Charles Krauthammer says it’s “comical and certainly embarrassing” that President Barack Obama will not use words such as jihadist and Islamist in reference to the Boston Marathon bombings.
“The lengths to which he will go to avoid telling us the truth about the enemy is becoming comical and certainly embarrassing,” Krauthammer said Tuesday on Fox News on “The O’Reilly Factor.” “For example, forget about the use the word jihadist – he will never use that, but he refuses to use the word Islamist, which is used throughout the Muslim world. It’s used by journalists, by authors, on the street, in Parliament, in Egypt. It’s used in Lebanon. It’s used everywhere by Muslims.”
He continued: “And yet Obama won’t touch it because he refuses to use any words that might imply a connection between radical Islam and terrorism, which as anybody who is over the age of 9 knows is the single greatest cause of terror in the world today.”
Krauthammer said that other historic leaders didn’t shy away from clearly defining their enemies.
“It matters because if you want to mobilize the population, if you want to give them the courage to persist and to carry on a fight which should be a difficult fight, it could go on for a generation. You have to be clear with your own people about who the enemy is. Churchill did not speak about German extremists. He talked about the Nazi menace. He described it in detail. FDR didn’t speak about extremists in Tokyo. He talked about the Japanese imperialism and its threat to the whole region,” Krauthammer said.
He added: “You have to be able to be honest with the people if you are going to get any support. Otherwise, you get an event here, an event there and you say, ‘We can’t jump to any conclusions?’ Within three days everybody understands that these brothers were jihadists.”
Authorities say Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, and his older brother Tamerlan, 26, are the two suspects in the bombings. Tamerlan was killed following an overnight police chase in suburban Boston on Thursday into early Friday morning. Dzhokhar is recovering in a Boston hospital and authorities are questioning him. The brothers are of Chechen descent and Muslim.