Qanta Ahmed: I Want To See Trump Engage With US Muslims and Separate Islam From Islamism, Which Obama Didn’t

On Friday’s broadcast of CNN’s “New Day,” author Dr. Qanta Ahmed argued that while she disagrees with National Security Adviser Retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn’s tweet that “Fear of Muslims is rational” she wants to see “President-Elect Trump to succeed where President Obama failed, to separate the religion of Islam from the political ideology, to engage with America’s Muslims.”

Ahmed began by stating that was “rubbish.” And “absolutely not helpful.”

She added that when people fail to distinguish between the religion of Islam and the totalitarian political ideology of Islamism, “we actually shelter Islamism.” And “If you are proposing and if you are supporting radical and violent Islamism, or radical institutional Islamism, this is a gift from God, and that’s the kind of opportunity. I’m not here to berate the new administration. My job as a citizen is to try and serve them to the best of my ability. Muslims like me can explain the distinction and the values of making that distinction.”

Ahmed further said, “What I would like to see is…President-Elect Trump to succeed where President Obama failed, to separate the religion of islam from the political ideology, to engage with America’s Muslims.”

She further said that Dearborn, Michigan would be a great place for Trump to have a rally, further stating, “[L]et’s give him a chance. Let’s engage with him. Let’s hear. He’s our president, not just president for everyone in the nation except Americans who are Muslim, or Muslim migrants here. The other thing is, I’d like him to bring intellect to the table. There are real scholars in Islamism. I’d like him to empower intellectual exchange in universities, off political Islamism, with Muslim scholars, not funded by patrons of Islamism like Iran, Turkey or Saudi Arabia. Those are the kinds of things he could do.”

Ahmed stated Trump’s proposed Muslim ban, “was astonishing in many regards. But I feel he may not have been adequately informed. How do we ban Muslims that make their homes here from 68 different nations, or 183 nationalities that are homes to Muslims, how do you do that? And to me, I feel, America’s made such an incredible investment in my education, which I took to Muslim countries, and shared with Muslim patients and physicians…when you work in the Muslim world, you represent America, and they were just so delighted to see a highly-trained woman help their family member [when they] get sick. That’s a great asset. We haven’t really engaged, post-9/11, America’s soft power. We’ve kind of forgotten that we have tremendous soft power, intellectual exchange, academic exchange, building an intelligencia. We’re not going to be able to defeat Islamism with registries and isolationism, borders, and camps. That’s not going to do it. What that will do, is ghettoize Muslims in America, and we know what happens, because we can look to Europe.”

(h/t Grabien)

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett