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A reminder of who we are fighting
If a European newspaper published a cartoon or a series of cartoons mocking Jesus Christ, would we see Christian gunmen storm a European Union office, demanding "a clear and public apology for the wrongful crime"? Considering that American taxpayers have subsidized things like a photograph of a cross immersed in a jar of urine or a paining of Jesus Christ's mother Mary smeared with feces, I do not think we would see that happen. In fact, American Christians get accused of being "facists" for simply wanting to deny taxpayer subsidies to such filth.
The controversy over a series of cartoons published by a newspaper in Denmark mocking the Muslim "prophet" Muhammad is a very different story. Muslims have displayed intense anger over these cartoons and there is a very real concern that Denmark will be the target of further terrorist acts by Muslim radicals.
The reaction of Muslim radicals to the cartoons is a window into the worldview we are fighting in this War on Terror. While some Leftists scoff at the idea that Muslim terrorists hate freedom, the explosion of anger over the cartoons and the threats of violence in response to the cartoons illustrate a radicalism that despises freedom of speech.
Islamists would stamp out freedom of speech, along with basic rights for women, "offensive" music, movies and other entertainment media, and deny the right to worship any other religion but Islam. In short, they would create a theocracy and want to topple Western governments in order to implement that theocracy.
I find it highly unfortunate that the U.S. government "condemned caricatures in European newspapers of the Prophet Mohammad, siding with Muslims who are outraged that the publications put press freedom over respect for religion." It would have been far better to say that the U.S. urges respect for all religions, but that violence in response to free speech is unacceptable and far worse than any "offensive" cartoon published in a newspaper.
Michelle Malkin correctly described Islamist thugs who seek to use violence and threats of violence to shut down "offensive" speech as bullies. When bullies get what they want, it encourages them to continue unacceptable behavior. Denmark, the European Union, and the United States cannot back down and give in to demands for censorship from Islamists. If the Islamists get what they want, it will encourage more, not less, terrorism.
Appeasement does not work! The world should have learned this lesson when Nazi Germany was not satisfied with the Sudetenland. Appeasement strengthened Nazi imperialistic ambitions rather than satisfying those ambitions. We cannot forget that lesson in the War on terror, or the most recent lesson of disgraced ex-President Clinton's failed policy in Somalia.Here are several articles on the controversy:
♣ Cartoon Rage vs. Freedom of Speech: Frontpagemag.com
♣ Muslims in new cartoon protests: BBC
♣ Militants Surround EU Offices in Gaza Over 'Offensive' Cartoons: Foxnews.com
♣ Muhammad Cartoon Ignites Muslim Outcry: CBSNews.com
♣ Fight the bullies of Islam: townhall.com
♣ Gunmen shut EU Gaza office over cartoons: CNN.com
♣ Protests Over Muhammad Drawings Intensify: news.yahoo.com
♣ Row over cartoons boils as Europe leaders urge calm: news.yahoo.com
♣ Norwegian Muslims want blasphemy law: aftenposten.no
♣ Tens of Thousands Protest Cartoon in Gaza: nytimes.com
♣ Muslims Against the Cartoon Jihad: frontpagemag.com
♣ Protecting Mohammed: nationalreview.com
♣ Muslim anger on cartoons spreads: cnn.com