Oh, Oriana, how Italy misses you.
“Western definition of “jihad” must be corrected — Italian expert,” from the Kuwait National News Agency:
KUWAIT, March 29 (KUNA) — The definitions of “jihad” and “holy war” as presented by Western media need to be corrected if a true and undistorted image of Islam is be presented to the world, said Italian professor of Islamic culture Valeria Paicentini on Thursday.
Speaking to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), the visiting professor said, “Our media is distorting a lot Islam’s aspects and features … and this misunderstanding media has created can only be countered by looking closely at the true meanings of such terms as ‘jihad’ and ‘holy war’ in Islam.” It is a common misconception that “jihad” means “military action”, when in fact it translates to “effort” of which just one aspect is to do with taking action to defend oneself, she said.
The best way for Muslims to clear up this “misconception” would be for them to act upon the definition of jihad as spiritual struggle, and to take steps to counter actively the Muslims all over the world who are acting upon the “misconception” that jihad involves warfare against unbelievers.
Ironically, she said, “holy war” was a term introduced by the Vatican to “counter the Islamic wave” it feared would spread throughout Europe.