Posts Tagged ‘europe’

5 years since the Muhammad Cartoons were originally printed…

September 30, 2010

So – today it is five years ago the original Muhammad Cartoons were originally printed. I remember that at the time I was living in a students residence in the western part of Aarhus (where Jyllandsposten, the newspaper that printed the cartoons, has its headquarters) with a bunch of international students – by sheer coincidense we (the Danish students) actually had a subscription for Jyllandsposten – and I vaguely remember having the feeling that it was a weird thing to do with the muhammad cartoons.

Not that is was not relevant, the basic idea behind printing them – that artist and/or people who wanted to voice a dissenting opinion would be scared of critizising Islam/the Quran/Muhammad would be scared of doing so, based on a number of incidents (Van Gogh, Rushdie, Fortuin, etc.) in Europe – is all too relevant, even to this day.

But what I found weird was that it wasn’t a normal newspaper story, nor was it an editorial or an opinion… And I remember thinking something like (scratches head…) – “what WILL people think about this? whatever will people think???” – and genuinely not being able to imagine what the reaction would be.

I also remember being a bit unimpressed with the cartoons – some of them was of a pretty poor quality, both in regards to content and drawing – but I suppose the whole idea was separated from any aesthetic ideals, and the main point was just to prove/disprove a point.

Anyways, I think we should all review the cartoons once more – and see them for what they are;

The 12 “horrible” cartoons are really quite diverse – some are not even showing Muhammad the prophet – one is apparently showing a 12 year old boy that the cartoonist knew in front of a black-board that reads “the editors of Jyllandsposten are old bigoted assholes” or something like that. Some are without any form of humour and strangely enough I think that the one I would have found most offensive if I had been a devout Muslim didn’t really get that much attention. (It is the one with Muhammad holding a sword in front of two burka-clad ladies…)

The one that got all the wrath was this one by Kurt Westergaard:

It is of course offensive to muslims, just as the cartoons of any newspaper with any real journalistic intent should or could be offensive to some party. But it is NOT similar to ‘Der Stürmer´or hardcore racist propaganda. Not by a longshot. It has a harsh point, but not one that can really be contested – that some persons are committing horrible acts of terror based on their reading of the Quaran and interpretation of the will of Allah.

Is this worth killing for?

Apparently to some.

Since the publication a number of people have died in demonstrations in various parts of the world, the Danish embassy in Pakistan have been bombed (killing only Pakinstanis with absolutely no afiliation with the cartoon) Kurt Westergaard has cleared an assasination attempt by escaping to a secure roon in his house, and several terror plots have been exposed against Jyllands Posten. Several responsible people from the newspaper are now living under constant police protection. Just a few days before this five year anniversary a guy was apprehended in Copenhagen with a small bomb and a map of Aarhus where Jyllandspostens headquarters had been circled in.

Happy anniversary – we must never give in to unreasonable pressure. We must review the cartoons and clearly recognize that the reaction is out of proportion. We must not give in.

Advertisements

Europe surrenders – Fitna the movie removed

March 29, 2008

Amazingly liveleak has decided to remove Fitna the movie, apparently due to death threats against their employees.

See the official statement HERE

NOTE – the movie is still available through p2p sites such as piratebay.org or similar – and since these sites are not in themselves legal and the movie has been made public, I would consider it completely legal to use one of these sites to get hold of the movie.

This is the most ridiculous thing ever – not only have the European governments shown themselves to be spineless or without any understanding of the fact that appeasement does not necessarily lead to a fair, equal compromise, but will often lead to continued aggression – sometimes it really is best to take a confrontation of ideas up front, and stand up for what you believe yourself.

So many ridiculous reactions have been made to this film – like its especially rude or extreme? Se various extreme reactions by the UN and various Middle Eastern governments HERE.

Comparisons with for instance the German anti-semitic propaganda movies are totally missing the point.

This is a movie simply displaying facts and letting Muslims themselves express how they think the quran should be interpreted. No clips in the movie are more than seven years old, nothing is really done to dishonor or insult muslims – the reason for the huge impact of the movie is simply watching stuff like homosexuals being hanged in Middle Eastern countries etc., and this is not something made up by Geert Wilders.

I wonder how come the new muhammed cartoons  has caused so little stir internationally? It seems nobody outside Denmark are really aware that new cartoons have been made by one of the cartoonists – and actually many Danes aren’t even aware.

Fitna the movie

March 28, 2008

If you haven’t seen it, you can watch it HERE.

I must say I’m very surprised – the movie really isn’t very shocking or anything? – I had imagined that Geert Wilders (the guy who looks incredibly dutch almost like a pastiche of what people from the Netherlands look like, and has a totally laughable haircut) had made some sort of Michael Moore style movie, and that it actually contained some desecration of the Quran… it’s really something that could have easily been a youtube movie…

And NO – tearing out pages in the Quran is hinted at, but is not shown – you hear the sound of a page tearing off-screen, while some on-screen text explains its a page from a phone book, and that Muslims should have their own confrontation with their own religion…

And YES – the muhammed cartoons are part of the movie.

But all the fuss, the threats and everything shows that Wilders has an important point – if this movie were to be forbidden it would be totally ridiculous.

And if you don’t want to spend 15 minutes understanding something thats subject to intense political debate, heres a short description of the movie: the whole movie consists of cross-cutting between verses (Surahs) from the Quran, footage from various terrorist act and various Muslims exclaiming that wish for world domination or “Death to the Infidels!”. In the end there are some facts about muslims in Europe and some speculation about what the future might bring.

Pretty basic actually – I did not feel the least bit provoked. The movie is totally acceptable and within the bounds of even the most politically correct definition of freedom of speech.

I Salute Geert Wilders!

Not for the movie in itself, but for making the movie, even at huge personal costs – he will have to fear for his life the rest of his years…

It is hardcore to put your life on the line for your beliefs, both if you’re a muslim extremist or Geert Wilders – but I salute people who live an extreme life, not ordinary people who value their own safety and comfort over any ideals they might hold.

For a much more interesting and enlightened comment than I am able to provide, visit the blog of Flemming Rose, the newspaper editor that decided to print the Muhammed Cartoons – NORTHERN LIGHT