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What “Jihad” Actually Means in 21 Tweets

What “Jihad” Actually Means in 21 Tweets July 7, 2017

Linda Sarsour - image source: Twitter
Linda Sarsour – image source: Twitter

One of the most misunderstood, hotly debated and fear/anger-inducing words in our public vernacular is “jihad,” which means many different things to different people, not all of which are true. The word jihad has been commandeered by ISIS and other extremist groups, whipped into a frenzy by various elements in the media and paraded around by many different groups to represent the most fiery version of Muslims – those who “declare a holy war on the rest of the world.”

Prominent Arab-Muslim activist Linda recently used the word, defining it as “speaking truth” against oppression and tyranny, in a speech at the 2017 annual Islamic Society of North American convention. That speech was prominently picked up by conservative media outlets, pundits, right-wing types and FOX News, who spun her words to be a declaration of “jihad against President Donald Trump,” with the president’s own son calling for (in a tweet) the DNC to denounce Sarsour:

This has resulted in attacks and threats against Sarsour, with Twitterverse hotly debating the word and what Sarsour meant in her use of it. Qasim Rashid, who writes for and helps manage the Islam Ahmadiyya blog, said the problem, among many, is that “jihad” continues to be a word misunderstood by the majority of the general population. He broke down the meaning of “jihad” in this series of 21 tweets that are not to be missed:


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