Dean A. Hoffman skewers U.S. filmmakers’ hypocritical silence about the killing of Theo van Gogh and its implications, in the Charlotte Observer:
It is a particularly hateful comment on the state of American cinema that one of the most egregious examples of Islamofacism since the unspeakable events of 9-11 has gone virtually unacknowledged by the filmmaking community.
With no significant profile in this country, director Theo van Gogh remains a whispered commodity, surreptitiously designated as a descendent of the famous painter and sheepishly acknowledged as the auteur behind “Submission,” an 11-minute independent film scripted by Somalian immigrant and Dutch parliamentarian Ayaan Hirsi Ali, that offers a critical perspective on the abusive treatment of women in Islam.
Killed by Muslim fanatic
The cruel fact that his last public act was being shot to death and mutilated in retaliation by a Muslim fanatic on an Amsterdam street in November 2004, a crude denunciation pinned to his chest with a penknife, is at best grudgingly recognized by Hollywood as an example of artistic equivalence, a non-Western gesture of living theater certain to provoke accusations of cultural insensitivity.
Dismissing van Gogh as a representative of the independent artistic fringe is one thing; willfully ignoring him for becoming a martyr to it is quite another. In the wake of George Clooney’s sophomoric discovery of the decades-old Sudanese genocide , the public hypocrisy in Hollywood over “Submission” is every bit as obscene as some of van Gogh’s own works.
If not more so.