Islamist extremism perverts the religion of Islam. Islamist extremists represent about 1% of the Muslim population worldwide (even less in America) — yet 54% of the images of Muslims that Americans see in the mainstream media are of Islamist extremists. No wonder many Americans harbor suspicions of the Muslim community!

Muslim-Americans can help to reverse this distorted image by openly opposing Islamist extremism. We must rally on this basic point. We must say to our neighbors, Islamist extremism is not us, not Islam, and not America. Then we can establish trust and work constructively together against the poison of Islamist radicalization.

Our first obligation is to see the poison and call it what it is. Islamist extremism is disgusting, but it is not entirely impotent, even in America. Conversion to it is rare, but it happens. Islamists insist upon a war between Islam and the West, and some people buy it. The Nawal Foundation denounces that narrative and opposes every effort of Islamists to spread their poison in America, or abroad.

Islamist extremism says there is only one way to be a Muslim and preaches hate and murder against both non-Muslims — and Muslims who presume to be some unnacceptable kind of Muslim. It is the religious warfare of a thousand years ago, the murderous nonsense of a long-since discredited violent ideology. Islamist extremism kills innocents in the name of Islam — and the great majority of its victims have been Muslims. It must be denounced, it must be stopped, it must find no sympathetic sanctuary anywhere in America.

The Nawal Foundation offers programs, and professionals who will assist Muslim-Americans, toward identifying threats within Muslim-American communities, understanding how to self-police, and convincingly defeating the extremist narrative.