Reuters reports that Muslims are upset because President Bush used the term “Islamic Fascists” in his response to the foiled terrorist plot to blow up airliners over the Atlantic. They don’t object to calling the terrorists fascists. They object to linking this label with Islam.
I can understand their discomfort. It would be an unnecessary linkage if the basis for the terrorist actions were something other than religion. However, the terrorists justify their actions with the tenets of Islam. It may very well be a faulty interpretation of Islam. But the terrorists claim their religion, Islam, compels them to take these dastardly measures. It is also true that the perpetrators of 9/11 were all Muslim. Richard Reid the shoe bomber was a Muslim. The London transit system bombers were all Muslim. The terrorists who attacked Bali were Muslim. In each of these cases, Islam or their concept of it was the motivating factor.
So if CAIR and other Muslim advocacy groups want to stop the linkage of Islam with words like fascist, tyranny, and terrorist, they need to vocally denounce the violence of terrorists. They need to advocate for religious tolerance and respect. They need to publicly reject the calls by Islamic leaders for the complete destruction of Israel and they need to acknowledge Israel’s right to exist. Only then can we begin to unlink the image of the Islam and fascist terrorists.