Bibi Netanyahu recently described radical Islamist terrorism as “primitive medievalism.” We should adopt this term.
Less controversial but more intriguing was his description of the turmoil in the Middle East. “The core of the conflicts in the Middle East is the battle between modernity and early primitive medievalism,” Netanyahu explained.
Everyone understood what he meant, of course. The Islamic State believes the Muslim world took a wrong turn more than a thousand years ago. The Taliban, the Wahhabis, al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood, and all the other Islamists share this same worldview to one extent or another. Not every Islamist believes in crucifying Christians or throwing acid in the face of little girls going to school. But they all reject modernity, pluralism, secularism, democracy, and, in many cases, even science. “Medievalism” isn’t a perfect word, but it’s a better word than “terrorism” or “Islamism.”