Netherlands: Capitulating to extremists

The following is a general translation of an opinion article written by Leon De Winter, a Jewish Dutch author:

Why was Naima El Bezaz so seriously threatened that she decided to back out of a television program and to have time for 'media silence'?

The answer: because she is a young woman of Islamic extraction who demands the right to live just like all other Dutch women (and therefore also has the right to write about whatever she wants, in the way she wants).

There are male (and female) Muslims who can't accept that. We see by El Bezaz what we had gone through earlier with Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Especially the fact that the heretics and trouble makers are women strengthens the hate by the extremists.

Part of the extremist way of life is the strict treatment of the woman. Islam started in a tribal environment of desert tribes, and there the relations revolved around the "honor" phenomenon. The women served to marry inside the tribe and her ability to have children strengthened the power and connection of the tribe.

The question of who was the father of the kid was of essential interest because in a tribal society everything revolves around blood connections. And not without reason. With the solidarity of the next of kin, individuals can't survive in the desert.

Till today there are Muslim societies where this tribal thinking is of decisive importance. Half the marriages in Iraq are between a man and the daughter of his father's brother, and thus between cousins. both remain in the tribe. Both only know the loyalty of their own family.

In Muslim tradition this loyalty spun out to loyalty to the Muslim believers in general. whoever renounces it, asks for death. A Christian or Jew who converts to Islam is interviewed on TV - but a Muslim who becomes Christian or Jewish, or atheist, gravely run the risk to be threatened with death.

I have no idea is Naima El Bezaz still calls herself a Muslim - it doesn't matter. What does matter is that she has a right to the freedoms that our land offers every citizen, without being trouble by others.

She deserves therefore support, and protection. Under no condition may she back out for these reasons. She was invited to a TV program, and she must appear there, unless she's sick or called off for other reasons.

but to cancel because she's being threatened is capitulating to the extremists. She must complain by the police and not hide. But that is only possible if the government protects her.

It is completely unacceptable that in 2007 the a novel writer have an intolerable existence because of her work and way of life.

Source: Elsevier (Dutch)

See also: Netherlands: Tolerating Muslims excesses, Netherlands: Author threatened again

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