The Obama-era program, “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE), was one of his most controversial.
Billed as a plan to combat radical ideologies with the engagement of local community leaders, many believed the program had sinister intentions to target conservatives.
And now Donald Trump is poised to correct one of Obama’s most costly mistakes.
Starting in 2009, the Obama administration began to claim conservative leaning groups and their beliefs were a breeding ground for violent ideologies.
A government data collecting fusion center identified Ron Paul supporters, pro-life activists, and veterans as domestic terrorists.
Obama built on this report with the 2015 rollout of the CVE.
His administration took the spotlight off Islamic extremism.
During the rollout of Obama’s CVE program in 2015, the Obama administration focused on “right-wing extremists” and white supremacists while refusing to focus on Muslim extremism.
“Violent extremist threats come from a range of groups and individuals, including domestic terrorists and homegrown violent extremists in the United States, as well as international terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIL,” claimed Obama’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS). DHS warned of the domestic right-wing terror threat in 2015 as Obama held a conference to focus his CVE program.
In contrast, the U.S. government blocked training about Islamic motivations and terminology from federal anti-terror efforts, at the request of Islamic political groups in the United States. His deputies also omitted “Islamic” or any related term or phrase from the CVE program’s lexicon, according to various public government documents explaining the effort. Even when alluding to the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) jihadist group in the CVE documents, the Obama administration opted to use the acronym “ISIL.”
And a leaked 2015 report by the Department of Homeland Security listed “right wing” terrorists and “sovereign citizens” as the chief terrorist threat facing the United States.
“A new intelligence assessment, circulated by the Department of Homeland Security this month and reviewed by CNN, focuses on the domestic terror threat from right-wing sovereign citizen extremists and comes as the Obama administration holds a White House conference to focus efforts to fight violent extremism.
Some federal and local law enforcement groups view the domestic terror threat from sovereign citizen groups as equal to — and in some cases greater than — the threat from foreign Islamic terror groups, such as ISIS, that garner more public attention.
The Homeland Security report, produced in coordination with the FBI, counts 24 violent sovereign citizen-related attacks across the U.S. since 2010.”
This politically correct approach to the War on Terror that ignored radical Islam helped contribute to the environment which allowed radicalized, homegrown jihadists to strike across America in 2016 in Orlando, New Jersey, and New York.
But now Donald Trump is going to correct Obama’s deadly mistake.
Reports are he will refocus the CVE back on radical Islam.
The Hill reports:
“The Trump administration is pushing to reshape a government program aimed at combating extremist ideologies to focus solely to countering Islamist extremists, Reuters reports.
Under the administration’s plan, the “Countering Violent Extremism” program, which is intended to counter all types of violent ideologies, including white supremacy, would become “Countering Islamic Extremism” or “Countering Radical Islamic Extremism,” five people briefed on the matter told Reuters.”
Trump has promised to get tough on radical Islam.
Focusing the government’s efforts on true terrorists and violent ideologies, as opposed to chasing down political opponents and pretending radical Islam is just one of many violent ideologies, is a step toward making America safe again.