LAHORE – John Kiser, an American intellectual, says that word “˜jihad” has been much abused by a tiny, but spectacularly successful minority of angry Muslims, whose success has been to pervert a good and holy word into a bad word, one that is associated in the non-Muslim world with Muslims killing people in God’s name.[…]
Question: how can a “tiny minority” of Muslims who “pervert” the word “jihad” be so successful? Why doesn’t the “huge majority” of Muslims either set them straight or, at the very least, see to it that their “perverted” interpretation not become so “successful”?
In an interview with The Nation on Friday, John said that Jihad and violence were now widely viewed in the public mind as synonymous with Islam. Such thinking, he believed, fuels Western Islamophobia which, in turn, encourages various forms of aggression-verbal and otherwise-that lends credence to the jihadist argument that the West hates Islam and wants to destroy it. And that is their most potent recruiting tool, he added.
In other words, jihadis wage jihad because the West accepts the definition that jihadis give to the word “jihad”?
“This sense of threat to Muslims” religious identity can best be understood among secular people if we think of Islam representing what flag and home represent to us,” he observed.