Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, a Hawaii Democrat and Iraq War veteran, joined Republicans in criticizing President Barack Obama for his refusal to use the term "Islamic extremism" when identifying America's enemies.
Gabbard, appearing Wednesday on Fox News Channel's "Your World with Neil Cavuto,"
said the war on terror should be a "bipartisan concern," and that failure to properly label the enemy makes it difficult to identify them and develop a strategy to defeat them.
In his State of the Union address Tuesday night, Obama asked Congress for an authorization of use of force against the Islamic State (ISIS), but Gabbard said that by not using the term "Islamic extremism" and clearly identifying America's enemies, "it raises a whole host of questions in exactly what Congress will be authorizing. Who will we be targeting? Who is our enemy?"
The White House has said
it prefers not to use the term "radical Islam" because it is not accurate and would legitimize the terrorists' claim to be part of the religion of Islam.
But Gabbard told Cavuto that properly labeling the enemy is not an indictment of all Muslims.
"You have people who are practicing in a spiritual way, studying the Quran and doing their best in their own way to develop their relationship with God," she said. "The difference between those Muslims and these minority but very radical and violent Islamic extremists is these extremists are advocating for a theocracy."
Using the "political Islamism" they advocate, they want to enforce laws based on their understanding of the Quran not only in Islamic countries, but throughout the world," Gabbard said.
"That's where we see this violence coming from," she said. "And that's what's so dangerous."
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