Muslim and non-Muslim leaders need to join together to drive out radical Islamists
© Getty Images

Last night, Manchester witnessed the evil and hatred of radical Islamists that President Trump described in his speech to Muslim world leaders in Saudi Arabia on Saturday when a suicide bomber blew himself out outside the entrance to an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, UK. At least 22 were killed and 59 injured.

Most of the attendees at this concert were teenage girls. This was an attack targeting children.  This was an act of pure evil.

The bombing fits the profile of an Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — directed or inspired terrorist attacks seen elsewhere in Europe over the past two years. ISIS has taken credit for the attack. The attacker's identity has not been released by British authorities.

Suicide bombings tend to be sophisticated and involve others who help construct the bomb and plan the attack, although this is not always the case. British authorities will be investigating the possibility whether a terrorist cell, possibly linked to ISIS, was behind the bombing.

British authorities also will investigate the suspect’s possible links to ISIS or al Qaeda. Is this someone who fought for ISIS in Syria or Iraq and returned to the UK? Was he radicalized through the Internet or by radical Islamists in the UK, possibly a radical cleric?

About 3,500 people reportedly are on the UK terrorist watch list. Was the perpetrator of the Manchester bombing one of them? If so, were clues about his intention to conduct such a horrible act of terror missed by security services?

The bombing probably was in response to directives by ISIS to its followers to conduct terrorist attacks against "soft targets.” The bomb was detonated in the foyer of the concert arena, apparently to allow the bomber to kill as many concert goers as possible without going through security.

Many are calling for even more security outside security checkpoints at public events and airports. (The March 22, 2016 terrorist attack at the Brussels airport took place before the security near the baggage check). Although such steps will improve security, it is impossible to guard every inch of a city from terrorists. Other steps also are needed.

One of these steps is to urge the public to be more vigilant. The "see something, say something" campaign has helped uncover and prevent many terrorist attacks. Security forces need help from the public to detect terrorist suspects.  

Most important, we must recognize the nature of this threat before we can defeat it. The Manchester bombing almost certainly was another radical Islamist committing an act of unspeakable violence to promote the Global Jihad Movement's war against modern society. 

This is not a war against “terrorism” or a specific radical Islamist terror group like ISIS, al-Qaeda and related groups. These "evil losers," as President Trump called them today, are using violence to advance their backward vision of a global Islamic caliphate governed by medieval Sharia law. 

In his speech on Saturday, President Trump said this on how Muslim leaders should defeat radical Islamists and their murderous ideology:

"DRIVE THEM OUT of your places of worship.

DRIVE THEM OUT of your communities.

DRIVE THEM OUT of your holy land, and


These steps demanded by President Trump to defeat the evil of radical Islam are long overdue.

Hopefully, this monstrous attack against children in Manchester will motivate Muslim and non-Muslim leaders around the world to take decisive action to implement the president’s call to drive out radical Islamists.

Fred Fleitz, a former CIA analyst, is Senior Vice President with the Center for Security Policy. Flietz was also chief of staff for John Bolton.

The views expressed by contributors are their own and are not the views of The Hill.