Monday, January 17, 2005

Dutch leaders turn to American for ideas

Dutch politician turning to American conservatives for ideas in reining in — and keeping-out — radical Muslims
By By Alicia Colon, Jewish World Review

For a few months I've been posting on the plight and progress of the Netherlands - Europe's "most liberal" country - in their battle against internal Islamic militants running amok.

Now, in an unprecedented move, the Dutch MP Geert Wilders, and think tank head honcho and member of Dutch Parliment Dr. Bart Jan Spruyt have traveled to the US, seeking ideas for ridding the country of dangerous "tolerance" for militant Muslims.

After the Van Gogh slaughter, [Dutch] police discovered Pakistani, Kurdish and Moroccan terrorist cells. An Islamic mole was uncovered working as a translator in the AIVD, the national investigative service. Wilders is hoping his government will pass a Patriot Act to coordinate the different agencies. He fully supports President Bush's war on terrorism and recent polls indicate that Wilders is gaining support across all party lines.

In Holland, the people are starting to feel that perhaps it is not just the radicals that are the problem but Islam itself because it does not co-exist well in a democracy. It will take the determination of moderate Muslims to prove them wrong by cleansing their religion of the extremists.

None of this would be necessary if "peaceful Islam" spoke up, condemning the radical element tarnishing their image. To jog your memories, it was "exactly 911 days" (ironic, no?) after the murder Pim Fortuyn that Theo Van Gogh was slaughtered in broad daylight." Van Gogh was the filmmaker of a short film called "Submission", critizing Islam's oppression of women.

"In broad daylight," Wilders said, " Van Gogh was shot eight or nine times, then he was stabbed several times. His throat was cut and he was almost decapitated. A five page- anti-Semitic rant was found held in place by a knife through Van Gogh's body."

The Netherlands is one of the most densely populated countries, with about 1000 residents per sq mile. Per Wikipedia, about 63% of the Dutch don't consider themselves to be members of a church. The main religions are Catholicism (18% in 1999) and Protestantism (15%). About 5-6% of the population or 900,000 people are Muslim.

The number of illegal Muslim immigrants in the country are impossible to come by. Considering that Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world, I'm confused they choose to migrate to liberal, free, western countries in droves since they apparently find the policies and culture so very offensive. Indeed, seeking economic relief from a western culture is, in itself, very un-Muslim.

All of this strikes me that perhaps too many believers don't really comprehend, or follow, the strict teachings of the Qu'ran.

Either way, whether out of fear of their own radical terrorists or tacit support, moderate Dutch Muslims continue to remain silent on the growing militants in the Netherlands. There were a few who were heard to say "he [Van Gogh} deserved it". Obviously these answers had to have come from male Muslims since I cannot imagine any Muslim woman, who must have been nodding mentally at the filmaker's charges, uttering these words. Indeed, who even knows if Islam allows women the ability to entertain such thoughts in a public forum.

This silence, tandamount to support, will ultimately prove Dutch Muslims' undoing as the country reacts - shifting from left to right in the effort to quell the violence.

Both officials are under constant death threats in their homeland. Wilders - perhaps the most assailed - travels with armed guards, lives on military bases, and only makes public appearances when the legislature is in session.

I'm sticking by my guns on this one. Watching the Netherlands deal with the problem is just the harbinger for the remainder of Europe. And it's interesting that, when looking for help, they came to the land of the Cowboy President.

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