August 10, 2006

Bush (Finally) Names the Enemy

Bush's statement today on the UK terror plot:

The recent arrests that our fellow citizens are now learning about are a stark reminder that this nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation.
May seem like a small thing, but this is the first time, so far as I'm aware, that Bush has ever identified our enemy by name. In my book, that's a step forward.

UPDATE : LGF noticed it, too. Michelle notes that "he got the 'I'-word in there."

Clarity & Resolve predicts that we should expect "a reaction from [CAIR] on Mr. Bush's clear observation."

Lefties like Pam Spaulding aren't buying it: "...is it possible Uncle Karl's rolling out his political game plan overseas now? Sure. Dear Leader, of course, is beating his chest on cue for the sheeple..."

Chris Floyd worries that this is a distraction from Lebanon, lamenting that "Bushists Blather While Lebanon Burns". Floyd cites an article by Juan Cole and invites readers to "...see the illustrations of the kind of 'Islamic fascists' being killed and despoiled with American weaponry even as we speak"

UPDATE 2 :Sure, enough, CAIR has issued a statement:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Muslim groups criticized President George W. Bush on Thursday for calling a foiled plot to blow up airplanes part of a "war with Islamic fascists," saying the term could inflame anti-Muslim tensions. . . .

"We believe this is an ill-advised term and we believe that it is counter-productive to associate Islam or Muslims with fascism," said Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations advocacy group.

"We ought to take advantage of these incidents to make sure that we do not start a religious war against Islam and Muslims," he told a news conference in Washington.

LGF asks "The question now, of course, is: will Bush be politically compelled to issue a “clarification?"

James Joyner at Outside the Beltway and several other commenters note that Bush has used the similar terms "Islamic radicalism" "militant jihadism" and "Islamo-fascism" previously, for example:

Some call this evil Islamic radicalism; others, militant Jihadism; still others, Islamo-fascism. Whatever we choose to call this enemy, we must recognize that this ideology is very different from the tenets of the great religion of Islam.
Good catch, folks. I agree that those are also ways of "naming our enemy." At the same time, the term "Islamic fascists" strikes me differently than the above terms. I've heard a lot of Bush speeches over the last six years, but those words today just jumped out at me for some reason. Maybe it's because the term "Islamic radicals" evokes an image of a "tiny minority" of fringe elements hiding in the shadows (i.e., al Qaeda), while "Islamic fascists" evokes an image of an army of Muslim soldiers marching in a military parade (e.g., Hizb'Allah). Then again, "Islamo-fascist" would seem to evoke the same image--and yet it doesn't, for some reason.

By Ragnar Danneskjold, Typical Bitter Gun-Clinger at 01:11 PM | Comments |