The concept of “tribalism” eludes Obama and the West

Barack Obama has gone from just being stubborn to a full-fledged apologist for all things Islamic.


CHARLOTTE, NC, April 4, 2016 – Sometimes you just want to take the palm of your hand and slap your forehead. Trouble is, it’s happening so often this political season that we are beginning to look like Neanderthals.

Barack Obama has gone from just being stubborn to a full-fledged apologist for all things Islamic. It does not serve him well nor does it do anything to strengthen the image of the United States.

The “blame game” has been one of Mr. Obama’s tactics since taking the oath of office. Nothing he has done over the past seven years is the result of any of his policies. George Bush laid all the groundwork and Obama is still cleaning up the mess, even though he assured us he could have it all done before he made the turn in his first round of golf.

For all of Donald Trump’s off-the-cuff shenanigans, at least he demonstrates a concern for the country, which is something Barack Obama has never done.

One of the key facets in dealing with global extremism is understanding how deeply tribalism is rooted in the minds and hearts of the Arab world, and by extension, Islamic jihadists. What is incredulous about that concept is that any ten year can recognize it just by walking down the street for an hour in any Arabic country.

Yet, somehow, the president, with all his hundreds of advisors and all the funding necessary to fight it and all the resources of the smartest people in the world like Hillary Clinton and John Kerry, cannot see it.

Dr. Michael Welner: An insightful analysis of Islamic terror

As Obama explains, which he does so often to excuse his ineptness combined with his arrogance, “The degree of tribal division in Libya was greater than our analysts had expected. And our ability to have any kind of structure there that we could interact with and start training and start providing resources broke down very quickly.”

In other words, “I don’t have a clue, but I will never admit it.”

Tribal intensity has been part of the Arabic mindset for centuries. It is a crucial aspect of the desert mentality of the Middle East. Obama grew up in an Islamic environment, which means he understands precisely what “tribalism” is and how it works. He simply refuses to admit it.

In his 1984 novel The Haj, author Leon Uris explained tribalism in a single paragraph, “…before I was nine I had learned the basic canon of Arab life. It was me against my brother; me and my brother against our father; my family against my cousins and the clan; the clan against the tribe; and the tribe against the world. And all of us against the infidels.” Tribalism pure and simple.

That was 28 years before the self-proclaimed “smartest man in the world” took office. Somehow, however, Arabic tribalism has escaped him.

In an article in The Federalist, M.G. Oprea gives four specific reasons why failure to acknowledge the existence of Islamic terrorism is so detrimental to the West. Simply reading the headlines is explanation enough, but Oprea provides strong details to support her position.

As Oprea explains, censoring the term “Islamic extremism” is a dangerous game. Recently the president, with little reaction from the media, had the words “Islamist terrorism”
spoken by French President François Hollande, edited from a White House video.

Writes Oprea, “This is an effort to expel the phrase from the conversation—literally. It’s one thing to refuse to acknowledge the threat oneself, but it is quite another to suppress the speech of a foreign head of state. This is full-blown censorship.”

“Obama staunchly rejects that ISIS, al-Qaeda, or any self-professed Islamist group has anything to do with ‘real’ Islam,” writes Oprea who says that it is impossible to deal with terrorism if we ignore it. She adds that Obama sees Islam as a monolithic entity with fringe radicals who are “hijacking” the faith.

Even Obama supporters are now accepting the third fact of Oprea’s premise which is that “Obama doesn’t take terrorism seriously.”

Time after time we have witnessed the president begrudgingly make half-hearted “condemnations” of terrorist acts before immediately heading off to a fund raiser, a baseball game or a round of golf.

“Maybe if our president hadn’t been so unwilling to speak plainly about Islamism, we wouldn’t be seeing such extreme reactions to it. This isn’t lost on the American people, or our allies,” adds Oprea.

Finally, and perhaps most damning, is Oprea’s belief that Obama’s stance on Islam demonstrates his low opinion of people in general. “He seems to view the American people as unhinged bigots, who, if they hear that Islam is associated with terrorism, will attack the nearest Muslim,” she writes.

Strangely enough, it is the low self-esteem of Muslim extremists that is a primary motivating factor in their quest for supremacy. “Justification” is all they need for a terror attack or a killing spree because THEY are the ultimate victims, which plays directly into the thinking of bleeding heart liberals.

Remember the words of Charlton Heston’s character, George Taylor, in the original 1968 version of Planet of the Apes when he shouted “It’s a mad house! A mad house!”

Perhaps the surprise ending of that film was prophetic. Perhaps we are de-evolving in reverse Darwinianism.

Just slap your forehead as we return to our Neanderthal roots.

Bob Taylor has been traveling the world for more than 30 years as a writer and award winning television producer focusing on international events, people and cultures around the globe.
Taylor is founder of The Magellan Travel Club (
Read more of What in the World and Bob Taylor at Communities Digital News
Follow Bob on Twitter @MrPeabod

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