Daniel Pipes questions Bush’s reference to “Islamic fascism” but asserts that a more relevant comparison is to Marxism-Leninism!
Pipes writes: “I applaud the increasing willingness to focus on some form of Islam as the enemy but find the word fascist misleading in this context. Few historic or philosophic connections exist between fascism and radical Islam. Fascism glorifies the state, emphasizes racial ‘purity’, promotes social Darwinism, denigrates reason, exalts the will, and rejects organized religion – all outlooks anathema to Islamists. In contrast, Radical Islam has many more ties, both historic and philosophic, to Marxism-Leninism.”
What term does Pipes prefer? He explains: “While Islamic fascists beats terrorists, let’s hope that a better consensus term soon emerges. My vote is for Islamists.” This of course collapses terrorist micro-groups like Al-Qaida and mass reformist currents like the Muslim Brotherhood into a single category, rather as Cold War ideologues denounced disparate political tendencies – from Stalinists to Trotskyists to left social democrats – as Communists.