Police in the United Kingdom are considering dropping the terms “Islamist terrorism” and “jihadis” out of fearing to appear Islamophobic, in the latest politically correct push in British institutions.
British police are reportedly looking to use the Doublespeak-Esque terms such as “terrorists abusing religious motivations”, “faith-claimed terrorism”, and “adherents of Osama bin Laden’s ideology”.
The review, came after a Muslim police organisation claimed that the Islamist label promoted negative stereotypes about Muslims, fostering a climate of supposed Islamophobia, The Times reports.
The name change was proposed in an online event attended by Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, the national head of counterterrorism policing, as well as a representative from the National Association of Muslim Police (NAMP), which boasts some 3,000 members.
The association’s representative, Alexander Gent, said that there should be “a change in culture by moving away from using terms which have a direct link to Islam and jihad. These . . . do not help community relations and public confidence.”
The group argued that the term “jihad” should be abandoned in police terminology, claiming that the translation of the term in English from Arabic can refer to doing good deeds or practising Islam in a “struggle”. However, the term has also come to mean according to Mirriam Webster: “a holy war waged on behalf of Islam as a religious duty”.
The NAMP suggested that jihadi be replaced with the Arabic word ‘Irhabi’, which they claim “is commonly recognised to mean terrorist within the Middle East and could be used to describe people that hold extremist ideologies.”
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The suggested name change was criticised by the Director of Policy at the counter-extremism think tank Quilliam, David Toube, who said: “People do not like to feel that they are being told only the partial truth… there is a serious problem with Islamist terrorism. The use of any term that obscures that fact risks damaging public trust in the police.”
A counterterrorism expert told the British paper, that the move could serve to further weaken the reputation of the police, which has already been damaged after being found to have overlooked majority Muslim grooming gangs who sexually preyed on young white British girls for years, out of fear of appearing racist.
“It creates ambiguity, that you can’t say this because it’s Muslim,” the expert said, adding: “There will be a lack of trust and confidence in public discourse. You are trying to avoid saying it because it is true.”
The national coordinator for the deradicalisation programme Prevent, Chief Superintendent Nik Adams, said that there has been no decision on the proposed terminology change.
“[Mr] Basu encouraged honest and open discussion from all sides and did not at any point suggest that terminology was definitely going to change, simply that it was right that we have an evidence-based discussion about it. We have no plans to change the terminology we use at present but welcomed the debate and contributions,” he said.
“It’s vital we get our terminology right to define the threat accurately and succinctly but also to avoid alienating communities crucial to our efforts,” Adams added.
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