Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Sunday the world must start thinking about how to reduce the number of people who are becoming terrorists through teachings in radical Islamic schools and not just focus on killing or capturing them after they commit violent acts.
In three TV appearances, Rumsfeld expanded on his Oct. 16 internal memo in which he posed the question, "Does the U.S. need to fashion a broad, integrated plan to stop the next generation of terrorists?"
"We are capturing and killing a lot of terrorists," Rumsfeld said on Fox News Sunday, "but we also have to think about the number of new ones that are being created." One problem, he said, was lack of knowledge about how many anti-American terrorists are being turned out.
"There is no way to measure it because you don't know what's happening in each one of these radical cleric schools . . . how many people are coming out of these radical madrasa schools," he said on ABC's This Week.
Saying the United States is not organized yet to handle the problem, Rumsfeld said, "We need to find ways to make sure we're winning the battle of ideas and that we're reducing the number of terrorists . . . that are being taught to go out and murder and kill innocent men, women and children."
Saying the solution was outside the Defense Department and even U.S. hands, he said on NBC's Meet the Press, "The world needs to think about other things we can do to reduce the number of schools that teach terrorism."