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Where's this 'crusade' stuff come from?



The Islamic Republic has renewed the charge that America has publicly resuscitated the "Crusades" of a millennium ago against Islam.

In the last few days numerous officials--up to and including Supreme Leader Ali Khamenehi--have accused the United States of launching a religious "Crusade" against the world of Islam. As proof, they hark back to a comment President George W. Bush made nine years ago.

Many people in the Arab world and Iran condemned Bush then when he discussed the response to the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and told a Pentagon audience, "This crusade, this war on terrorism, is going to take a while."

Bush did not say "Crusades" in the plural, which refers to attacks by European Christians on the Islamic world a millennium ago, but rather "crusade," a generic word that can be used for any major campaign and was applied by Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower to the U.S. invasion of Nazi-held Europe in 1944.

But the Islamic Republic and many Arab commentators accused Bush of using the word because he consciously wished to renew attacks on Islam by the Christian world.

The United States was embarrassed by the anger in the Arab world and Bush quickly expressed regret through a spokesman for using the word. The term was then expunged from the vocabulary of everyone in the White House

In fact, the ban was so total that when Bush gave the 2004 commencement address at the Air Force Academy in Colorado and quoted Eisenhower's message to the allied troops about to land in Normandy on D-Day, he even censored Eisenhower's use of the word "crusade."

Eisenhower's message said: "Soldiers, sailors and airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force: You are about to embark upon the great crusade toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty loving people everywhere march with you."

Bush dropped the entire sentence containing the word "crusade" when he read the quote.

Three days later, however, the Tehran Times editorialized that Bush, "the vampire of imperialism," gives "vent to his deep hatred for Muslims" by "frequently" using the word "crusade."
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Title Annotation:Faith: Religion and the world
Publication:Iran Times International (Washington, DC)
Date:Sep 17, 2010
Previous Article:Khamenehi: US on 'Crusade' against Islam by sponsoring Qoran-burning.
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