A Dutch court has ordered the prosecution of Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders for his film Fitna, in which he criticized Islam and compared it to totalitarian ideologies and accused it of fostering violence. The court justified this persecution thusly:
The three judges said that they had weighed Mr Wilders’s "one-sided generalisations" against his right to free speech, and ruled that he had gone beyond the normal leeway granted to politicians.
"The Amsterdam appeals court has ordered the prosecution of member of parliament Geert Wilders for inciting hatred and discrimination, based on comments by him in various media on Muslims and their beliefs," the court said in a statement.
"The court also considers appropriate criminal prosecution for insulting Muslim worshippers because of comparisons between Islam and Nazism made by Wilders," it added.
Several months ago, the Dutch prosecutor’s office had decided not to
persecute prosecute, having determined he had not broken the law. Some dhimmi-Dutchmen pressed the matter in the courts, however, leading today’s decision to force the prosecutor’s office to open an investigation. Wilders’ Freedom Party (PVV) issued the following statement:
Court decision an all-out assault on freedom of speech
woensdag 21 januari 2009
The Freedom Party (PVV) is shocked by the Amsterdam Court of Appeal’s decision to prosecute Geert Wilders for his statements and opinions. Geert Wilders considers this ruling an all-out assault on freedom of speech.
Geert Wilders: “Apparently this is The Netherlands today. If you speak out you might be prosecuted. To participate in public debate has become a dangerous activity.”
“If I have to appear in court, not only I will be prosecuted, but also hundreds of thousands of Dutch citizens who reject the Islamisation of the West. In Dutch Parliament only the Party for Freedom is willing to speak up for the preservation of our culture and our many freedoms.”
The Freedom Party leader now faces legal proceedings that will probably take years to conclude and will also involve enormous legal fees.
“We depend on small donations. The Freedom Party is the only party in Parliament that does not accept any government funding. This court decision jeopardizes the very existence of the Freedom Party. We simply cannot afford the enormous legal expenses.”
“This is a black day for freedom.”
As a free human being Mr. Wilders has the inalienable, natural right to speak his mind on political matters. I don’t care what one thinks of him, the PVV, Fitna, or Islam and the cultural jihad against the West. My own writings here should make it clear that I largely agree with the opinions expressed in Fitna and that I am very concerned about the renewed jihad and the dangers posed to liberal democratic society by the spread of sharia law. On the other hand, you may think Wilders’ an ass and the whole hullabaloo over Islam nothing more than a fear-mongering fantasy.
But that is immaterial. Whether you agree with Wilders or not, he has the right to free speech, to present his views and have them challenged and judged in the marketplace of ideas. What the Dutch court has done is to sacrifice that right at the altar of communal tranquility, to grant Islam a special, superior place in which it is immune from criticism, from the normal give and take of Western society.
In other words, the Dutch Court of Appeal has submitted to Islam and become dhimmi.
Make no mistake, the Court has done Islam and Dutch Muslims no favor. To effectively ban criticism of Islam is to leave the intellectual field to the advocates of jihad and Islamic supremacy. By acting out of a kneejerk multiculturalism and a fear of Muslim violence –and that’s the root of this decision– the Court undercuts the arguments of any moderate, peaceful Muslims looking to reform their faith and find a place in the liberal, democratic societies of the West. It strengthens those who seek to recreate a seventh-century society by imposing sharia law, first on other Muslims, then the non-Muslims around them. It strengthens them because the Court’s decision shows fear and a lack of faith in the foundational principles of democratic society and can be used by jihadist imams as an argument for the natural superiority of Islam and its law.
And, after this, how could any moderate Muslim argue against them?
LINKS: Exercise your freedoms and watch Fitna for yourself. More from Fausta, Gateway Pundit, Samizdata, Islam in Action, Sweetness and Light, Jihad Watch, Ed Morrissey, Richard Fernandez, Michelle Malkin, and The Jawa Report. Mark Steyn as usual, is glorious: Dutch Courage.