Our Opinion: Nothing less

Islamic terrorists proved Saturday they retain the ability and the bloodlust to commit massive atrocities.

Using a bomb mounted on a truck, the al-Shabab organization, linked to al-Qaida, killed 276 people in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia. More than 300 others were injured.

Such bomb attacks have not been uncommon in Africa, with several claiming scores of victims. Saturday’s was among the worst.

Al-Shabab has been working to topple the already shaky regime of Somalia for years. Leaders of the group said earlier this year they would step up the frequency and ferocity of their assaults, in response to pledges by both the government and U.S. President Donald Trump to increase efforts to defeat al-Shabab.

There are dozens of Islamic extremist organizations, throughout the world. Al-Shabab has been among the most vicious.

For years during former President Barack Obama’s administration, the strategy was to contain Islamic terrorists — sometimes even to discuss power-sharing with them, as with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Surely the implacable nature of the extremists, expressed in their vows to kill anyone who fails to bow to them, has made it obvious any policy that falls short of destroying the terrorists is both dishonest and doomed to failure.

It has been suggested U.S. strategy should focus on major military powers such as Russia and China, which are existential threats to our nation. Indeed, that idea has merit.

But murderous heathens such as the terrorists who pervert the teachings of Islam to massacre the innocent time after time cannot be ignored. They cannot be allowed to survive, in fact. Nothing less than destroying them will suffice.