Obama Uses Op-Ed To Condemn ‘Murder Of Egyptian Christians’

United States President Barack Obama President Obama meets new Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter in the Oval Office, Washington D.C, America - 17 Feb 2015 Ashton Carter, who was sworn in as defense secretary today... United States President Barack Obama President Obama meets new Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter in the Oval Office, Washington D.C, America - 17 Feb 2015 Ashton Carter, who was sworn in as defense secretary today, inherits an array of defense and foreign policy challenges that are likely to help define the remaining two years of Obama's presidency. (Rex Features via AP Images) MORE LESS
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President Barack Obama on Wednesday neutralized a conservative line of attack on his approach to terrorism by condemning a recent mass beheading in Libya as the “murder of Egyptian Christians.”

Conservatives and evangelicals cried foul when the White House released a statement Monday on the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians by Libyan militants claiming affiliation with the Islamic State terror group. The statement referred to the victims as “Egyptian citizens” instead of Egyptian Christians.

But in an op-ed published Wednesday in the Los Angeles Times, Obama dispelled that ambiguity.

“In Syria and Iraq, the terrorist group we call ISIL has slaughtered innocent civilians and murdered hostages, including Americans, and has spread its barbarism to Libya with the murder of Egyptian Christians,” he wrote.

The President called for international unity in the fight against the Islamic State as world leaders gathered in Washington for a three-day summit on countering violent extremism. He emphasized that strategies other than the use of military force must be employed if the global community hopes to wipe out terrorism.

“Efforts to counter violent extremism will only succeed if citizens can address legitimate grievances through the democratic process and express themselves through strong civil societies,” Obama wrote. “Those efforts must be matched by economic, educational and entrepreneurial development so people have hope for a life of dignity.”

Invoking the recent killings of three Muslim students near the University of North Carolina, Obama also urged Americans to uphold “pluralistic values” in order to counter violent extremists’ narrative that the U.S. is at war with Islam.

“With al Qaeda and ISIL peddling the lie that the United States is at war with Islam — all of us have a role to play by upholding the pluralistic values that define us as Americans,” he wrote. “This week, we’ll be joined by people of many faiths, including Muslim Americans who make extraordinary contributions to our country every day. It’s a reminder that America is successful because we welcome people of all faiths and backgrounds.”

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  1. “violent extremists’ narrative that the U.S. is at war with Islam.”

    And by “violent extremists” in that phrase he means Bill O’Reilly and the rest of the RWNJs.

    Remarkable how aligned Faux and Al Qaeda are in their narratives, eh?

  2. I wish President Obama had not used “Christian” in his Op-Ed. In the eyes of the United States they should be viewed as citizens, religion should not come into the narrative. The United States would be reacting no matter which ‘religion’ was under attack.

    The right-wing needs to take 8th grade government again, clearly they missed the point.

  3. Since when has this President ever “neutralized a conservative line of attack” by saying the exact opposite of what he was accused of by the Right Wing Noise Machine?

    This is just another of the many versions of the “He didn’t say ‘terrorist’ (even though he did)” memes we’ve seen since he took office.

  4. Obama also urged Americans to uphold “pluralistic values…”

    Of course the conservapsychos will take this to mean same-sex relationships, non-LDS sanctioned polygamy, and paganism.

  5. Avatar for JohnB JohnB says:

    Yes. When I read this in the op-ed–

    “With al Qaeda and ISIL peddling the lie that the United States is at war with Islam — all of us have a role to play by upholding the pluralistic values that define us as Americans,”–

    I thought, “Where is Fox News in that list of lie-peddlers?”

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