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Why Trump Is The “Perfect” Presidential Choice For ISIS

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross
24th March 2016 - Quoted by Shane Dixon Kavanaugh - Vocativ

He’s already won the support of the Ku Klux Klan’s onetime leader David Duke and the Nation of Islam’s Louis Farrakhan, along with other extremists. Will Donald Trump also get the endorsement of the Islamic State?

The real estate mogul’s polarizing persona and broad, withering attacks on Muslims make him the natural presidential choice for the jihadist group that embraces a similar black-and-white worldview, national security and terrorism experts interviewed by Vocativ said. And with repeated vows to crush ISIS, Trump might be the candidate most likely to lead U.S. troops into a war against the militants, fulfilling their apocalyptic vision.

“You’d have to be blind not to see that Trump is appealing to ISIS,” said Patrick Skinner, a terrorism analyst and former CIA case officer. “He’s the perfect candidate for them.”

ISIS militants and their sympathizers have not been publicly outspoken about the U.S. presidential campaign. The terror group’s online forums and social media channels reveal little chatter about Trump, Hillary Clinton and the other contenders. Nor has official ISIS propaganda focused on the race.

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Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric bolsters a deliberate effort by ISIS to eliminate what it calls the “gray zone” of moderate Islam, ultimately turning more tolerant Muslims against the West, said Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, a senior fellow with the right-leaning Foundation for Defense of Democracies. That alone could earn the terror group’s tacit support. “From ISIL’s perspective, Trump is the candidate that could destroy the gray zone,” Gartenstein-Ross told Vocativ, using a another name for ISIS. “I am certain that’s part of their strategic thinking.”

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isis, trump