Comparing ad culture to Islamic militant culture

 

 
 

Comparing ad culture to Islamic militant culture

Here's an exerpt from the article by N.D. Batra, a professor of communications at Norwich University, Vermont, USA:
"How advertising creates and transforms our desires and wants into compelling needs is a fascinating field of study that should not have been ignored by counter-terrorism experts.

Just as the culture of consumption has been driving people, for example, to McDonald's to consume billions of hamburgers and tons of French fries, the culture of paradise/afterlife that Islamic militants, such as al-Qaida and its decentralized networked franchisees, preach to Muslim youth has been driving them to jihad suicide. Both cultures promise fulfillment: here or hereafter. So did communism."

Advertisers have been using target marketing to reach and persuade their audiences more effectively. Similarly, instead of looking at the Muslim population of a country as a monolithic mass, it should be segmented demographically for specific messages.

It might sound bizarre but militant Islam, like communism, would wither away through the seductions of consumer society, with its promise of happiness in a world of here and now rather than the false glory of paradise that jihad promises through a sudden death experience.

Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabia, West Asian satellite networks that do not hesitate to broadcast messages from Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein, out of fear or favor, would have no problem airing commercials that persuade Muslims to reach for their wallets rather than their guns. Nike, Coke, McDonald's, Britney Spears, Hollywood/ Bollywood, figuratively speaking, would ultimately win over the destructive culture of the afterlife.

Militant Islam, with its bloody mission of worldwide jihad, would go the way of communism with its bloody global revolution. The Arabs, and other Muslims too, would rather trade than kill, if history has any lesson.

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