When President Barack Obama was questioned by three YouTube personalities in January, the conversations revolved around green lipstick, low-cost medication, and which superpower he would choose. Yet there were no hard-hitting questions about the president’s refusal to use the term “Islamic terrorism” when referring to violent jihadists. On Sunday, CNN’s Fareed Zakaria asked Obama if the U.S. is in a war with radical Islam.
Lindsey Graham says that he’s bothered by the fact that you won’t admit that we’re in a religious war. There are others who say that the White House takes pains to avoid using the term ‘Islamic terrorists.’ So my question to you is, are we in a war with radical Islam?
President Obama responded:
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You know, I think that the way to understand this is there is an element growing out of Muslim communities in certain parts of the world that have perverted the religion, have embraced a nihilistic, violent, almost medieval interpretation of Islam; and they’re doing damage in a lot of countries around the world. But it is absolutely true that I reject a notion that somehow that creates a religious war because the overwhelming majority of Muslims reject that interpretation of Islam. They don’t even recognize it as being Islam; and I think that for us to be successful in fighting this scourge, it’s very important for us to align ourselves with the 99.9 percent of Muslims who are looking for the same thing we’re looking for: order, peace, prosperity.