again Muslim Protests for Pictures

Linked with our Presentation ‘Ayaan Hirsi Ali – Somalia & Netherlands‘.

I have already published this text in a Google-Blog two days ago. As our actual President of the Swiss Confederation was in the Emirates, here again the same text:

” February 6, 2006: I am here in Abu Dhabi and listen to the news telling about protests in Arabian countries. As far as I can get it, there are no protests in the Emirates. For this result I see some reasons:

First the Arabian population is ‘well’ economically. The Sheikhs have a politic which enables people here to live a correct life, without starvation (as far as I can get it). So there is not too much basic anger to be withheld.

Second, the Sheikhs are building a huge, fantastic future ‘ Tourist world’. Obviously in three, five, ten years the Emirates will be the favourite vacation destiny for sun hungry peoples of the north (*). Now, in January, February only hard cooked Germans will take a bath in the sea, but March to May and around October we northern people will come here to stock ‘sun and sea’ in our bodies. So, the Sheikhs do not push people to manifest, they rather are able to let the situation be calm. This said, I do not think that people here may not be angry about the joke cartoons – they are rather religious – but from a silent anger to the burning of an embassy, there are steps between. And it seems, here in the Emirates these steps can be handled.

Third: the internet censure of these pictures. By searching in the internet some articles, I often have the message ‘sorry, this site is not available … ‘. This makes that most people have only heard about the pictures, but not seen them. ”

(*) I know the war fears for this region. Here nobody fears anywhat, life goes in a calm way. Yes, hope for the future here is permitted.

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My second comment: it is absolutely not acceptable that any crowd speaks out death threats against a citizen of another country, here a western country. We have the right to make pictures about Mohammed, even in a position which is not so respectful. Muslims have NOT the right to answer with death threats.

OUR governments have to react in a way showing us that they are willing to protect our citizens. Not only willing, but being able to reach this goal. I do not believe that the governments of these countries make all what is needed to stop their crowds. I believe this helps them that their people no more see their own misery. Here in the Emirates the Sheikhs are able to have a calm situation (I know, it is their interest).

If our citizens do not feel protected, they may take these rights in their own hands. Escalations, more innocent people hurt, more hate and mutual misunderstanding will follow.

Here in the Emirates no crying crowds. I do not taste the censure of internet sites, but it could be that Muslims need some 10, 20 years to get the changes. Changes in this world they never can stop. They cannot ask us to come back to their Middle Age. This is never possible. But we have to let them the time of one generation to ‘get it’. Meanwhile, maybe censure is for them the lesser unacceptable reality.

And this, we western lefties, we have also to get it.

Added later, on February 12: Sorry, this with the censure I wrote above is shit. No, we have not to accept censure, even not for people who are hurt by a publication.

We have to accept that they are hurt and decide if we change our behaviour. But WE decide our behaviour, not others, not any artificially created adversary, as here in a so called ‘war of cultures’.

A second point: we are only one world, more and more. If we accept censure in the Muslim world, we have soon or later also some censure. As the same people live here and there.

Yes, the cultures are different, but not our basic feelings. In our basic feelings we are same. The difference is in the way how we self we react on our own basic feelings. And this is a fact of culture.

And here a link:

Global Voices/Lebanon

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