America's Information War on Terrorism: Winning Hearts and Minds in the Muslim World [open pdf - 503KB]
This paper examines America's struggle to win hearts and minds in the Muslim World. The US may win the military fight on terrorism but thus far is losing the public opinion fight in Muslim countries. Although the US may be able to eradicate many of today's terrorists, many in fact welcome the chance to die for their cause, and there are thousands ready to fill the ranks of the fallen. The US must find a way to build bridges to Muslims while simultaneously discrediting and then isolating bin Laden (or his successor) and other Islamic terrorist organizations from the Muslim masses. America's most daunting and important fight is the information war in the Muslim World. If we fail in the struggle to win the hearts and minds there, we'll be locked into an interminable struggle of strike and counterstrike while American civilian casualties mount and US domestic life is changed forever. This paper describes a proposed overarching strategic information campaign to restore favorable perceptions of the US in the Muslim World.