Europe placates foes of freedom

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The Article

Europe, or a significant segment of Europe, unfailingly discloses its frequent willingness to appease totalitarian foes of freedom.

In modern times Europe gladly has served as a cradle of fascism on the right, communism on the left and in between all sorts of variations of the two, joined at the hip with a common blood-soaked bigotry directed at Jews.

Since 9/11, and despite Muslim terrorists striking on European soil, that segment of Europe ready to appease any totalitarian assault on freedom has contorted itself to accommodate the Islamist agenda. The latest evidence of this is the Amsterdam Court of Appeal’s decision to prosecute Geert Wilders, an elected member of the Dutch Parliament, for hate speech offending Islam and Muslims.

Wilders is the most daring critic of the Islamist assault on Holland, and Europe, since the murder of Theo van Gogh in November 2004 by a self-confessed Muslim fanatic of Moroccan origin, and the marginalization in Dutch politics of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the Somali-born critic of Islam.

What brings Wilders into legal trouble with Dutch jurists is the 15-minute video he produced last year on Islam titled Fitna. In this short film Wilders juxtaposed verses from the Koran with passages from Hitler’s rant, Mein Kampf, and urged Muslims to push for reform by removing “hate-filled” verses from their sacred text.

I do not share Wilders’ views on the Koran, or on Islam, and I would be quite prepared to engage him if an opportunity presented itself. But I categorically disagree with the Amsterdam Court of Appeal’s decision to prosecute him on the grounds of hate speech, thereby abridging the principle of free speech, for expressing his views on the Koran.

It is ironic that the announcement to prosecute Wilders comes on the eve of the 20th anniversary of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s notorious incitement (fatwa) to murder Salman Rushdie, the Indian-born writer, for his satirical novel The Satanic Verses.

Khomeini’s incitement was an opening salvo in the Islamist agenda to silence any critic, Muslim or non-Muslim, of Islam and Arab-Muslim history.

Following Khomeini’s directive to murder, Farag Foda – a courageous and brilliant Egyptian critic of fundamentalist Muslims and Islam – was gunned down in Cairo in April 1992. However Foda’s compatriot and winner of the 1988 Nobel Prize in literature, Naguib Mahfouz, survived a knife assault by Islamists in 1994.

Islamist effort to silence critics is part of a larger agenda for the full and unreformed imposition of Sharia – laws derived from the Koran and codified in the first millennium of the Christian era – within the Arab-Muslim world, and its acceptance by governments in Europe and North America to enable Muslims residing in the West to live by a pre-modern legal code.

This push is backed by the 57-member Organization of Islamic Countries (OIC) at the UN to combat “defamation of religions” under the international human rights code for the purpose of judicially silencing critics of Islam and Muslims.

The prosecution of Wilders, as the Dutch judges contort themselves to do the bidding of the OIC, will warm the hearts of Islamists everywhere. But Europe and the West could not be more warned of what embracing the Islamist agenda means than taking full measure of the Arab-Muslim world turned into a cultural wasteland by the unremitting Islamist assault on civilization.

Salim Mansur
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