Friday, June 10, 2005

Muslims Threaten Woman With Death
Europeans Blame Her


Somali-born, Dutch Member of Parliament speaks out against the ill-treatment of women which is rampant in Muslim cultures. She made a film with Theo Van Gogh, called Submission, which showed the scars and bruises some women bore as the result of beatings administered by men. For this honest depiction Van Gogh was murdered, and Ali's life was threatened. She has been under protective custody ever since.

The Nation magazine somehow believes Ali is responsible for Islamic radicalization:



In the United States, where few people have had the chance to read or see her critiques of Islam, the 35-year-old Hirsi Ali has been almost exclusively portrayed as a champion of free speech and women’s rights. In the Netherlands, however, she remains the subject of intense controversy. Well before van Gogh’s murder, she had become a major hate figure among Dutch Muslims, who accuse her of stirring up Islamophobia on behalf of a cabal of right-wing politicians and columnists. Since the murder, a surprising number of native-born Dutch intellectuals have come around to the Muslim point of view.

In a series of “Letters to Hirsi Ali” published this spring in the newspaper De Volkskrant, several well-known, mostly male writers charged her with poisoning the political atmosphere with her strident attacks on Islam and the Prophet Mohammed. They argued that by pandering to Dutch prejudices and putting Muslims on the defensive, she contributes to the very Islamic radicalization she claims to want to stop. In a book rushed into print in February, the popular historian Geert Mak went so far as to compare Submission to Joseph Goebbels’s infamous Nazi propaganda film The Eternal Jew. He warned that the Netherlands could be on the road to civil war. “When the time comes for us to tell our grandchildren, how will we tell the story of the last months of 2004?” Mak asked breathlessly. “The tone, the new tone that suddenly had taken hold? Where did it all begin?”

The backlash against Hirsi Ali has astonished and disappointed many Dutch feminists, who continue to count themselves among her biggest fans. Margreet Fogteloo, editor of the weekly De Groene Amsterdammer, said flatly that Mak is crazy. “People like him feel guilty because they were closing their eyes for such a long time to what was going on,” she said. In what appears to be a Europe-wide pattern, some feminists are aligning themselves with the anti-immigrant right against their former multiculturalist allies on the left. Joining them in this exodus to the right are gay activists, who blame Muslim immigrants for the rising number of attacks on gay couples.


Why would members of the left see fit to blame the victim, the woman whose life is threatened because she speaks out for the rights of women? Well, the answer is because, as former Spanish President Jose Aznar says, Europeans prefer appeasement:


“Europe likes appeasement very much; this is one of the most important differences between us and the States,” Aznar said in an interview on the Bar-Ilan University campus. “Europeans don’t like any problems. They prefer appeasement.”


Hat tip: LGF