The White House recently released its “Empowering Local Partners to Prevent Violent Extremism in the United States” [PDF], a plan that calls for a community-based approach that includes greater support and information-sharing with local officials.
But in that 12-page plan, the administration attempted to disassociate the Islamic faith from the terrorism perpetrated by Islamic groups like al-Qaeda, saying al-Qaeda “tried to spark a conflict between faiths and divide us as Americans. But they failed.” The document also claims that the “overwhelming majority” of the victims of al-Qaeda are Muslims — and argues that one of the nation’s priorities must be to counter al-Qaeda’s “propaganda that the United States is somehow at war with Islam.”
“We will challenge this propaganda through our word and deeds, defined by the very ideals of who we are as Americans,” the plan continues. “As the president has stated repeatedly, the United States is not, and never will be, at war with Islam. Islam is part of America, a country that cherishes the active participation of all its citizens, regardless of background and belief. We live what al-Qa’ida violently rejects — religious freedom and pluralism.”
Lt. Col. Bob Maginnis (USA-Ret.), who currently serves as senior fellow for national security at the Family Research Council, says the Obama administration goes out of its way to paint Islam in a positive light.
“They celebrate Islam in many cases, and any derogatory statement made about Islam is condemned by the administration and its officials,” he notes. “To try to extract it totally, without mention of Islam, is incredibly naïve and dangerous. Yeah, there are extremists of other stripes out there. But today, most people, when you think of extremism, if you follow the news and terrorism, you think of Islamic extremism.”
Maginnis further points out that evangelist Franklin Graham was not allowed to speak at the Pentagon last year on the National Day of Prayer because he once referred to Islam as “evil.”
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