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Originally published at DanielPipes.org under the title, “Islam v. Islamism,” and at The Washington Times, May 13, 2013.

Update from Daniel Pipes: 

The article above has been misinterpreted, for example by Walid Shoebat who states that “Pipes makes an unsubstantiated claim that a majority of Muslims are moderate and that Islamism is only supported by 10-15 percent of Muslims.” No, I do not claim that 85-90 percent of Muslims are moderate. Let’s use more precise language. I estimate that a very small percentage of Muslims are actively opposed to application of the Shari’a and can be defined as anti-Islamists. That leaves a vast body that includes traditionalists, Sufis, Islamic supremacists, and completely apolitical types. I do not characterize them as moderate. I only call them not Islamist.

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Daniel Pipes is a world-renowned Middle East and Islam expert. He is President of the Middle East Forum. His articles appear in many newspapers. He received his A.B. (1971) and Ph.D. (1978) from Harvard University and has taught at Harvard, Pepperdine, the U.S. Naval War College, and the University of Chicago. He is a board member of the U.S. Institute of Peace and other institutions. His website is DanielPipes.org.

6 COMMENTS

  1. Insightsful piece by Dr. Piples. Let us not forget, eithe, that there are at least two empires, which oppress Moslem populations under their control: Russia and China. And that Serbia was on heir way to eliminate Moslem populations in what amounted to the post-WW1 Serbian empire. The tragedy is that whille PC wise guys see no evil, hear no evil, not even smell any evil, even serious people who discuss Islamism consider the Russian and Chinese empires to be on the same side with the West… Generalizations and extrapolations are wrong – and harmful. Which means that there are sad news all way around…

  2. Daniel Pipes: "We understand that radical Islam is the problem and moderate Islam is the solution."
    What you have said is impossible! Islam is radical.
    “Can Islam be reformed?” No, it can’t! To reform Islam you have to first get rid of Muhammad and second get rid of the Quran. You have to take out a great portion of that book which is violent. The rest is nonsense and absurdity. But this you can’t do, because you have no authority to do such a thing. Muhammad said that he has perfected his religion (Q. 5:3). How can you improve something, which is perfect? You can’t change the Quran. You can’t reform it. All you can do is to reinterpret and, for example pretend, “slay the unbelievers wherever you find them” means something else.
    http://www.faithfreedom.org/oped/sina50116.htm

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