After a heady day of freedom, European dhimmitude reasserts itself with a rush — at least in France. Still, if the other editors don’t get fired, we’re still ahead of where we were 24 hours ago. “Muhammad cartoon row intensifies,” from the BBC, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
France Soir originally said it had published the images in full to show “religious dogma” had no place in a secular society.
But late on Wednesday its owner, Raymond Lakah, said he had removed managing editor Jacques Lefranc “as a powerful sign of respect for the intimate beliefs and convictions of every individual”.
Mr Lakah said: “We express our regrets to the Muslim community and all people who were shocked by the publication.”
The president of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM), Dalil Boubakeur, had described France Soir’s publication as an act of “real provocation towards the millions of Muslims living in France”.
Other papers stood by their publication. In Berlin, Die Welt argued there was a right to blaspheme in the West, and asked whether Islam was capable of coping with satire.
“The protests from Muslims would be taken more seriously if they were less hypocritical,” it wrote in an editorial.
La Stampa in Italy, El Periodico in Spain and Dutch paper Volkskrank also carried some of the drawings.
I am very sorry that Jacques Lefranc lost his job. I hope he gets a new one soon — say, as President of the European Union.