By Gregorio Bettiza

Should American foreign policymakers attempt to reform major world religions? This may sound like a hubristic, at best, if not a potentially dangerous and misguided idea, at worse. Yet, this is what the United States has, in essence, been attempting to do with Islam and Muslims since 9/11. Since that tragic September morning in 2001, many policy analysts in the United States came to understand the attacks and the ensuing War on Terror as part of an ongoing struggle for the future direction of Islam and the hearts and minds of Muslims. In the process, a wide range of domestic and foreign policy initiatives have emerged over the past decades designed to intervene in theological debates within Islam and encourage Muslims to ‘speak out’ against terrorism, while also seeking to diffuse clash of civilizations narratives and promote a positive image of America in the so-called Muslim world…


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