Who is America Fighting - Jihadists or Extremists?
By Jeffrey Imm
By Jeffrey Imm
Now we officially know the answer - the U.S. Government states that America is definitely not fighting "jihadists", based on new guidelines directing federal agencies not to even use the term "jihadist". So who is America fighting? Defense Secretary Robert Gates tells us: "the enemy is extremism".
D. Why "The War On Extremists" Fails to Understand the Islamist Imperatives
Where the weary U.S. administration's retreat into a non-ideological "War On Extremists" (which would be aptly abbreviated as W.O.E.) truly fails is in its belief that America can wage a non-ideological battle against Jihad. Such advocates are wrong that by merely calling Jihadists other names such as "extremists" - that it will encourage peace with Islamists.
Their major failure is the inability to understand that Islamism is an activist ideology. Islamism is not just a supremacist way of thinking like racism or other supremacist viewpoints.
Islamism is an activist conflation of Islam with a political form of governance driven by imperatives for control and action. The imperatives for control and action inherent in Islamism itself are what resulted in impatient Islamists like Osama Bin Laden to adopt terrorism as a tactic.
The Islamist imperatives of control and action can be seen daily in: (a) Islamist condemnation and denunciation of democracy, (b) Islamist calls for expansionism and separatist territories within other nations (e.g., Thailand, Philippines), (c) Islamist groups calls for a global caliphate, (d) Islamist efforts to dictate legal standards by Sharia and to enforce Sharia law (e.g., Pakistan, Afghanistan), (e) frequent protests by Islamists against any perceived slight, (f) Islamist violence to demonstrate their peaceful nature, (g) Islamist calls for control of media and freedom of speech, (h) Islamist demands for controls over freedom of religion based on Sharia concepts, (i) Islamist suppression of religious beliefs that challenge theirs, (j) Islamist demands for their own set of laws separate from the rest of a society -- as shown in the push for Sharia in the United Kingdom and Canada.
A pro-freedom nation like the United States of America remains on a collision course with totalitarian Islamism, regardless of the goals of the current administration behind the "War On Extremists". The choice is whether America will face the ideology behind Jihadism and confront it with the courage of our ideological convictions, or whether America will hide behind the delusion that if we can just control "extremists", and don't say any "offensive" words to Islamists, we will have gained a respite from Islamist terrorism.
As George Weigel stated in his February 2008 commentary about the inability to define the enemy as Jihadism, "if the United States can't explain to the world why religious freedom, civility, tolerance and democratic persuasion are morally superior to coercion in religious and political matters, then America stands disarmed before those who believe it their duty to impose a starkly different view of the good society on us."
While the current administration may seek "peace in our time" with Islamists, the only peace that the Islamist imperatives will truly accept will be in our submission and surrender as a freedom-loving nation.
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