Take this latest story about the son of Osama bin Laden, for instance.
Omar Osama bin Laden bears a striking resemblance to his notorious father—except for the dreadlocks that dangle halfway down his back. Then there's the black leather biker jacket.
The 26-year-old does not renounce his father, al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, but in an interview with The Associated Press, he said there is better way to defend Islam than militancy: Omar wants to be an "ambassador for peace" between Muslims and the West.
Maybe I failed to successfully emerge from Erickson's "Trust Vs. Mistrust" stage of development with C's or better, but this outreach program is not going to be an easy sell. It's one thing to speak to a reporter about wanting to bridge gaps between the Muslim world and the West, but it's quite another to actually do it.
There's bound to be a lot skepticism and doubt that this communique will generate, So, don't think it strange when most realistically grounded people blow this off. Mr. bin Laden hasn't said what he plans to do to implement this grandiose strategy. And what that usually means is, there is no plan, just talk.
Again, I think it would be great to have someone from the Muslim world look hard at establishing a realistic worldview and becoming better able to work against terrorist forces everywhere they exist. I think this way, because I think it's sorely going to be needed in any long-term solution to the hostilities that exist, between the two worlds. But until I see something more definitive than rhetoric and feel good statements laced with hope and vision, I cannot be optimistic.