Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/31/2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/31/2010Barack Hussein Obama is no longer the darling of America’s liberal intelligentsia. A group of cognoscenti, including Mort Zuckerman and Barbra Streisand — Barbra Streisand! — met at the Aspen Ideas Festival to voice severe complaints about the President’s economic policies.

In other news, Prince Charles, the heir to throne of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, says that considers it his mission to save the world. Thank God! Now we know that’s taken care of…

To see the headlines and the articles, open the full news post.

Thanks to Barry Rubin, Fjordman, Gaia, JP, JTT, LS, SF, Zenster, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Commenters are advised to leave their comments at this post (rather than with the news articles) so that they are more easily accessible.

[This post is a stub — nothing further here!]

The Austrian Left Hits Bottom, Digs

Our Austrian correspondent Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff reports on the latest nonsense from Austria’s two major left-wing parties, including the vote of the Vienna city council to support the “peace flotilla” that attempted to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza.

The Austrian Left Hits Bottom, Digs
by Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff

SPÖ LogoTimes are not easy for Austria’s left-wing parties — the Green Party and the Social Democrats (SPÖ). The former are entangled in a public and heated discussion about Islamophobia and Islamism, with one Turkish member of parliament accusing another Turkish member of the lower house of parliament of these horrible views. The latter is losing Jewish voters as a result of its support for the Gaza “peace” flotilla.

The Austrian Green party, never at a loss for “bashing the evil right” whenever the topic of Islam is raised, are, in the wake of the upcoming local Vienna city council elections, clearly getting nervous. This especially since every election result in the past two years has shown only losses rather than hoped-for gains. The latest polls indicate at best stagnation in voter support, and the recent party split in one of Vienna’s Green-dominated districts has exacerbated the problem.

Green Party AustriaThe Green party’s two Turkish-born members of parliament, Alev Korun and Efgani Dönmez, are currently facing off in a fierce debate whereby each accuses the other of Islamophobia. Some background to the story: Two well-known leftist political scientists have recently produced a compilation of more or less scholarly articles on the topic of Islamophobia in Austria. Apart from bashing an Austrian blog run by Mission Europa, one article also accuses Green MP Efgani Dönmez of “employing an Islamophobic discourse”.

In an interview with “Die Presse”, Dönmez rebuts the accusations:

Die Presse: Mr. Dönmez, are you Islamophobic?
Dönmez: I am not. I myself am an enlightened Muslim with Alevite roots.
DP: Well, in a recently published book you are accused of being an Islamophobe.
Dönmez: Yes, I am being defamed, but because I criticized the religion, but because I criticized Muslim organizations and their representatives. Conservative-religious politics coming out of so-called Muslim associations connected with their countries of origin is made under the guise of religion and with the help of political parties. Religion is (ab)used in order to make political chump change. I am being lumped together with all racist and Islamophobic people just because I dare to make this an issue.
DP: Which organizations and people are referring to specifically?
Dönmez: Omar Al-Rawi is a member of the Vienna city council and at the same time spokesman for integration matters of the Islamic Faith Community (IGGiÖ). In my opinion, he personifies the incompatibility of politics and religion. SPÖ is making a cheap decision in that it weighs a few hundred Jewish votes against hundreds of thousands of Muslim votes. It is obviously not known to SPÖ strategists that Al-Rawi is not the mouthpiece for all Muslims in Austria that he is seen as being. It is a fact that the IGGiÖ represents only one percent of the more than 400,000 Muslims in Austria.

Dönmez goes on criticizing his colleague, Alev Korun, of not informing him about the podium discussion held in parliament, where Dönmez was discussed but not invited to tell his side of the story. “Instead of coming to a colleague’s defense against defamation, my own Green parliamentary fraction and my colleague Alev Korun offer political Islam a podium for it to spread its views.” He has no problem being slammed by his colleagues, but he did expect to have been invited to the discussion, which he found out about through an e-mail sent to all members of parliament. Dönmez is puzzled about the Green party’s giving clerical conservatives a platform when none of the members of IGGiÖ would vote for the Green party anyway.
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“I do not know why my colleagues support these tendencies (offering the clerical conservatives a platform). Perhaps it is a never-ending tolerance of all and everything. I can see different approaches among the Greens on the topics of migration and integration. […] We must talk about what we want in integration politics and what we do not want, namely groups that have no interest whatsoever in Austria and Austrian society. There should be the possibility of sanctions against this group, going as far as revocation of the residence permit. There is no discernible line of discussion among the Greens yet. This is obviously a concern of those [party colleagues] in Vienna.”

Alev Korun’s reply came swiftly in the following day’s Die Presse. She rejected Dönmez’ accusations of offering political Islamism a podium. “I am astonished at his accusation,” she said. The Greens are the only political party dealing with Islamism and Islamophobia. The claim of political Islamism is ridiculous, as this would mean that the CEO of the anti-racism organization ZARA, the renowned political scientist John Bunzl, and the university professor Rüdiger Lohlker “are the spearheads of political Islamism in Austria.”

Never mind that ZARA is in the lucrative business of suing anything and everything Austrian for racism, and that Rüdiger Lohlker reminds us that “the popular linkage of Islam and terrorism causes only a defensive reaction and blocks any constructive crisis management.” As for the “spearheads” accusation: They are certainly guilty of aiding and abetting what they call “political Islamism”, and others would simply call Islam in Austria.

It bears mentioning that Mr. Tarafa Baghajati, chairman of the Initiative of Muslim Austrians, felt the necessity to shed some light in this matter by writing a letter to the editor of “Die Presse” (unavailable online). Among other things, Baghajati says that no one ever intended to accuse Dönmez of Islamophobia and that in the book two of Dönmez’ statements — “minarets are political symbols” and “imams are ragheads” — are simply scientifically analyzed. “Both assertions are without a doubt hostile against Islam coming straight from FPÖ.”

The ruling Social Democrats are also facing unpleasantness from an important voter group. According to a commentary by Christian Ortner on the Austrian daily Die Presse, Vienna mayor Michael Häupl “acts like a light version of Karl Lueger in order to get the vote of Vienna’s 200,000 Jewish voters.” Karl Lueger was a former Socialist mayor of Vienna, known not only for raising the living standard if Viennese at the beginning of the 20th century, but also for his anti-Semitism. Wikipedia cites the following:

[O]bservers contend that Lueger’s public racism was in large part a pose to obtain votes. Historian William L. Shirer wrote that “…his opponents, including the Jews, readily conceded that he was at heart a decent, chivalrous, generous and tolerant man. So there is not a lot of evidence to support his large effect on the views of Adolf Hitler.” According to Amos Elon, “Lueger’s anti-Semitism was of a homespun, flexible variety — one might almost say gemütlich. Asked to explain the fact that many of his friends were Jews, Lueger famously replied: ‘I decide who is a Jew.’” Viennese Jewish writer Stefan Zweig, who grew up in Vienna during Lueger’s term of office, recalled that “His city administration was perfectly just and even typically democratic.”

Continues a sarcastic Ortner,

“When Israel enters the ships of so-called ‘peace flotilla’ with connections to the terrorists, the Vienna municipal council — an institution known for its harsh foreign policy — decides to implement a super two-fisted resolution against the Jewish state. […] When, however, the violent anti-Semitism in the city of Antwerp rises so sharply that the local ‘Staandard’ is forced to write: ‘The Jews are leaving Antwerp’, the city council of Vienna does not even peep.

One really has to understand this: While the votes of a few thousand Jews are irrelevant in the upcoming elections, there are the votes of nearly 200,000 Muslims, a group not averse to anti-Semitism. Why should the Vienna city council care a fig about the Jews in Antwerp if it already sacrificially cares about the Palestinians in Gaza?

The provincial politicians of all political parties in the Vienna city hall are not alone in their disgusting and ridiculous vainglory, quite the contrary is the case in Europe. They discharge a “Never again Fascism” and “Beware the beginnings!” when at the memorials of dead Jews, but do not blink when Jews in Europe are hassled by a — in many cases — mob consisting of migrants. This is a very common stance among Europeans. […] It Is not a good sign when Jews from continental Europe choose exile in London because they no longer feel safe here. And when the Vienna city council at the same time acts as a protector power of the Gaza that shoots rockets into Israel only so that it can pocket a few votes of migrants, it is hard to quash the feeling of nausea.”

Prominent Jewish Socialist voters and supporters have voiced their anger over official Vienna’s support of the Gaza flotilla.

“Ernst M. Stern’s farewell letter to the SPÖ could not be clearer: ‘I and many of our like-minded friends, and most members of our Jewish community, find the initiative of the Vienna city council scandalous. The resolution prejudging Israel was passed on the initiative of the SPÖ city council members without any factual evidence and without waiting for this evidence to come out. This body has always remained silent when genocide occurs in other parts of the world. We also deem Omar Al-Rawi’s behavior a scandal: He adds fuel to the fire when he holds an incendiary speech before a hysterical and fanatic crowd of Muslims and their Austrian sympathizers.’

Ariel Muzicant, leader of the Vienna Jewish community, reports that a number of Jewish SPÖ members have officially renounced their membership. Stern adds that he does not want to make the official number public as this is a private matter.”

It is hard to believe that either the Green party or the SPÖ are eagerly awaiting October 10, 2010, the day the Viennese say good-bye to Multiculturalism and its associated evils.


An open letter to the Islamic religious community in Vienna from Israelitische Kultusgemeinde, as published in OTS. Many thanks to JLH for the translation:

Open Letter to the Islamic Religious Community

Vienna (OTS)

Dear President Schakfeh, Ladies and Gentlemen,

In reference to several explanations by representatives of the Islamic religious community, the Israelite Religious Community (IKG) ascertains:

The culture of dialogue between the religious communities in Austria is indeed threatened. Not by pointing out anti-Semitic incidents, but rather by permitting and downplaying them.

A special legal and moral responsibility accrues to organizers of demonstrations, which, however, is not appreciated by their leaders. Just in recent days, the IKG has received many calls and visits from Muslims — especially those who were exposed to political persecution in their homelands — who have expressed their indignation during pertinent demonstrations in Vienna at the rabble-rousing against Jews and Israel, and at the regrettable indulgence and belittling of these incidents by official Muslim political organs.

The IKG continues to take conversations with Muslims very seriously. Without wishing to judge the internal workings of the Islamic religious community, the IKG would like to point out that its own representative authorities are legitimized democratically with an election participation of between 50 and 60%. It has been pointed out to us on numerous occasions that this is not true of the IGGO.

In the definition of anti-Semitism by the EUMC of the EU, propagandizing against and denigration of the state of Israel includes:

  • Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g. by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.
  • Applying double standards by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.
  • Using the symbols and images associated with classic anti-Semitism to characterize Israel or Israelis.
  • Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis
  • Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the State of Israel

Exactly this way is how it happened at the demonstrations. In his speech, Omar Al-Rawi played on a simultaneous demonstration of solidarity with Israel. However, a comparison of the videotapes shows where incitement was being practiced and where peace was being called for.

Further, Hamas banners were carried at the demonstrations. Hamas is well-known as the Palestinian organization of the Muslim Brotherhood and is committed to international terrorism. Money for the front organizations of Hamas has been collected for years in Vienna.

The IKG has been advised many times by Muslims of the personal identities of functionaries of the Islamic community as members of the Muslim brotherhood.

The IKG therefore goes on the assumption that the anti-Semitic content of Article 7 of the Hamas charter is well-known: “The hour of judgment will not come until Muslims fight and kill, so that the Jews hide behind trees and shrubs and every tree and stone will say: ‘Oh, Muslim. oh servant of Allah, a Jew is behind me, come and kill him.’“

Hamas calls the Holocaust a lie (for example, Abdel al-Rantisi: “The Holocaust — the Greatest of Lies Funded by the Zionists”, 2003).

In the past, the IKG has indicated the danger of Islamic preachers of hate and was attacked for it, then confirmed in its judgment by later developments.

All of the things mentioned cannot be swept aside as “criticism of Israel,” which is quite legitimate so long as it does not occur in other political discourses with a double purpose.

Calling participants in a cooperative demonstration of anti-Semitic Islamists, rightist radical Grey Wolves, and leftist radicals “antifascists” is ridiculous.

If an interfaith dialogue is to have any meaning, it cannot occur simultaneously with the indulgence of anti-Semitic (better said — anti-Jewish) propaganda. In this sense, the Muslim side has an obligation to re-work the anti-Semitic passages in the Koran — something that has been thoroughly done on the Christian side in regard to the New Testament.

The strain on the climate of the dialogue is not from the differing opinions about the Near East but the permissiveness vis-à-vis anti-Semitism (or if you wish, anti-Judaism).

Dr. Ariel Muzicant
President, IKG
Mag. Raimund Fastenbauer
General Secretary, IKG

Israelitische Kultusgemeinde, Tel. (01) 531 04-105

Life Has Become an Unreality Show

The video below has been up on YouTube for two days. During that time it’s received over a million and a half hits:

I’ll give you my own response to what transpired in those brief moments below the fold.
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This brother-sister act is just that: an act. The indignation, the shout-out to the rapist, the stamp-your-foot outrage - all of it designed for the “news” clip that would later air on TV.

Their act had to be over the top, otherwise how could they compel the TV entertainment news show to film them? And if they weren’t getting their two minutes’(and two seconds) worth of fame, then what was the experience worth in the long run?

Have you ever sat at the local mall for a while and watched the “Reality Show Groups” strut by? The whole time these kids are there, the self-conscious interactions are performed as though there were a camera following them. It’s self-consciousness totally barren of any self-awareness.

Too much television has been blamed for all sorts of cultural problems. But has anyone addressed the hollowing out of the core self which is the outcome of a TV-saturated life?

As it happens, they have. Call it the “Truman Syndrome”, named after the 1998 Jim Carrey film:

Joel and Ian Gold, a New York psychiatrist and Montreal academic, say they have been inundated with cases since they first expounded what they have dubbed the “Truman Syndrome” two years ago.


The condition might seem comical - one man went to a US government building and announced he wanted his show to end - but it tended to be “absolutely debilitating” as sufferers believed they could trust no-one, said Dr Joel Gold, head of psychiatry at Bellevue Hospital in New York.

He said he had recently been contacted by the father of a girl who had contemplated suicide because she believed it was the only way of “getting out of the show”.

It was also difficult to treat because, as he had found himself, sufferers will dismiss their doctors and psychiatrists as actors.

The existence of a specific Truman Syndrome has divided experts, with critics pointing out that delusional patients have long believed that friends or relatives have been replaced by imposters.

However, the Gold brothers counter that the Truman Syndrome is different because of the “sweeping” scope of the delusion, taking in society at large.

“We’re not claiming it’s a new form of mental illness and we’re not suggesting these people would be well if there was no YouTube,” said Dr Gold.

“But we’ve passed a watershed moment with respect to the internet, in which you can do something very silly and without skill, and yet become famous instantly. That can be very exciting for many people but for those who are at risk of this kind of paranoia, it can be very stressful.”

“Silly and without skill” pretty much nails this sad delusional state. Why strive for accomplishment if you can win instant fame? Just look at all the others who’ve made it. Why shouldn’t I?

I first noticed the preoccupation with fame among young girls when I was working in foster care programs. In fact, it was impossible to get most of the girls to be ‘real’ even in moments of extreme duress. Always, there was the camera - at least the one inside their head - moving in for close-ups of their over-wrought emotional state.

Except, it wasn’t really a state of being so much as a shallow acting-out of what they thought represented an emotion: extremis on the outside…but nothing inside. These girls, as young as they were, had been hollowed out; there wasn’t a core self with principles or beliefs. They hungered after fame because that’s all they’d ever been shown as representing genuine satisfaction.

So it seems to be with the latest titillation from YouTube: a brother-sister act that may go into overtime if the police find the perpetrator.

Lord spare us - and them - Act II.

Hat tip: Brutally Honest


Thanks to Archonix for the tip to this song. Much more concisely than I, these lyrics capture several aspects of the intellectual poverty on display in the afflicted.

Couch potatoes can sit and dream…

The Bank of Last Resort

I reported in last night’s news feed that the U.S. Army has been unable to find a bank in the Ft. Hood area willing to open an account for Major Nidal Hasan, the Killer Shrink of Fort Hood. The Army is required to deposit his monthly paycheck in a bank account, but for some reason the local banks are reluctant to accommodate Maj. Hasan.

Lawrence Person has come up with an elegant and practical solution to Maj. Hasan’s financial problems:




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BELTON, TX 76513-3078

Maj. Hasan may want to read the proceedings of the 3rd Annual Nigerian EMail Conference to pick up some handy tips on conducting financial transactions in the traditional Nigerian fashion.

Islam is Both Theology and Politics

The following article was written by Kent Ekeroth, the international secretary for Sverigedemokraterna (Sweden Democrats), in reply to a blog post at the web site for Axess, a conservative Swedish magazine. The blog post criticized SD for inviting Robert Spencer to Sweden to speak about the threat of Islamic jihad.

Many thanks to Cavatus for the translation:

Kent Ekeroth: Shall we waste time on debating debates?

Kent Ekeroth of SDAnna Ekstrom recently wrote recently wrote an article on the blog Axess about my and the Sweden Democrats’ opinion on Islam after the participation of the Islam expert Robert Spencer during the Swedish political week in Almedalen on the island of Gotland. But the debate we ought to mention is the one that aims to answer the question: How can we ensure that the political aspects of Islam end up in the same ideological corner as Nazism? If Anna Ekstrom, Johan Lundberg or someone else want to debate this, I and the other Sweden Democrats will of course take part.

Recently an entertaining but rather unessential pseudo-debate has been flourishing among the Swedish public about Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s real or imagined views. Such a discussion seems uninteresting to me, since it isn’t dedicated to a public discussion of cultural, political, and kindred subjects in any essential meaning: the debate deals with the alleged views of a third party. Anna Ekstrom now tries to initiate a similar pseudo-debate on Robert Spencer. Just as Ayaan Hirsi Ali herself may declare her own opinion, Robert Spencer may declare his own views. If Anna Ekstrom has questions about this, she should write to Spencer. I have no need to defend his views. Instead, I choose to focus on the debate about Islam and Islamism that should reasonably return readers a better profit.

Some clarifications: yes, there are Muslims who are peaceful, and yes, they have the right to practice their belief in private. But there are also Muslims who are not peaceful, who are ready to kill in the name of their God, and who dedicate their lives to adapting society to the political directions that are codified in the Islamic law, Sharia. There is no contradiction between saying that there are peaceful Muslims and saying that the Muslims who are violent and intolerant follow the same religion that do their peaceful fellow-believers.

It is in fact very simple: a religion is a set of rules, and in the case of Islam even a set of laws. Islam is both theology and politics — the politics is part of Sharia, which regulates everything from inheritance and divorce to what laws to apply in wartime. (One example chosen at random: the beheading of prisoners is lawful since Mohammed beheaded prisoners of war. It doesn’t get any better than that.)

Every aspect of man’s life is covered by Sharia. Every Muslim is free to ignore Sharia — the Muslim who does so disregards Islam’s political aspects and focuses instead on the experience of God, a “transcendent meeting with a divinity”, as Johan Lundberg expresses it. In the same article, Lundberg points out that Islam has come to be regarded as “synonymous with a set of laws and legal cases that mostly do not have much to convey to Swedish society in the 21st century”. This is correct: the laws that Lundberg mentions, Sharia, are not part of a modern, civilized, secular society.
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They are intolerant, they discriminate against women and non-Muslims, and they impose violence against non-Muslims and inhuman corporal punishment for “crimes” that at bottom are not crimes. A legislation that imposes capital punishment for infidelity is not legislation worth its name: it is a form of barbarism. These laws originate, however, with Islam; thus the set of theological doctrines and laws that have been codified by ulama and fuqaha over time, and that are regarded even today as normative by the “religious elite”, to a very great extent influence the non-Islamic debate.

And it is here where the problem appears: the problem is not so much those Muslims who completely ignore a central part of Islam (here I disregard the general problems that arise in a multiculture), namely Sharia, but the Muslims who take Islam and accordingly Sharia seriously and work to adapt their environment to Islam’s normative orthodoxy. It is here that we see the division between ordinary Muslims and so-called “Islamists”: the two groups follow the same prophet, read the same muniments, and consult the same religious elite for guidance. But it is when Sharia comes up on the agenda that the restrictions of freedom of religion, which are to be found in the 9th article of European Convention of Human rights, come into question.

It is important to note that even though there are Muslims who disregard Sharia, this does not imply that Sharia is not part of Islam. Islam and Muslims are not necessarily the same thing but as long as Islam looks as it does, i.e. includes Sharia, Muslims will take it seriously.

Those who try to practice the political aspects of Islam — those who normally are called Islamists — are not protected by freedom of religion. It is actually fully necessary to oppose political Islam, in order to protect our fundamental human rights. Islam’s schools of law command, for example, capital punishment if you leave Islam. At the same time, the right to become a convert is inscribed in the UN declaration of human rights. Here two legal systems come into conflict. To me it is apparent what system overrules the other: in a conflict with fundamental human rights — the rights denied by Sharia — Sharia will lose, always, without exception. It wouldn’t be necessary to explain why, but the one who still wonders is advised to study why “Islamists” and jihadists around the world do what they do.

For these groups are surprisingly willing to explain what motivates them: Sharia, and thus Islam. Al-Qaeda pretends to make a defensive jihad, which is a religious duty according to Sharia when Islam is regarded being under attack or oppressed by non-Muslims. Al-Shabaab blasts bombs in restaurants and digs up Sufi graves, since they are fighting for Sharia. The Taliban execute innocent people in their ambitions to establish Sharia in Afghanistan. And so on and so forth. These groups are jihadists — they take up arms and murder in the name of Allah since they take the Islamic law seriously.

Their ideological kinsmen, the “democratic Islamists” in organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood, do not use violence, but have the exact the same goal: they work for the day when Islamic law will be prevail in the societies where they live. An internal document [pdf] that was presented as evidence during the Holy Land Foundation trial in the USA reveals the goal of the Muslim Brotherhood:

4- Understanding the role of the Muslim Brother in North America:

The process of settlement is a “Civilization-Jihadist Process” with all the word means. The Ikhwan must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions. Without this level of understanding, we are not up to this challenge and have not prepared ourselves for Jihad yet. It is a Muslim’s destiny to perform Jihad and work wherever he is and wherever he lands until the final hour comes, and there is no escape from that destiny except for those who chose to slack. But, would the slackers and the Mujahideen be equal.

The Muslim Brotherhood is a far more dangerous organization than al-Qaeda and similar jihad organizations, since the former pretends to be peaceful. Their European umbrella organization, FIOE [pdf], has prominent friends in Sweden, for example Abdirisak Waberi, a candidate to the Swedish parliament for the party the Moderates. During the spring of 2008 they were invited to a conference in Sweden’s parliament on the theme “freedom of religion and speech”. The host for this event was Mehmet Kaplan. Thus we have a situation in which representatives for the organization whose ideological ancestor, Sayyid Qutb, inspired modern jihadism, is invited to Sweden’s parliament — in order to discuss the freedoms and rights that are denied by the legislation that this organization lobbies for — Sharia.

And it is here somewhere where the shoes chafe my feet. What exactly do Sweden’s Muslims do to handle these Islamists’ assiduous ambitions for influence? So far I have not noticed any efforts from, for example, Sweden’s young Muslims or the Peace Agents (Fredsagenterna) to stop Islamists like Waberi from getting into Sweden’s parliament. The question arises: if these organizations recommend peace and tolerance, why aren’t they acting against the Islamists? One thing is certain: absolutely the best way to respond to the “tepid” attitude of many Swedish non-Muslims towards Islam is to work against political Islam, sharia itself, and jihad in the sense of “holy war for the sake of Allah”. If Muslim organizations that work to convince non-Muslims of the fact that Islam is a religion of peace were instead to strive energetically for mastering so-called “Islamism”, they wouldn’t have to sell their message to non-Muslims. But instead they treat criticism from organizations like Sweden’s Young Muslims by shouting “Islamophobe”, which in reality should be interpreted as “Shut up!” Such an objection is far too simple and is not convincing.

Let me summarize: the right of the individual Muslim to practice his private faith is guaranteed by freedom of religion. The individual Muslim does not “by nature” behave in a certain manner — he can chose to disregard the message of violence that is an inevitable part of Sharia and thus of Islam, but he can also chose to adhere to this. But choosing not to follow the decree of Islam does not imply that these decrees do not exist — jihad in the sense of holy war with a view to invading non-Muslim states and replacing their laws with Muslim supremacy in form of Sharia (which is not the same as compulsory conversion), is part of Islamic law and is commanded by all the law schools in Islam. Al-Qaeda and the Taliban state for example that they wage jihad in order to defend Islam — are they doing the wrong thing according to Islam?

Those Muslims who choose to adhere to this legislation and implement it are called Islamists, and the project in which they are engaged is exactly contrary to the freedom and rights that our society is founded on. The political aspects of Islam are not protected by freedom of religion, and are best addressed through prohibition — outlaw Sharia and ban Islamist organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood. There is no room for Islamists on the political scene in the Western world today. Where Islamists have implemented Islam’s political aspects, it is necessary to criticize these — and then you criticize Islam, since Sharia is a central part of Islam. Criticism of Islam is in reality necessary in order to find the solution to both so-called “Islamism” and jihadism. If you don’t even understand the ideology that is the driving force behind these movements, you cannot refute them.

The only debate we ought to have is the one that aims at answering the question: how can we ensure that the political aspects of Islam end up in the same ideological corner as Nazism? If Anna Ekstrom, Johan Lundberg or someone else wants to debate this, I and the other Sweden Democrats will of course be willing to participate. Is there someone who will take up the gauntlet, or shall we continue to waste time on debating debates?

Kent Ekeroth is the Sweden Democrats’ candidate for the parliament as number 16 on the ballot.

Geert Wilders is “Very Pleased”

As we reported a few hours ago, the VVD, the CDA, and the PVV have reached an agreement on the formation of a minority right-wing government in the Netherlands. It will consist of the CDA and the VVD, and be supported by the PVV.

Further details may be found at the PVV website. Many thanks to our Flemish correspondent VH for the translation:

Declaration PVV, VVD, CDA

Wilders ‘very pleased’ with the right minority government (from

Friday, July 30, 2010 00:00

The three parties VVD, PVV, and CDA disagree about the nature and character of Islam. The dividing line is in the characterization of the Islam as either a religion or a (political) ideology.

Parties accept each other’s different views on this subject and will also act on this based on their own views.

However, there is much that binds the parties: making the Netherlands stronger, safer, and more prosperous is the common goal and starting point.
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Therefore — accepting each other’s differences of opinion and fully assigning to one another the freedom of expression with regard to the differences of opinion — it is agreed that the PVV will support elements of the yet-to-be-negotiated government agreement from a position of support. The VVD and CDA will on their part honor the wishes of the PVV in the support agreement to be settled.

In any case the, such support agreement arrangements should settle the details of the measures for budget cuts and firm agreements on immigration, integration and asylum, safety, and better care for the elderly, whereby it is clear that for the PVV the willingness to support the budget cuts is linked to the content of the agreements to be settled in the fields of immigration, integration and asylum, safety and elderly care.

Mark Rutte [VVD]
Geert Wilders [PVV]
Maxime Verhagen [CDA]

The Hague, July 30, 2010

Friday, July 30, 2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/30/2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/30/2010Major Nidal Hasan, the Killer Shrink of Fort Hood, is having trouble finding a bank that will accept his money. Or, rather, the Army is having trouble — it is attempting to deposit his pay on his behalf. Maj. Hasan, although in custody pending a possible court martial, is still receiving his pay — about $6,000 a month — as required by law. But no bank in the Ft. Hood area is willing to open an account for him.

In other news, polio has been wiped out in East Africa, but cases have now appeared in Russia. The disease apparently spread there from Tajikistan.

To see the headlines and the articles, open the full news post.

Thanks to Caroline Glick, Fjordman, Gaia, JP, Lurker from Tulsa, Nilk, Reinhard, SF, TV, Zenster, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Commenters are advised to leave their comments at this post (rather than with the news articles) so that they are more easily accessible.

[This post is a stub — nothing further here!]

The Dudley Two Go Free

Remember the Dudley Two?

EDL Dudley rooftopLeon and Snowy are two English Defence League members who were arrested back in May for occupying the roof of the existing building on the site of the proposed mosque in Dudley. They were held in jail for several days and then charged with burglary and breach of the peace.

Now comes word that the charges have been dropped, and both men are free. However, one of them had his arm broken when he was beaten by the police — I suppose that’s just a little souvenir to remind him of his visit with Dudley’s friendly law enforcement community.

According to The Dudley News:

Charges Dropped for EDL Rooftop Protestors

TWO English Defence League members, who were arrested during a rooftop protest, have had all charges dropped against them.

Leon McCreery from Stockport and John Shaw from Knaresborough were arrested during the incident over the May Bank holiday, after being taken down from the roof of a disused factory in Hall Street by riot police.

The pair were bailed following an appearance at Dudley Magistrates Court, but the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has today announced it has dropped all charges against them because of “insufficient evidence”.

Gill Casey, District Crown Prosecutor for CPS Wolverhampton, said: “When considering whether a case should be prosecuted, the CPS applies the Code for Crown Prosecutors in two parts. The first is the evidential test where we have to be satisfied that there is enough admissible evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction. If the evidence satisfies the first test, then we have to consider the second part the public interest test.
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“In the case against John Shaw and Leon McCreery a preliminary evidential test called the threshold test was applied. This was permissible because they were considered a substantial bail risk if released from custody and not all of the evidence was available to the prosecutor at the time that the charging decision was sought by the police. Additionally it was considered to be in the public interest to commence a prosecution.

“I have now had an opportunity of carrying out a review of all the evidence and have applied both parts of the Code and I have made the decision to discontinue the prosecution on the basis that there is now insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction.”

A rumor is circulating to the effect that Muslims in Dudley are now rioting in protest over the release of Leon and Snowy. I don’t have any confirmation of this intriguing report, but another news story seems to support the contention that Dudley’s “youths” have indeed been rioting.

Hat tips: Gaia and Vlad Tepes.

Dutch Government Denies Funding Ground Zero Mosque

As a follow-up to his earlier post on the topic, our Flemish correspondent VH has translated an article from yesterday’s Trouw about the Dutch government’s denial that it is helping to fund the mosque at Ground Zero:

Dutch Ministry denies subsidy for Ground Zero Mosque

The Netherlands provides no subsidy for the building of a mosque at Ground Zero, the place in New York where the WTC towers stood until the attacks of September 11. So writes the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in response to the parliamentary questions of the PVV.

PVV MPs Geert Wilders and Sietse Fritsma had recently asked for clarification when news recently broke that the Netherlands is providing a one-million euro subsidy to the American Muslim organization Asma. According to the PVV, this organization is involved in the construction of the mosque at Ground Zero.

Foreign Minister Maxime Verhagen [CDA; Christian Democrats; Verhagen is also at present fraction leader of the CDA] makes it known in writing to the PVV that the grant was earmarked for a program of Asma that focuses on the emancipation of Muslim women in Afghanistan, Egypt, and Pakistan. [see Parliamentary Letter below.]

Verhagen additionally denies that Asma is involved in plans to build a mosque near Ground Zero. “For that, therefore, no Dutch tax money used,” states Verhagen. For that reason he is not planning to withdraw the subsidy, as the PVV had demanded.

However, on the website of the Cordoba Initiative, which wants to build the mosque, Asma on the contrary is indeed is listed as a partner organization. Asma’s founder, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, moreover, is also chairman of the Cordoba Initiative.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs this Thursday could not immediately explain the reading by Verhagen.

From the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs:
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Parliament Letter on answering questions from members Wilders and Fritsma on ‘By the Netherlands co-financed of a mosque on Ground Zero’

Parliamentary Letter | July 28 2010

I am pleased hereby to offer you the answers to the written questions by members Wilders and Fritsma about ‘the co-financing by the Netherlands’ of a mosque on Ground Zero’. These questions were filed on July 21, 2010 with reference number 2010Z11149.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Dr. M.J.M. Verhagen

Answers from Mr. Verhagen, Minister of Foreign Affairs, to questions of members Wilders and Fritsma (PVV) on ‘the co-financing by the Netherlands of a mosque on Ground Zero’.

Question 1

Is it true that Dutch taxpayers’ money is used for the support of the American Society for Muslim Advancement (ASMA), the organization Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, who wants to build a mosque on Ground Zero?


No, the American Society for Muslim Advancement (ASMA) is not involved in the construction of a mosque at Ground Zero in the United States. For that reason, therefore, there is thus no Dutch tax money used.

However, the American Society for Muslim Advancement does receive subsidy from the Dutch MDG3 Fund to implement the program of the Women’s Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equity (WISE) Compact program. WISE has as its aim the self-determination and full participation of Muslim women in their communities. To achieve this goal, activities focus on among other things the reform of existing legislation, the design of new legislation, and training for women, activities that are oriented towards increased equality between women and men. They do this primarily in Afghanistan, Egypt and Pakistan. It is about programs to prevent genital mutilation, counteracting violence against women, and organizing training of women (including media, leadership).

The duration of the project is from 13 October 2008 to June 30, 2011.

Question 2

If yes, do you acknowledge that it is absurd to build a mosque right at Ground Zero and that this is also an insult to (the families of) the victims of 9-11? If not, why not?


See question 1

Question 3

If so, are you, given the offensive plan to build said mosque, willing to immediately withdraw the subsidy to ASMA? If not, why not?


No. Because there is no question of support for the construction of a mosque. The withdrawal of the subsidy to ASMA, which focuses on promoting equal rights for women in countries such as among others Afghanistan, Pakistan and Egypt, is therefore not being considered.

A Right-Wing Government for the Netherlands?

According to Elsevier, the political impasse in the Netherlands has been broken, and a government will be formed. It will be a minority right-wing government that will not include Geert Wilders’ PVV, but will be supported by it.

This announcement validates the open letter to the Queen that I just posted.

Many thanks to our Flemish correspondent VH for the translation:

VVD, PVV, and CDA go for it: right-wing government is near

by Jeroen Langelaar

The Netherlands is heading for a right wing minority government consisting of the VVD and the CDA, with the support of the PVV. As far as the three parties concerned, the “formal” negotiations on this will start as soon as possible.[1]

The three separate fractions decided this today (Friday), VVD leader Mark Rutte said. According to him, the Parties see future prospects.

In a joint statement, the three parties state: “There is much that unites us: making the Netherlands stronger, safer and more prosperous, is the common goal and starting point.”

In the “support-agreement” important demands by the PVV will be included: on the field of immigration, integration and asylum, safety and elderly care. The PVV will have to support the agreements on the budget cuts.

PVV leader Geert Wilders announced that he is very happy with the step taken.. “This may succeed. We will prove our reliability, and not send this government home on issues addressed in the government-agreement.”
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From 14.00 hours onwards Friday, party leaders Rutte, Wilders, and Maxime Verhagen (CDA) conducted consultations with their own fractions on possible cooperation in a government. Analysts expect that Rutte will be appointed by Lubbers as the new informateur.

Rutte, Wilders, and Verhagen, last week held “informal” negotiations on cooperation with one another. This happened at the initiative of the informateur.


[1] This is similar to the “Danish model”, following the Danish People’s Party of Pia Kjærsgaard, who since 2001 successfully supported a government of Liberal and Conservative parties.

An Open Letter to Queen Beatrix

The following open letter offers a glimpse into the Byzantine intricacies of public corruption in the Netherlands. According to the author, the time-hallowed place of the Christian Democrats at the government gravy trough will prevent the formation of a right-wing cabinet that includes the PVV.

Many thanks to our Flemish correspondent VH for translating this fascinating document and researching all the links.

Open letter to Her Majesty the Queen of the Netherlands

23 July 2010

Copy to the Fraction leaders:
Maxim Verhagen CDA
Mark Rutte VVD
Geert Wilders PVV
Emile Roemer SP
and the (in)formateur Ruud Lubbers via

Published at Het Vrije Volk:

“The left wing of the CDA [Christian Democrats] depends on subsidies. And that is what they will not let go.”


by Peter Siebelt

Already with the first talks on the formation of a coalition government, the big loser of the recent elections, the CDA, represented by its leader Maxime Verhagen, disavowed any consultations to investigate a possible right-wing government. Initially surprising, but upon closer examination very understandable.

The major obstacle to any contribution to this [a right wing government] by Maxime Verhagen is most likely presented by the left-wing Christian Democrats, who views the party’s extra-parliamentary interests and activities endangered by the announced policy intentions of both the VVD and PVV with regard to budget cuts. Interests and activities that in 2009 alone cost the Dutch government [and thus the taxpayer] billions of euros, not to mention the social burden and aggravating effects to our society.

Activities that essentially take place under the themes of development aid, the environment, climate, and refugee assistance. Activities that take place in close collaboration with the left-wing political elite and its extra-parliamentary networks. Activities that have saddled the Netherlands over the years with a huge and almost irreversible fixed cost which has significantly contributed to the debt of the Netherlands (until 2009 more than 347 billion euros, rising in 2010 by 100 million euros per day).

Given the foregoing, it is not surprising that various attempts to form a government have until now run aground over the way the debt of the state should be reduced, for “budget cuts” is the key word nowadays. How to execute these cuts is the major stumbling block and has caused deep divisions between possible coalition partners. The left-wing politicians do not want to touch the aforementioned themes, but the VVD and PVV, on the contrary, want to do precisely that. And the “leftist” fear of the participation of the PVV in a new government plays a role, because the latter political party, in particular and above all, wants to cut back drastically on the policies that put an irresponsible financial burden to our country.

Now for the second time you have decided to assign a new (in)formateur who, as I see it, will seek ways to prevent a right-wing coalition government from being formed, and in my view it is of the utmost importance to remind you of a few issues, and also inform in detail a broader Dutch audience. Because your new informateur, Ruud Lubbers [former United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees] is infected and captured by his own interests. He is not only of the left wing of the CDA, but is also deeply involved with the issues that the left-wing political elite wants to leave untouched.

As former prime minister (1982 to 1994), Ruud Lubbers was responsible for the billions of euros that were drawn from our treasury on behalf of the aforementioned themes, and partly because of the consequences thereof have contributed significantly — and still do — to the accumulation of our countries’ debt. Since his resignation as prime minister, Ruud Lubbers holds positions within Non Governmental Organisations (NGO’s) that are subsidized with millions of tax payers money.

The current (in)formateur Ruud Lubbers for example is chairman of the Stichting voor Vluchteling Studenten (UAF, “Foundation for Refugee Students”) and in 2009 alone this association was awarded 2,678,580 euros in government subsidies. He is also involved with the Nationale Commissie voor internationale samenwerking en Duurzame Ontwikkeling (NCDO, “National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development”), that over the period 2007-2010 collected 128.4 million euros in government grants. In cooperation with the NCDO, Lubbers has taken the initiative to establish “Worldconnectors”, an organization of which he is also chairman. “Worldconnecters” among other things focuses on climate issues, on connecting cultures, global power shifts, and Europe’s position in the world.

And more people in the left wing of the CDA are in similar circumstances, whose collars will fit too tight at the thought of a right-wing government.

Take for instance one of Lubbers’ main godfathers and colleagues, Jos van Gennip. The man who is often described in the media as the party ideologist of the CDA, and who is in large part responsible for the enlargement of the left wing within that party. He managed to interest many prominent Christian Democrats in this. The themes mentioned above have for years been high on his political agenda. According to Jos van Gennip, not the national issues, but the international events, the internationalism, must dominate the political agenda. His dual role is multiple and represents a shining example of the entanglement between politics and the billions-hungry extra-parliamentary action-environment. A few of his many activities:
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From 1967 till 1976, Van Gennip was director of the Centraal Missie Commissariaat (CMC, “Central Mission Commissariat”). An organization that stood at the basis of the left-wing Christians penetrating the churches and was responsible for the interests of 8,000 Dutch missionaries. Missionaries who embraced a Marxist liberation theology and supported bloody revolutions in the Third World. Missionaries who looked the other way when their “clients” horribly violated human rights, or purchased weapons with development aid money. One of those for example, Jan Schrama, who to a large extend supported the opposition in the Philippines and also was part of to the advisory board of the Catholic development organization Cebemo.

Ruud Lubbers was a regular guest speaker at meetings organized by Cebemo. Since the founding of both organizations [CMC and Cebemo], huge amounts of public money have flowed to it. Meanwhile, the CMC changed its name to Mensen met een Missie ([link] “People with a Mission”), and was funded by government and others in 2009 to the amount of 4,466,872 euros. The name Cebemo was changed to “Cordaid”, and it was rewarded with government subsidies for the period 2007 to 2010 amounting to 421,830,126 euros.

These organizations emerged around 1967. The need for public money became ever larger, and to attract more funding, and also to expand their network, they began step by step to set up new organizations. So in 1968 Van Gennip was involved at the inception of the national commission “Justitia et Pax”. The Netherlands thereby was one of the first countries to found its own commission, one year after the international committee had gone to work in Rome. Justitia et Pax at present is being subsidized by among organizations People with a Mission, Solidaridad, religious institutions, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the co-financing organisation (MFO), Cordaid.

But in Cordaid, Van Gennip has also left his traces. Following the MFO, NOVIB (currently the Foundation Oxfam Novib and over the period 2007 to 2010 funded with 509 million euros), which was founded in 1956 by his Christian soulmate Father Simon Jelsma, Van Gennip in 1965 — from out of the CMC — stood at the cradle of the Catholic Cebemo. A year earlier, in 1964, the Protestant ICCO was established. Also there the left wing of the CDA is well represented. The CMC and Cebemo remained closely linked. As director of Cebemo, in 1973 Van Gennip advised his comrade Jan Pronk, the former Labour (PvdA) Minister for Development Cooperation in several coalition governments [and former Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of Mission for the United Nations Mission in Sudan], on how they could pass through money to the [Marxist] opposition in Chile.

Subsequently Jan Pronk reciprocated and appointed Van Gennip to investigate reports of the abuse of development aid by the armed resistance in the Philippines. Given his years of support for this resistance, the result of his research may be guessed beforehand. Van Gennip remained the general director of Cebemo until 1984 (Cebemo is currently merged into “Cebemo Cordaid”). Interestingly, also the daughter of Jos van Gennip, Karien van Gennip, is a CDA politician and currently in the Board of Trustees of Cordaid, and is accompanied there by the prominent CDA members Gerrit. H.O. van Maanen and Arie M. Oostlander.

In 1984, Van Gennip was like a cat tied to the bacon. He left Cebemo to begin as Deputy Director-General of International Cooperation in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs until 1990, and supervised Dutch bilateral development aid. Partly because of his involvement and collaboration with Jan Pronk, the relationships of the ministry and its officials became intimately intertwined with the NGOs. In 1986, Van Gennep also became a member of the Board of Trustees of the Rabobank in The Hague. His party associate Herman Wijffels was a member of the Executive Board of the Rabobank Netherlands, and as informateur in 2006 constructed a coalition government of CDA [Christian Democrats], PvdA [Labour party, Socialists] and CU [Christian Union, left-wing Christians]. Wijffels steered the Rabobank into development aid (in 2009 over 14.7 million euros). On the occasion of his departure, the Herman Wijffels Fund was installed.

After his job at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Van Gennip became Director of the Scientific Institute of the CDA (SID; from 1991-1999). And here also he operated with double loyalty. From June 1997 onwards he became chairman of Netherlands International Development Society (SID), and one month later (January 16, 2008) Vice President. As chairman of the SID Van Gennip stressed that this organization is “one of the driving forces” in the promotion of alternative views and actions relating to development aid and plays a unique role “in bridging the gap between policymakers and activists at the base”. Currently the SID counts nearly 6,000 members in 115 countries, and works closely with like-minded international organizations and networks, including parliamentarians and students. SID is also supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. How SID gained this support will by now be obvious.

Beginning in May 2004, Van Gennip became President of the Nationale Commissie voor Internationale Samenwerking en Duurzame Ontwikkeling (NCDO), “National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development”). For the period 2007-2010 the NCDO received a government grant of 128.4 million euros. From 1991 to 2007, Van Gennip was a member of the Dutch “First Chamber” [Senate or Higher House; Parliament is called “Second Chamber”]. He also there was involved with development aid issues and was CDA spokesman for “Development Aid and Foreign Affairs”. Interestingly, he is also a board member of the “Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy” (NIMD) of which his CDA-colleague [and former foreign minister] Bernard Bot is chairman. The NIMD in 2008 received almost 10 million euros from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs [while the present fraction leader of the CDA, Maxime Verhagen, was Minister of Foreign Affairs].

His CDA colleague Sophie van Bijsterveld is a member of the Senate and is also infected by a double loyalty, and serves on the members’ council of (IKV)PaxChristi, an organization receiving over 15 million euros in government funding in the period 2007-2010.

In his role as chairman of NCDO, Van Gennep subsidized the SID (in 2004 €75,000; 2005 €75,000; 2006 €241,612; 2007 €211,120). And it did not stop with this. Other organizations in which he operates he lavishly enriched with NCDO grants, such as the Eduardo Frei Foundation (EFF; 2004 €100,000; 2007 €90,000 [also present CDA fraction leader Maxime Verhagen has been a board member of the EFF]). Further, as chairman of the NCDO he is active in the “Knowledge and Advisory Centres” in which his CDA colleague [and anti Wilders campaigner] Doekle Terpstra and the very controversial Muslim intellectual Tariq Ramadan also participate.

Furthermore, Van Gennip is also a strong supporter of Gemeentelijke Samenwerking met Ontwikkelingslanden (“Municipal Cooperation with Developing Countries”) and to that end is on the Board of the Vereniging van Nederlandse Gemeenten (VNG, “Association of Dutch Municipalities”). An organization which in this context is partly responsible for the vast sums of taxpayers’ money flowing abroad through municipalities, and works closely with, and is financed by, the NCDO (more than 300,000 euros in 2009; see this).

And then we still have the vice-presidency of Van Gennip with Vluchtelingenwerk Nederland (Refugee Work Netherlands [link]). The organization which not only for many years has sabotaged the curbing of the massive flow of asylum seekers to the Netherlands, but with its activities also has a priming effect. Refugee Work Netherlands is partly responsible for the establishing of the “Generaal Pardon” [“general amnesty”, legalization in 2006-7 of some 27,500 rejected asylum-seekers]. A legalization that was enforced by a powerful lobby called “26.000 Faces”. In this lobby Van Gennip walked hand in hand, so to speak, with the newly appointed informateur Ruud Lubbers and the president of the HBO-Raad (“Higher Education Board”) and ICCO, Doekle Terpstra.

Now ICCO is an inter-church organization, founded in 1964 and also concerned with development aid. During the period 2007-2010, ICCO received 525 million euros of tax payers money. This organization was involved in the Filipino resistance movements and was part of the reprehensible research by Van Gennip, as commissioned by Jan Pronk (see earlier on in his article). In a response in Dutch left wing newspaper De Volkskrant on June 5, 1990, he made clear that: “Support for armed resistance remains possible with ICCO.”

The predecessor of Doekle Terpstra at ICCO was a prominent CDA member Tineke Lodders. She was its Chairperson form January 1996 till January 1, 2006. She is also Chairperson of the Supervisory Board of Samenwerkende Hulporganisaties (“Joint Aid Organizations”) and since September 2007 has also be on the board of the NCDO. Furthermore, Tineke Lodders is chairperson of the Landelijk Beraad Stedenbanden Nederland-Nicaragua (LBSSN, “National Council of City Connections Netherlands-Nicaragua”) which collected for the period 2007 till 2010 government grants to the amount of 2,000,000 euros. As a member of the CDA fraction in the Senate she was mainly involved with development aid, spatial planning and environmental-issues and social affairs.

Other CDA members in this context are also quite worth mentioning:

Gerrit Terpstra and Pieter Kooijmans, both among other things members of the Board of Trustees of the Refugee Foundation (see above), which for 2007 till 2010 was rewarded 6,419,725 in government grants.

But also Jan Schinkelshoek, the former campaign spokesman of then CDA party leader Ruud Lubbers in 1986 and 1989. Schinkelshoek is a member of the board of the Dutch foundation “Press Now”, which received a government grant of 9,966,144 euros for the period 2007-2010.

And then I still have to mention the recently established “Rights Forum”, which focuses on the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. A forum in which the CDA members Dries van Agt (former prime minister; notorious anti-Semite]) and Hans van de Broek (former foreign affairs minister, EU politician and member of the Queen’s Council of State; Van de Broek was the first to censor due to possible Muslim sensitivities, in 1987 he prevented the broadcast of a sketch by the comedian Rudi Carrell in which ladies’ underwear was thrown at Ayatollah Khomeini), Frans Andriessen (former finance minister), Pieter Kooijmans (see above), Tinneke Lodders (see above), and Bert de Vries (former fraction leader, Social Affairs minister), Doekle Terpstra (see above), participate. A forum for which the government grants are not yet known, but most likely will receive funding through the previously-mentioned subsidy channels.

Well, I could continue for a dozen pages with similar conflicts of interest that make a negotiation towards a right-wing cabinet virtually impossible.

I will end this letter to you by mentioning the interesting fact that your son [prince] Constantine is Chair of the Board of the foundation “The Hague Process on Refugees and Migration”. A foundation in which both the aforementioned Jos van Gennip as well as your newly-appointed informateur Ruud Lubbers are member via the department of the “Club of the Hague”, a foundation that works closely together with the aforementioned SID and receives subsidies entities that include from the Ministries of Justice and Foreign Affairs, the municipality of The Hague, Refugee Work, ICCO, Novib and NCDO.


Peter Siebelt


[1] For decades Peter Siebelt has been the Dutch top expert on left wing activism and activists and their networks, a security expert, an author, and a reporter. He has his own blog and publishes among other places at the Het Vrije Volk site.

Links added by the translator.

Back to Work

Ironworkers #2

Our (allegedly) quarterly fundraiser is over at last. Time to pack up the lunchbox, retrace our steps along the girder, pick up the welding torch, and get back to work.

The seven days of our recent bleg far exceeded any previous week of fundraising. Given the hard times and straitened circumstances that most of us are living through, the generosity expressed by our donors was gratifying and humbling.

The geographic range of people who contributed was also amazing — as near as I can tally it, here is the final breakdown of locations:

From the USA: California, Washington D.C., Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Dakota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

From elsewhere: Australia, Austria, Brazil, the British Virgin Islands, Canada, Denmark, the Faeroe Islands, Flanders, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK.

Dymphna is still firing on only two or three cylinders, so some of the thank-you notes haven’t gone out yet. Bear with her; she’s slowly catching up.

Once again, many thanks to everyone who donated. With your help, this modest endeavor will be able to continue indefinitely.

*   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

One of our donors wrote and asked me: “Suppose you had a really rich benefactor — what would you do if someone were to donate a million dollars to the cause?”

Ah…. Fantasy time!

In my idle moments I sometimes imagine:

The Gates of Vienna Foundation

A million isn’t much of an endowment, but still…

It’s a nice dream. I picture an outfit like the Manhattan Institute, which is an excellent organization that employs a variety of scholarly authors. Our foundation would also require a glossy quarterly publication, perhaps resembling City Journal, but featuring a more classical style of cover art:

The Löbel Bastion

“But Baron,” you ask, “why ‘The Löbel Bastion’? Do you enjoy being obscure?”

Well, yes, I do. But it’s also true that the Löbel Bastion played an important role in the Siege of Vienna in 1683, and it fits in well with the Gates of Vienna theme.
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The bastions were projecting sections of the city’s fortifications that allowed the defenders to fire on the flanks of the besiegers. As the Turks came nearer to reducing Vienna in September 1683, they approached the city walls closely enough to tunnel under the Löbel Bastion and lay mines. Portions of the walls had collapsed from previous explosions, and the garrison was forced to close the breaches with temporary repairs that became more and more flimsy as the damage to the walls increased.

On the climactic day of the siege — September 11th, 1683 — the Turks had tunneled deep under the Löbel Bastion and laid a large mine. Grand Vizier Kara Mustafa and his generals calculated that this charge would blow a big enough hole in the defenses to allow the Turks to enter the city. September 12th was to be the day when the Turks finally broke the siege.

The Winged HussarsAs a result, the besiegers committed most of their resources south of the city, leaving their left flank relatively unprotected. Even when King Jan III Sobieski of Poland began his descent from the hills to the north and approached the city with his Winged Hussars, the Grand Vizier remain focused on the Löbel Bastion, certain that his troops were about to storm the city.

The murk of history obscures exactly what happened to the Turkish mine, but legend has it that the defenders dug a counter-tunnel, and sent a young boy — who was the only person who could fit through the end of the hastily-dug shaft — to stop the mine from exploding. According to the story, the young man extinguished the fuse just before the powder detonated.

In any case, the mine failed to explode. The Löbel Bastion held. Sobieski and his men rolled up the Turks’ left flank while the garrison sallied forth from the city, routing the besiegers. The Grand Vizier and his janissaries fled eastward in panic, leaving behind their tents, baggage, captives, and slaves.

Jan III Sobieski at Vienna

The humiliation that Kara Mustafa inflicted upon the Sultan through his ignominious defeat was too much to bear, and the Grand Vizier was ritually garrotted a few months later.

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The Löbel Bastion is a fitting metaphor for the current state of Western Civilization. Like the walls of Vienna, our culture has been sapped, undermined, weakened, and is now near collapse.

There are a few defenders left behind the walls who have yet to flee, and they are ready to fight to the last man to defend their city. Nobody knows whether relief will come in time, so all we can do is counter-tunnel in hopes of sending an urchin along the shaft to thwart that final explosion…

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/29/2010

Gates of Vienna News Feed 7/29/2010Abdul Hakim Muhammad, the man who killed one soldier and wounded another at a Army recruiting center in Little Rock last year, attempted to firebomb the rabbi of a synagogue in Nashville before he paid his murderous visit to Little Rock. This news has been publicly revealed for the first time, based on revelations in a psychiatric evaluation of Mr. Muhammad.

In other news, a bus driver in London who was accused of “Islamophobia” after refusing to let to veiled women board his bus has been exonerated. CCTV evidence backed up his story that the women were aggressive and argumentative, and that his refusal to let them board was justified. He faced the possible loss of his job if the charge against him stuck.

To see the headlines and the articles, open the full news post.

Thanks to Barry Rubin, CSP, DS, Fjordman, Gaia, Henrik, JD, JP, Lurker from Tulsa, Nilk, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Commenters are advised to leave their comments at this post (rather than with the news articles) so that they are more easily accessible.

[This post is a stub — nothing further here!]

A Radical Imposition of Sharia

Former congressman Newt Gingrich gave a speech at the American Enterprise Institute today, and his topic was stealth jihad and creeping sharia. Below is an excerpt from his speech:

Many thanks to Kitman for YouTubing this clip. The entire speech is available at KitmanTV.

See also Frank Gaffney’s account of the speech at Big Peace.

[Post ends here]

The Taliban Say: “A Vote for the PvdA is a Vote for Jihad!”

The formation of the new Dutch government is still in limbo, but if the Taliban have any say, the PvdA will be included in the coalition. The Socialists are regarded as friends of the Islamic radicals, and a Taliban spokesman in Afghanistan is not shy about saying so.

Here’s the latest from today’s Elsevier, as translated by our Flemish correspondent VH:

The Taliban hopes the Labour Party will govern again

by Marlou Visser

TalibanThe Taliban thanks the PvdA [Labour Party, Socialists] for the upcoming departure of Dutch troops form Uruzgan. The radical Islamic terrorist organization says it hopes the PvdA will again become part of the Dutch government so that there will be a lasting friendly policy “toward Afghanistan”.

This was said by Qari Yusuf Ahmadii, the spokesman for the Taliban in southern and western Afghanistan in an exclusive interview with Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant.

The Taliban already had congratulated the Netherlands earlier in a telephone interview with Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad for the intended departure from Afghanistan. “The Dutch have said to themselves: we will not benefit here; our goals are not in this country, so why should we sacrifice ourselves?” Ahmadii said then.

This weekend the roughly two thousand Dutch troops will withdraw from the Afghan province of Uruzgan. Their task will be taken over by Americans, Australians, and NATO troops from Singapore.

Recently it was made public that the entire Afghan operation [of the Dutch], militarily and in terms of development, cost the Dutch €2 billion.
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The new government may decide whether it will accede to the request by NATO for the Dutch to send police trainers to Afghanistan. However, with a right-wing government it will also be uncertain whether the Netherlands will comply with this request. The Party for Freedom is opposed to the military mission.

NATO will probably request the new Dutch government to allow the Air Force to remain a while longer in Afghanistan, as Dutch newspapers report.

Photo caption: “Congratulations”

“We still remember well the day the Dutch government resigned,” says Ahmadii, who states that the Taliban keep a sharp eye on the international media over the Internet. The spokesman also promises that there will never be peace in Afghanistan as long as foreign troops are present in the country. “The resistance will only become stronger.”

The Destiny of the West is Tied to Israel

Last winter we featured an op-ed by the Danish writer Jeppe Juhl. The author returns with a new essay, which was published in 180grader on July 22. Many thanks to Anne-Kit of Perth, Australia, for translating it into English.

The Destiny of the West Is Tied to Israel
by Jeppe Juhl

(Written after comments on Israel’s Gaza blockade by Catherine Ashton, de facto Foreign Minister of the EU)

Israel Is the Canary of the West

Canary in the coal mineIt’s not that long since miners were still using caged canaries as an early warning system for detecting gas leaks. If something happened to the canary it was time to get out quickly. Or into one of the safety pockets that were part of the contingency plan. You wouldn’t even need to have finished primary school to understand that only a really, really stupid (or suicidal) miner would look the other way if his canary suddenly passed out in its cage. And it would be equally remiss of the miner not to care for his canary or not to help it if it should fall ill.

Right now we are witnessing not one but millions of stupid or suicidal “miners”. I am referring to all those in the West who are actively agitating against or directly oppose the State of Israel. For Israel is the “Canary of the West”. The day Israel succumbs is when the days of the West are numbered. There can be no reasonable doubt about this. This does not mean that our civilization will crumble instantly, but the moral collapse which must inevitably have preceded any future dissolution of the Jewish State would have to have been so massive that the West would necessarily be in a state of free fall. And no measures will be able to halt this moral gravitation. We will not be able to rise up again if that small spot which represents Israel is overrun by forces which we all know are evil, even though it is forbidden to say it aloud.

Yes, life will go on. For a little while. But the gas leak has been established. The canary’s death presages our own. If in any way we are dealing with a clash of civilizations, now is the time to occupy the “high ground”. I am not referring to a military confrontation, as this would inevitably lead to only temporary solutions, but to a moral struggle where we in the West proudly and fearlessly fight for the beautiful ideals which the intellectual canary haters benefit from in their own privileged and protected lives, but which they denounce to the world in their eternal quest to appear as “good people”.
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What is the nature of this self-hatred that drives Western intellectuals, especially those in Europe, to combat the canary of the Middle East? What perverse mechanisms compel many Westerners to demand that our canary always be more colourful and sing with a purer voice than any other birds around the world? What makes these intellectuals and their thoughtless followers punish our bird instead of kindly shipping it off to the doctor when it shows signs of illness, which would be the only rational thing to do? Is it perhaps because they no longer perceive themselves as part of our community? Is it maybe because they are not down in the mineshaft with the rest of us but live their danger-free lives at the higher levels, where they can breathe easily and enjoy their expensive vintage wines, while they gaze with pity and condescension upon the swarthy workers down in the mine who day in and day out live their insect-like lives watching the X-Factor and reading Dan Brown? I think this is how it is. The only problem is that these cerebral aristocrats do not understand that they are living on top of the mine. And when the mine collapses, they go down with the rest of us.

If the greatest statesman of the Western world had been alive today, and here I am thinking of course of Winston Churchill, he would have been on the barricades just like he was in the thirties. And Churchill would not have minced his words. He would have denounced the meaningless lunacy of condemning Israel in the wake of the flotilla. An episode which Israel should have avoided but which happened because they naively had not foreseen the evil present on the boat. Instead Catherine Ashton, the so-called Foreign Minister of the EU — a person whom it is safe to say the late Churchill would have viewed with the utmost contempt — steps in to make demands of Israel. Demands which we in the West would never dream of making of many other countries which behave so badly that it is inconceivable that no-one has noticed. Likewise, of course, it went unnoticed by the entire Danish press that last week Germany banned the Turkish organization IHH, which was the real villain of the flotilla episode.

The flotilla is but one of a veritable shower of episodes which expose the moral relativism that has infected us in the West. Yes, there are lots of things wrong with our canary. But perhaps we should consider the part we ourselves play in inflicting diseases on our bird when we choose to desert it. We do not even have to like our bird, but our sense of self preservation alone should be enough to make us treat it better.

Hat tip: TB.

Talks About Talks

Since last month’s general election, the Netherlands has been in constitutional limbo. At first all the mainstream parties absolutely refused the possibility of forming a coalition with Geert Wilders’ party, the PVV. Then, after a lot of wrangling and dickering, it became apparent that a government without the PVV could not be readily achieved.

At that point the two least left-wing parties — the VVD and the CDA — decided that, well, yes, maybe they would be willing to work with the PVV, if only Mr. Wilders were to ease up on some of his most extreme Islamophobic positions.

Since then there have been talks about talks, but no actual official talking. Our Flemish correspondent VH has translated two articles about the process. First, here’s what De Telegraaf had to say about the situation early on Monday:

Informal consultations on Monday

THE HAGUE — The party leaders Mark Rutte (VVD) Geert Wilders (PVV) and Maxime Verhagen (CDA) are meeting Monday at a secret location in The Hague for informal consultation to see whether there are possibilities to form a government together. The consultation was at the request of informateur Ruud Lubbers. It is not clear how long the consultation will lasts. Possibly also in the coming days there will be meetings [they will continue on Tuesday].

The CDA has always been opposed to a three-way conversation with the VVD and PVV. VVD and PVV should first agree in broad terms. But under pressure from informateur and former Christian Democrat prime minister Ruud Lubbers, the CDA fraction accepted an initial informal meeting. Lubbers will not be there himself.

Since the elections on June 9 there has been quite a bit of puzzling going on about forming a cabinet. The formation of a coalition of VVD (major party), PVV (biggest winner) and CDA have up till now encountered objections from the latter party [CDA]. The formation of a right-wing government thus seemed impossible, but that option was still in the air. Therefore Lubbers wants these parties to first talk informally, without himself present, to see if any business can be done.

The CDA will enter the informal consultation without preconditions. But if the CDA were then to decide to really negotiate with the PVV for cooperation [minority cabinet supported by the PVV for instance, according to the Danish model] or a coalition government, there would be a few issues, according to Maxime Verhagen, that would be of great importance to the CDA. For example, a tax on headscarves and the desire of the PVV to scrap development aid must be taken off the table.

PVV leader Geert Wilders is pleased that the CDA wants to enter the conversation with his party and the VVD. He finds it a good thing that the CDA is doing that without preconditions.

Then, two days later, Elsevier reported that the talks about talking are continuing:
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Parties continue talks about right-wing cabinet Wednesday

by Jeroen Langelaar

Mark Rutte, Geert Wilders and Maxime Verhagen are taking their time. The talks among the fraction leaders of VVD, PVV and CDA have been suspended early Tuesday. VVD and CDA spokesmen made it known afterwards that the three gentlemen will continue talks this Wednesday about a right-wing government.

On Monday Rutte (VVD), Wilders (PVV), and Verhagen (CDA) started informal discussions at a secret location, an initiative of informateur Ruud Lubbers, who himself did not join in. The three fraction leaders returned between three and half past three at the Binnenhof [parliament buildings in The Hague]. Nobody wanted to provide comments on their progress. Lubbers also said nothing.

It is unclear why the consultation was suspended so soon. The faction leaders of the four-plus Purple-plus parties had in recent weeks been talking regularly until late at night.

The informateur Lubbers has been assigned by Queen Beatrix to clarify as soon as possible whether a right-wing cabinet of VVD, PVV and CDA, or a minority government with two of the three parties, is possible. Negotiating with the PVV is controversial in leftist circles of the CDA. A slight majority of CDA voters (53 percent) is in favor of a right-wing government.

Make yourselves comfortable, everybody. It looks like this one is going to take a while.