"History is philosophy teaching by example." (Lord Bolingbroke)

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Monday, February 20, 2006

Denmark's Humiliation: A Lesson for the Rest of the World

Flemming Rose, the editor of the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten is a martyr of sorts. Although not physically dead, his career is shambles. He is a martyr to free speech.

He has been called: childish, and irresponsible. "They" say that his paper showed gross stupidity and that "freedom of expression does not imply an endorsement of insulting people's religious feelings, and besides, they add, the media censor themselves every day. So, please do not teach us a lesson about the limitless freedom of free speech."

Fleming Rose believes that the cartoon story is a different matter.

Those examples (pornographic images; graphic details of dead bodies; swear words;)have to do with exercising restraint because of ethical standards and taste; call it editing. By contrast, I commissioned the cartoons in response to several incidents of self-censorship in Europe caused by widening fears and feelings of intimidation in dealing with issues related to Islam. And I still believe that this is a topic that we Europeans must confront, challenging moderate Muslims to speak out. The idea wasn't to provoke gratuitously -- and we certainly didn't intend to trigger violent demonstrations throughout the Muslim world. Our goal was simply to push back self-imposed limits on expression that seemed to be closing in tighter.

At the end of September, a Danish standup comedian said in an interview with Jyllands-Posten that he had no problem urinating on the Bible in front of a camera, but he dared not do the same thing with the Koran.
This was the culmination of a series of disturbing instances of self-censorship. Last September, a Danish children's writer had trouble finding an illustrator for a book about the life of Muhammad. Three people turned down the job for fear of consequences. The person who finally accepted insisted on anonymity, which in my book is a form of self-censorship. European translators of a critical book about Islam also did not want their names to appear on the book cover beside the name of the author, a Somalia-born Dutch politician who has herself been in hiding.

There we have it. Before Cartoon Rage, the existence of Muslims among Danes had caused self-censorship, not because Danes were sensitive to religious feelings as Danes use sarcasm and mockery as a way to demonstrate the shortcomings of religions and of religious people. No, Danes were self-censoring out of fear of intimidation and physical violence. But apparently the "religion of peace" had not taught the lesson well enough.

For Muslims, peace means the "elimination of enemies" or the non-existence of enemies. How do you make enemies disappear? You kill them, you cripple them with fear, you bring them to your bosom as converts in order to control their very thoughts as well as their words and deeds, and you continue to silence using intimidation. And you "blame the government."

Muslims always blame the government for allowing something to happen to Muslims. So far nothing had happened to Muslims except the publishing of the cartoons. But Muslims wouldn't stand for the lack of government cooperation. They had petitioned the government for redress of grievances and the government's reply inadequate: in a free society, barring matters of national security, a government should not control what is published in the press.

Danish Muslims were incensed. Why didn't the government protect their Prophet from impudent publishers? Now the stakes had risen: the punishment now had to be inflicted on the whole Danish people because the cartoons has been published and the population had not risen to complain, to drive out, punish or kill the editors and the to bring down the government for not given Muslims what they wanted. But how could they pull it off?

A dossier was created including the cartoons published in the Fall of 2005. Several other images were added that had nothing whatsoever to do with the Prophet. Faked, non-published cartoons were added to the dossier and off they went to the Muslim world to drum up support. Abdel Rahman Abu Laban, a "prominent" Danish imam, a self-described "moderate." began to make his rounds and to punish the Danes and all others who had published the cartoons and who had no taken action as Muslims had demanded.

Abu Laban appealed to the brotherhood of Muslims that exists in all corner of the world. The plan they concocted was not new. In recent times it had been put into use at the drop of a hat when Muslims believed that their issues were not being addressed or that some filthy infidel, non-Muslims, had the temerity to stand up to them, to touch a Koran, enter a mosque, "bother" a Muslim women, or, as they say, look cross-eyed at wrong person, in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

Danes believed that they were a tolerant people. Muslims were out to squealch that belief and teach the dirty Infidel how vile they really were, that their intolerance was an illusion because it an intolerance that did not fit in the ideal of Islam.

Now their reputation is literally going up in smoke. Danish Muslims, with the help of powerful Muslim leaders in the Arab world, recruited "more radical" to burn them out. They didn't burn anything in the Danish homeland as did French "youths" in recent rioting inside France in which thousands of cars and other property were destroyed. They didn't restrict access to natural resources as did Australian Muslims who forbade non-Muslims the use of certain Australian beaches. They didn't coax and coerce hate-speech laws as they have in UK and in Australia. No, Danes need a bigger lesson, more obvious, more permanent lesson.

Danish interests throughout the world were to be burned down and destroyed: embassies were burned to the ground. Businesses suffered the same fate and, in typical Muslim style, employees were threatened, kidnapped, and even murdered. Hits were issued to kill Danes wherever they were found. Danes were being made object lesson to the world: give in to Muslims or your fate will be that of Denmark.

Muslim populations were lied to about the cartoons as they were about the supposed various and supposed Koran desecration by the Americans that also were proved to be false. They were encouraged to boycott Denmark and to ruin the Danish economy. If a 2% population of Danish Muslims couldn't humble, humiliate, and subdue the population of Denmark, then the Muslim world would come to the aid of their Danish-Muslim brethren to subdue them and make them know that they were subdued. The jihad goal had been reached: eliminate your enemies using any means necessary and demonstrate your success either through one of the three "D's" of Jihad: Da'wa (calling non-Muslims to conversion), Death, or Dhimmitude.

Danes have been subdued and some are refusing to bend to the will of Muslims. They used to believe that tolerance in their clean country was a multicultural paradise of diversity and mutual respect. They have been taught the sad reality of living among Muslims: no one has ever been able to live among them as a free people.

The 2% have "prooven the pudding." Cartoon rage continues in distant countries away from Denmark and is making its way to the United States. So far there are no known instances of deaths nor destruction instigated by the so-called offending cartoons. A series of suspicious church burnings in Alabama, the work of unknown arsonists, has not been attributed to Muslims and no Muslim group has made the claim. Only time will tell how Cartoon rage will play out in the United States and in other parts of North America.


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