Friday, March 28, 2008
And so Fitna, Geert Wilders' film, is not as dangerous as expected. I just watched it and felt nothing in particular beyond a certain hopelessness. It links Islamic terrorism directly to verses in the Koran and compares Islamicism with communism and fascism. We defeated those threats to European freedom, now we must defeat this one. Of course, we must - 'we' includes Muslims - but this is a very different kind of campaign in which it is impossible to assess the extent and nature of the threat. And it is, primarily, cultural rather than military. Pursuing internal terrorism through body counts would be absurd and counter-productive; pursuing it through an absolute refusal to compromise our freedoms will, in the long run, work. In that context, Fitna is no help at all. It calls on Muslims to tear offending pages out of the Koran and implies that Islam is intrinsically violent. It thus pushes its viewers towards a blasphemous and potentially murderous absolutism which is the mirror image of Islamism - hence the feeling of hopelessness. I guess we'll carry on killing each other as we usually do. Like I said, completely stupid.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 6:59 am