The Jake Files

February 27, 2006

Standing Up to Cartoon Violence

Filed under: Cartoon Intifada,France,Middle East,Old Europe,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 12:19 am

Public officials in two corners of the Anglosphere are publicly stating the obvious:  Western societies are nations of laws, and there is no room in a modern liberal democracy for Sharia law.

From the BBC:

Sir Trevor told ITV1’s Jonathan Dimbleby programme: “What some minorities have to accept is that there are certain central things we all agree about, which are about the way we treat each other.

“That we have an attachment to democracy, that we sort things out by voting not by violence and intimidation, that we tolerate things that we don’t like.”

And that commitment to freedom of expression should also allow Muslim preachers to make comments about homosexuality that are offensive to broad segments of the British population, he said.

Trafalgar Square  

There were several large protests held in London over the cartoons

“One point of Britishness is that people can say what they like about the way we should live, however absurd, however unpopular it is,” said Sir Trevor.

He also rejected the idea of Shariah law in Muslim communities in the UK.

“We have one set of laws. They are decided on by one group of people, members of Parliament, and that’s the end of the story.

“Anybody who lives here has to accept that’s the way we do it. If you want to have laws decided in another way, you have to live somewhere else,” he said.

From news.com.au:

ANYONE who believes Islamic sharia law can co-exist with Australian law should move to a country where they feel more comfortable, Treasurer Peter Costello said today.

All Australian citizens must adhere to the framework in society which maintains tolerance and protects the rights and liberties of all, he said. It is a pre-condition for citizenship of Australia.

Mr Costello was giving a speech on the meaning of Australian citizenship to the Sydney Institute.

“There is one law we are all expected to abide by,” Mr Costello said.

“It is the law enacted by the Parliament under the Australian Constitution.

“If you can’t accept that, then you don’t accept the fundamentals of what Australia is and what it stands for.”

Mr Costello, the son of a Methodist lay preacher and who was raised a Baptist, emphasised that Australia is a secular state under which the freedom of all religions is protected.

“But there is not a separate stream of law derived from religious sources that competes with or supplants Australian law in governing our civil society,” he said.

“The source of our law is the democratically elected legislature.

Mark Steyn wrote another great column yesterday in the Chicago Sun-TimesPowerline and Instapundit both commented on the murders of Jews in France, by Muslims, and the recent demonstrations there against violence. 

Somthing different in Steyn’s column struck me:

Something very remarkable is happening around the globe and, if you want the short version, a Muslim demonstrator in Toronto the other day put it very well:

”We won’t stop the protests until the world obeys Islamic law.”

Stated that baldly it sounds ridiculous. But, simply as a matter of fact, every year more and more of the world lives under Islamic law: Pakistan adopted Islamic law in 1977, Iran in 1979, Sudan in 1984. Four decades ago, Nigeria lived under English common law; now, half of it’s in the grip of sharia, and the other half’s feeling the squeeze, as the death toll from the cartoon jihad indicates. But just as telling is how swiftly the developed world has internalized an essentially Islamic perspective. In their pitiful coverage of the low-level intifada that’s been going on in France for five years, the European press has been barely any less loopy than the Middle Eastern media.

It’s a good thing that this is breaking into the news in France, and presumably Europe at large.  But what they’re not doing is talking openly about the problem, which is what Mr. Costello in Australia and Sir Trevor of the UK are now doing.  There has been a low level intifada going on in France for years now, and no one wants to admit the reason why:  Muslim immigrants do not want to integrate with France or Europe, they want their own set of rules.  And when there are conflicts involving Muslim immigrants and Western ways, no one wants to be politically incorrect and admit that the source of the problem is often because the Muslims have clashed with Western values.  And there you have the cartoon intifada in all its glory.

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February 9, 2006

Kinder, Gentler Commander in Chief?

Filed under: Cartoon Intifada,Middle East,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 11:22 pm

I’m not sure how I feel about this development

Bush commented alongside King Abdullah II of Jordan at the White House. Abdullah, too, called for protests to be peaceful, but he also spoke against ridicule of Islam’s holiest figure.

Islam is interpreted to forbid any illustrations of Muhammad for fear they could lead to idolatry.

“With all respect to press freedoms, obviously anything that vilifies the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, or attacks Muslim sensibilities, I believe, needs to be condemned,” he said.

I think this message was designed as a soundbite for Muslim audiences.  The White House was eager to show to the Muslim world that the United States is respectful of Islam and their prophet, while at the same time, on the same day, the Secretary of State is saying some pretty inflammatory things directed to the local state sponsors of terrorism.  While I’m not sure how I feel about the leader of my country making the reverential statement “peace be upon him,” I think the tactic was well thought out.  Hopefully Al Jazeera picked it up.

 

Laying the Diplomatic Smackdown on Terrorist Regimes

Filed under: Cartoon Intifada,Middle East,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 11:13 pm

Sec of State Condi Rice, laying the smackdown on Wednesday to Iran and Syria:

Mr. Bush, in an Oval Office meeting with King Abdullah II of Jordan, said, “We reject violence as a way to express discontent over what is printed in the free press.” Hours later, Ms. Rice delivered a far more pointed message, saying that Iran “hasn’t even hidden its hand in this.” “Iran and Syria have gone out of their way to inflame sentiments and to use this to their own purposes,” she said. “And the world ought to call them on it.”

That was such undiplomatic language for a Secretary of State, and I love it.  Give us more.

February 5, 2006

US Blasts Mohammed Cartoons

Filed under: Cartoon Intifada,General,Politics,War on Terror — Amazing Jake @ 3:09 pm

This is disturbing (hat tip Zonitics):

US blasts cartoons of Prophet Mohammed
Feb 03 11:11 AM US/Eastern

US blasts cartoons of Prophet Mohammed
Feb 03 11:11 AM US/Eastern

The United States blasted the publication by European newspapers of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed as unacceptable incitement to religious or ethnic hatred. “These cartoons are indeed offensive to the beliefs of Muslims,” State Department spokesman Justin Higgins said when queried about the furore sparked by the cartoons which first appeared in a Danish newspaper.

“We all fully recognize and respect freedom of the press and expression but it must be coupled with press responsibility,” Higgins told AFP.“Inciting religious or ethnic hatreds in this manner is not acceptable. We call for tolerance and respect for all communities and for their religious beliefs and practices.”The cartoons have caused an international furore, with protests in many Muslim nations and from Muslim political leaders.While Danish and Norwegian missions are burning in Damascus and Beirut, and while the President proclaims that “freedom is on the march,” the US State Department apparently doesn’t believe that freedom of speech and of the press is not worthy of defending.

 

 

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