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Can I Ask A Dumb Question? What's An Islamic Fascist?

"The Islamo-fascists are fighting us on an asymmetrical, global battlefield that spans from Baghdad to Pakistan to Indonesia to the streets of London. To retreat from any battlefront where we are engaged with this enemy is foolish and reckless."--Wade Zirkle, Veterans For Freedom, a Republican-led 527, August 11, 2006.

"The recent arrests that our fellow citizens are now learning about are a stark reminder that this nation is at war with Islamic fascists who will use any means to destroy those of us who love freedom, to hurt our nation." President George Bush, August 11, 2006

"In World War II we fought Nazism and Japanese imperialism. Today, we are fighting against Islamic fascism," Senator Rick Santorum, Republican Senator, July 20, 2006

Islamic Fascism. I have never heard the phrase and I evidently didn't get the memo from the RNC detailing its use (the DNC sends out memos on Together, America Can Do Better - the RNC plays a different game.) I envision millions of good Republicans out there nodding their heads in agreement - after all, can you imagine a world run by Islamic Fascists? Hitler dressed like Osama? Can you goosestep in those robes he wears? Frankly, we can hardly afford to find out. If we don't fight these here Islamic Fascists over there, well, you know the rest. But before we fight an phrase that doesn't exist or apparently make any sense, I decided to take a moment to make sure I wasn't missing anything.

As my first grade teacher used to tell me, if you don't understand a sentence or a word, try breaking it down. First, Islam. Now, Islam is one of the world's oldest and most revered religions. One definition of Islam is a monotheistic religion characterized by the acceptance of the doctrine of submission to God and to Muhammad as the chief and last prophet of God.

So we have one of the world's most popular religions functioning as an adjective creating a new type of Fascism. There was German Fascism, Italian Fascism but I can't find any evidence of there ever being any form of Fascism based upon religion. Furthermore, I have deduced that the reason it is not Fascist Islam is that Islam is an older as a religion than Fascism is as as system of government so Islam goes first. I know it sounds stupid, but it's the best I can do, being a Democrat and all.

Next word, Fascism. Fascism is defined as a system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism. A political philosophy or movement based on or advocating such a system of government. Oppressive, dictatorial control.

Put the two together and you have? Well, a system of government oppressively controlled through terror and censorship where the religion is Islam and there's a policy of belligerent nationalism. But Osama Bin Laden does not run a government, the terrorists in Iraq aren't a government, the 9/11 hijackers weren't fascists, so who are the Republicans saying is a threat here?

Sounds to me like we're not fighting terrorists anymore, because it sure sounds to me like we're about to fight Iran.