His policy statement reflects state-of-the-art knowledge on counterterrorism.
On August 15, Candidate Trump delivered a major speech on fighting terrorism. These days, everything has become intensely partisan, so I preface my assessment with the following self-disclosure: I have been a lifelong Independent, usually leaning towards the Democrats. I have worked on the issues central to this speech – immigration, integration, youth radicalization, nation-building, political Islam and counterterrorism – for the bulk of my professional life, first with a European think tank and then at the RAND Corporation. At RAND, my research focused on how to distinguish radical and potentially violent segments of the Islamic populace from garden variety religious folks. My team spent time in Baghdad trying to help the military figure out which detainees to worry about and which ones to release. In our 2013 study Eurojihad, we evaluated the policies of European governments and warned that their intelligence was inadequate, their cooperation with each other and with the U.S. needed to be beefed up, many of their social policies were naïve and that without major efforts, terrorist attacks were likely; events have sadly borne this out.