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President Trump campaigned in 2016 with a pledge to “name the enemy” behind the vast majority of terrorist acts in the world, in contrast to the obfuscations of previous administrations.

The Obama administration, for example, named its strategy Countering Violent Extremism, or CVE, while the early Trump administration proposed rebranding CVE as “Countering Islamic Extremism” or “Countering Radical Islamic Extremism.”

But now the Department of Homeland Security under Trump is set to spend $35 million on a new Center of Excellence in Terrorism Prevention and Counterterrorism Research that appears to bear remnants of the old philosophy.

Universities will apply for grants to develop “multidisciplinary, customer-driven solutions while training the next generation of homeland security experts,” according to the press release announcing the center, reports Chris Wright of the website Sharia TipSheet.

The center will “leverage emerging technologies and analytic techniques to provide innovative solutions for preventing and countering terrorism,” the press release said. It “will support academic-led innovation that supports DHS in staying a step ahead of emerging terrorist tactics.”

Wright wanted to know that all of that means.

He asked DHS whether the new center will focus on Islamic jihad, and if so, through what specific projects. A DHS press officer replied that he would ask a staff member at the center, initially providing only grant document instead.

Sharia TipSheet contacted the press officer again, noting the document mentions Islamic terrorism only once.

How can anything useful be developed, Wright asked, concerning “integrat(ing) technologies and concepts into DHS operations to avoid, prevent, or stop a threatened or actual act of terrorism” if no specific group is being examined?

Similarly, Sharia TipSheet asked, how can anything useful be developed concerning “break(ing) the cycle of recruitment, radicalization, and violence” if no specific group is being examined?

The website noted that along with rebranding CVE, the Trump administration had proposed reviewing all CVE programs, cutting CVE staff and developing a new counter-terrorism program. That included reformulating counter-terrorism programs to make them risk-based,intelligence-driven, proven effective and focused on front-line actors.

Sharia TipSheet said it didn’t get a response from DHS regarding the status of the proposed moves away from CVE.

Regarding the areas of focus of the Center of Excellence, the press officer said DHS wouldn’t tell the recipients of the funds what to study.

“I will try to get some more clarity on this issue for you, but in general, we did not itemize specific types of groups so as not to limit the thinking of the potential research,” he said.

“We’re not telling them who to study nor how to study it, but to propose what they would do with those mentioned goals in mind. We are looking to establish a new center to conduct this research, and want to see what the various universities submit in their proposals.”

The press officer later provided an additional response from a program manager, who said the new center “seeks to competitively select the best lead and partner organizations that submit packages outlining the most comprehensive approaches to advance the Department’s ability to mitigate the terrorism threat and to develop, in our workforce, the capacities and capabilities to effectively protect the Homeland.”

Sharia TipSheet commented: “So there you have it. The new center will spend $35 million on fishing for new ‘comprehensive approaches’ to counter and prevent terrorism.”

“Pardon my cynicism, but it is not at all clear the taxpayers will receive anything of value for their money given the homogenized, generic, CVE-flavored gobbledygook in the press release and grant document,” Wright wrote.

“Job One for the federal government is to keep people safe, and that can’t happen unless the government admits Islamic doctrine per se is a national security problem,” Wright explained. “There’s a lot of mindless romanticism about ‘inclusiveness’ these days, but the obvious question is this: why would we want to include people who want to kill or subjugate us?”