Posted in: Jihad & Terrorism, Culture Wars & Censorship
Published on Feb 23, 2009 by Phyllis Chesler
A Dutch Hero Comes to Warn Us, Seek Our Support
The Incomparable Geert Wilders, MP, in New York City
"I have come to warn you of a great threat. Free speech is no longer a given, we must now battle for our birthright. We are looking at the end of democracy, the slavery of women, the death of gays. While there might be moderate Muslims, there is no such thing as moderate Islam. Islam is not a religion, it is a political and totalitarian ideology."
Some would say that these are fighting words.
Indeed, Dutch parliamentarian, Geert Wilders, is fighting for Western liberty and Western values, as rooted in the legacies of "Athens, Rome, and Jerusalem." This is the legacy he wishes to leave the "children of Europe," as opposed to the legacy of "Mecca and Gaza." Wilders is fighting for us all, his fight is our fight. As he said earlier today, "it is not about (him) but about Free Speech." Today he may be a "criminal, tomorrow, anyone of us might be considered a criminal too," for telling the truth about the danger that Islam poses to Western democracy. "Today I may be put behind bars. I am not the issue. Will free speech be put behind bars?"
"It is not 8:55pm. It is 11:55pm. We will lose everything."
Wilders is very blond, quite trim, and well tailored, both matter-of-fact and charming in a way that does not come across in still photos. Wilders' Dutch and Scandinavian entourage: other members of Parliament, such as Barry Madlener, of the Party of Freedom, (PVV), with whom I sat, and Lars Hedegaard, (the head of The Free Speech Society–Denmark), were all impossibly handsome, healthy, fluent in English, and heartbreakingly serious.
"The Left has hated Christianity for decades. Now, it demands respect for Islam. Guess why? The Left and Islam are both opposed to criticism of any kind. Where the Left and Islam come together, freedom will always suffer."
Wilders attributes the erosion of Western sanity and courage to the infernal doctrine of "multicultural relativism which has fatefully weakened the West." Such politically correct beliefs have led to the liberal Dutch Labor Party's initiation of the lawsuit against Wilders. While the public prosecutor's office declined to prosecute Wilders for "hate speech," (hundreds of people wrote to the Prosecutors on Wilders' behalf), the liberals appealed their ruling to the High Court in Amsterdam which actually overruled the public prosecutor's decision. Wilders is on his way to appeal this last decision in the Dutch Supreme Court. He says, wryly, that the lawsuits may last until 2015.
There we all were, on a cold and sunny day in February, the creme de la creme of New York's anti-jihadists, gathered together in Manhattan's Four Seasons restaurant, to honor Geert Wilders, all of us the guests of The Hudson–New York Briefing Council. The tall and elegant Dr. Herbert London, the author of a new and wonderful book, America's Secular Challenge. The Rise of a New National Religion presided. I was so happy to see him and many others, including Anne Bayefsky, Dr. Anat Berko, Dr. Andrew Bostom, Helen Freedman, Ibn Warraq, Joel Mowbray, Deroy Murdock, Pierre Rehov, Claudia Rossett, Ilyse Wilpon, Tim Wilson, and Barbara Winston, all of whom do extraordinary anti-terrorist and anti-jihadi work. I was honored to be among them. (Other important people were present but I am not at liberty to divulge their names).
Wilders said: "The liberals are blinded by multicultural relativism."
Ah yes, we have all written as much dozens of times, hundreds of times, and the "great disdain" of the leftists and liberals for this particular sentence is something that Wilders also knows a great deal about. But, Wilders points out, these same "leftists and liberals participate in demonstrations where they shout 'Death to the Jews.' They bring shame upon Europe." Wilders asks: "Are we going to sell Israel, our dearest ally, out?"
Wilders had been invited to show his film, Fitna,in the British Parliament. One Lord Ahmed threatened that if this happened, there would be 10,000 Muslims protesting on the street. And worse. Thus, Wilders, a Dutch MP, was detained at the airport. For three and a half hours, the British authorities did not allow the Dutch Ambassador to Britain to see Wilders. Shockingly, Wilders was deported from England–in his words, "the first member of a European government to be denied entry to another European country."
This is beyond remarkable, even beyond surreal, when you think about how many Muslim hate preachers and Muslim terrorists Britain has allowed both entry and citizenship.
Wilders is wanted in Jordan to stand trial as well; he potentially faces deportation. Wilders has received so many death threats that he has been under armed guard for four and a half years. And yet: His face is unlined, his words flow smoothly. He does not look harried. He does not have a haunted, hunted look in his eyes.
As I listened to Wilders' speak, I wondered whether this time, the hero's story will have a happy ending, or whether he will be delivered up to the jihadists , one way or the other, by dhimmi westerners who view what Wilders says about Islamic violence and hatred as "hate speech," but who refuse to consider words uttered by Muslims in mosques, Islamic schools, and on the streets of Holland, such as "Kill the Jews," "Stone the gays," "Enslave all the women," "Behead them all," as hate speech.
MP Wilders embodies our Orwellian moment in history. Like Oriana Fallaci who, for years, had also been sued in several European countries for telling the truth about Islam and about Muslim immigration to Europe; like Salman Rushdie, who was forced to live in hiding and under police protection for years because of an Islamic fatwa against his life; like Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who has required round-the-clock protection due to Islamic death threats as well–Wilders has taken the same battle to a new level. (What is wrong with Holland? Theodore Van Gogh is dead, butchered by an unrepentant Islamist who insists that were he not in jail that he'd do the exact same thing. You can see him on camera in Fitna.)
Wilders is not in hiding. He has not been exiled from, nor has he exiled himself from his native country. He is endangered, but he is also fighting back in some new ways.
Wilders has been sued in Holland for "hate speech." He has also been characterized as an anti-immigration "racist," as if anyone who dares question the Islamification of Europe and what it means for Western democracy is, by definition, a "right-wing" maniac as opposed to a civil libertarian and freedom-fighter.
Wilders hopes to introduce a version of the American First Amendment in Europe, (they have nothing like this), and to abolish the hate speech codes which, United Nations style, are only meant to silence those who criticize Islamist violence, including terrorism, and intolerance; it is not supposed to stop the Muslim violence or hatred or the left support for it.
Wilders made a brief film, Fitna. I've posted it at my blog several times. He has been absolutely unable to find a distributor for this film. "They are too afraid."
We all watched it together again. This was the first time I've seen it on a big screen and it has real power. You may watch it HERE. The film is great, awe-inspiring.
Interspersed with powerful, lyrically chanted passages from the Qu'ran, we see familiar scenes of Islamic terrorist carnage in New York, Madrid, London. Bloody body parts are strewn everywhere, buses and cars are burned and twisted, we hear a frantic call to 911 from the Twin Towers. Then, after more Qu'ranic passages are chanted, we see a mullah or imam preaching fiery hatred: "We will rule the world, we will defeat and take over the world." We see a Dutch Muslim explain that yes, if his mother or his sister have forbidden sex that he will kill them." We see a young Arab girl, no more than three or four years old, explain that "Jews are descended from pigs and apes."
The scenes of carnage are accompanied by the grave and beautiful music of Tchaikovsky's "Arab Dance."
Wilders-our-hero did not for one minute suggest that things were gloomy. For example, he and his political party are gaining in popularity in Holland. He joked that someday he may stand before us as Holland's Prime Minister. He also said that Italy has embraced him and that he has been invited to show Fitna in the Italian Parliament. Wilders has even persuaded the Dutch Parliament to demand a review of the British deportation decision; unfortunately, the Dutch Prime Minister ignored this decision. "My own government is not in favor" of holding the British government accountable.
I will give Wilders the last words. "You cannot escape the dangers of ideologies that are out to destroy you. America might be the last man standing. And you might lose Europe as an ally…European leaders are giving in, giving up, selling out our values. We need your support."
All donations to Wilders' cause can be made to the Hudson Institute. They will be tax deductible and will go 100% to Wilders. Checks should specify that they are for Geert Wilders and may be written to:
Hudson Institute New York
666 Third Ave. – 29th floor
New York, NY 10017
Donations to Wilders may also be made online through Daniel Pipes' not-for-profit tax-exempt The Legal Project which you may find HERE Please note that your contribution is earmarked for Wilders.
According to Wilders: "We do not stand and fight alone. We are standing on the shoulders of giants. We will never apologize or bow to the Left or to Mecca. We will never surrender."
Geert Wilders sounds a lot like a twenty-first century Winston Churchill, or like World War II era, American General, Anthony McAuliffe who, although surrounded and outnumbered, refused to surrender to the Germans at the battle of Bastogne, in Belgium, during the Battle of the Bulge. We won that war against Hitler, against fascism, against National Socialism. We must win the war against totalitarian Islam now.
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