Home/Daniel Larison/As Opposed To The Liberal, Freewheeling Caliphate

As Opposed To The Liberal, Freewheeling Caliphate

In all of the commotion about Obama’s remarks on Pakistan, I neglected to note that his 01 August speech contained this Bush-Romney-Giulianiesque soundbite:

Just because the President misrepresents our enemies does not mean we do not have them. The terrorists are at war with us. The threat is from violent extremists who are a small minority of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims, but the threat is real. They distort Islam. They kill man, woman and child; Christian and Hindu, Jew and Muslim. They seek to create a repressive caliphate.

But if that is the enemy, how exactly does the President misrepresent the nature of the enemy?  Obama is saying the same things that Bush (“they distort Islam”, Romney (“caliphate”!) and Giuliani (“terrorists’ war on us”) have said.  (Yes, of course, Bush misrepresents things by including Baathists and Iranians and everyone he can think of and lumping them all together, but Obama doesn’t say that here.)

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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