Terrorism Phrasebook to Put Officials on Guard

February 4, 2008

Author: Stephanie Condron

Source: The Times


Hundreds of guides telling town hall officials and police how to talk about terrorism without causing offence to Muslims have been distributed in the past few weeks.

The guide, written by Home Office civil servants, suggest that instead of talking about Muslim or Islamic extremism, officials should instead say “violent extremism”.

The guide also says that “Islamophobia” should be simply termed “discrimination”, while those purporting to carry out jihad and attacks in the name of Islam should be called simply criminals, murderers or thugs.

It is far removed from Tony Blair’s rhetoric after September 11, 2001, when he spoke of Armageddon and the justification for war. Now civil servants are advising that careful language is a vital tool in the war on terrorism.