Reformist Muslims were banned from 'White House Conference on Violent Extremism (by nobody in particular)'
This is an outrage that should be taken up by GOP leaders. Charles Hoskinson reports in the Washington Examiner:
The White House excluded members of a prominent group of reformist Muslims from its terror summit this week, apparently because President Obama rejects their argument that such groups as Islamic State of Iraq and Syria are actually motivated by Islam.
A group of 23 prominent Muslim reformers signed a full-page ad in the Sunday New York Times on Jan. 11 asking "What can Muslims do to reclaim their 'beautiful religion'?" (snip)
Maajid Nawaz, a former Islamist radical andone of those who signed the Times advertisement, is co-founder of the Quilliam Foundation, an anti-extremist British think-tank. The refusal of Obama and his officials to name their real enemy is referred to among reformers as the "Voldemort effect," after the villain in the Harry Potter books whose name could not be mentioned.
Nawaz told CNN on Wednesday that refusing to address the Islamist ideology directly puts all Muslims at risk of being blamed for the actions of a tiny minority — the exact opposite effect of what Obama intended by his approach.
The White House cannot claim to have been ignorant of the group’s effort to win over the world’s billion-plus Muslims to a reform version of their religion, eschewing the very “violent extremism” that Obama and company decry. After all, The NYT is often referred to as the “House Organ of the Democratic Party.” And anyone who bothers to read the Koran will encounter multiple problematic verses instructing the pious to persecute, oppress and kill infidels.
The Obama administration is pushing the self-evidently absurd position that the people who kill in the name of Islam have nothing to do with Islam. I don’t believe that anyone outside of Obama fanatics, and those paid to say so, really believes this. Eric Holder has already gone to the nuclear option, demonizing the question as something the Fox News is pushing, a line that is intended to mean that it is purely partisan. What it does in fact, however, is endorse Fox News as wiling to be honest. Keep in mind that substantial majorities of the public acknowledge the bias of the mainstream media, so the fact that it is mainly Fox reporting the issue does not discredit it.
So the “White House Conference” explicitly refuses to support those who are trying to direct Islam into a reformist direction, on the theory that doing so would connect terror to Islam, and therefore somehow “legitimize” ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al Shabab, and the other groups that follow the literal language of the Koran. As if Muslims with theological questions would look to the White House, the American government, or Barack Obama as arbiters of what is legitimate Islam.
It is patently absurd, and completely destructive of the possibility of neutralizing radical Islam to shun those who want to reform it.
Anyone who wants to run for president on the GOP ticket has a major opening here. So do senators and representatives, from John McCain and Lindsey Graham to Chuck Schumer and Louie Gohmert.
It is time to push back. Today, The Mall of America came under threat. Americans know this is not a remote issue, and Obama is forfeiting his responsibility to protect us.
Read the entire Hoskinson article, and also this Daily Beast piece by Asra Nomani that explains the views of the reformists.