Barack Obama on Terrorist Recruits at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs
April 23, 2007
A recent report detailed Al-Qaeda's progress in recruiting a new generation of leaders to replace the ones we have captured or killed. The new recruits come from a broader range of countries than the old leadership—from Afghanistan to Chechnya, from Britain to Germany, from Algeria to Pakistan. Most of these recruits are in their early thirties. They operate freely in the disaffected communities and disconnected corners of our interconnected world—the impoverished, weak and ungoverned states that have become the most fertile breeding grounds for transnational threats like terror and pandemic disease and the smuggling of deadly weapons. Some of these terrorist recruits may have always been destined to take the path they did—accepting a tragically warped view of their religion in which God rewards the killing of innocents. But millions of young men and women have not.