From Brussels Journal

I have found these important pieces of information in this online newspaper:

1.- The 36 year old Somali-born Ayaan Hirsi Ali is the most famous member of the Dutch Parliament. She is not only a Naomi Campbell lookalike, but is an outspoken and courageous critic of Muslim extremists, who have consequently threatened to kill her. One can only admire her resolve. Two weeks ago, however, Hirsi Ali became controversial within her own party, the Dutch center-right Liberal Party VVD, with her proposal to abolish Article 23 of the Dutch constitution. This article guarantees freedom of education. Ayaan Hirsi Ali wants all religious schools banned.
Is Islam dangerous because it is a religion? Do Muslim values differ from European values because the latter are rooted in Christianity or because they are secular? These questions are at the heart of the debate in Europe today.
Theo Van Gogh, the Dutch moviemaker who was murdered by a Muslim fanatic last year believed that religion was what made people intolerant. Van Gogh was anti-religious rather than anti-Islamic, as he had previously shown by insulting Christians and Jews and attacking traditional morality before shifting his attention to the growing segment of Muslims in Dutch society.
Van Gogh was a friend of Hirsi Ali’s. He was murdered shortly after completing
Submission, a ten minute documentary, written by Hirsi Ali, which dealt with the abuse of Muslim women. Hirsi Ali recently finished the script for a sequel to Submission, in which she criticises the oppression of homosexuals in Muslim societies.
In the secular Netherlands, the rejection of homosexuality by Islam is considered proof of its backwardness and intolerance. This argument was also used by the assassinated anti-immigration politician
Pim Fortuyn, himself a theatrical homosexual, who argued that he was no racist because he had sex with Moroccan boys.
Hirsi Ali’s demand that religious schools be abolished in the Netherlands has caused
a row within her own Liberal Party (VVD), especially after she attacked Hans Wiegel, a former leader of the party and one of the VVD’s most prominent members. In an interview last month Hirsi Ali called Wiegel “a reactionary,” who “denies reality” by defending freedom of education. She said Wiegel has no idea about the problems relating to the integration of immigrants into Dutch society and compared him to a “Turkish or Moroccan father” who is “living in a country of yesterday.” Hirsi Ali believes that Article 23 hinders the integration of Muslim children because they end up in Islamic schools. According to her, the state should educate all children in state schools in order to ensure that they learn tolerance.
The 64 year old Wiegel, who is considering running for the position of Prime Minister in 2007, said he did not mind being called a reactionary, “on the contrary.” He said Hirsi Ali’s
proposal to abolish Article 23 of the Constitution was “intolerant” and suggested she should “not be so fanatic”. The quarrel within the VVD, which is in government with Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende’s Christian-Democrats, deepened when a third prominent party member, Frits Bolkestein, the former European Union commissioner, lended his support to Hirsi Ali. Bolkestein said that freedom of education was not essential for the Liberal Party: “My ideal is: all children in state schools. So, as far as I am concerned, Article 23 can be abolished.” According to Bolkestein the VVD only supports freedom of education for the sake of its Christian-Democrat coalition partner. (…)
2.- Fjordman, the Norwegian blogger (how sorely his invaluable reports from Scandinavia will be missed when he quits blogging next week) reports that Louise Arbour, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, has expressed her concern over the 12 cartoons [see them here] depicting the prophet Muhammad which were published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten last September. Ms Arbour says that the UN experts on racism will deal with the matter.
The 56 member countries of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) are
currently meeting in Mecca to discuss joint action against Denmark because the Danish government has refused to call Jyllands-Posten to account and restrict the freedom of the Danish press. According to Muslims it is blasphemy to depict the prophet and the paper should apologize for having done so. Eleven Muslim ambassadors to Copenhagen had asked the Danish Prime Minister to ensure that such an apology would be forthcoming.
In a message to the OIC, the UN’s High Commissioner for Human Rights states: “I understand your concerns and would like to emphasize that I regret any statement or act that could express a lack of respect for the religion of others.” In a complaint to the High Commissioner, the 56 Islamic governments asked Louise Arbour to raise the matter with the Danish government “to help contain this encroachment on Islam, so the situation will not get out of control.” Muslim radicals have threathened
to murder the Danish cartoonists and take revenge with bloodshed in Denmark.
According to the director of the Danish Center for Human Rights, Morten Kjærum, “the concern of the High Commissioner reflects that the ban on discrimination is one of the most important and general within human rights law, because we know how disastrous it is when different groups are pitted against one another.”
Over the past three months this case has become a major international incident. Curiously enough, to our knowledge it has hardly been reported in the non-Danish mainstream media
. (…)
3.- When the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published a series of twelve Muhammad cartoons [see them here] on September 30 the editors probably never imagined that ten weeks later Kashmir would come to a standstill because of them. Yet that is what happened yesterday. On Thursday Kashmir, a Muslim province of India, went on strike to protest the Danish newspaper publishing the cartoons. According to Islam it is blasphemy to depict the prophet.
The strike was called by a separatist group, but was supported by the Kashmir bar association and other organisations. The authorities made elaborate security arrangements to maintain law and order. Shops were closed to express anger over the caricatures of the prophet. In some places there were clashes, and people threw rocks. “Most Muslims feel deeply affronted,”
said Abdur Rasheed, editor-in-chief of the newspaper Kashmir Observer.(…)
4.- Every day the front pages of the European mainstream media (MSM) report ad nauseam about the alleged threat that the CIA poses to Europe. Not a single European, however, – unless they are terrorists, radical Muslims or the extremist Left – is worried about the CIA. The MSM are creating their own hype, endlessly parroting each other, and creating “consensus outrage” about a non-issue.
What really worries Europeans is illustrated in this article with contributions from Paul Belien on the situation in Flanders, Edwin Jacobs on the Netherlands and Hjörtur Gudmundsson on Denmark. It is the explicit refusal of some who have settled in Europe to assimilate into European society.
Yesterday, Gazet van Antwerpen, a local Antwerp newspaper, published the results of a poll among a representative group of 495 Muslim youths between 15 and 25 years of age, who live in the Flemish harbour town. 89% of these youths respond that religion occupies a “very important” place in their lives. 41% attend the mosque at least once a week (while 12% never does). 85% say they will raise their children in the Muslim faith. This in itself would not be a bad thing (on the contrary), except for the fact that 48% of Antwerp’s Muslim youths are convinced that the Quran should be taken literally and 21% readily admit that they have already heard their imam preach a hate sermon.
In addition, 21% of the young Antwerp Muslims say that they find it “problematic” that the majority of Antwerp’s citizens are non-Muslims, while less than half (47%) do not regard this as a problem. 22% of the Muslim girls prefer to marry a man who has lived in a Muslim country all his life.
Many of the young Muslims are unwilling to become Flemish. 40% say that Islamic values are incompatible with Flemish values. A teacher of Antwerp’s Muslim high school explains that children from families that arrived during the past decade integrate less easily because their knowledge of Dutch is worse than that of the children of immigrant families who arrived two or three decades ago. The cause of this, he explains, are the satellite dishes, which allow immigrant families today to watch the television programs of their home countries, “whereas in the 1980s we could only watch Flemish television.”
While there are no young Muslims converting to Christianity, some 400 young Belgians (in both Dutch-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia) convert to Islam each year. One of the latter was Muriel Degauque, the Walloon woman who last month became the first ever Western suicide bomber. Professor Johan Leman, an anthropologist at Leuven University and the former head of Belgium’s taxpayer-funded pro-immigration Centre for Equal Opportunities and the Fight against Racism, said in a recent (Dutch language) interview that “the most fanatic Muslims are the female converts.”
This is also the opinion of the authorities in the Netherlands. Last week, the bureau of the National Coordinator to Fight Terrorism (NCT) issued a report stating that Muslim converts very often become extremists. Young female converts especially end up in circles of Muslim extremists. This happens mostly through marriage. The marriages never seem to last long and are disbanded once the women have been recruited for the Islamist cause. This has prompted Piet Hein Donner and Johan Remkes, the Dutch ministers of Justice and Home Affairs, to compare these marriages to the recruiting methods of so-called “loverboys” who marry young girls with the sole purpose of tricking them into prostitution.
Last week, the Amsterdam police lost a court case against a female convert of Dutch origin, whom the police suspect of being a contact of the Hofstadgroep, the network surrounding Mohammed Bouyeri, who assassinated Theo van Gogh. Police officers had been shadowing the woman since October 19. They phoned her once a day, her house was under constant police surveillance, and she was followed when she went out.
The woman, a single mother of three, went to court, complaining that the police was violating her privacy because she took her religion very seriously. The court ruled in favour of the woman and ordered the police to stop harassing her. The Amsterdam police is considering whether to appeal against the court decision or not.
In Denmark, meanwhile, young Muslim women are still forced into marriages in spite of the recent actions taken by the country’s Liberal-Conservative government to prevent this. The government decided that Danish residents are no longer allowed to bring foreign spouses into the country unless both partners are at least 24 years old.
Despite the measure, however, a growing number of immigrant parents in Denmark force their daughters to move to their homelands or to Sweden where they are pressed into arranged marriages with people from their countries of origin. “Families are increasingly using physical and psychological violence to force a spouse upon their daughters. We experience more and more that parents threaten to kill their children if they do not agree,” says Leif Randeris, the head of the Immigrants’ Counselling Services in Copenhagen and Århus.
Every week Randeris’s services are called upon to help girls who feel their lives are in danger after rejecting an arranged marriage. The services give them secret hiding places. Randeris says the 24-year age limit has resulted in parents forcing their daughters to move to their countries of origin. Rikke Hvilshøj, the Danish Minister of Refugee, Immigration, and Integration Affairs, says the government has never claimed that the measure would put an end to forced marriages. She adds, however, that there is plenty of evidence that the rule is making it harder to impose forced marriages on girls.
The Danish government also intends to clamp down on another, similar practice. It has ordered local authorities to report the slightest suspicion of immigrant families forcing their children on reconditioning trips to their countries of origin in order to prevent them from becoming too Westernized. The government intends to deport families that engage in such practices. “Obviously, it’s a very drastic measure we are introducing, but it is simply an expression that we will not tolerate reconditioning trips,” says Anders Fogh Rasmussen, the Danish Prime Minister. “When you come to Denmark to live here, you are expected to do everything in your power to be integrated.” According to the Danish Social Appeals Board, an independent administrative authority with judicial powers, at least one thousand children have been forced to undertake such reconditioning trips since 2002.
Amazing how it’s Eurabia.

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One response to “From Brussels Journal

  1. Buon luogo, congratulazioni, il mio amico!

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