Anti-Islamic Christians Draw Concern From White House

Nov 18, 2002 03:00 AM EST

Washington – Conservative Christian charges against Muslims draw attention of Colin Powell, the US secretary of state.

Days after the televangelist Pat Robertson said on his Christian Broadcasting Network, "what the Muslims want to do to the Jews is worse" than the Holocaust, Mr. Powell expressed that "This kind of hatred must be rejected," to a gathering in Washington.

Powell's comment followed the escalation in anti-Islamic remarks by conservative Christians, including a recent claim by Jerry Falwell, a prominent American Baptist, that the prophet Mohammed was "a terrorist."

Jimmy Swaggart, a veteran evangelist also called Mohammed a "sex deviant" and a pervert, demanding tat the Muslim students in the US be expelled. "We ought to tell every other Muslim living in this nation that if you say one word, you're gone," he said.

Some Christians view Powell's concern as a "corrdinated White House campaign to confront anti-Islamic rhetoric from a consistency that includes some of the Bush administration's staunchest reporters," according to CNN reporter Oliver Burkeman.

He commented, "the administration's increased willingness to confront the Christian right reflects the Republicans' sweeping victories in last week's mid-term elections, reducing Mr. Bush's reliance on the extreme fringes of his supporter base."

By Pauline J.