(WASHINGTON, D.C., 4/7/10) — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today welcomed an announcement that the Obama administration will remove ‘loaded’ terms linking Islam to extremism from an important national security document.
Administration officials said the change would remove terms like “Islamic radicalism” from the National Security Strategy, a document that was created by the previous administration to outline the Bush doctrine of preemptive war.
SEE: Obama Sets New Approach Toward Muslim World (AP)
“We welcome this change in language by the Obama administration as another step toward respectful and effective outreach to Muslims at home and abroad,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “We hope this positive change in language will lead to policies that will deal more effectively with important issues such as peace with justice in the Middle East and withdrawal of our nation’s forces from Iraq and Afghanistan.”
He recommended that media professionals and commentators adopt similarly neutral and objective language and avoid “loaded” terminology. Awad noted that CAIR has been calling for changes in the use of terminology falsely linking Islam to terrorism for a number of years.
In 2008, the National Counter-Terrorism Center produced a document, called “Words that Work and Words that Don’t: A Guide for Counter-Terrorism Communication,” which encouraged government agencies and officials to avoid characterizing al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups as “Islamic” or “Muslim,” as that could “unintentionally legitimize” their tactics.
SEE: U.S. Officials Urged to Avoid Linking Islam, Jihad with Terrorism
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CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787 or 202-341-4171, E-Mail: email@example.com