing commentaries, then comes the second stage when the recruiter know that the person is easy ready to join them After that, they move to private communication, through demagogy and then becomes recruited

In addition, the jargon used vary; for instance, the use of the word “taghout” Which means tyrant,which have another interpretation The alternative discourse is to clarify meanings of, for example “Kharijites”, “Sunnis”, “Shiites” I see that we should deliver the right speech, call things by their proper name, And define the right concepts, which avoid violence We have in Tunisia a beautiful popular saying, "before the harm is done

" In the sense that the involvement in the phenomenon of terrorism has introductions and reasons, And can therefore be addressed only if we refer to the deep causes and factors That lead to unorthodoxy, at the intellectual, Behavioral, social, and loyalty levels For this reason, no strategy or plan to deal with this complex and dangerous phenomenon can succeed, Except by exerting efforts to protect tens of thousands of our youth, be it in Tunisia or abroad, To prevent them from falling preys to this “dangerous octopus” There is now in Tunisia a national strategy to combat terrorism, Signed by the National Security Council and the Presidency of the Republic last October This strategy includes four main areas: protection, prevention, tracking and response

The prevention is very important because it goes beyond the security approach to what we call the comprehensive approach In the sense that we must look at the reasons that make the young person or youth violent and extremist What are their motives for that? Then in addition to reasons, there are motives But most importantly how shall we get rid of this phenomenon Primarily, it is my belief that we should cut the way for young people, Who could be victims of recruitment and terrorist networks The issue of prevention in the fight against terrorism is a very important element, Since prevention is a national strategy to combat terrorism

The prevention is mainly about preventing a young person from engaging in these extremist ideas and falling prey to extremist actions and terrorism Prevention is an important first proactive measure that can be measured on many grounds, Especially at the intellectual level, as extremism is mainly a thought Therefore, we must protect young people by introducing them to the right knowledge about religion, Especially by giving them the most important components of nationalism, Because he or she must have a sense of belonging, they must feel citizens

They must have hope They should belive in their belonging to this nation, So that to impede the way in front of the extremist terrorist groups that who give them the programs, projects, funds and identity It is a networking project at the national level between different organizations and parties

In order to implement the national policy of prevention and countering extremism and terrorism I believe that CAFA initiative is in the right hands and came around the proper time There is really a need to combine all forces to represent a single line With the concerned government bodies, as well as with the big government agencies, So that we can actually succeed over this scourge of extremist ideology That has shown strong potential and can be enormous, And which has regional and international, that is why it seemed powerful… CAFA Network comes within the framework of prevention

Because CAFA is a civil network, that first introduced the so-called alternative discourse, Because the terrorist network depends primarily on the social networks In persuasion in the recruitment, in the influence, in the motivation This speech can appeal to young people, so CAFA should include a discourse

That could curb the one calling for extremism and violence… I believe that CAFA Network is moving steadily, Because it is based on a scientific methodology, objective analysis, a smart outlook, But also on a comparative approach with other experiences in the West or in other Arab Islamic countries Trying to be different in the way they work or in the results they seek to achieve Is a network established for prevention, a network of methodological framing to save what can be saved at this level It is not meant to confront extremists on the real ground, as there is room for this, especially the role of the State in this confrontation… CAFA is a promising network that will include many associations that will work on human rights, terrorism and corruption Then it is a network that wants to help the state in its efforts to establish the second republic in all dimensions Therefore, I think that this network when established, and when it becomes a force, Can have the power to put pressure It can give approaches that will help decision Makers to follow the right path during this sensitive stage that the country is going through… CAFA Network has a great dream, which is about incorporating as many organizations as possible to meet this scourge Why? Because unity generates strength, and also because we have a civil society active in many fields

We need this networking, and In this context comes CAFA initiative This is what will enable all actors of civil society to unite efforts, so we can benefit and invest In order to have a clear vision and ability to act and influence … When all our efforts come together and our visions become clear, we will act as the locomotive driving forward so that we have a clear vision on prevention , And each association has an addition and a brick and when we meet we can become an unbeatable force that is able to prevent

Source: Youtube