A French journalist has revealed what he thinks it takes to defeat the so-called Islamic State.
Nicolas Henin, who was held hostage by ISIS for ten months, spoke to The Syria Campaign to provide his own resolution for terminating the fundamentalist group. In his eyes, airstrikes are to be avoided.
Henin was captured by the extremists and Mohammed Emwazi – later known as Jihadi John – is said to have abused the journalist through physical and psychological torture.
Strikes on Isis are a trap. The winner of this war will not be the party that has the newest, the most expensive or the most sophisticated weaponry, but the party that manages to win over the people on its side.
Henin believes the West’s best bet is to embrace refugees fleeing their war-torn homes.
Hundreds of thousands of refugees, fleeing this Muslim land that is like a dream for ISIS – that is supposed to be their Israel? And fleeing that land to go to the land of the ‘unbelievers’?
This is why they probably tried to manipulate the public during the Paris attacks. To make us close our borders, and maybe even more importantly, close our minds.
Henin’s main argument is that airstrikes and military intervention simply serves as a reason for moderates to join ISIS.
What we have to do – and this is really key – is we have to engage the local people. As soon as the people have hope for a political solution, the Islamic State will just collapse.
There will be a very easy way to make Isis lose ground at a high speed. The international community must decide all regions held by the Syrian opposition are no-fly zones.
No-fly zones for everybody. Not the coalition, not the Russians, not the regime, nobody. Providing security for people [there] would be devastating for Isis. That’s what the international community should focus on.
Why are we making so many mistakes? Why are people so misunderstanding [ISIS’s] vision?
We are just fuelling our enemies and fuelling the misery and disaster for the local people.
While to many his comments may seem controversial it is worth remembering Henin has been there. He has a knowledge most politicians and western citizens would certainly hope never to acquire.