Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Islamists are stifling debate in the Netherlands and the rest of Europe

Douglas Murray:

This may seem fantastic to people in Britain. But the story of Holland — which I have been charting for some years — should be noted by her allies. Where Holland has gone, Britain and the rest of Europe are following. The silencing happens bit by bit. A student paper in Britain that ran the Danish cartoons got pulped. A London magazine withdrew the cartoons from its website after the British police informed the editor they could not protect him, his staff, or his offices from attack. This happened only days before the police provided 500 officers to protect a “peaceful” Muslim protest in Trafalgar Square.

It seems the British police — who regularly provide protection for mosques (as they did after the 7/7 bombs) — were unable to send even one policeman to protect an organ of free speech. At the notorious London protests, Islamists were allowed to incite murder and bloodshed on the streets, but a passer-by objecting to these displays was threatened with detention for making trouble.

Holland — with its disproportionately high Muslim population — is the canary in the mine. Its once open society is closing, and Europe is closing slowly behind it. It looks, from Holland, like the twilight of liberalism — not the “liberalism” that is actually libertarianism, but the liberalism that is freedom. Not least freedom of expression.

All across Europe, debate on Islam is being stopped. Italy’s greatest living writer, Oriana Fallaci, soon comes up for trial in her home country, and in Britain the government seems intent on pushing through laws that would make truths about Islam and the conduct of its followers impossible to voice.

Those of us who write and talk on Islam thus get caught between those on our own side who are increasingly keen to prosecute and increasing numbers of militants threatening murder. In this situation, not only is free speech being shut down, but our nation’s security is being compromised.

Since the assassinations of Fortuyn and, in 2004, the film maker Theo van Gogh, numerous public figures in Holland have received death threats and routine intimidation. The heroic Somali-born Dutch MP Ayaan Hirsi Ali and her equally outspoken colleague Geert Wilders live under constant police protection, often forced to sleep on army bases. Even university professors are under protection.

Europe is shuffling into darkness. It is proving incapable of standing up to its enemies, and in an effort to accommodate the peripheral rights of a minority is failing to protect the most basic rights of its own people.

The governments of Europe have been tricked into believing that criticism of a belief is the same thing as criticism of a race. And so it is becoming increasingly difficult and dangerous to criticise a growing and powerful ideology within our midst. It may soon, in addition, be made illegal.

I had planned — the morning after my speech — to see Geert Wilders, but instead spent the time catching up with his staff. Their leader had been called in by the police to discuss more than 40 new death threats he had received over the previous days.

As I left the Netherlands I once again felt terrible sorrow for a country that is slowly being lost. A society which should be carefree and inspiring has become dark and worried. The jihad in Europe is winning. And Holland, and our continent, takes one step further into a dark and menacing future.

The End of Tolerance

John Derbyshire, NRO, And The Curses Of Those Who Come After

Needed: Mature, Moderate Muslims

Stand up for Denmark!

Protecting speech


At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Europe is not all that it portends to be.

Beneath it's open, lazy and liberal atmosphere, lies a xenophobia which is now roiling to the surface.

Holland...your vaunted leavees couldn't keep out the tide of radical islam and like Hurricane Katrina....your misery has already begun.

A little to late to evacuate...

The usual smugness and superiority that Europeans normally display... has now faded into the realization that it is perhaps to late to save their beloved identities..

Panic anyone?

You vilify and insult America.

Call us names and tell us how 'stupid' we are...except we 'cowboys' are the only ones willing to confront this Islamic scourge.

We don't seem to have many of these assimilation problems in our country. Yet we absord millions of immigrints every year.

Hmmm, I wonder how we do that?

Don't want to say that 'We told you so' but I will.

Europe....I have no tears for you.

At 2:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think the United States is not in the same boat? You think the largest population growth being Latino is not going to change the culture of this society? And what does our government do about it but nothing? Take note of this America, its happening here as well!

At 3:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's an idea: let's stop all immigration from Third World countries.


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