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Peretz: Obama Needs “Harsh View of Islam Today”

By Matthew Yglesias  

"Peretz: Obama Needs “Harsh View of Islam Today”"

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(cc photo by seier+seier+seier)

(cc photo by seier+seier+seier)

New Republic editor in chief Martin Peretz says that what the country needs is more anti-Muslim sentiment:

And the truth is that it is not yet clear in the president’s head–or he is not yet being candid (which is my substitute for “frank” and “honest”)–that you can’t have a true view of routine mass murder in the contemporary world without having quite a harsh view of Islam today. It is unfair to the American people and to the peoples of the liberal world for the administration to pretend that the perpetrators of terror are not animated by some all-consuming ideology. It is not an abstraction that animates them. It is not a game of hide-and-seek with the CIA.

Setting aside the fact that I don’t understand why Peretz thinks ideologies are concrete rather than abstract, this is all depressingly nuts from the proprietor of an erstwhile liberal publication.

You can grow horse talking about this, but there are over 300 million Americans and a few thousand al-Qaeda members on the planet. Those are not winning odds for Osama bin Laden. But there are over a billion Muslims who bin Laden claims to represent. When influential Americans echo bin Laden’s claim about this, they shift the odds closer to his favor.

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