Friday, January 30, 2015

New French Tactic on Radicals

After the Paris murders of three weeks ago....France has been on a fairly creative route to dismantle radicals operating in France.

The newest item?  It's a PR-theme that is being pushed on the internet and on posters.

The poster on the right leads to the suggestion....."You might be a radical....".

So, it goes to suggest when a guy is suddenly demotivated on a relationship.....has no interest in sports....isn't participating as a family member....stops interest in TV or life...then you might want to alert someone.

If you look at the's the same thing you'd get when some guy or gal has gone into a depressive mood and considering suicide.  They've given up on things of interest and just accepted some fate of death in the near future.

For several years, I've followed various news reports over individuals who've committed themselves to radical Islam.  Some did the war thing in Syria....some were recruited as players in some radical Islamic scholar's game-plan....and some were just signed up for death in the near future (mostly without any consideration of the value of their life, just some promise of some greater presence in the next world....the sixty or seventy innocent virgin story).

There are some odd things that you start to notice when you browse through as much news reports as I do.  You just don't find many people over the age of forty picked up in some recruitment drive.  There's an age deal to this whole recruitment thing.  Older guys are wiser, and don't buy into some dopey religious scholar's game.  They've got a family, a job, and a life.  Younger guys?  In a number of cases....the younger guys are failures in school, unemployed or just sitting there without any purpose in their life.

Years ago, I sat down and read over mass movements (Eric Hoffer wrote the defining book of mass movements....The True Believer - 1951).

To run a successful recruitment scheme for any mass have the recruitment drivers who utilize three themes: persuasion, intimidation, and transformation.  You work on all three themes to gather supporters and brainless players in the mass movement.  The less intelligent....the better of your odds of recruitment.  The less success in life....the better your odds of gaining their trust.  The less view of their future.....the better your odds of converting them to death-only results.  It's a simple theme, if you think about it.

Across Europe....eager players of radicalism stand around in city parks, religious centers, and sport fields.....talking up the theme of the day.  Persuasion is linked to his subject matter and the way that the audience receives it.  If persuasion isn't working that well....flip to the intimidation level and use the individual's peers to center on this individual or this group.  As the guy gains their confidence....then flip to the final step....transformation.  You need X to commit to such-and-such plan, for the results to be positive.  Without transformation....there's no players in the scheme.

As far as I one has ever taken Hoffer's book (The True Believer) and built a class out of it.  It's the perfect text document that you ought to present to fifteen-year old kids.  One simple document....three weeks of reading and discussing the document.....and you end up with kids who question movements and persuasion-talkers.  Sadly, we don't even press the document toward university students or intellectuals.  So, it's strictly by accident that you might bump into the book, read it, and ask yourself some odd questions.

As for my view of the French poster and it's effect on the public?  Sadly, public relations type posters are rarely read on school or public walls.  Maybe a thousand kids will see it.....ask questions.....and maybe a dozen will call to report on their cousin or brother who they feel are headed toward some radical lifestyle.  The dozen who report on their relatives?  Better than zero, but still it's not much to get excited about.

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