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  • Technorati: graph / links

    Geert Wilder’s freedom of speech hypocrisy


    by Sunny on 13th February, 2009 at 12:56 AM    

    The Times newspaper reports:

    Lord Ahmed denies allegations in the Spectator that he had “threatened the House of Lords authorities that he would bring a force of 10,000 Muslims to lay siege to the Lords if Wilders was allowed to speak”. Lord Ahmed told The Times that he was considering legal action against the Spectator. A spokesman for the House of Lords did not comment on the allegation. Lord Ahmed said he had received “dozens if not hundreds of hate mail and threats as a result of Fitna” but told The Times he would not protest the screening of the film in Mr Wilders’ absence.

    Baroness Cox said the original screening was delayed not because of alleged threats but because she was made aware of Mr Wilders’ calls for the Koran to be banned shortly before the event and she disagreed with them. In a joint statement, Baroness Cox and Lord Pearson insisted that they were promoting freedom of speech: “We do not agree with Geert Wilders that the Koran should be banned…. Geert Wilder’s ‘Fitna’ film is not a threat to anyone.

    He may not be a threat to anyone here because we ignore such stupid fools. But there’s two points here.
    First, Wilders is no believer in free speech, so for him to try and play the victim is rather hypocritical.
    Secondly - where has this claim come from about Lord Ahmed ’summoning 10,000 Muslims’?
    Thirdly, Geert Wilders wants:

    all immigration from Muslim countries halted, Muslim immigrants paid to leave and all Muslim ‘criminals’ stripped of Dutch citizenship and deported ‘back where they came from’.

    Deported where they come from? That is of course no different to the anti-semitic libel that Jews (in this case Muslims) have no relevance to the country they hold citizenship in, and are all traitors to its values. No surprise to see Melanie Phillips is supporting his cause. Incidentally, what did he say in Netherlands that led to charges of incitement to violence? I’m interested in knowing that.


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    1. Persevere » Blog Archive » Geert Wilder’s freedom of speech hypocrisy

      [...] Lord Ahmed denies allegations in the Spectator that he had “threatened the House of Lords authorities that he would bring a force of 10,000 Muslims to lay siege to the Lords if Wilders was allowed to speak”. Lord Ahmed told The Times that he was considering legal action against the Spectator. A spokesman for the House of Lords did not comment on the allegation. Lord Ahmed said he had received “dozens if not hundreds of hate mail and threats as a result of Fitna” but told The Times he would not protest the screening of the film in Mr Wilders’ absence. for more click here [...]



    1. Golam Murtaza — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:14 AM  

      Deported back to where I come from? Oh God, not Birmingham. Please! I beg you, NO!

    2. Bishop Hill — on 13th February, 2009 at 7:41 AM  

      It is a bit of a struggle to get from “ban the Koran” to a belief in free speech isn’t it? He should still be allowed in though, partly because it appears to be illegal to keep him out and partly because we should demand freedom of speech for bad people too.

    3. Random Guy — on 13th February, 2009 at 8:27 AM  

      Oh I see they did the old “leak a false story to the media” routine with the Lord Ahmed thing so that all the damage could be done before the story could be clarified any further.

      Read the classic “There have been reports that up to 10,000 Muslims could demonstrate” in Metro as well. Same old tricks, same old tricks.

      Oh and the whole Quillam Foundation reaction is a bit hilarious. If they had any more credibility to lose with the British Muslim community, they probably just lost all 2 ounces of it.

    4. DavidMWW — on 13th February, 2009 at 8:42 AM  

      Wilders is NOT charged with inciting violence. He’s charged with insulting the community of Islamic worshippers.

      Read Bartholomew.

    5. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 9:39 AM  

      If they had any more credibility to lose with the British Muslim community, they probably just lost all 2 ounces of it.

      It’s just one homgenous bloc is it, the Muslim community?

    6. Random Guy — on 13th February, 2009 at 9:57 AM  

      “It’s just one homgenous bloc is it, the Muslim community?”

      Its homogenous enough, in my opinion. If you are a practicing Muslim like me you will know what I mean. If not, then I’d rather not have yet another pointless semantic discussion. I just cannot be bothered with wasting my time on that BS. If you can’t accept it, move on.

      So Wilders eh? What a prat.

    7. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:22 AM  

      You see, I would quite like to be deported to Birmingham.

      I’m one of the few people who find the Brummy accent really really sexy.

      Wolverhampton is even better.

      Loveloi.

    8. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:30 AM  

      I note that Salma Yaqoob opposed the Wilders ban on BBC QT last night.

      Is she a Quilliamite?

      Or is this homogeneity not quite as you suggest?

    9. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:42 AM  

      There’s a certain level of nervousness about quite how many Islamist preachers might get banned, if the Gvt applied banning consistently. Bungle is opposed to the ban as well, and specifically mentioned Qaradawi as his rationale for taking this line.

      They should be a little worried - but not massively.

      There are more than a few people in Government who are prepared to cut a deal with the “covenant of security” Islamists (“jihad abroad, but not in the UK”): who they think will keep Al Qaeda-ism at bay in the UK.

      (This was also the theory with Omar Bakri Mohammed… didn’t turn out particularly well)

    10. shariq — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:46 AM  

      I think the government really screwed this up. If Mr Wilders had come into the country then he would hardly have received any publicity and no damage would have been done.

      Besides, this dude is an MP for gods sake. If he had arrived and incited violence, the police could then have taken the appropriate action. Evan Harris was very good on this subject on Radio 5 last night.

    11. Refresh — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:48 AM  

      DavidT, can I ask why you didn’t run with the siege of House of Lords by 10,000 muslim story on Harry’s Place?

      What was the editorial thinking there?

    12. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:48 AM  

      Did Evan Harris hear his home affairs spokesman Huhne defending the ban that morning on R4?

    13. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:57 AM  

      siege of House of Lords by 10,000 muslim story on Harry’s Place?

      Because I initially saw that specific number in the Brussels Journal. I believe that the BJ is sympathetic to Vlaams Belang. That makes me wary of them, and wary of the “10,000″ claim.

      I did see other reports, not connected to BJ, which suggested that some form of protest was being proposed. However, I was looking for something independent of BJ for the specific 10,000 claim, didn’t find it, so didn’t run it.

    14. Mary — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:59 AM  

      Nope, Yaqoob’s point is the one mirrorred by Bishop Hill above. I fail to see how making that point means that she doesn’t find the pathetic Quilliam reaction hilarious?
      The point you’re obviously missing is that QF agreed with the Qaradawi ban and yet are arguing against Gilder’s ban. The hypocrisy is plain to see and they cannot hide behind the ‘I believe in freedom of speech for all’ motto.
      However Yaqoob, as far as I know, has not stated that Qaradawi be banned, and therein lies the difference.

      As for the blog - Agreed.

    15. Refresh — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:59 AM  

      Thanks DavidT, its appreciated.

    16. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 11:02 AM  

      Is anyone suggesting that he was banned for any reason other than fear of demonstrations??

    17. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 11:02 AM  

      But hey, the Brummie accent?

    18. platinum786 — on 13th February, 2009 at 11:04 AM  

      Listen, the government got this call right. It’s hard to say I know…. i gets stuck in your throat, but they did.

      Think of it this way. The arguments presented in Fitna, and I have seen it and was not offended by it, are the same lame arguements rednecks have presented to me post 911 on any sort of military forum. I even used to be a member of a redcneck forum to argue thise points with them (the good old days of Ezboard).

      I wouldn’t mind seeing Geert Wilders on national TV, with a panel containing muslims, so he can present his evidence and then have it shreded to bits, i think it would make excellent viewing.

      BUT at the same time, just because his arguement is illogical and easy to break down, does not make it less hateful and an incitement to hate. furthermore, as a British citizen I hate offence that such material will be presented in an office of our government.

      If an anti semetic speaker came to the UK and was banned, would the same reaction have occured? People who hate jews, are just as easy to break down with their stupid arguements, but that does not make them any less offensive and hateful.

      If an Al queda supporter, a self declared PR guy for Al Queda came to Britain, should he be let in and allowed into the lords to explain why it’s a good idea to destroy all of our society? Or the non Muslim section of it perhaps?

      It is against our ideals that someone be limited from speaking, but we must remember, that we hold the same ideals about freedom to worship (something Geert Wilders wants to prevent) and our opposition to hate, be it against Muslims, or other religious groups, or homosexuals or Liverpool supporters.

      It’s not an idealistic solution, but it’s the right one.

    19. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 11:12 AM  

      platinum - yours is a recipe for banning a great many more people than we already - inconsistently - do

    20. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 11:15 AM  

      If an anti semetic speaker came to the UK and was banned, would the same reaction have occured? People who hate jews, are just as easy to break down with their stupid arguements, but that does not make them any less offensive and hateful.

      1. One of the most prominent anti-semites in the world today, a guy called Jorgan Jermas who writes as “Israel Shamir”, was hosted by Lord Ahmed in the House of Lords a couple of years ago:

      http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article378140.ece

      Qaradawi hasn’t been banned for good, and no banning order has been made against him. There are a number of people in Government who think he is an ally against extremism and terrorism.

      There are a number of hugely anti-semitic and pro-jihadist speakers being allowed into the UK at the moment. Bilal Phillips is coming here next month. Last year, we had Hezbollah’s Mousawi, whose Al Manar TV made a drama based on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, which included scenes of little children being bled and killed, so that their blood could be incorporated into Passover matzohs.

      There was a little bit of fuss in the blogosphere, but the Government wasn’t interested.

      The problem is that this Government sees anti-semitism as tolerable and explicable. They also see any Islamist who supports Jihad abroad, but not in the UK, as an ally. Therefore, they’re just not prepared to act against them.

    21. dave bones — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:06 PM  

      …They also see any Islamist who supports Jihad abroad, but not in the UK, as an ally. Therefore, they’re just not prepared to act against them.

      People are going down for supporting Jihad abroad now, Mohammed Hamid for one, but yes people who support Jihad are let in, so why not Wilders?

      I wouldn’t mind seeing Geert Wilders on national TV, with a panel containing muslims, so he can present his evidence and then have it shreded to bits…

      His evidence is what an unknown number of Jihadis believe is Islam. Fitna as a film is totally interchangable with a lot of Jihadi stuff online. The only dispute I can see is with Wilders claim that this way of thinking is mainstream Islam, which it blatantly isn’t.

    22. douglas clark — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:06 PM  

      I believe there is a clear distinction to be made between people advocating or inciting violence as a political solution to the worlds’ or the UK’s problems and people advocating radical solutions. I feel that distinction is the one to draw.

      So, the former should be banned, the latter not. It is the cusp question for freedom of speech.

      The former group have no arguement that anyone living in a pluralist democracy ought to be listening to.

      There may be worthwhile exceptions to that general rule, for instance London has historically been the base of many governments in exile from around the globe. However I think the principle should stand.

    23. platinum786 — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:13 PM  

      If you want Dave, you can invite extremists to the same debate and have them defend Geert Wilders opinions. It’d be excellent, imagine that Abu Hamza, Geert Wilder, maybe someone from the Israeli government, all on the same side Vs the normal world.

    24. dave bones — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:17 PM  

      Bring it on. Better out than in. While we aren’t shooting each other, lets talk. I have yet to meet someone who I think should be banned from speaking. We all have mouths. They open and close. What are people scared of? I don’t get it.

    25. DavidMWW — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:18 PM  

      @25 Or even Omar Bakri, who thought Fitna was quite good.

    26. Kismet Hardy — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:22 PM  

      Hang on, the dude made a short film. He wasn’t trying to come here to plug the DVD on Chris Moyles’ show or speak candidly of his views regarding Islam and shoe trends with Lorraine Kelly, was he? Or even joining the annual BNP picnic in the park. He wanted to air his amateur video in the House of Lords (and correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t the film get shown there last night anyway?). It would have been just one more nutcase coming to the country for a visit and leaving without incident. All this hoo-ha has given him, his movie and I dare say his cause much more publicity than he could have if he’d appeared on Johnathan Ross with swastikas painted around his nipples

    27. Sid — on 13th February, 2009 at 12:26 PM  

      Bring it on. Better out than in. While we aren’t shooting each other, lets talk.

      Heh. That reminds me of this.

    28. Katy Newton — on 13th February, 2009 at 1:09 PM  

      Deleted. I don’t really want to look as if I’m standing up for Melanie Phillips.

    29. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 1:11 PM  

      What a silly boy

    30. David T — on 13th February, 2009 at 1:14 PM  

      I’m in that video. Probably.

    31. Trofim — on 13th February, 2009 at 1:46 PM  

      I understand that Geert Wilders was in Britain in December (bloke from Quilliam Foundation, amongst others, said so). Doesn’t that change the complexion of things yet again? Did he have different beliefs in December?

    32. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 2:10 PM  

      No of course he didn’t.

      But this time his visit had been publicised and they were worried about the reaction.

      It is blindingly obvious that the ban had nothing to do with what he was going to say, and everything to do with his possibly hostile reception, whether driven by Lord Ahmed’s “threat” - for which we still have little evidence - or not.

    33. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 2:29 PM  

      Dave T - Please could you enlighten us all as to why you don’t campaign and in fact your buddies at Memri don’t campaign and highlight extremist speeches by Rabbi’s?

      Last year a senior Rabbi arrived here in the UK and preached ethnic cleansing of Gaza of Arabs and not a word was said. Your girl Mel didn’t rant.

      I can give you numerous other examples but not a word.

      Surely the fight against extremism is against all and not sleectively and yet….

      One of the most senior Rabbi’s in Isreal referred to Arabs as snakes and not a mention or words of condemnation and his party is a leading candidate for Government. Yet you keep harping on about the Apes and Monkeys so why ignore things like this?

      So why are you refusing to tackle issues of extremism within Judaism?

      Surely you need to be highlighting that as well to make a safer home for all those in the Middle East?

      Also what condemnation did you make at HP of Liberman’s policies which can’t hardly be described as mainstream and yet he may soon be here shaking hands with government officials? Will you campaign against recognition of someone who advocates such digusting measures?

      I notice Mel hasn’t said much about Liberman or condemned his extreme views or even the luverly very Senmior Rabbi who called Arabs snakes - that doesn’t get mentioned in her blog

    34. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 2:55 PM  

      Imran - any links to any of those you mention?

    35. The Queen of Fiddlesticks — on 13th February, 2009 at 2:55 PM  

      Platinum
      The arguments presented in Fitna, and I have seen it and was not offended by it, are the same lame arguements rednecks have presented to me post 9/11 on any sort of military forum. I even used to be a member of a redcneck forum to argue these points with them

      My thoughts exactly. We have been debating this for 8? years now already, whats left to discuss? I did laugh at how this is even called a “film” … it’s good for nothing but a you tube clip. So I hate to say I agree with the decision to turn him back, for today anyway.
      I can’t say he is interested in debate … seems to have his mind made up.
      If I pieced together the story correctly, he was invited to come by the UKIP … not really known for their racist policies, are they? Maybe they wanted to argue against him themselves … I don’t know.
      and he was asked/told by the home office before hand to not come, but he chose to any way. He is not the first ever to be refused (for what ever reason) as I’m sure he won’t be the last.
      I have always admired Dutch culture for soooo many things, what happened to them? When even their liberal values can become a foundation for a nationalist extremist movement? Not a fan of Geert at all! Everything about him is hypocrisy.

      I do have a question though. As an American, I said in another thread, always seeing that word attached to everything evil … affects me in the same way Muslims are offended through things like this. Why aren’t I permitted to have the same debate? anytime I try I am always told to think for myself, that I don’t or I’m just plain too stupid, or ignorant of my own countries evil plan to overtake and control the universe?

    36. blah — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:00 PM  

      An excellent rebuttal of Fitna here
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUiQ3V-IMYI

    37. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:21 PM  

      cjcjc - Yes plenty and it’s been discussed here before with links.

      But my questions is why HP, Memri, Mel and DaveT et al. focus alone on Muslim extremists as if this is the only type of extremism. What about getting their own house in order.

      Why did Mel fail to condemn the statements of the Rabbi who came here.

      The point is that if someone attacks a Muslim or ethnic then we need to accept free speech and if Muslims are extreme in speech they must be condemned. Surely all extreme speech should be condemned.

      Wilders is an example of hate speech under the guise of free speech. Wilders isn’t for free speech he is for his own free speech thats it.

    38. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:29 PM  

      Can you point me to those links?

      And what exactly do you mean by HP’s “house”?

    39. blah — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:43 PM  

      Ah David T
      Fresh from defending Wilders freedom of speech he’s calling for Muslim preachers he doesnt like to be banned from the UK.

    40. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:48 PM  

      I notice Mel hasn’t said much about Liberman

      It’s Lieberman btw, and in fact she describes him as “extreme” as well as describing Israel as a banana republic…

      http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/3354176/israels-banana-republic.thtml

    41. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:53 PM  

      Ah blah,
      so how do you feel about the charming Ibrahim Moussaoui?

    42. blah — on 13th February, 2009 at 3:57 PM  

      cjcjc here are some links to extremist Rabbis you never see on MEMRI or HP

      Israeli Army Rabbis Encourage Soldiers to Kill Palestinians Civilians

      It said one urged soldiers to “spare your lives and the lives of your friends and not to show concern for a population that surrounds us and harms us…”

      “Kill the one who comes to kill you. As for the population, it is not innocent,” the daily quoted the pamphlet as saying.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_gBhPSYDtw

      Rabbi compares blacks to apes
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jtPnu0XX1GA

      The need to wipe out Amalek (aka Palestinians)
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPH6os7OR1w

      “We must cleanse the country of Arabs and resettle them in the countries where they came from,” head of the Yesha Rabbis Council, Rabbi Dov Lior, declared Monday, adding that, “If this means we have to pay them, we will. Without doing so, we will never enjoy peace in our land.”

      Sephardi chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu
      “Even when we seek revenge, it is important to make one thing clear – the life of one yeshiva boy is worth more than the lives of 1,000 Arabs.

      “The Talmud states that if gentiles rob Israel of silver they will pay it back in gold, and all that is taken will be paid back in folds, but in cases like these there is nothing to pay back, since as I said – the life of one yeshiva boy is worth more than the lives of 1,000 Arabs,” added Rabbi Eliyahu.

      Yitzhak Batzri, said, “The Arabs are donkeys and beasts. They are inferior. What do they want? To take our women. They say we are racist. In reality, they are the wicked and cruel ones. They are imbued with the filth of the snake. There are pure and impure, and they are impure. You residents of Patt must not give in.”

      David Batzri told the audience, “The establishment of this school is an act of abomination and impurity. One can’t mix impure and pure. Of course we must stay apart from all the nations. You must stand in the breach and prevent this. It is forbidden to mix darkness with light. The nation of Israel is pure. The Arabs are a nation of donkeys. They are an affliction, a demon, a pestilence.
      “Why, one may ask, did God not create them to walk on all fours, since they are donkeys? The reason is that they must build and clean, but must always understand that they are donkeys. There is no room for them in our schools.”

    43. Sunny — on 13th February, 2009 at 4:03 PM  

      As I said when Fitna was first made - it really was a piss poor effort. The guy is nonce.

    44. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 4:06 PM  

      Those “rabbis” are disgusting - though I would be a little more convinced if they were clips of live sermons - these guys are speaking solo to camera with no indication of who on earth they are.

      Who are they? What are their names?

    45. cjcjc — on 13th February, 2009 at 4:07 PM  

      And have they been invited to speak in the UK?

    46. The Queen of Fiddlesticks — on 13th February, 2009 at 5:14 PM  

      sunny,
      I agree, Finta if anything was a piss poor effort, and nothing we have not already seen over and over again from the beginning. The debate is stalemate when the same words are used over and over, including the comments here when they turn to bring in examples of how everyone is bad. something we should already all know as well.
      lets call for a new game, I’m so bored of just going back and forth.
      I am a big supporter of free speech, who has prevented anything from being said if it already has? nothing has really been banned has it? I would support the home office simply because he offers nothing new, and whats his point in doing so if not to spread his own ideas at a time where they will be unproductive in more than one way. The only one I can blame for anything right now is the press, and yesterday seeing a billboard painted on the entire side of a building saying only “reading the news is making you stupider” …gave me hope I’m not alone in my thinking. Freedom of speech is being used as an excuse to say whatever you like, so someone needs to control it somehow don’t they? freedom of expression is another thing, maybe… but even that is a personal expression. freedom of thought is still another topic.
      anyway if the debate needs to change … why can’t Europe express it’s concerns, but in another way and be acknowledged for it’s fears of being overtaken? without always being labeled racist and Islamiphobic?

    47. Don — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:01 PM  

      There are certainly a lot of vile people spouting hate, ignorance and bigotry, attempting to dehumanise the group(s) they loath and urging bloody persecution.

      Do they share a common factor? All Moslems? Nope. All Jewish? Uh-uh. All Christians? Far from it.

      For the most part the common factor appears to be religious supremacism. If god is really on your side, it’s easier to dispense with simple humanity.

    48. Ravi Naik — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:11 PM  

      For the most part the common factor appears to be religious supremacism.

      Is Geert Wilder a religious supremacist? The reason why you see more religious fanatics - is because there are far more religious people than atheists in this world.

    49. Ravi Naik — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:32 PM  

      I have to say a few things.

      First. Geert Wilder and Nick Griffin are a new breed of racists. They are not your David Duke or Farrakhan kind of racists, because their language is the one used by mainstream, and they appeal to fears people have specially when the economy is down. Yelling “racists” and “nazis” or censoring their message doesn’t cut it any more. They get far more support when they are seen as martyrs of freedom of speech.

      The weak spot, of course, is that they can be easily dealt with by confronting their message with facts, and by pointing out their fallacies.

      Second. It is unfortunate that Lord Ahmed didn’t take this opportunity to confront Geert, and point out in front of his peers and media, all the errors of this movie. It would humiliate Geert, and educate the public about Islam. Instead, the coward decided to go for censorship, and in the end, Geert got the better of him. More fodder for the likes of Mad Mel.

      Third. In the grand scheme of things, perhaps all the rotten people won. Call me cynical, but Geert got to be the martyr of freedom of speech, and Lord Ahmed got his profile hyped up, which will come in handy for the upcoming trial (texting while driving, and killing another driver). Then we have the Islamophobes who are going to say that this is one more example of how Muslims are curbing freedom of speech in Europe, and the radical muslims who will say that this is one more proof that their religion is under attack.

      Who loses? Everyone else.

    50. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:59 PM  

      cjcjc - She didn’t describe him as extreme she described him as an extreme nationalist - which is a whole world of difference.

      Anyway regarding the Rabbi’s that was just an example and they are major Rabbi’s.

      However my point to Dave T, Memri, Mel was that extremism in other faiths isn’t challenged.

      There is the extremism in the Evangelical movement.

      So when Muslims and/or ethnics are attacked its free speech and we should get used to it. But when the right wing is attacked its called extremism and not free speech. Why the double standard?

      Why the tunnel criticism?

      I am afraid its not a question you can answer unless you arte Dave T, Mel or represent Memri.

    51. Don — on 13th February, 2009 at 6:59 PM  

      Ravi,

      Not that I can discover, which is why I said ‘mostly’. I was more referring to the spate of pointing at obscure hate-spouting religionistas from any side but one’s own.

      Never a shortage of them.

    52. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 7:01 PM  

      Ravi - Starngely the Evening Standard has quite a good take on this story:

      http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23641599-details/article.do?ito=newsnow&

      An extract:
      “There is every opportunity in the UK for open debate on Islam and on the ways it has provided inspiration to terrorism, and rightly so. But for anyone to use that right of free speech purely to provoke trouble risks threatening the very ­atmosphere in which free speech is possible.

      The Home Secretary’s power to exclude foreigners whose presence could cause a threat to public safety is an important one. It has rightly been used to exclude the extremist Muslim preacher Yusuf al-Qaradawi: while he was unlikely to incite violence directly, his pronouncements would still have been deeply offensive and provocative to signficant ­sections of the community. Likewise the firebrand American leader of the black Nation of Islam, Louis Farrakhan.

      The same is true of Geert Wilders. We should show no tolerance for hate-mongers, regardless of their faith: banning the Dutch MP was, reluctantly, the right decision.”

      Sums it up well met thinks.

    53. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 7:40 PM  

      cjcjc - here are a few more examples and you trying to imply these are not to a big audience is nonsense. These are senior senior Rabbi’s whose words carry great significance.

      From the Spiritual Head of Shas - Rabbi Yosef:
      “”It is forbidden to be merciful to them, you must give them missiles, with relish - annihilate them. Evil ones, damnable ones,” Ovadia Yosef was quoted in the Hebrew Maariv newspaper as telling a congregation attending prayers last weekend.”

      “May the Holy Name visit retribution on the Arabs’ heads, and cause their seed to be lost, and annihilate them, and cause them to be cast from the world,” Rabbi Yosef, a former Chief Rabbi of Israel’s Sephardi Jews, is reported to have said.

      More Gems:
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/869553.stm

      “Why do you bring them (the Palestinians) close to us?” Rabbi Yosef said in the sermon on Sunday. “You bring snakes next to us. How can you make peace with a snake?”

      The information is easy to find and includes additioinal gems such as calls to poison Palestinian livestock and water wells - issued by friendly and cuddly Rabbi Dov Lior.

      Loverly Rabbi Eli Albaz attacks Islamand condemns the Prophet but you don’t hear loss of Memri then do you?!

      Rabbi Isaac Ginzburg — published a book “Baruch the Hero”.

      Yet more:
      http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/army-rabbi-gave-out-hate-leaflet-to-troops-1516805.html

      “The Israeli army’s chief rabbinate gave soldiers preparing to enter the Gaza Strip a booklet implying that all Palestinians are their mortal enemies and advising them that cruelty is sometimes a “good attribute”.

      The booklet, entitled Go Fight My Fight: A Daily Study Table for the Soldier and Commander in a Time of War, was published especially for Operation Cast Lead”

      So tell me where is the condemnation from those like Dave T, Mel, Memri (they seem to have lost their Memri!) etc.

      So pleaese don’t hide behind excuses as all sides are doing this.

      This isn’t to excuse the Muslim Extremist Preachers who also deserve utter condemnation but lets not kid ourselves this is one sided.

      So those spouting off that banning Wilders denied him free speech ignore vile hate speech in their own communitiews and also fail to appreciate that Wilders himself isn’t a champion of free speech and the Govt was right to ban him and place him alongside other inciters such as Qaradawi.

    54. Imran Khan — on 13th February, 2009 at 10:16 PM  

      My point about this was that extremist preachers exist in every faith and people need to recognise that.

      The vocal writers who are complaining about Wilders right to free speech avoid looking within and also are quick to label Muslim Praechers of Hate but are blind to issues elsewhere. so lets stop them all.

      As regards Dave T and his blog then you see the same imbalance namely that he focusses on the Muslim side without also looking to correct issues within his own community and the wider community.

      Even in the Daily Telegraph- Charles Moore failed to recognise the need to ban all extremist preachers and again seletctively focussed on one community:

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/charlesmoore/4615504/Banning-Wilders-plays-into-the-hands-of-our-Islamist-enemies.html

      Thus failing to recognise the wider issues.

      Religion needs to be for good and this applies across the board.

    55. blah — on 14th February, 2009 at 9:37 AM  

      Imran Khan you are dreaming if you think that David T or Charles Moore (!) would ever be balanced towards Muslims or they are interested in fairness.

      Moore has made a career out of bashing Muslims. He of course would claim this is legitamate and hes just criticising a religion . However the racist mask many Islamophobes hide behind has on occasion slipped

      “Britain is basically English-speaking and Christian and white, and if one starts to think that it might become Urdu-speaking and Muslim and brown, one gets frightened and angry. Next door to me lives a large family of Muslims from the Indian sub-continent. We are friendly enough to one another and they have done us various small acts of kindness. During the Gulf war, however, I heard their morning prayers coming through the wall, and I felt a little uneasy. If such people had outnumbered whites in our square, I should have felt alarmed. Such feelings are not only natural, surely - they are right. You ought to have a sense of your identity, and part of that sense derives from your nation and your race”

    56. Tim Worstall — on 14th February, 2009 at 11:43 AM  

      Ahmed and the 10,000.

      Sadly, a private meeting and no, one cannot reveal who was there or even where the meeting was. But Ahmed did make the claim as I have been told by one who was indeed at the meeting.

    57. Refresh — on 14th February, 2009 at 12:34 PM  

      Tim, what was the claim?

      Was it that there would be protests and expect 10,000; or was it the House of Lords will be put under seige?

      It is inadequate to say you know someone who was at the meeting, we can’t know who was there, or where it was and leave it hanging.

      And why was it only run by a far-right site?

    58. Yacine — on 14th February, 2009 at 12:51 PM  

      With regards to the actions of Lord Ahmed, confirmation of his planned demonstrations can be found here:

      Associated Press of Pakistan
      http://www.app.com.pk/en_/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=65842&Itemid=2

      Islamophobia Watch
      http://www.islamophobia-watch.com/islamophobia-watch/2009/1/26/house-of-lords-cancels-fitna-screening.html

      The second link also provides a further link to the Jerusalem Post, who also mention it.

      None of these sources can be accused of being biased towards Wilders, so it does indeed look like Lord Ahmed made those threats.

    59. blah — on 14th February, 2009 at 1:52 PM  

      Yacine
      “With regards to the actions of Lord Ahmed, confirmation of his planned demonstrations can be found here:

      Associated Press of Pakistan
      http://www.app.com.pk/en_/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=65842&Itemid=2”

      It mentions nothing about 10,000 people

      “The second link also provides a further link to the Jerusalem Post, who also mention it.

      None of these sources can be accused of being biased towards Wilders, so it does indeed look like Lord Ahmed made those threats.”

      You seriously think the Jerusalem Post is an unbiased paper when it comes to Muslims?

      Caroline Glick the writer used to be in the IDF and
      “She was the 2005 recipient of the Zionist Organization of America’s Ben Hecht award for Outstanding Journalism (previous recipients have included A. M. Rosenthal, Sidney Zion and Daniel Pipes).”
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caroline_Glick

      This is one of her charming comments
      “one of the greatest problems for international journalists covering the Middle East is that people who serve as guides for journalists are often affiliated with Islamic terrorists seeking to turn foreign visitors against Israel. They bring journalists to staged scenes that paint a false, overly optimistic picture of Arab life.”

      Desperate stuff “Yacine”

    60. cjcjc — on 14th February, 2009 at 4:31 PM  

      Even in the Daily Telegraph- Charles Moore failed to recognise the need to ban all extremist preachers and again seletctively focussed on one community:

      That is a reasonable point.

      Are these rabbis coming to the UK?

    61. blah — on 14th February, 2009 at 5:31 PM  

      Wilders extremism revealed

      “I put it to the leader of the Freedom Party that he risked upsetting harmonious community relations in Britain by calling for bans on the Koran and the building of mosques, when in truth there were only a tiny number of Islamic extremists.

      At first Mr Wilders agreed that the majority of Muslims were moderate but soon he betrayed his deeper convictions. “Are you familiar with the concept of Taqqiya? It means that Muslims can lie. It is even written in the Koran that if you are not living under Muslim rule, they will talk differently if they are not in the majority.

      “For example, if you ask a Muslim guy what he thinks about gays, he will give a politically correct answer because he knows that he will be punished otherwise. But if there are more like him, you will see the truth.””

      http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/world_agenda/article5725776.ece

    62. blah — on 14th February, 2009 at 8:05 PM  

      This is from Wilders aborted speech to the House of Lords. From reading his speeches he believes every single Muslim is blotting to overthrow the west. Many others believe this stuff (its full of fabricated Daily Mail stories):

      “But there is still much work to be done. Britain seems to have become a country ruled by fear. A country where civil servants cancel Christmas celebrations to please Muslims. A country where Sharia Courts are part of the legal system. A country where Islamic organizations asked to stop the commemoration of the Holocaust. A country where a primary school cancels a Christmas nativity play because it interfered with an Islamic festival. A country where a school removes the words Christmas and Easter from their calendar so as not to offend Muslims. A country where a teacher punishes two students for refusing to pray to Allah as part of their religious education class. A country where elected members of a town council are told not to eat during daylight hours in town hall meetings during the Ramadan. A country that excels in its hatred of Israel, still the only democracy in the Middle-East. A country whose capitol is becoming ‘Londonistan’.”

    63. Don — on 14th February, 2009 at 8:35 PM  

      Wilders extremism revealed

      Gasp ! He’s an extremist ?

    64. blah — on 14th February, 2009 at 9:32 PM  

      Don
      “Gasp ! He’s an extremist ?”

      Sorry to break it you Don. You wouldnt know it from reading some of the papers to whom he’s a cross between Mother Theresa, Hans Brinker and Anne Frank

    65. Yacine — on 14th February, 2009 at 11:10 PM  

      Blah,

      I meant the two links I gave when I sad about not being favourable towards Wilders. You are correct about the Jerusalem post. My post was ambiguous.

      Why do you believe that quoting the Associated Press of Pakistan is “desparate stuff”?

    66. douglas clark — on 15th February, 2009 at 1:48 AM  

      Tim Worstall @ 57,

      Put up your source. Otherwise what you say is just hearsay, too.

      Look, I have no idea whether Ahmed said what your source said he did. But the evidence, so far, is extremely weak. If your source knows otherwise, let he or she say it on the record.

      Otherwise, it is just another unattributable smear.

    67. douglas clark — on 15th February, 2009 at 1:56 AM  

      This is a complete lie:

      A very good friend of mine was at the meeting and says Ahmed said nothing of the sort.

      Who to believe?

      One commentator or another?

      We ought to be swayed by supported evidence, nothing more, nothing less.

    68. Ravi Naik — on 15th February, 2009 at 9:16 AM  

      At first Mr Wilders agreed that the majority of Muslims were moderate but soon he betrayed his deeper convictions. “Are you familiar with the concept of Taqqiya? It means that Muslims can lie. It is even written in the Koran that if you are not living under Muslim rule, they will talk differently if they are not in the majority.

      Blah, so your evidence of Mr. Wilders’s extremism is that he picked up something that IS in fact in the Koran? Is Taqqiya an invention of Geert Wilder?

      I liked this article, which pretty much says what I have been defending: that this was a lost opportunity to tackle a lot of misconceptions about Islam. Even if we put the position that we do not tolerate Islamophobes, the fact is that there is a silent majority who sees Muslims as alienated from mainstream. After the events of 9/11, 7/7 and the reports about Mosques hosting radicals that spew hate to British Muslims, I think you can’t blame that people are concerned, or that there is no problem in some communities.

      “For example, if you ask a Muslim guy what he thinks about gays, he will give a politically correct answer because he knows that he will be punished otherwise. But if there are more like him, you will see the truth.”

      Funny, the BNP and racists who support them operate absolutely the same way, about gays and about non-whites.

    69. Imran Khan — on 15th February, 2009 at 11:21 PM  

      Ravi - As you most likely know Taqqiya is a Shi’a concept and isn’t practised by the majority of Muslims.

      The concept of concealing faith can’t go hand in hand with Melanie Phillips assertion that Muslims are taking over and concepts such as Londonistan.

      How can you have Londonistan and Taqqiya!!!!!!

      The argument is nonsense and again refers to your and Geerts lack of knowledge.

      ALso before you charge in - no Muslims are not allowed to lie in their dealing with non-Muslims. These are concepts which are parctised by ignorant people.

      Nice to see you have such faith in Geert and his poor statements which are simply just hate mongering.

    70. blah — on 15th February, 2009 at 11:40 PM  

      Imran Khan

      “Ravi - As you most likely know Taqqiya is a Shi’a concept and isn’t practised by the majority of Muslims.”

      To be fair shias use taqiyya much as Sunnis do- only in situations where your life is at risk. They have had greater recourse because they have been persecuted far more. Shias in Iran dont hide their beliefs.

      For example if someone is killing Muslims and asks you “are you Muslim?” You are permitted to say no to save your life. That is the only acceptable taqiyyaa in Islam.

      Its funny to say Muslims conceal our faith when our holy books are available and widely distributed and we get accused of pushing our religion on others

      The “taqiyya libel” is of course meant to negate anything a Muslim says and make it impossible for them. If a Muslim says something agreeable the muslim hater will say “ah hes doing taqiyya” - something disagreeable “look what those Muslims are saying”

      That is what Wilders meant by his quote that Ravi appears to be making apologia for.

      Given his film is full of Muslims making outragous statements how can he then claim Muslims do taqiyya ?
      Why cant it be argued that the extereme statements are aslo taqiyya and the people making them are actually moderates? Thats how absurd the argument is.

      Judaism also incidentally has the notion of taqiyya. Maimondes used this exact word in Arabic in his writings on the issue of concealing ones faith to avoid persecution

    71. blah — on 15th February, 2009 at 11:46 PM  

      Nice article from excellent site

      The Taqiyya Libel Against Muslims

      http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/the_taqiyya_libel_against_muslims/

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