President Barack Obama wants to change America's relationship with the Muslim world, beginning with dropping language like "Islamic radicalism."
Counterterrorism officials said Obama wants to remove the term from a document that lays out the country's national security strategy. It is document that previously outlined the Bush Doctrine of preventive war.
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"The struggle against militant Islamic radicalism is the great ideological conflict of the early years of the 21st century," the document currently states.
The White House said the conversation with the Muslim world has been dominated by terrorism for nearly a decade. And it now wants to base the relationship on issues like health care and education.
It "doesn't appear to have created much in the way of strategic benefit" in the Middle East peace process or in negotiations over Iran's nuclear ambitions, said Peter Feaver, a Duke University political scientist and former Bush adviser who is wary of Obama's engagement effort.
"Obama runs the political risk of seeming to adopt politically correct rhetoric abroad while appearing tone-deaf on national security issues at home," Feaver added.
*Originally published on April 7, 2010.