Chas' Compilation

A compilation of information and links regarding assorted subjects: politics, religion, science, computers, health, movies, music... essentially whatever I'm reading about, working on or experiencing in life.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Nasar Khader, moderate Muslim politician, is largely ignored by MSM

Syrian born Nasar Khader, a moderate Muslim and a member of the Danish parliament, displays a tattoo on his upper arm, which says "Democracy" in Arabic.

Naser Khader, MP in the Danish Social-Liberal Party, calls himself "Muslim light" and is insulted by the Cartoon Jihad; his democratic convictions have been insulted, and he demands an apology, but not from the Danish or the cartoonists. From an article called "I Feel Insulted", published in Berlingske Tidende 31. January 2006, Section 2, Magazine, page 15. Here is an excerpt:

...Therefore, as a Muslim and a democrat, I want to stress that: I (and many others) do not feel offended by the drawings. But I do feel deeply insulted that where there was earlier a tradition for religious satire in the Middle East it now seems that a satirical stance on religion has become the privilege of the West. And I am offended that freedom of speech, the press, and artistic expression is predominantly the preserve of the Western world. Why are we not fighting here in Denmark for the right of Muslim artists to enjoy the same privileges as their Western colleagues?

I find it insulting that we in Denmark hear demands for an apology to Saudi Arabia’s fundamentalists instead of demands for democratic freedoms for everyone, Muslims included.

Why don’t we condemn Saudi Arabia’s outrageous failure to implement democratic systems of government? Why does religious insult carry more weight than democratic insult?

Many column inches could be filled debating the wisdom of Jyllands-Posten’s decision to publish the drawings. The same columns could be devoted to discussing whether they amount to more than common provocation. Or whether the government could have acted differently. But it is of course excellent that the foreign minister is now ‘calming frayed tempers by diplomatic means’. Dialogue, yes. Apology, never. What would he apologise for? That we don’t intervene in freedom of the press and freedom of artistic expression? Who should he apologise to? Saudi Arabia?

If anyone should apologise it is Saudi Arabia. Apologise for its open contempt of human rights, its scorn for freedom of religious expression, and its systematic repression of equal rights. For taking away women’s right to vote, for refusing them a passport without the husband’s consent, for crediting their testimony with the validity half that of a man, and for forbidding them something as trivial as driving a car. For the poor and underpaid Philipino Christian guest workers put in jail merely for possessing a personal bible. Apologise for punishment under Sharia. For punishing theft by amputation and alcohol consumption by whipping. For stoning to death for adultery and homosexuality - I could continue...

I find it very interesting that he puts the blame for the cartoon controversy firmly at the feet of Saudi Arabia, home of the radical and intolerant Wahhabi sect, which hates all images of living beings, and other objects it claims will induce Muslims to commit idol-worship. Their fanaticism on this subject is so extensive, that the Saudis are currently engaged in extensive vandalism of ancient Islamic architecture on their own territory; recently they demolished five ancient mosques in Medina, including one built by Fatima, the prophet's daughter. Why is the western MSM allowing THESE extremists to represent the whole of Islam?

In 2002, Mr. Khader made a speech which included the following:

The ten commandments of Democracy

1. We must all separate politics and religion, and we must never place religion above the laws of democracy.
2. We must all respect that all people have equal rights regardless of sex, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious beliefs.
3. No person must ever incite to hatred, and we must never allow hatred to enter our hearts.
4. No person must ever use or encourage violence – no matter how frustrated or wronged we feel, or how just our cause.
5. We must all make use of dialogue - always.
6. We must all show respect for the freedom of expression, also of those with whom we disagree the most.
7. No person can claim for themselves or assign to others a place apart, neither as superior persons, as inferior persons or as eternal victims.
8. We must all treat other people’s national and religious symbols as we wish them to treat ours – flag-burning and graffiti on churches, mosques and synagogues are insults that hinder dialogue and increase the repression of the other party.
9. We must all mind our manners in public. Public space is not a stage on which to vent one’s aggressions or to spread fear and hate, but should be a forum for visions and arguments, where the best must win support.
10. We must all stand up for our opponent if he or she is subjected to spiteful treatment.

That sounds better than excuse making for cartoon rioters, doesn't it? So why don't we hear more from truely moderate Muslims like him? Why is the western media allowing the Wahhabist sect to speak for the whole of Islam? Are the Saudis using their vast wealth to buy influence? They finance many Muslim groups in the U.S., who seem to have the ear of the MSM. We hear very little about moderate Muslims in the U.S. You can find out about them if you hunt for the information. If it wasn't for the internet, would we even hear about them at all?

You can visit the English version of Nasar Khader's website H.T. to the post "Democratic Muslims" at the Danish Mohammed Cartoons blog, for the photo and the link to Khader's website. Please visit there for more information too.


At Tue Feb 28, 08:22:00 AM 2006, Blogger Jay said...

Interesting report. When we hear so much from the President et al about moderates in Islam, I've often wondered where they were. No I have some insight. Thanks.

At Tue Feb 28, 10:21:00 AM 2006, Blogger jgf said...

Great post. I had no knowlege of him.

At Wed Mar 01, 04:19:00 PM 2006, Blogger Gayle said...

"If it wasn't for the internet would we even hear about them at all?"



Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home