Bush and the “Muslim Problem”

This is quite an intiative by President Bush.  Frankly, I can’t help but cringe when I read things like this. Our country’s leaders have no idea how to approach Islam in the slightest bit.  <Sigh> Maybe one day we’ll figure it out, but not anytime in the near future that is for sure. I think that a good place for them to start would be the free report posted on this blog.  To some it may seem like common sense, but that is what our leaders are lacking at the moment.

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The US president has said he will send an envoy to the largest grouping of Islamic nations and called on Muslims to speak out against “extremists” he says are Islam’s “true enemy”.

George Bush said appointing an envoy would demonstrate to Muslim communities “our interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship”.

But several American Muslims told Al Jazeera that Bush’s walk did not match his talk.

They said Muslims had been discriminated against especially since the September 11, 2001 attacks and that the country’s military action was not congruent with its rhetoric that Islam is a peaceful religion.

Bush did not say who would be made the first US envoy to the 57-nation Organisation of the Islamic Conference, in his latest bid to counter the tide of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world.

But Al Jazeera’s Viviana Hurtado said he would have to be a respected American Muslim who can articulate US foreign policy, withstand criticism at home and scepticism from people in the Middle East who may see him as Bush’s puppet.

‘True enemy’

In his speech marking the 50th anniversary of the Islamic Centre of Washington, Bush said that while the principles of religious freedom have been expanding elsewhere in the world, in the Middle East there had been a rise of “extremists”.

“This enemy falsely claims that America is at war with Muslims and the Muslim faith, when in fact it is these radicals who are Islam’s true enemy,” he said.

“We must encourage more Muslim leaders to add their voices, to speak out against radical extremists who infiltrate mosques, to denounce organisations that use the veneer of Islamic belief to support and fund acts of violence.”

Asked about the simplistic way of viewing the Middle East as having only either moderates or extremists, Karen Hughes, the US undersecretary of state for public diplomacy, told Al Jazeera that the distinction was to draw a clear line between those who advocate using violence and those who do not.

Anti-American sentiment has increased since the US-led invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan and Bush’s past use of terms such as “crusade” and “Islamo-fascists” in referring to the “war on terror” and Iraq has angered many Muslims worldwide.

(Source: Al Jazeera and agencies)

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3 Responses

  1. Most of the world feels that there is a Bush Problem.

  2. Yes they do.

  3. Hi Justin,

    I am glad that you made this post. I noticed something important about what you wrote saying,

    “Bush did not say who would be made the first US envoy to the 57-nation Organisation of the Islamic Conference, in his latest bid to counter the tide of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world.”

    The mere fact that this is occurring is extremely important, because it means that either, America’s Muslim population is large enough that its behooves the leaders of this nation to play an active role in interests of Muslims in Muslim lands.

    Or that America’s interests are so involved in politics and national development of Muslims and Muslim nations that it behooves American leaders to become accountable for its foreign policy and subsequently those grievances that develop as a result of that foreign policy.

    Or

    A bit of both – though I am leaning with the latter – either way it is a good sign. Though, I certainly hope that leison is ready for the kind of scrutiny that will surface with this title. I am glad it is not me.

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