With a globally coordinated effort, however, the internet can be a highly effective channel to serve another important purpose. That is to activate Muslim intellectuals and moderate clerics across the world to produce and disseminate widely a counter-narrative to the violent ideology of jihadism. While some intellectuals and scholars, generally located in western societies, have written books and articles to counter the hate doctrine of the extremists, much more needs to be done within Muslim societies to counter narrow interpretations by radical clerics of Quranic texts and hadiths. This should now happen, much of it preferably in Arabic, Urdu and Pashto.
Importantly, Islam's compatibility with the ideas of democracy and the nation-state needs to be established in the minds of young Muslims. Major Nidal Hasan's case is a worrying one. Here was an American Muslim who had willingly sworn to defend his country by joining the army; yet, when it came to being actually deployed to fight he told himself, allegedly with guidance from a radical cleric on the internet, that his allegiance was to the Ummah and not to his country. He not only declined to fight other Muslims, he killed 13 soldiers who had similarly vowed to defend the nation. -- Gautam Adhikari