“Hiding the very language and ideological justification used by terrorists from the American people is misguided at best”
A Homeland Security report tellingly entitled “Terminology to Define the Terrorists: Recommendations from American Muslims” explains that this initiative comes from a concern not to offend moderate Muslims. By calling the terrorists “jihadists,” American officials could be “unintentionally portraying terrorists, who lack moral and religious legitimacy, as brave fighters, legitimate soldiers or spokesmen for ordinary Muslims.”
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is refusing to identify the “influential Muslim Americans” and “leading U.S.-based scholars and commentators on Islam” who met with Secretary Michael Chertoff in helping shape a softer approach to government lexicon about terrorists and their ideological motivations.
DHS and the State Department’s Counterterrorism Communications Center each issued reports urging government employees to avoid words like “jihad,” “mujahedeen” or any reference to Islam or Muslims, especially in relation to Al Qaeda.
the memos say a change in language from the U.S. government is needed to win the hearts and minds of moderate Muslims and avoid glamorizing terrorists motivated by religious ideology. “Moderate” is also frowned upon in the memos, though, with “mainstream” or “traditional” suggested as replacements.
Among the recommendations not reported previously:
* “The experts we consulted debated the word ‘liberty,’ but rejected it because many around the world would discount the term as a buzzword for American hegemony.”
* “The fact is that Islam and secular democracy are fully compatible â€“ in fact, they can make each other stronger. Senior officials should emphasize that fact.”
* The USG [U.S. government] should draw the conflict lines not between Islam and the West, but between a dangerous, cult-like network of terrorists and everyone who is in support of global security and progress.
So America, after serving for more than two centuries the sanctuary for huddled masses yearning to breathe free, is being asked to minimize liberty against fanatics bent on a global religious state. The memo doesn’t offer examples to show where Islam and secular democracy have reinforced each other, or explain how Shariah law, the imposition of religion into state affairs, is “fully compatible” with secular democracy.
It is no surprise, however, to see the changes praised by the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)…
And the guidelines were supported by:
April 30, 2008 – Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) Applauds Gov’t Initiative To Stop Using ‘Jihadist’ Terminology
MPAC APPLAUDS GOV’T INITIATIVE TO STOP USING ‘JIHADIST’ TERMINOLOGY
— by Edina Leckovic who was managing editor for Al-Talib when it instructed Muslim readers to “defend our brother” Osama bin Laden, and “refer to him as a freedom fighter, someone who has forsaken wealth and power to fight in Allah’s cause and speak out against oppressors. We take these stances only to please Allah.”
* The best of peoples, doing what they do best…
* Unfortunately,Â some buy into it:
“I’ve seen detainees break down and cry when they realize that the conduct they thought was sanctioned by God is actually a sin”