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demoleft Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 07:32 AM
Original message
Dutch MP on trial for 'hate speech'
Source: al jazeera

Geert Wilders, a right-wing Dutch MP, has appeared in an Amsterdam court on charges of inciting hatred against Muslims.

The Freedom Party leader is standing trial after a court overruled a decision by the public prosecutor, who had argued Wilders was protected by the right to free speech.

Wilders is being charged over his 2008 film Fitna, which urged Muslims to tear out "hate-filled" passages from the Quran and juxtaposes images of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the US with quotations from the text.

Writing on his website before the trial on Wednesday, the MP said he would "remain combative and still convinced that this political process will only lead to an acquittal".

Read more: http://english.aljazeera.net//news/europe/2010/01/201012094532873241.html
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paulsby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 07:35 AM
Response to Original message
1. thankfully we do not have such orwellian laws
here in the US. in oh so many countries, one can be prosecuted for such things as "inciting hatred", "vilifying religion", etc.

the idea that fitna could lead to criminal charges is absurd.

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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 08:11 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Three quarters of the Jewish population in the Netherlands perished in the Shoah
After WWII, Europeans have concluded that "inciting hatred" is not a harmless activity. They were not alone in this assessment: Julius Streicher was hanged at Nuremberg for his anti-Semitic propaganda
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paulsby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 08:45 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. i;m not saying that inciting hatred is harmless
assuming arguendo that fitna incites hatred.

i am saying that the proper response to inciting hatred is with speech, not prosecution.

nobody is saying that inciting hatred is a "good" although plenty here incite hatred on a daily basis towards political opponents. i, for one, do not hate political opponents. and i don't call them "enemies", i call them opponents.

one can think that inciting hatred is wrong, without thinking that the proper response is prosecution.

that is a cure FAR worse than the "crime" of inciting hatred.

thankfully, we have a constitution that has, and hopefully will continue, to protect speech, even hateful speech
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 09:15 AM
Response to Reply #3
5. I feel confident the Dutch can sort out this case themselves, without grandstanding
from a peanut gallery across the pond
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paulsby Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 11:54 AM
Response to Reply #5
8. i am confident that
the dutch and other non-americans feel free (and should) to criticize us for aspects of our criminal justice system, policies, etc. and we should feel the same way.

it's not grandstanding to criticize them, especially as an EU country, for disrespecting freedom of expression.

that's a solid value for me.

i don't buy into the "only the dutch can criticize the dutch" thang.

i mean, what fun is THAT:?
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RZM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 08:55 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Remember though
That some European hate speech laws (including the criminalization of holocaust denial, which British ass-hat David Irving was busted for a few years ago in Austria) were put on the books also as a means of indirectly cracking down on far-right parties, some of which openly venerate fascist movements and symbols from the first half of the last century. There are political subtexts to some of these laws that go beyond objective concerns about hate speech.
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DeSwiss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 09:24 AM
Response to Original message
6. I've watched Fitna.
Geert Wilders should not be on trial for telling the truth. He is being held responsible for showing the images of religious conflict. The term that we refuse to accept and call it a "War On Terror" instead. And just as governments don't want us to see our children and relatives killed in our wars, the Dutch are afraid of showing a facet of Islam that they'd prefer not to think exists. So Fitna is hard to look at for these reasons. It shows us dead bodies and it shows us who made them.

In the end, it is merely the same genocidal language which can be easily found in the Bible. And the Torah. Its the one consistency between all the Abrahamics. Death for their god's sake and to the unbelievers. So no one's got a right to point fingers at anyone else here. It's just religion once again being itself -- barbaric and Bronze Aged. I don't know how people expect for peace to come from the passages of such barbaric blood-thirsty tomes as these. Particularly since we're little better today than they were. We've just gotten much more efficient at killing now that we've graduated to push-button death. So we don't have to look if we don't want too, even if someone like Geert Wilders shoves it in everyone's face.

- http://www.break.com/usercontent/2008/4/Fitna-New-English-Version-485249.html">But judge for yourselves (NSFW), it took only about 17 minutes to tell the truth......

K&R
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 11:03 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. I too have watched it...he should not be prosecuted
Edited on Wed Jan-20-10 11:03 AM by ProgressiveProfessor
I do find it interesting the a court overruled the prosecutor who decided it was allowable.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 06:35 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. Evaluation of Geertz Wilders Propaganda Piece, Fitna
... I feel violated having watched it ... a blatant act of fear mongering and hyperbolic propaganda ... http://www.jdavidramsey.com/2008/04/02/evaluation-of-geertz-wilders-propaganda-piece-fitna/

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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. It's informative that your ideological hostility, towards major religions, leads you
to sympathize with this rightwing European xenophobe: the fact, however, that you can patch his anti-Islamic rants into your own simplistic worldview, does not really qualify as evidence that Wilders is "on trial for telling the truth." He is on trial because a court decided his remarks might violate the criminal law against incitement to hatred
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 07:13 PM
Response to Reply #6
13. I agree, Wilders should not be on trial.
Freedom of speech should be protected no matter how much it's abused by that nazi bigot Wilders and his nazi bigot fanboys.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jan-21-10 07:01 AM
Response to Reply #6
15. Fitna is only part of the charges
The charges relate to comments Wilders made in a variety of media between 2006 and 2008. They include an October 2006 interview with the Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant in which he said he wanted to stop the "tsunami of Islamisation," and another in September 2007 with Radio Netherlands in which he said the Quran should be banned.

Wilders' film "Fitna," which he released online in March 2008 to international outcry, is also part of the charges against him. The film features disturbing images of terrorist acts superimposed over verses from the Quran in order to paint Islam as a threat to Western society.

http://edition.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/europe/01/20/netherlands.geert.wilders/


Wilders faces five charges of religious insult and anti-Muslim incitement after a court last week dismissed his final challenge against the pending prosecution.

He stands accused of insulting Muslims by describing Islam as a fascist religion and calling for the banning of the Koran.

He is also charged with inciting hatred and discrimination for stating that Moroccan youths were violent, calling for Dutch borders to be closed to all "non-western immigrants", and advocating an end to what he terms "the Islamic invasion."

Wilders faces up to one year in jail if convicted.

His 17-minute film, Fitna, was called "offensively anti-Islamic" by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon after its screening in the Netherlands in 2008 prompted protests in much of the Muslim world.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5jhkMTvdPJfrrUnap06ZvxZNz0Blg


Wilders has been charged for more than 100 public statements, including remarks comparing the Koran to Hitler's "Mein Kampf" and calling for it to be banned in the Netherlands.

He also produced the short film "Fitna," which offended Muslims around the world by juxtaposing Koranic verses with images of terrorism by Islamic radicals.

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5ilZTJXgt0oGxCRNr9v-3sQ2_tVSg


Ironic that he's calling for the banning of the Koran, and defending what he says as free speech.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 06:52 PM
Response to Original message
11. An-Ox Session: Hate Speech in the Netherlands
... judges .. in the Netherlands.. do not have the power to decide whether a provision concerning the media is constitutional or not. The notion in the Netherlands is that the Parliament is best equipped to make these kinds of decisions. Judges are able to get past this hurdle, however, via Article 10 of the Human Rights Convention of the COE. In most member states (including the Netherlands), the Convention applies directly, and judges are obligated to apply the provision of Article 10 where applicable ... In the Netherlands a person may be punished for .. incitement to hatred ... Wilders has made many statements about keeping Muslims out of the Netherlands and forbidding the Koran, even going so far as to compare it to Mein Kampf. The Dutch prosecutor assigned to dealing with complaints against Wilders initially opted not to prosecute him, explaining that it would do more harm than good, effectively drawing attention to Wilders political agenda. The appellate court later ordered the prosecutor to file charges, stating the need for adherence to rule of law in the Netherlands and discouraging the kind of political decisionmaking that had been done by the prosecutor ...

http://www.globalmedialaw.com/blog/?p=690
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 07:08 PM
Response to Original message
12. Cartoon tensions in the Netherlands (PRI | September 09)
... In the Netherlands prosecutors are planning to charge an Arab group under the countrys hate crime law and it follows the online publication of a cartoon deemed offensive to Jews ... he cartoon on the Arab European Leagues website depicts two Jewish men counting bones. One says, I dont think these are human. The other responds, But weve got to get to six million somehow ... Ronny Naftaniel .. with the Amsterdam-based Center for Information and Documentation .. took his cartoon grievance to Dutch prosecutors and they agreed that its offensive ... In August, even as prosecutors were preparing charges against the Arab European League, it dropped similar charges against controversial Dutch politician Geert Wilders. Last year Wilders made a documentary criticizing Islam. In it he included a cartoon first published in Denmark in 2006. It shows the Muslim Prophet Muhammed with a time-bomb in his turban ... http://www.theworld.org/2009/09/04/cartoon-tensions-in-the-netherlands-300/
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-20-10 07:28 PM
Response to Original message
14. Wetboek van Strafrecht 137c & 137d
Article 137c
1. Who publicly, orally or in writing or by image, intentionally insults a group of people because of their race, their religion or belief or their hetero- or homosexual orientation, is punished with imprisonment not exceeding one years or a fine of third category ...

Article 137d
1. Who publicly, orally or in writing or by image, incites hatred or discrimination against person(s) or a violent act against a person or property of people because of their race, their religion or beliefs, their gender or heterosexual or homosexual orientation, is punished with imprisonment not exceeding one years or fine of the third category ...

See: http://www.wetboek-online.nl/wet/index.html
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