Islam has been derived from salamti i.e peace. Perhaps it is the only religionhaving its origin in the concept of peace. For example, Muslims are under obligation to wish peace whenever they see each other during the day or at night. The conventional way of wishing in Islam is As-Salaam-o-Aleikum i.e may Allah bestow peace & his protection on you; which in turn is responded as Wa-Aleikum-us-Salaam ie. may you also live & prospper under divine protection. It is a simple & straight relifion emphasising the role of peace in human & animal life.It has been enjoined upon all Muslims not to render any physical/bodily harm to any human being; unless he/she has harmed others physically/bodily. This is strictly in accordance with the modern theory of deterrence from crime while dealing with the system of Crime & Punishment in a given Society. Recognising the freedom of conscience, Islam has given liberty to all human being living within the territorial limits of a Muslim State to adopt practise and follow the religion of their own choice without accepting any external pressure.
Similarly Jihad is obligatory under circumstances of an armed aggression to life & property. The right of self-defence has all along been universally accepted, and Islam is no exception in this case either.All the Wars during the lifetime of Holy Prophet were defensive in nature without allowing aggression in any case.
It has also been preached forcefully that one' belief in Islam is doubtful, unless his existence is acknowledged as unharmful to others----no discrimination between Muslims & non-Muslims has been made. We all know and Christian powers in Europe recognise that Muslim defenders were humane, whereas so many atrocities are attributed to crusaders who didn't spare their other christian brethren & sisters. One could easily allude to the notorious chastity belts for women when crusaders left for the so called crusades.
One also knows that Renaissance started after the fall of Constantinople, when Muslim knowledge of Science & Technology was discovered by Europe through sheer accident. Islam was the fountain of knowledge, when Christians in Europe were walking on their fours.
Today Islam is being blamed for terrorism, when Muslims are engaged in defending their own life & property against the Western aggression on false pretexts of terrorism whereas it is they who are committing unparallelled & unequalled atrocities even on Muslim Women & Children throughout the World (even in Chichniya in Europe despite the fact that chichniyans belong to their own white race).
In addition to above, they would be well-advised to remember that that all human are fallible; and muslims are not an exception to this universally acknowledged human trait. Whereas Islam is a religion providing a code of conduct for Muslim, the latter are fallible human beings not essentially coming upto the islamic ideals. So the two are to ben seen separately; and failing of Muslims, if any, are not to be attributed to Islam as a religion. This is the message for today.