Clinton’s disingenuous speech on the Islamic State. By Jennifer Rubin. Washington Post, November 19, 2015.
CLINTON: Online or offline, the bottom line is that we are in a contest of ideas against an ideology of hate, and we have to win. Let’s be clear, though. Islam is not our adversary. Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism. The obsession in some quarters with a clash of civilization or repeating the specific words radical Islamic terrorism isn’t just a distraction. It gives these criminals, these murderers, more standing than they deserve. It actually plays into their hands by alienating partners we need by our side.
Our priority should be how to fight the enemy. In the end, it didn’t matter what kind of terrorist we called bin Laden. It mattered that we killed bin Laden. But we still can’t close our eyes to the fact that there is a distorted and dangerous stream of extremism within the Muslim world that continues to spread. Its adherents are relatively few in number but capable of causing profound damage, most especially to their own communities, throughout an arc of instability that stretches from North and West Africa to Asia.
Overlapping conflicts, collapsing state structures, widespread corruption, poverty, and repression have created openings for extremists to exploit. Before the Arab spring, I warned that the region’s foundations would sink into the sand without immediate reforms. Well, the need has only grown more urgent.