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Islamism, also known as Political Islam (Arabic: إسلام سياسي islām siyāsī), is an Islamic revival movement often characterized by moral conservatism, and the attempt "to implement Islamic values in all spheres of life." Islamism favors the reordering of government and society in accordance with the Sharia. The different Islamist movements have been described as "oscillating between two poles": at one end is a strategy of Islamization of society through state power seized by revolution or invasion; at the other "reformist" pole Islamists work to Islamize society gradually "from the bottom up".


  • As he continued to talk to me, I realized one of the fundamental points about Islamism that so many people fail to understand. The way Osman was speaking wasn’t in the orthodox, religious way of the imam with a stick; he was talking about politics, about events that were happening now. That’s crucial to understanding what Islamism is all about: it isn’t a religious movement with political consequences, it is a political movement with religious consequences.
  • The one reason that I could not ignore, the one reason that grew deep inside me till it consumed me with guilt, was the realisation that I was abusing my faith for a mere political project. After learning in prison that Islamism was not the religion of Islam, but rather a political ideology dressed up as Islam, I no longer felt guilty simply for criticising a political system inspired by modern European constructs, while justified by seventh-century norms.
  • Even as the nation monitors the Muslim world within its borders more closely for signs of Islamism, it must continue, of course, to protect the civil rights of law-abiding American Muslims. Political leaders should regularly and publicly distinguish between Islam, the religion of Muslims, and Islamism, the totalitarian ideology. In addition, they should do everything in their power to make sure that individual Muslims, mosques, and other legal institutions continue to enjoy the full protection of the law. A time of crisis doesn’t change the presumption of innocence at the core of our legal system. Police should provide extra protection for Muslims to prevent acts of vandalism against their property or their persons.
  • Nazism and Islamism are on the opposite sides of the same coin – we oppose both. Nazism has been defeated and Islamism is spreading across the country.

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