Coded language and the Christian right
It has been well-documented how coded racist language is used to help politicians speak directly to their racist constituencies while avoiding detection by the mainstream press. W.'s speechwriters have effectively tweaked this strategy to speak to the religious right without alarming the majority of us who would have a problem, to say the least, with policy decisions being guided in any way by Biblical prophecies. Bush got caught when he used an overly-loaded word "crusade" a couple years ago when speaking of the war on terrorism, and last night it was revealed that this was no mistake, that "crusade" is an important word that BushCo intends to keep in circulation.
This is not a badly planned attempt to intimidate Muslims, even if that is the effect. This word was used in a campaign letter and was intended to set fire to people who already vote Republican. It's coded language rearing its ugly head again. BushCo is nodding to the religious right again, and he's probably not going to get called out for it this time, either.
Edited to say: I'm glad I'm not crazy. Atrios apparently believes that this language is meant to raise right wing religious cash as well.