And their media stooges who never identify them as an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case, or note the jihad terror convictions of several of their former officers, or their consistent opposition to every anti-terror measure ever devised, will no doubt go along, as will pro-jihad “journalists” such as Christiane Amanpour, Manya Brachear, Bob Smietana, Kari Huus, Dave Weigel, Michael Kruse, Eli Clifton, Alex Kane, Adam Serwer, Max Blumenthal, and all the rest of them.
The irony is that, as I have explained many times (as in this National Review article), the term “Islamist” is often used by those who believe that Islam is a Religion of Peace that has been hijacked by a tiny minority of extremists, to create a distance between Islam, which is supposedly entirely benign and peaceful, and Islamism, which teaches political authoritarianism, subjugation of non-Muslims, and everything else about Islam that is unpleasant and at variance with Western principles of human rights.
You can see a recent example of this in Martin Amis’s fatuous statements here: “In ‘The Second Plane,’ a collection of nonfiction published in 2008, Mr. Amis noted that he is an “Islamismophobe,” not an Islamophobe. The events of Sept. 11 left him bereft and angry and in desperate search of distinctions. ‘Let us make the position clear,’ he wrote in an essay titled ‘Terror and Boredom.’ ‘We can begin by saying, not only that we respect Muhammad, but that no serious person could fail to respect Muhammad. . . . But we do not respect Muhammad Atta.’” No serious person could fail to respect Muhammad? Despite the fact that Atta and others like him look to Muhammad as their exemplar and inspiration, not without abundant justification for doing so from the canonical accounts of Muhammad’s life?
Anyway, now even the word “Islamist,” although it is usually used to exonerate Islam and distance its teachings from the violence and hate propagated in its name, is unacceptable for Hamas-linked CAIR. Clearly Hamas-linked CAIR’s amiable beekeper, Honest Ibe Hooper, sees how successful he and his fellow Islamic supremacists have been in co-opting the media, government, and law enforcement in recent years, and is pressing on toward final victory: the total silencing of any resistance to the global jihad and Islamic supremacism.
“ISLAM-OPED: Media Urged to Drop Term ‘Islamist’ in New Year: CAIR, a Muslin [sic!] Civil rights group active in Orange County, is urging the media and the public to be more judicious in how they describe Muslim public officials,” from the LakeForest Patch, January 3 (thanks to all who sent this in):
Ibrahim Hooper is national communications director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil liberties organization with an active branch in Orange County.
As many people make promises to themselves to improve their lives or their societies in the coming year, here is a suggested New Year’s resolution for media outlets in America and worldwide: Drop the term “Islamist.”
The Associated Press (AP) added the term to its influential Stylebook in 2012. That entry reads: “Islamist — Supporter of government in accord with the laws of Islam. Those who view the Quran as a political model encompass a wide range of Muslims, from mainstream politicians to militants known as jihadi.”
The AP says it sought input from Arabic-speaking experts and hoped to provide a neutral perspective by emphasizing the “wide range” of religious views encompassed in the term.
Many Muslims who wish to serve the public good are influenced by the principles of their faith. Islam teaches Muslims to work for the welfare of humanity and to be honest and just. If this inspiration came from the Bible, such a person might well be called a Good Samaritan. But when the source is the Quran, the person is an “Islamist.”
Unfortunately, the term “Islamist” has become shorthand for “Muslims we don’t like.” It is currently used in an almost exclusively pejorative context and is often coupled with the term “extremist,” giving it an even more negative slant.
There are few, if any, positive references to “Islamist” in news articles. There are also no — nor should there be — references to “Christianists,” “Judaists” or “Hinduists” for those who would similarly seek governments “in accord with the laws” of their respective faiths.
No journalist would think of referring to the “Judaist government of Israel,” the “Christianist leader Rick Santorum” or “Hinduist Indian politician Narendra Modi,” while use of “Islamist” has become ubiquitous. It might be an interesting exercise to hold a contest, the winner of which would be the first to find a positive mainstream media reference to “Islamist.”
Quite likely, such a contest would end up being similar to a unicorn hunt.
The frequent linkage of the term “Islamist” to violence and denial of religious and human rights is also strongly promoted by Islamophobic groups and individuals who seek to launch rhetorical attacks on Islam and Muslims, without the public censure that would normally accompany such bigoted attacks on any other faith.
Islam-bashers routinely use the term to disingenuously claim they only hate “political” Islam, not the faith itself. Yet they fail to explain how a practicing Muslim can be active in the political arena without attracting the label “Islamist.”
If the term is retained, media professionals should modify its use to reflect language similar to that used in the AP Stylebook reference to “fundamentalist,” which states that the label should not be used unless a group applies the term to itself.
By not dropping or modifying use of the term, the media are making a political and religious value judgment each time it is used.
That is hardly fair or balanced.
What Honest Ibe is not telling you here is that “Islamists” are generally proponents of political Islam, an authoritarian system that would deny basic rights to non-Muslims and women. Their political agenda is grounded in Islam in a way that no fair-minded person would say that Santorum’s is grounded in Christianity. But “fair-minded” would leave out Honest Ibe.