Much of Ms. Ali's argument comes from a depth of understanding and is extremely well-reasoned and compelling. However, I'm having trouble with one thing. It is the idea of encouraging a reform of Islam as a faith (otherwise a great idea!) by threatening Islamic countries with military force. I don't think this will work for a minute. Historically and psychologically, when a country is threatened with foreign military might, its people come together against the enemy. This patriotism usually supersedes rational thoughts about the humanity of individuals.
Therefore, if a reform is our goal, then we should encourage and support _internal_ reform movements in Islamic countries.
After all, Christianity was reformed from the inside by generations of people who questioned their own institutions.
How might support for internal reform be achieved? The specifics will have to be figured out by professionals, but the key is a combination of education in critical thinking and providing an opportunity for a better life. And the ideas/education and the opportunities must somehow come or appear to come from within. Maybe one way of doing that would be to start in more open societies (like, say, Lebanon) where these functions are now performed by organizations like Hezbollah. And then let the success stories percolate to the more closed-in societies.
And a question for Ms. Ali: in the moderate Islamic communities in the US and in Western Europe, is the people's faith reconcilable with peace and liberal democracy? If it isn't then how come these communities live and thrive in peaceful and democratic countries? If it is, then how much fundamentalism and violence is in the tenets, and how much is the conditions of everyday life? Sorry if I sound Marxist, but I was surprised to not hear the economic/opportunity aspect of the problem addressed at all in the interview.