The Counterterrorism Blog says that the "fatwa" issued by American Muslim leaders is bogus.
The terms "hudna" and "taqiyya" come to mind. The former is a truce entered into by Muslims in order to give themselves time to rearm and prepare for when the truce is called off (see history of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict for numerous examples of this tactic used in modern times). The latter is the deliberate deception about Islam to non-believers for the purpose of preventing harassment, while remaining true to the faith.
It is rather disheartening to think that these are some of the fundamental principles of Islamic discourse. Especially because we really really want to believe good of everyone.
May I remind all of you about the natural history of many battered women? After the woman is brutally beaten, the apologies, remorse and promises of good behavior come pouring from the abuser. I remember one woman whose hospital room was filled with flowers, balloons and cards from the husband who had made her face black and blue and caused her to have to undergo major surgery to stop the internal bleeding from his "love". I talked about her in this post when I was discussing Islam's oppression of women. Her case is equally appropriate to consider here, when we might fall for the same kind of false sincerity.
Words are cheap. If the fatwa is part of of a strategy of hudna or taqiyya, then the words of these "leaders" are meaningless --no matter how much we wish they actually reflected the "true" Islam.