Conservatives have long expressed frustration with Obama's unwillingness to describe the threat posed by the Islamic State as "Islamic terrorism." Obama explained Wednesday that his refusal to use that term was an attempt to keep from legitimizing the group.
"They try to portray themselves as religious leaders, holy warriors in defense of Islam," Obama said. "We must never accept the premise that they put forward because it is a lie. Nor should we grant these terrorists the religious legitimacy that they seek. They are not religious leaders. They are terrorists."