Those who portray terrorism as an “Islamic” phenomenon should pay more attention to current events. On Friday, terrorists targeted worshipers at two Iraqi mosques, murdering more than 70 innocent Muslims.
These viscous attacks on Muslims at prayer were just the latest in a long list of such violent acts carried out in Iraq, Jordan and other parts of the world. Muslims have been the targets of terrorists more often than people of any other faith.
Also on Friday, suspected Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka hurled grenades at a mosque packed with worshippers, killing at least four people. And in Amman, thousands of Jordanians protested the recent terror attacks that killed 59 people, mainly Muslims, in that city last week.
Islamophobic pundits should recognize by now what Muslims already know, that terrorism is Islam’s enemy too. Terrorists should be viewed as members of organized crime, made unique only by their attempts to gain legitimacy through false invocations of faith.
Only when terrorists are viewed as common criminals can the so-called clash of civilizations be replaced by a cooperation of civilizations against the barbarity and cowardice that is the hallmark of terrorism.
Ahmed Rehab is communications director for the Chicago office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Chicago). His email address email@example.com.
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