Well said.I would ask humbly that everybody not release the hounds. A tactless comment doesn't need to become a disastrous one. Granted, the wording was less than choice, but I'm sure McCauley's intent was to point out that something quite that gauche is commonplace in the Arab/Persian world, which is also by any stretch, the Muslim world.
You've only got to be offended if you choose to take offense. Most of us are aware of that to which he was alluding, poor word selection or not. No lynchmob necessary.