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Tuesday, 22 April 2014

One Use of the Word “Islamist”

I use the word 'Islamist' in a very simple way.

Islamists are those Muslims who're directly involved with - often democratic! - political institutions and processes; such as the government itself or in government-friendly agencies. Islamist groups like this include the following: 

CAIR, Hamas (before it gained power), the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), the Muslim Public Affairs Committee (MPACUK), the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB), the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Respect (the former British political party), Muslim councillors, some Muslim MPs, Muslim members of the law, police, media, etc. (CAIR, the MCB, the MAB and Hamas are all also Muslim Brotherhood.)

Thus I don't understand it when some commentators criticise me when I use the word 'Islamist' instead of the word 'Muslim'. They say that "all Muslims are Islamists". That's simply not true. Even some extreme Muslims and terrorists aren't Islamists; as we shall see.

Salafists, Deobandis, Wahhabis, etc. don’t believe - from an Islamic perspective - in getting involved in any such (kuffar) political processes.

So it’s not a case of the following:

i) Islamists = those Muslims who get involved in terrorism, violent political activism, etc.
ii) Muslims = those who don’t get involved in terrorism, violent political activism, etc.

The word 'Islamist' is really just a specific technical term. 

For example, the UK’s MCB and MAB are made up of Islamists; whereas Anjem Choudary certainly isn’t an Islamist in these senses. In a strong sense, many Islamic terrorists aren't Islamists either.

In other words, an Islamist isn't just someone who wants an Islamic state and full sharia law (as Anjem Choudary does): he’s someone who may well become a councilor, MP or a member of CAIR/MCB in order to bring about full sharia law and an Islamic state (which Choudary and the Salafists would never do).

Because of all that, it's safe to say that Islamists are far more dangerous than such Salafists as the street clown Anjem Choudary.

Having said this, I may well be using the word 'Islamist' in such a narrow way that many other people may not accept my limited usage.

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