Terrorism as “Anti-Islamic Activity”

The Politically-Correct contortionist award goes to the British government for its Orwellian scheme of relabling Islamic terrorism “anti-Islamic activity.” Let’s let Canadian hate-speech defendant Mark Steyn tell about it:

My favorite headline of the year so far comes from The Daily Mail in Britain: “Government Renames Islamic Terrorism As ‘Anti-Islamic Activity’ To Woo Muslims.”

Her Majesty’s government is not alone in feeling it’s not always helpful to link Islam and the, ah, various unpleasantnesses with suicide bombers and whatnot. Even in his cowboy Crusader heyday, President Bush liked to cool down the crowd with a lot of religion-of-peace stuff. But the British have now decided that kind of mealy-mouthed “respect” is no longer sufficient. So, henceforth, any terrorism perpetrated by persons of an Islamic persuasion will be designated “anti-Islamic activity” Britain’s home secretary, Jacqui Smith, unveiled the new brand name in a speech a few days ago. “There is nothing Islamic about the wish to terrorize, nothing Islamic about plotting murder, pain and grief,” she told her audience. “Indeed, if anything, these actions are anti-Islamic.”

Steyn observes that during the Blitz no one called the Luftwaffe airstrikes “anti-German activity.” So will England label the surge in Iraq “pro-Islamic activity” or “anti-American activity”?

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.pagantolutheran.blogspot.com Bruce

    I could be accused of all sorts of things here, but sometimes it seems to me the best way to deal with the hotheaded little boys posing as radical Islamic leaders and followers, is to intentionally not use anything like inflammatory language where they can hear and react to it.
    If at the same time you reach out persuasively to an extremely important demographic–moderate muslims–then perhaps there is some wisdom in the choice of words the Brits are using.

    It all looks so therapeutic–not the American way. But the Brits have this profound proper streak culturally that we don’t really grasp. That too may be in play.

    How to deal with hot-headed little boys. That is the question.

  • http://www.pagantolutheran.blogspot.com Bruce

    I could be accused of all sorts of things here, but sometimes it seems to me the best way to deal with the hotheaded little boys posing as radical Islamic leaders and followers, is to intentionally not use anything like inflammatory language where they can hear and react to it.
    If at the same time you reach out persuasively to an extremely important demographic–moderate muslims–then perhaps there is some wisdom in the choice of words the Brits are using.

    It all looks so therapeutic–not the American way. But the Brits have this profound proper streak culturally that we don’t really grasp. That too may be in play.

    How to deal with hot-headed little boys. That is the question.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Pr. Lehmann

    Ironically one could label the crucifixion of our Lord as “pro-Christian activity.”

    But what the Brits are doing is just nuts.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Pr. Lehmann

    Ironically one could label the crucifixion of our Lord as “pro-Christian activity.”

    But what the Brits are doing is just nuts.

  • organshoes

    It would seem to be a wise move, Bruce, if Britain had resolutely tried some other, more militant technique first.
    But, truth is, Britain has weakly addressed that it has a problem with Islamic extremists in their midst, in spite of the London subway bombing and other threats.
    Hot-headed little boys are hardly going to care if their parents are being called into the office to apologize. What will those parents do? Put them in time-out? Take away their matches?
    Those parents have been absent from day one. Maybe those parents are urging them on by their silence, happy to see a gumption in their offspring which they themselves lacked.
    Maybe those moderate parents will just as happily say, ‘We tried, but alas we have no influence.’

  • organshoes

    It would seem to be a wise move, Bruce, if Britain had resolutely tried some other, more militant technique first.
    But, truth is, Britain has weakly addressed that it has a problem with Islamic extremists in their midst, in spite of the London subway bombing and other threats.
    Hot-headed little boys are hardly going to care if their parents are being called into the office to apologize. What will those parents do? Put them in time-out? Take away their matches?
    Those parents have been absent from day one. Maybe those parents are urging them on by their silence, happy to see a gumption in their offspring which they themselves lacked.
    Maybe those moderate parents will just as happily say, ‘We tried, but alas we have no influence.’

  • Bror Erickson

    I just got done reading an article in Kyrka och Folk (Church and People) from Sweden. It made the very good point that to be what we call a moderate muslim requires a very radical interpretation of the Koran.
    We in the west do not even understand our own historical religion (Christianity) but we want to play like were experts on Islam, determining who are the radicals and who are the moderates. Can anyone tell me when, exactly at what point in history, was Islam a religion of peace? It has been a religion of conversion by conquest since its very inception. Mohammed even had to convert Mecca by the sword. At some point we in the west are going to have to wake up to this reality.

  • Bror Erickson

    I just got done reading an article in Kyrka och Folk (Church and People) from Sweden. It made the very good point that to be what we call a moderate muslim requires a very radical interpretation of the Koran.
    We in the west do not even understand our own historical religion (Christianity) but we want to play like were experts on Islam, determining who are the radicals and who are the moderates. Can anyone tell me when, exactly at what point in history, was Islam a religion of peace? It has been a religion of conversion by conquest since its very inception. Mohammed even had to convert Mecca by the sword. At some point we in the west are going to have to wake up to this reality.

  • organshoes

    Yes, Bror.
    That calling a thing what it is requires such courage and even defiance, well, ’twas ever thus, I suppose.
    I urge readers of this blog to visit the archives of Issues, Etc., for its many cogent discussions of Islam.
    Of course, Issues, Etc. always calls things what they are. Always.

  • organshoes

    Yes, Bror.
    That calling a thing what it is requires such courage and even defiance, well, ’twas ever thus, I suppose.
    I urge readers of this blog to visit the archives of Issues, Etc., for its many cogent discussions of Islam.
    Of course, Issues, Etc. always calls things what they are. Always.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    I am constantly amazed that people have a hard time believing in moderate Muslims while at the same time decrying the existence of liberal (or, honestly, even “moderate”) Christians.

    Bror (@4), your statement that “to be what we call a moderate muslim requires a very radical interpretation of the Koran” could just as easily be turned around to say that “to be what we call a liberal Christian requires a very radical interpretation of the Bible.”

    And so it does. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t liberal Christians out there. But I wouldn’t be surprised if some mullah was preaching that there is no such thing as a liberal Christian — all one has to do is to read the Bible to see that it says there is only one way to heaven and Muslims who trust in their works are going to Hell. He would be right, but to the great surprise of many who call themselves Christians.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    I am constantly amazed that people have a hard time believing in moderate Muslims while at the same time decrying the existence of liberal (or, honestly, even “moderate”) Christians.

    Bror (@4), your statement that “to be what we call a moderate muslim requires a very radical interpretation of the Koran” could just as easily be turned around to say that “to be what we call a liberal Christian requires a very radical interpretation of the Bible.”

    And so it does. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t liberal Christians out there. But I wouldn’t be surprised if some mullah was preaching that there is no such thing as a liberal Christian — all one has to do is to read the Bible to see that it says there is only one way to heaven and Muslims who trust in their works are going to Hell. He would be right, but to the great surprise of many who call themselves Christians.

  • Bror Erickson

    tODD,
    No one is discounting that there are in fact liberal or moderate muslims, one is only saying that there position is untenable. The Koran has a life of its own, and it teaches the exact opposite of what the Bible teaches (by your own admission here.) It has never taught anything close to turn the other cheek.
    So yes there are liberal Christians, that is people who call themselves Christians but are in fact not. But radical Christians are not known for acts of violence, because if they take Christ’s words seriously they will be put to death for going on a medical mission to Afghanistan and trying to love their enemy. (That is not to say that horrific things have not been done in the name of Christ, it is to say that those doing those things were not following Christ, even if they thought they were.) The same cannot be said about Osama.

  • Bror Erickson

    tODD,
    No one is discounting that there are in fact liberal or moderate muslims, one is only saying that there position is untenable. The Koran has a life of its own, and it teaches the exact opposite of what the Bible teaches (by your own admission here.) It has never taught anything close to turn the other cheek.
    So yes there are liberal Christians, that is people who call themselves Christians but are in fact not. But radical Christians are not known for acts of violence, because if they take Christ’s words seriously they will be put to death for going on a medical mission to Afghanistan and trying to love their enemy. (That is not to say that horrific things have not been done in the name of Christ, it is to say that those doing those things were not following Christ, even if they thought they were.) The same cannot be said about Osama.

  • Joe

    I have no doubt that there are plenty of Muslims who are “moderate” or at least disapprove of terrorism. But my question is, where are they? What are they doing to make things better? Are they out there actively preaching moderate Islam? Are they starting competing madrases in Europe to counter act the whahabist madrases that are in place all over Europeand the US? Where are their press releases denouncing radical Islam? Every once and a while someone speaks up for moderate Muslims and says the whabisits are out of line, but it is not very often and when they do there never seems to be an out pooring of support for them by other Muslims.

    How effective will reaching out to this group be when this group has done nothing but demonstrate that it is either not able or not willing to be a part of the solution?

  • Joe

    I have no doubt that there are plenty of Muslims who are “moderate” or at least disapprove of terrorism. But my question is, where are they? What are they doing to make things better? Are they out there actively preaching moderate Islam? Are they starting competing madrases in Europe to counter act the whahabist madrases that are in place all over Europeand the US? Where are their press releases denouncing radical Islam? Every once and a while someone speaks up for moderate Muslims and says the whabisits are out of line, but it is not very often and when they do there never seems to be an out pooring of support for them by other Muslims.

    How effective will reaching out to this group be when this group has done nothing but demonstrate that it is either not able or not willing to be a part of the solution?

  • Carl Vehse

    I think the opinion of Dr. John Warwick Montgomery would be relevant here.

    From approximately 7m25s into the Novermber 29, 2007, Issues, Etc. interview, “Muslim Riots in Paris & the Punishment of a British School Teacher in Sudan for Allowing Students to Name a Teddy Bear ‘Mohammed’” (http://www.kfuoam.org/mp3/Issues7/Issues_Etc_Nov_29b.mp3), Dr. John Warwick Montgomery noted:

    “You’ll pardon my opinion on this, but I would outlaw the Muslim religion on the very same basis that I would outlaw the Aztec religion. The Aztec religion holds to human sacrifice. I would not allow that religion to prevail, nor would I allow Islam to prevail, because the moment that they get into any situation of power, the result is this kind of thing, which is against human rights and against human civilization. And I don’t care that there’s some lovely Muslims around. I’m sure there were some very fine Aztecs as well.”

    I’ll second that motion.

  • Carl Vehse

    I think the opinion of Dr. John Warwick Montgomery would be relevant here.

    From approximately 7m25s into the Novermber 29, 2007, Issues, Etc. interview, “Muslim Riots in Paris & the Punishment of a British School Teacher in Sudan for Allowing Students to Name a Teddy Bear ‘Mohammed’” (http://www.kfuoam.org/mp3/Issues7/Issues_Etc_Nov_29b.mp3), Dr. John Warwick Montgomery noted:

    “You’ll pardon my opinion on this, but I would outlaw the Muslim religion on the very same basis that I would outlaw the Aztec religion. The Aztec religion holds to human sacrifice. I would not allow that religion to prevail, nor would I allow Islam to prevail, because the moment that they get into any situation of power, the result is this kind of thing, which is against human rights and against human civilization. And I don’t care that there’s some lovely Muslims around. I’m sure there were some very fine Aztecs as well.”

    I’ll second that motion.

  • Bror Erickson

    A but the Spaniards were such bastards for puting an end to the aztec reign. I mean come one fighting violence with violence? Two wrongs do not a right make.

  • Bror Erickson

    A but the Spaniards were such bastards for puting an end to the aztec reign. I mean come one fighting violence with violence? Two wrongs do not a right make.

  • Greg

    And yet the world is such a better place for such wrongs. The world is a better place without Aztec barbarism. Montgomery is right. If the west gives civil rights to muslims in the end only muslims will have civil rights.

  • Greg

    And yet the world is such a better place for such wrongs. The world is a better place without Aztec barbarism. Montgomery is right. If the west gives civil rights to muslims in the end only muslims will have civil rights.

  • CRB

    I can’t help but wonder what “The Iron Lady” would have said were she still P.M.? Or, for that matter, what
    “Winnie” might have said. “Political correctness” will be the death of the West, in time!

  • CRB

    I can’t help but wonder what “The Iron Lady” would have said were she still P.M.? Or, for that matter, what
    “Winnie” might have said. “Political correctness” will be the death of the West, in time!

  • Carl Vehse

    It’s not called “political correctness” when it gives aid and comfort to the enemy.

  • Carl Vehse

    It’s not called “political correctness” when it gives aid and comfort to the enemy.

  • Bror Erickson

    Greg,
    It was sarcasm. Never does come over well in print. But then I have a reputation on this page somewhat, and didn’t think I would have to explain myself.
    Of course you fight violence with violence. How else do you defend the innocent?

  • Bror Erickson

    Greg,
    It was sarcasm. Never does come over well in print. But then I have a reputation on this page somewhat, and didn’t think I would have to explain myself.
    Of course you fight violence with violence. How else do you defend the innocent?

  • Carl Vehse

    You fight violence with force. Violence is the unjust use of force.

  • Carl Vehse

    You fight violence with force. Violence is the unjust use of force.


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