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Monday, October 09, 2006

Mozart's Greatness, Europe's Smallness? and news from France

Dan Riehl links to a news item about a Schoolgirl Stoned In Playground For Not Observing Ramadan in Lyon, France Wednesday last week. The original item was first posted on France-Echos on information provided from a women's rights group. I haven't found any other reports, and France2 has not reported on it in any of their evening newscasts.

More widely reported is the statement from the police union acknoledging that Radical Muslims in France's housing estates are waging an undeclared "intifada" against the police, with violent clashes injuring an average of 14 officers each day
As the interior ministry said that nearly 2,500 officers had been wounded this year, a police union declared that its members were "in a state of civil war" with Muslims in the most depressed "banlieue" estates which are heavily populated by unemployed youths of north African origin.
Robert Redeker wrote an article that may cost him his life, and that of his family.

There are a lot of people in France who have not abdicated in front of the threat. For example, this article, written by Jacques Henric:
Mozart's Greatness, Europe's Smallness?

"Maidens both fair and young,
Good wine, and plenty,
To these are praises due,
To these alone!"
(Don Giovanni, finale)

"E aperto a tutti quanti
Viva la liberta!

The madmen of Allah, the Islamist crazies cannot stand the hymns to pleasure and to freedom found in Mozart's operas! Their world is one of darkness, one where the queen of Night reigns supreme, one where the Spirit of revenge growls: "An inferno of revenge burns in my heart / Death and despair burn around me". No wonder that Benedict XVI, a great fan of Mozart, puts his theological finger on the hatred and acts of violence that are born in this inferno of revenge. Hatred of Mozart: his Idomeneo opera is the target of islamists in Berlin. Hatred of the pope: he is insulted, a nun is slaughtered in Somalia, churches are burned in Gaza. To words, writings and thoughts, the spirit of revenge answers by explosives and massacres, thus giving credit to the words of the Holy Father on the havoc caused by a deity who much more resembles Milton's Lucifer than the God of love and mercy.

In this matter, the enormity doesn't lay in the miserable fatwas thrown around, some time ago against writers (Salman Rushdie, Taslima Nasreen) and against Danish caricaturists, today against Mozart and a professor of philosophy (Robert Redeker).

What is extremely serious is the pusillanimity, or even cowardice, with which one responds to them. A single threat, by telephone, to the Deutsche Oper of Berlin, and Idomeneo is immediately canceled. A teacher, writer for the journal Les temps modernes, expresses himself with complete freedom about Islam, not in his class, but in a newspaper, Le Figaro. Immediately, death threats from a Muslim fundamentalist group surface; worse now, the Minister of National Education, Gilles de Robien, issues a scared and disgraceful reaction: "By authoring this article, Professor Robert Redeker involved the Ministry of National Education. A State employee must show prudence, moderation and reserve in all circumstances."

What would the same minister have recommended to the teachers who, under the "legal" French regime of Vichy, proved to be not "moderate" and "prudent" by joining the Resistance against the German occupiers? As for the MRAP (Mouvement contre le Racisme et pour l'Amitié entre les Peuples = Movement against Racism and For Friendship between Nations), true to its usual self, it comes very close to find that this "provocateur" Redeker rightly deserved what happened to him.

Abdelwahab Meddeb, a French Muslim, is in the process of publishing Contre-prêches (the reading of which I highly recommend). The publisher Le Seuil had planned to put on the cover a miniature of the book showing Mahomet together with the Virgin Mary (a miniature that has been reproduced again and again in art press). The University of Edinburgh, which owns the original, vetoes the release of the miniature, on the grounds of "fear of hurting Muslims' feelings" (the picture still appears on the inside flap of the book jacket).

Should we despair in light of this cowardice, this appeasement, these multiple abdications of our fundamental freedoms?

Absolutely not: Many politicians, writers, artists, or even religious leaders (including Muslims) are not yielding to the blackmail of the terrorists.

To wit, here is a comment from the German movie director Hans Neuenffels addressed to the people responsible for the cancellation of Idomneo: "It is not those who live in the Islamic faith who frighten me. Who really frightens me? The people in the West who want to make us afraid of the faith of Muslims."

Jacques Henric
© exclusive translation for eXc by Lagrette, used with permission.

Update: A most interesting, in-depth article on France and Its Muslims, to read and ponder.

Related posts: The article that may cost a man his life, and that of his family, and follow-up
More French "youths", and the new French doctors
Silencing dialogue

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