Hillary: ‘radical jihadism,’ ‘radical Islam’ mean the same thing — but one is more dangerous

From The Washington Times

Hillary Clinton pushed back Monday against criticism from Donald Trump and declared that she was unafraid to use the term “radical Islamic terrorism,” but the likely Democratic presidential nominee then gave a 30-minute speech about the Orlando massacre without uttering the words.

Experts on fighting terrorism split on the importance of the label applied to the violent extremist strain within the Muslim faith. But they agreed that U.S. leaders must directly and unequivocally confront the ideology behind the terrorist movement that is at war with the West.

Sebastian Gorka, an authority on terrorism and irregular warfare, said that referring to radical Islam as such was “hugely important” in advancing the fight against terrorism.

“It is absolutely crucial what you call the enemy and how you understand who they are and what they want,” he said. “If you don’t accurately describe the problem, how are you going to solve it?”


He called the arguments against using the term “totally bogus,” noting that the president of Egypt and the king of Jordan have described the terrorist scourge as a struggle within Islam.

“What kind of arrogance for the White House or talking heads in D.C. to say, ‘No, no, no, we know better what your problem is.’ Absolutely bogus,” he said. “In fact, it weakens our allies in their fight for the hearts and minds of Muslims around the world.”

John R. Bolton, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under President George W. Bush, said worries over offending friendly Muslim nations was “nonsense.”

However, he said the exact terminology used was not important and that Mrs. Clinton’s remarks demonstrated that the debate should not get hung up on “magic words.”

“Whether she uses the words or not, her view remains the same as Obama’s, which is these are isolated acts by deranged individuals who don’t really understand Islam rather than people who are acting out a political ideology,” he said. “So she may use the words, but she isn’t any more capable than Obama is of dealing with the problems.”