One of my favorite writers on politics, Daniel Larison, has given the term ‘Islamofascism’ the pummeling it deserves in the latest American Conservative, one of the few anti-war organs of the American Right.

As Marxists once used the term “fascist” to vilify everyone to their right as a means of wielding influence, Horowitz and his allies use “Islamofascist” to group together the many regimes and groups they wish to cast as a cohesive, united enemy, conflating mutually hostile forces into a single, undifferentiated mass.


The proper use of names and words is essential to rational argument, and the proliferation of nonsense terms and thought-policing labels is fatal. Use of propagandistic terms like “Islamofascism” and “Islamophobia” is an attempt to wield power through confusion and intimidation: they aim to mislead about the nature of our actual enemies on the one hand and invent new heresies against “tolerance” on the other. The debasement and cheapening of language are assaults on the quality of thought and discourse, and they are intended to prevent the proper, sober understanding of the realities of the Islamic world and our policies overseas.