Funny how they never called the violence depicted in the film — violence that the perpetrators justified with reference to the Qur’an — “hateful, blasphemous, and un-Islamic.”
“Iran, Indonesia angry over Dutch Koran film,” by Niclas Mika for Reuters:
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Iran and Indonesia on Friday condemned a film by a Dutch lawmaker that accuses the Koran of inciting violence, while Dutch Muslim leaders urged restraint. […]
Iran called the film heinous, blasphemous and anti-Islamic and called on European governments to block any further showing.
Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation and a former Dutch colony, also condemned the film.
“We are of the view that the film has a racist flavour and is an insult to Islam, hidden under the cover of freedom of expression,” a foreign ministry spokesman said. “We call on Indonesian people not to be incited.”
What race is Islam again?
Dutch Muslim leaders appealed for calm and called on Muslims worldwide not to target Dutch interests. The Netherlands is home to around 1 million Muslims out of a population of 16 million.
“Our call to Muslims abroad is follow our strategy and don’t frustrate it with any violent incidents,” Mohammed Rabbae, a senior Dutch Muslim leader, told a news conference in a mosque in an Amsterdam suburb that is home to many Muslims.
“Looking for conflict there is looking for conflict with us,” he added before an imam made a similar appeal in Arabic.
Dutch authorities reported a calm night in contrast to the unrest that swept the country after the murder by a militant Islamist in 2004 of Dutch director Theo van Gogh, who made a film accusing Islam of condoning violence against women.
Earlier this month, Dutch security officials raised the national risk level to “substantial” because of the forthcoming Wilders film and perceptions of an increased al Qaeda threat.
Wilders, who has been under heavy guard because of Islamist death threats since the murder of director Van Gogh, has seen support for his anti-immigration Freedom Party rise in anticipation of the film to about 10 percent of the vote.
The Dutch government has worked for months to distance itself from Wilders and try to prevent the kind of backlash Denmark suffered over the Prophet cartoons.
In a statement on live television on Thursday evening in both Dutch and English, Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said he rejected Wilders’ views and was pleased by the initial restrained reactions of Dutch Muslim organisations.
The European Union supports the Dutch government’s approach and believes the film serves no purpose other than “inflaming hatred”, the Slovenian EU presidency said in a statement:
“The European Union and its member states apply the principle of the freedom of speech which is part of our values and traditions. However, it should be exercised in a spirit of respect for religious and other beliefs and convictions.”
Mind you, the European Union has never, ever said anything like that regarding attacks on Christianity. The point is not just the double standard; it is that they are allowing violent intimidation to succeed, and that will only lead to more violent intimidation.