Demonstrators marched from Regent’s Park mosque, London, to the Danish embassy, with banners reading: “Kill the one who insults the Prophet” and “The only way this will be resolved, is if those who are responsible are turned over so they can be punished by Islamic law, so that they can be executed“.
This is why there should be no apologies, no retribution, no firings, nothing. Since when does Islamic law apply to non-Muslim Danish cartoonists?
The Irish Daily Star joined other European papers in publishing the cartoons. “We wanted to give our half a million readers a chance to actually see this infamous cartoon,” said columnist Joe O’Shea. “We thought it would be a good idea to make a stand for freedom of the press and democratic rights.”
Egypt’s ambassador, Mona Omar Attia, said the Danish prime minister’s response to drawings controversy was inadequate and the country should do more to “appease the whole Muslim world”. More than 70 ambassadors attended a meeting with the prime minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who warned: “If the protests in the streets escalate further, we may be faced with unpredictable repercussions in all the affected countries. We have a common interest in calming down feelings and in settling this affair.”…
The home minister, Wolfgang SchÃ¤uble, defended the decision by four German newspapers to publish the cartoons, declaring: “Why should the German government apologise? This is an expression of press freedom.”
Cardinal Achille Silvestrini, a retired Vatican diplomat, said: “Freedom is a great virtue but it must be shared and it must not be unilateral. Freedom of satire that offends the feelings of others becomes an abuse, and here we are talking about nothing less than the feelings of entire peoples who have seen their supreme symbols affected.”…
God save us from retired diplomats. Your Eminence, I await your statement on this, which should strike you closer to home.
Jihad Momani, the editor sacked for reprinting the cartoons, said his purpose had been merely to demonstrate the extent of the Danish insult to Islam. “Oh, I ask God to forgive me,” he wrote in a public letter of apology yesterday….
President Hamid Karzai urged newspapers to dismiss editors who published cartoons depicting Muhammad. “As much as we condemn this, we must have, as Muslims, the courage to forgive and to not make an issue of dispute between religions or cultures. But that doesn’t mean that insulting cartoons about Islam must continue to appear. They must definitely, definitely stop.”
Must this be unilateral? Or will there be a similar effort by Muslims to end violence committed in the name of Islam?