The "deviant group"

From Reuters, today (Monday):
It [Saudi Interior Ministry] said members of the "deviant" group -- which is what the government calls al Qaeda -- threw explosives at the consulate gate and entered the compound in central Jeddah.
From the French wire AFP (Agence France-Presse), July22:
"The deterioration of this deviant group [al Qaeda] and the downfall of its figures one after the other confirms that Allah is looking after this country," he [Saudi Defense Minister Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz] said.
From the Saudi news magazine Ain Al-Yaqeen, November 19:
[T]he [Saudi] Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National Guard, vowed to continue an unwavering crackdown on the deviant group which managed to terrify innocents in the Saudi society in the name of defending Islam, stating that Islam categorically prohibits resort to violence, terror and extremism to settle disputes. . . .

[W]e are going to continue chasing the deviants without leniency at all and to enforce the Islamic Sharia law on them, the statement [from the Saudi government] said. . . .

Prince Naif said the government was successful in "exposing the ideology and lies" of the deviant group, a reference to the sympathizers of the Al-Qaeda terror network in the Kingdom.
If I'm reading that right, it's a clever characterization of al Qaeda, "deviant group." Some Saudis are no doubt sympathetic to al Qaeda because their acts are done beneath the flag of Islam. By calling them a "deviant group," the Saudi government is acknowledging for the sake of those who would guard everything remotely Islamic that there is an element of Islam to the Qaeda, but they are portraying them as deviant, a perversion of the religion.

To his diplomatic credit, President Bush has taken the same tack since it was first determined that al Qaeda sponsored the hijackings.

Deviant is an exclusable understatement in a case like this.



Thank you for the clarification. When I saw the references to "deviants" I assumed it meant they were compulsive masturbators or something...

Like you, I'm not sure "deviant" fully conveys a sense of murderous, psychopathetic, woman-hating, sadistic, mutant, fanatical fascists. But maybe that's just me...

By Blogger David L, at December 6, 2004 at 11:02 PM  

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