It has been a standard response for moderate Muslim to say: ( Islamists do not represent Islam). Moderate Muslims or what westerns see as Moderate always distance themselves from extremists by saying: "They hijacked Islam." " It is a culture problem ..." "It is a political problem".
Here is my answer it is a religion problem spread to become a cultural issue and powered by political ambition.
Once a Muslim scholar practices Ijtihad (deploy his mental effort) and gives an explanation. It becomes part and a version of Islam. Ijtihad is the source that allows us Muslims to believe that Islam is valid at all time. Muslims scholars and thinkers explain then Muslims follow what is their heart and choose which direction to go. Sayyid Qutb whether I like it or not is a Muslim scholar with followers. To say I am moderate and he is an extremist is taking the easy way out. I do not take the easy way out. He is Muslim and I am Muslim and we all follow the same rules which allow both of us to choose. We all read the same book. I am chossing verses and they are choosing verses and sometimes even using the same verses we have different interpretations.
The reality is I can't call them non- Muslims or use the standard answer they hijacked Islam. I can't denounce Islamists as much as they should not denounce me. Although of course they denounce moderate Muslims and call us Kafir/ infidels.It is an IDEOLOGY WAR. They have centers, schools, and followers to spread their ideology. I have a blog.