Some Republicans would rather defend Christianity from all criticism than stand clearly against religious violence.

Conservatives are correct that we’re in a global struggle over Islamic violence. But the struggle isn’t between Islam and Christianity. It’s between people who want religious war and people who don’t. Al-Qaida and ISIS can’t conquer the world with 19 hijackers or 20,000 fighters. They need the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims. That’s why Osama Bin Laden always framed the conflict between al-Qaida and its targets as a war between Islam and “Crusaders.” It’s why George W. Bush always stressed that Islam wasn’t our adversary. And it’s why today’s conservatives, with their anti-Muslim rhetoric and their excuses for the Crusades, are doing the enemy’s work.

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