Here yet again, jihadists present themselves as the exponents of “true Islamic teachings.” Yet in the American and European mainstream one must hold to the dogma that the jihadists twist the true, peaceful Islamic teachings, or risk being ruled out of polite discourse. Of course, there is no Pope of Islam, so no one can say definitively that anyone else does or does not represent “true Islamic teachings,” but the force of the jihadist appeal in the Islamic world is undeniable, and it is silly and self-defeating for Western analysts to ignore or reflexively deny that they have a case, or even worse, to charge those who report that this appeal does have power in the Islamic world with “agreeing with Osama bin Laden” or “racism” or “bigotry.” This also undercuts any efforts by sincere Muslim reformers, since it denies that there is anything that needs reforming.
I’ll happily accept that the jihadists do not represent true Islamic teachings as soon as peaceful Muslims begin to mount a large-scale successful counter to this jihadist claim.
“Minister named to ‘Islamic Cabinet,'” from AP :
CAIRO, Egypt (AP) – A Sunni insurgent coalition in Iraq announced Monday the appointment of an education minister to the group’s so-called 10-member “Islamic Cabinet,” set up in April to challenge the Iraqi government.
In a statement posted on an Islamic Web site, the Islamic State of Iraq, made up of eight insurgent groups, including al-Qaida in Iraq, said its leader Abu Omar al-Baghdadi chose Mohammed Khalil al-Badria for the education position.
Al-Baghdadi tasked al-Badria with “protecting our sons against moral and ideological deviation and raising a new generation of sons of Islam based on true Islamic teachings and away from the filth of secular tenets.”