This is from CAIR’s e-mail blast this evening
U.S. MUSLIMS CONCERNED ABOUT BUSH’S USE OF ‘ISLAMIC FASCISTS’ – TOP
CAIR: ‘Today you equated the religion of peace with the ugliness of fascism’
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 8/10/06) – A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today expressed concern over President Bush’s use of the term “Islamic fascists” in a news conference about the arrest of 21 suspects in a plot to bomb airliners flying between Britain and the United States.
SEE: Religious Group Bristles at Bush Term ‘Islamic Fascists’ (Reuters)
In a letter to President Bush, Parvez Ahmed, board chairman of the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) wrote in part:
“American Muslims have consistently condemned all acts of terrorism, whether carried out by individuals, groups or states. We repudiate anyone who plans or carries out a terrorist act. The American Muslim community remains dedicated to the protection of our nation’s security. . .
“Unfortunately, your statement this morning that America ‘is at war with Islamic fascists’ contributes to a rising level of hostility to Islam and the American-Muslim community. Just today, Gallup released a poll indicating that four out of ten Americans feel ‘prejudice’ toward Muslims.
SEE: Anti-Muslim Sentiments Fairly Commonplace
“You have on many occasions said Islam is a ‘religion of peace.’ Today you equated the religion of peace with the ugliness of fascism.
“The use of ill-defined hot button terms such as ‘Islamic fascists,’ ‘militant jihadism,’ ‘Islamic radicalism,’ or ‘totalitarian Islamic empire,’ harms our nation’s image and interests worldwide, particularly in the Islamic world. It feeds the perception that the war on terror is actually a war on Islam. . .
“American Muslims stand ready to serve as a bridge of understanding to the Islamic world. We can best fulfill that role by offering advice that can help prevent misperceptions and misunderstandings between different nations and cultures.”
CAIR, America’s largest Islamic civil liberties group, has 32 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
“Today you equated the religion of peace with the ugliness of fascism.” If a mainstream Muslim group can’t see or make the distinction between RADICAL/MILITANT/FASCISM Islam and thinks any of those terms are interchangable with Islam, we are in pretty bad shape, indeed.