In two separate instances Sunday morning, Attorney General Eric Holder refused to follow the lead of France and declare that the U.S. is at war with radical Islam in the aftermath of the brutal attack on the Charlie Hebdo offices on Wednesday.
Instead, Holder, who was pressed by both NBC’s Chuck Todd and ABC’s George Stephanopolous with the same exact question, said that the U.S is at war with “terrorists” who “corrupt the Islamic faith” or use a “corrupted version of Islam.”
“The French Prime Minister declared that France is at war with radical Islam. Would you say the United States is at war with radical Islam?” Todd asked Holder.
“I would say that we are at war with terrorists who commit these heinous acts and who use Islam, they use a corrupted version of Islam, to justify their actions,” Holder told Todd on “Meet The Press.” “We are bound and determined to hold them accountable, to find them wherever they are.”
“And then to try…to come up with ways in which we prevent young people, who become attracted to this radical ideology, from becoming members of these groups and perpetrating these heinous acts,” Holder added
Holder repeated his assertions in a separate Sunday interview on “This Week with George Stephanopolous.”
“The French Prime Minister said yesterday that France is at war with radical Islam. Is the U.S. at war with radical Islam?”
“Well, I certainly think that we are at war with those who would commit terrorist attacks and who would corrupt the Islamic faith in the way that they do to try to justify their terrorist actions,” Holder told the “This Week” host. “So that’s who we are at war with, and we are determined to take the fight to them to prevent them from engaging these kinds of activities.”
Holder, who attended a security summit meeting convened by the French Interior Ministry, announced that the White House would set up an international forum on February 18th to discuss new means of countering terrorism.
In a statement, the administration said the meeting would be held to discuss measures “to prevent violent extremists and their supporters from radicalizing, recruiting, or inspiring individuals or groups in the United States and abroad to commit acts of violence.”