söndag 13 december 2009

Ny historia skall avsvenska nationen

Mattias, SD Kuriren

Den kontroversielle historieprofessorn Dick Harrisson, som bland annat rönt medial uppmärksamhet för att ha trakasserat en elev som han haft en sexuell relation med och som kallats en skam för landets professorer på grund av sin lättsinniga inställning till plagiat, har sedan en tid tillbaka gått i täten för arbetet med att skriva om den svenska historien.

En svit med en omfattning av totalt åtta band med titeln ”Sveriges historia”, varav två redan är klara, planeras. Syftet med boksviten är enligt Harrisson att ändra svenskarnas bild av sin egen historia, att ”slå hål på myten” om att den svenska historien är specifikt svensk och att visa att Sverige och svenskarna ”bara har funnits i 100 år ”. Framtagandet av boksviten har skett i nära samarbete med Historiska museet och TV4, som skall arrangera en flerårig megautställning respektive sända en påkostad tv-serie med böckernas innehåll som grund.

I såväl det senaste numret av tidningen Expo som Sydsvenska Dagbladet har Harrisson deklarerat att den primära drivkraften bakom projektet är att skriva en ny ”svensk” historia som inte kan ”missbrukas av sverigedemokrater och högerextremister”. För Expo deklarerar han också, i all sin blygsamhet, att han, med all sin kunskap, skulle kunna slå hål på alla sverigedemokraternas argument på två minuter.

I ett pressmeddelande från Historiska museet deklarerar Harrisson följande ”Historien bestäms alltid i efterhand och varje generation har sin egen tolkning. Har du makt över det förflutna, kan du definiera nuet och peka ut riktningen för framtiden”.

Denna makt över det förflutna har nu Harrisson och hans gelikar tillskansat sig och man hymlar alltså inte med att man tänker utnyttja den till att försöka krossa den svenska identiteten och självbilden i syfte att befrämja en mångkulturalistisk framtid.

George Orwells futuristiska skräckvision från boken 1984, ter sig alltmer profetisk:

”Om alla andra accepterade den lögn partiet föreskrev, om alla handlingar sade samma sak, då övergick lögnen till historien och blev sanning. "Den som kontrollerar det förflutna, kontrollerar framtiden", löd partiparollen; "den som kontrollerar nutiden, kontrollerar det förflutna."

Will Europe Put its Foot Down? – by Hege Storhaug



“Either Islam will be Europeanized, or Europe will be Islamized.”  In recent years this prediction has been made by many major experts, among them the AmericanBernard Lewis, the Syrian-born German Bassam Tibi, and the French Gilles Kepel.  This is, without question, an uncomfortable and sensitive topic, but it’s one that is very pertinent now that the Swiss have put their foot down and said that they will not accept another minaret within their borders.

In recent decades, Islam has exploded in Europe.  You can see the changes with your own eyes from year to year – whether it’s the increasing presence of hijabs on the street in a city like Oslo, or the bearded men with ankle-high baggy pants, or the new and resplendent mosques that are under construction.  For my part, I’ve noticed an increasing insecurity and unease among “ordinary” people who feel like aliens in their own country.  People ask: what is the purpose of this project?  Don’t we, as a nation, have a right to pass our own cultural legacy, our traditions and values, on to our children and grandchildren?  Should we, in the name of tolerance, give in to the demands made by “others” whose influence is growing, and whose voices are becoming louder, as their numbers increase? Or as a Norwegian Labor Party politician said to me in a private conversation: “On the day that most of the members of the city council are Muslims, what do you think will happen to the right of Oslo bars to serve alcohol?”  Another leading Laborite with over a couple of decades’ experience in politics put it more bluntly when I asked him “What you think about immigration from the Muslim world?”  The answer was so crisp, merciless, and genuinely felt that I gasped: “What have they contributed?”  Period.

Let it be said that of course there are many Muslims in Europe who are getting along just fine and who get the same chills down their spines that other European citizens do when they think of Sharia and the lack of freedom that accompanies classical Islam.  But as a rule those aren’t the Muslims who are the most prominent members of their faith among us; they aren’t the ones who enjoy power in the Muslim community, and they aren’t the ones who are best organized and who have developed exceptionally strong connections to our public officials.

No, it’s not the secularized Muslims who are leading the way – far from it.  Ayaan Hirsi Ali made this clear when I and a colleague of mine from Human Rights Service in Oslo met her at the Dutch Parliament in The Hague in 2005.  As she put it, there most certainly are Muslims in Europe who want a Europeanized Islam – that is to say, a private, personal Islam without political and judicial influence.  But these aren’t the Muslims who are powerfully positioned in Europe’s community organizations, Europe’s corridors of power, and Europe’s universities.

Here is an interesting point: immigrants from Iran tend to be secular, well-integrated, and – very often – well-educated.  Here in Norway, Iranians have generally integrated themselves into our culture, accepting Norwegian values even as they’ve maintained Iranian traditions that don’t conflict with human rights, such as celebrating Iranian New Year.  But Iranians are not the leaders of Europe’s Muslim communities.  Nor can I think of a single mosque in Norway, or anywhere in Europe for that matter, that has been founded by Iranians.

If Iranians, generally speaking, have been an immigration success story, enriching Europe and becoming fully participating members of European society, this isn’t true of the members of many other major immigrant groups, whose origins are in traditional villages in other Muslim countries.  It’s precisely these people’s unwillingness (or inability?) to assimilate to European society – indeed, to appreciate such typically European values as freedom, equality, social participation, and personal responsibility – that may be a major reason why Switzerland said no to more minarets.  At some point, Europe must put its foot down if it truly wishes to continue to be the Europe we know today.  There is a limit as to how many minarets a society can live with, how many hijabs and baggy pants the streets of Europe can tolerate, before the public space becomes as ideologically charged and as palpably unfree as the streets of, say, Pakistan.  We need to stand up and preserve our culture – a successful culture that is itself the only reason why immigrants are streaming from the Muslim world to our continent rather than in the other direction.

Here’s a specific example of how misguided our politicians have been in their handling of the challenge of Islam – an example that I think provides a very clear picture of grotesque weakness.  In 1974, Muslim immigrants from Pakistan established the first mosque in Norway, the Islamic Cultural Centre (ICC).  The name has a comforting, harmless sound: a “cultural center” sounds like something very different from a mosque.  In reality, however, the ICC is a direct subsidiary of an extreme religio-political movement and political party in Pakistan, Jamaat-i-Islami (JI), which was established by one of the leading Islamist ideologues of the last century, Abu Ala Maududi (1903 – 1979). When Pakistan’s worst despot ever, General and President Zia ul-Haq (1977 – 1988), Islamized that country from top to bottom, his main inspiration was Maududi. Today Qazi Hussain Ahmad, who has been a top JI leader for several years and has been banned for security reasons from entering about 25 European countries, as well as Egypt.  He has been under house arrest in Pakistan several times for having instigated violent riots that took human lives. Unsurprisingly, he’s also a fan of Bin Laden. Yet he’s not prohibited from entering Norway, and when he landed at Oslo Airport in August 2004, the arrivals hall was packed with Norwegian-Pakistani men and boys who openly cheered him as a prophet.

The ICC, then, which has a grandiose new mosque with minarets in downtown Oslo, follows an ideology that is a carbon copy of Maududi’s terrifying, violent creed.  It doesn’t just belong to a philosophically dangerous movement; it belongs to a movement which preaches that Muslims should not become fully integrated members of Norwegian society.  This is exactly the same attitude that is preached at every mosque in Europe that has “respect” for itself.  And yet the ICC, like many other mosques that share its theology, was allowed to establish itself in Norway, and in Europe generally, without protest from anybody.  And that’s not all: today it’s one of the largest and most influential so-called faith communities among Norwegian Muslims and has, over the years, received tens of millions of kroner in government support because it is regarded – absurdly – as a purely religious body.

But Europe’s cultural elite is blind to this ugly reality.  On the contrary, that elite, which lives largely off of the dialogue industry – exchanging endless amiable platitudes with Muslim leaders – is all bent out of shape over Switzerland: it views the ban on minarets as an assault on free speech and on freedom of religion; the ban, according to the elite, is an offense against cultural diversity, an expression of intolerance, prejudice, and extremism that will lead to a clash of civilizations.  Not to mention that the ban violates international conventions.

Yet this same elite never gets worked up when Christians are murdered in Pakistan or when their churches and homes are burned down.  Or when women and men are stoned to death in Somalia, or when burka-clad women in Afghanistan are crammed together with goats in the backs of trucks.  Nor do they pay the slightest heed to a woman walking through the streets of Oslo in a burka – a garment that must be described as the clearest possible manifestation of antipathy to Western culture, a powerful statement of complete rejection of the society in which the woman lives.

It is not too much to say, then, that the elite is completely off-balance.  And it’s this lack of balance, this lack of sensible attitudes in the salons of the privileged, this lack of respect for their own culture and for the values on which that culture is founded, that the grass roots are reacting to.  Simply put, ordinary people are sick of being told by their “betters” what to do and think: they want with all their hearts to defend themselves and their own.  Their message is: By all means, come to Europe and become one of us.  But don’t come here to turn our culture and our values upside down. The people have, in short, begun to wake up and to say no to the utopian multicultural dream. For they realize that Norway will no longer be Norway, and the West will no longer be the West, if the country’s essential culture is not preserved; and Christianity is an indissoluble part of that culture.  Whether one is personally religious or not, that’s simply a fact.  If Islam is going to place itself at the heart of our culture, most Norwegians understand that what we now consider Norwegian will be dead and buried.  The only alternative would be a miracle: a revolution within Islam that would place all of Muhammed’s inhumane actions on the ash heap of history and reduce all of his “sacred” legal and political pronouncements to the status of fairy tales like A Thousand and One Nights. Of course, such a revolution would also require an end to all of the violence and hatred preached in the Koran.

For about a millennium, Islam has failed spectacularly to pull off such a revolutionary project.  It’s precisely for this reason that people are pouring out of these failed states (yes, they’re also failed on account of other kinds of ideological despotism, including socialist projects, which when combined with authoritarian, oppressive religion produce something like gunpowder). The big question, however, is this: why should we expect a form of Islam to develop in Europe that is entirely antithetical to the form of Islam found in the Muslim world?

Of course Norway, and Europe as a whole, should not embrace any and every kind of culture or religion that finds its way here.  But where to draw the line?  There is no one answer to this question.  The answer will vary according to the nature of the culture or religion and the strength of the challenge that it represents.  But if we sell out our mainstream culture, and relativize it, accept a watering down of our rights, we may end up with a set of supposedly democratic but in fact empty and meaningless ideals that fail to provide us citizens with a values-related map or compass.  And what can happen in critical situations if the people don’t share a sense of community?  How can we ensure a sense of belonging if, for example, freedom of speech faces a major threat or if we suffer a terrorist attack?  Can we risk having civil war-like conditions, as we is already the case in Europe’s no-go zones?  Democratic order is, above all, a technical and practical matter, and it can thus never replace people’s need for a community, their need to be part of a common culture.

People must, then, have feelings – positive ones – about one another.  Last winter I had a thought-provoking experience on the east side of Oslo on my way home after work.  A thin layer of snow covered the icy streets.  A Somali women dressed in a tent slipped on the ice as I passed her.  Instinctively, I grabbed her and thus managed to prevent what could have been a bad fall, and helped her back to her feet.  I asked if she was okay, but she just hurried on with a completely expressionless look on her face.  Not a single sign of human connection, not a single glance at me.  I stood there feeling empty and alienated.

Awareness of a society’s and a culture’s need for a sense of community seems especially absent from the EU system.  The kind of communal feeling I am talking about contrasts sharply with the multicultural mentality of the pro-EU and antinational forces.  They refuse to understand that a nation’s culture – its folk songs, traditions, holy days, flags, and national anthems – is different from a broad-based constitution based on ideals of equality.  A text, simply put, cannot replace a feeling of community.  A national community with strong survival instincts is founded not on a text but on matters that are close to the heart, on traditions, on things that are palpable, on things as obvious as a common language and a sense of belonging to a fatherland.  And yes, this sense of community also has something to do with the churches and church spires, as well as the church’s rituals and traditions.  The principles that tie people together cannot be legislated by politicians; such bonds call for something more – trust between citizens, national loyalty, a high degree of agreement as to what freedom is and is not, and a broad sense of support for the obligations that a real community demands of its members.

The minarets, then, don’t symbolize community in the European sense – they symbolize the umma, the Muslim community.  They don’t represent loyalty to Norway or Switzerland or any other European country – they represent loyalty to Mecca and to the umma.  They don’t signify freedom, but illiberalism (women’s oppression, the punishment of apostasy with death).  The minarets, in short, embody the antithesis of the Declaration of Human Rights (as is clear to anyone who has read the 1990 Cairo Declaration about so-called “human rights in Islam,” which was formulated by the Organization of the Islamic Conference).  Nor are they, one might add, a part of our architectural tradition or any other Western tradition.  On the contrary, they bear witness to a state of mind that views us, the “others,” as strangers.

The policy of forcing oneself to tolerate something for which one has no sympathy whatsoever will, moreover, only erode the national culture.  Pointing fingers and making moral judgments is not the way to enhance tolerance.

In light of the immigration from the Muslim world, it’s very important for us to be aware of the history of our Western democracy.  It’s not true, after all, that we adopted democracy, with all the magnificent liberal values that accompanied it, and then developed a broad community of the people.  On the contrary, our free society is a historical consequence of a communal society based on trust, a shared culture in which Christianity has naturally played a central role.  Norway would not have managed to come together under our constitution, signed at Eidsvoll in 1814, if the country that produced it had been split along cultural and religious lines.  The people whose representatives met at Eidsvoll were a people who shared essentially the same culture and religion and who could hence agree on the text upon which their nation was to be founded.  The same thing happened when the Puritans settled in New England and built a society that grew into American democracy.  It is actually somewhat odd to think that America owes the liberal democracy enshrined in its founding documents to a group of original settlers whose strong sense of community was based on conservative religion and illiberal traditions.  It is, then, shared cultural norms, and not theoretical or abstract ideals of equality or international conventions, that lead people to stand shoulder to shoulder and to find community together.  A liberal democracy such as that of Norway or Switzerland is not and never has been self-sustaining.

The minaret case, then, can be very critical for Europe’s future.  How many minarets can Europe tolerate before our strong sense of communal connection is dissolved?  What will happen, then, to our democracy’s liberal values and to the social harmony we have enjoyed?  These are questions that most of the political parties in Norway and in a number of other European countries do not wish to address.  As I wrote a few days ago, they absolutely refuse to recognize that Islam is an ideology and a social system, a religion of laws – a religion with a political orientation and with political ambitions.   Yet Islam and Christianity are still treated by Norwegian (and European) officials as identical twins.  This misguided way of thinking may end up costing us heavily.  We must learn from the Swiss as quickly as possible – must learn, that is, to face up to, and respond appropriately to, the political and legal realities of the Islamic congregations in our midst.

This essay originally appeared in Norwegian on the website of Human Rights Service, www.rights.no, and was translated into English by Bruce Bawer.

Mosques as barracks, minarets as bayonets...

Kanchan Gupta Journalist & Writer, Saturday, December 05, 2009

Mosques as barracks, minarets as bayonets...

Turkey’s Islamist Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was being faithful to his creed when he declared, “Mosques are our barracks, minarets our bayonets, domes our helmets, the believers our soldiers.” Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi, a fascist Sunni imam with a huge following among those who subscribe to the Muslim Brotherhood’s antediluvian worldview, was more to the point when he thundered at an event organised by London’s then Labour mayor Ken Livingstone, “The West may have the atom bomb, we have the human bomb.” Sheikh Qaradawi, who is of Egyptian origin, frequently exhorts Muslims not to rest till they have “conquered Christian Rome” and believes “throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler”. Islamic schools in Britain funded by Saudi Arabia use textbooks describing Jews as “apes” and Christians as “pigs”. Theo Van Gogh, who along with writer Ayaan Hirsi Ali produced Submission, a film on the plight of Muslim women under sharia’h, was shot dead by Mohammed Bouyeri, a Dutch-Moroccan Muslim, in Amsterdam. Rallies by radical Islamists, which were once rare, are now a common feature in European capitals with banners and placards denouncing democracy as the ‘problem’ and Islam as the ‘solution’.

Such crude though accurate assertions of Islamism, coupled with the relentless jihad being waged overtly — exemplified by the London Underground bombings and the riots in Parisian suburbs — and covertly as exposed by Channel 4’s stunning investigation in its Dispatches programme titled ‘Undercover Mosque’, have now begun to raise hackles in Europe. The first signs of an incipient backlash came in the form of French President Nicolas Sarkozy demanding a ban on the burqa (the sharia’h-imposed hijab is already banned at public schools in France). Any doubts that may have lingered about Europe’s patience with Islam’s rage boys running thin have been removed by last Sunday’s referendum in Switzerland where people have voted overwhelmingly to ban the construction of minarets which are no longer seen to be representing faith. For 57.5 per cent of Swiss citizens, the minaret, an obligatory adjunct to a mosque which is used by the muezzin to call the faithful to prayers five times a day, is now a “political symbol against integration”. They view each new minaret as marking the transmogrification of Christian Europe into Islamic Eurabia. The Islamic minaret, according to Swiss People’s Party legislator Ulrich Schluer, has come to represent the “effort to establish sharia’h on European soil”. Hence the counter-effort to ban their construction.

Last Sunday’s referendum and the massive vote against Islamic minarets is by no means an unexpected development, as is being pretended by Islamists and those who find it fashionable to defend Islamism or are scared of taking a stand lest they be accused of Islamophobia, which Christopher Caldwell, author ofReflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam, and the West, describes as a “standing fatwa” against Islam’s critics. Resentment against assertive political Islam has been building up in Switzerland for almost a decade, triggered by refugees from Yugoslavia’s many civil wars seeking to irreversibly change the Swiss way of life to suit their twisted notions of Islam’s supremacy. For the past many years the Swiss People’s Party and the Federal Democratic Union, both avowedly right-of-centre organisations, have been trying to initiate an amendment to Article 72 of Switzerland’s Constitution to include the sentence, “The building of minarets is prohibited.” After doing the cantonal rounds, both the parties set up a joint Egerkinger Committee in 2007 to take their campaign to the federal level. The November 29 referendum is the outcome of that campaign.

The resultant vote — 57.5 per cent endorsing the proposed amendment to the Constitution with 42.5 opposing it — provides some interesting insights. For instance, the Swiss Government and Parliament, which are opposed to the amendment, clearly suffer from a disconnect with the Swiss masses. The voting pattern also shows that the spurious ‘cosmopolitan spirit’ of Zurich, Geneva and Basel, where people voted against the ban by a narrow margin, is not shared by most Swiss. The initiative has got 19.5 of the 23 cantonal votes — Basel city Canton, with half-a-vote and the largest Muslim population in Switzerland, barely defeated the initiative with 51.61 per cent people voting against it. This only goes to show that the Left-liberal intelligentsia may dominate television studio debates, as is often seen in our country, but it neither influences public opinion nor persuades those whose perception of the reality is not cluttered by bogus ‘tolerance’ of the intolerant.
Daniel Pipes, who is among the few scholars of Islam not scared to be labelled an ‘Islamophobe’, is of the view that the Swiss vote “represents a turning point for European Islam, one comparable to the Rushdie affair of 1989. That a large majority of Swiss who voted on Sunday explicitly expressed anti-Islamic sentiments potentially legitimates such sentiments across Europe and opens the way for others to follow suit”. As always, Pipes is prescient. An opinion poll conducted by the French Institute for Public Opinion after the Swiss referendum shows 46 per cent of French citizens are in favour of banning the construction of minarets, 40 per cent support the idea, while 14 per cent are indecisive. “That it was the usually quiet, low profile, un-newsworthy, politically boring, neutral Swiss who suddenly roared their fears about Islam only enhances their vote’s impact,” says Pipes. The post-referendum opinion poll in France shows that one in two French citizens would not only like to see minarets banned, but along with them mosques, too.

The ‘sudden roar’ heard in Switzerland has found a resonance in countries apart from France. A comment on the Swiss vote that appeared in the mass circulation German newspaper Bild reflects the popular mood in Germany which is remarkably similar to that which prevails in Switzerland at the moment: “The minaret isn’t just the symbol of a religion but of a totally different culture. Large parts of the Islamic world don’t share our basic European values: The legacy of the Enlightenment, the equality of man and woman, the separation of church and state, a justice system independent of the Bible or the Quran and the refusal to impose one's own beliefs on others with ‘fire and the sword’. Another factor is likely to have influenced the Swiss vote: Nowhere is life made harder for Christians than in Islamic countries. Those who are intolerant themselves cannot expect unlimited tolerance from others.”

Yet, it may be too early to suggest that the tide of Islamism will now have to contend with the fury of a backlash. Governments and organisations that find merit in toeing the line of least resistance have reacted harshly to the Swiss vote; rather than try and understand why more and more people are beginning to loathe, if not hate, Islamism, a case is being made all over again for the need to be tolerant with those whose sole desire is to subjugate the world to Islam. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms Navi Pillay, who is yet to utter a word about the suppression of freedom and denial of dignity in Islamic countries or the shocking violation of human rights by jihadis, has been scathing in her response, describing the Swiss vote as “a discriminatory, deeply divisive and thoroughly unfortunate step”. The Organisation of Islamic Conference has warned that the vote will “serve to spread hatred and intolerance towards Muslims”. The OIC’s complaint would carry credibility if it were to demand tolerance towards non-Muslims in its member-countries, especially Saudi Arabia, and denounce Islam’s preachers of hate. That, however, is unlikely to happen. On the contrary, the OIC will continue to defend, even while accusing others of intolerance and hate, the denial of religious, social and cultural plurality in Islamic countries as also the repudiation of the core values of a modern democracy by those Muslims who find themselves living in one. The absence of ‘multiculturalism’, which Muslims demand in non-Islamic countries, is one of the defining features of any Islamic country, including those touted as being ‘moderate’ and ‘modern’, for example, Egypt and Turkey.

It is amusing that Egypt’s Grand Mufti Ali Gomaa, whose salary and perquisites are paid for by the Government, should feel upset over the Swiss vote: “This proposal ... is not considered just an attack on freedom of beliefs, but also an attempt to insult the feelings of the Muslim community in and outside Switzerland.” In his own country, Coptic Christians live in increasing fear of Muslim attacks with anti-Copt violence fast becoming a regular feature. No less amusing is Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s response to the Swiss rejection of Islamic minarets. Mr Davutoglu finds the proposed ban on the construction of minarets “reminiscent of the sectarian wars of the Middle Ages” and has warned that the move could “incite clashes on a global scale if sufficient measures are not taken”. Had he been honest, Mr Davutoglu would have added that the posters exhorting Swiss citizens to vote for the proposed ban were inspired by his leader’s vivid description of Islamic minarets as Islam’s bayonets.

Hence, those who are crying foul over the Swiss vote and those who are pretending disquiet and anguish are perfectly at ease when Saudi Arabia ruthlessly deals with the faintest expression of faith in any religion other than Islam or Malaysia pulls down Hindu temples. Nor have Ms Pillay and those who blithely cite her criticism of the Swiss referendum to absurdly insist that the vote “represents a fundamental threat to millions of Muslims” ever bothered to protest against the discrimination meted out to Copts in Egypt or the raucous, coarse anti-Semitism of Iran whose President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad misses no opportunity to reiterate his threat of “wiping Israel off the map of the world”. Closer home, Muslims are not known to have disowned those of their co-religionists whose murderous campaign to cleanse Kashmir Valley of all Hindus resulted in 250,000 Pandits fleeing their ancestral land and being reduced to refugees in their own country. Nor were anguished voices heard when Muslims took to the streets to prevent the construction of temporary shelters along the Amarnath Yatra route for Hindu pilgrims, although Muslims in India and abroad would see any move to curtail facilities and subsidies for Haj pilgrims, which are paid for by non-Muslims, as a “fundamental threat” and a manifestation of Islamophobia.

We are yet to be told by Muslims who demand equal rights and more in non-Islamic countries – for instance, public funds for schools in Britain where children are taught Hizb-ut-Tahrir’s hate agenda and madarsas in India which excel in bigotry -- what they have to say about Hindus being asked to pay jizya to Islamist thugs in Pakistan and Afghanistan, or the abduction and rape of Hindu women under the Jamaat-e-Islami’s supervision in Bangladesh. What we have heard, most recently in India, are exhortations for Muslims to stand apart from the national mainstream, to maintain their separate Islamic identity, to banish women from public places and to reject all secular statutes.

Instead of indulging in manufactured rage and pretending imagined victimhood, Muslims across the world would do well to ponder over Bild’s pithy comment: “Those who are intolerant themselves cannot expect unlimited tolerance from others.” As for the limp-wristed Left-liberal intelligentsia, it is welcome to be tolerant of Islamic intolerance, but it should not expect the vast majority to meekly subjugate itself to Islam – if that is Islamophobia, so be it. The time to feign tolerance so as to be seen as ‘secular’ is over. The age of dhimmitude is drawing to a close. That is the real significance of the Swiss vote.
(This is an expanded version of my Sunday column 'Coffee Break' which appears in The Pioneer.)