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Jewish Myopia at Muslim Organized Solidarity Event in Oslo

Fjordman” – the nom de guerre of ex-pat Norwegian counter jihadist, Peder Jensen, sent us a report by NRK about the Saturday night rally, February 21, 2015, organized by a 17 year old Norwegian Muslim girl, Hajrah Arshad.   1,300 people formed a Ring of Peace around the Oslo synagogue organized by Miss Arshad.  Miss Arshad said:

Most of us Muslims stand up for Jews’ rights. I hope that other communities do like us and fight against radicalization. It is unfair to be set up against the wall for everything a Muslim terrorist does. We are not here today to say we are sorry on behalf of the Muslims that attacked people in Copenhagen. What we do here is to show everyone we stand with you. We feel the same fears as you, and we will bear the brunt together with you.

 Rabbi Michael Melchior of the Oslo Synagogue was reported by NRK to have “told the masses outside his synagogue about his trip to the funeral of the man killed outside the synagogue in Copenhagen last weekend.”

Afterwards, I sat with the grieving parents. I told them about the initiative of young Muslims here in Oslo, and the father of Dan Uzan embraced me and began to cry.

He said to me “You must say to the young Muslims in Norway that they have given me hope. They have given me a reason to continue living. Maybe it was a meaning to my son’s death. Maybe it gives reason to life for the future.”

This message goes to the entire world, it is not just here in Norway, it is a universal message.

 Ervin Kohn, a leader at the Oslo synagogue, spoke about this significant outpouring of support by Norwegian Muslims:

We must work against fear. It is much easier to work against fear when we are together. It is very nice that we are so many here today

Why has this “Peace Ring” gained so much attention? Because it is unique. I think we once again can say “Look to Norway” after what has happened here tonight. This event fills me with hope. Youngsters take back the power to define what a Muslim is. They will not let the extremists polarize society. We will continue this fight together.

There were strong appeals and rabbi shouted “Allahu akbar” – God is great – under his appeal.

 It was great to see. Muslims and Jews have the same ancestor. We have the same God. It is more that gathers us than separates us.

Fjordman noted in his email exchange:

Kohn is also  deputy director of the state-sponsored Norwegian Center against Racism, which has made combating Islamophobia a major priority.

Watch this You Tube interview with Korn.

Rabbi Melchior and Kohn exhibited myopia by their remarks. As we will see they are not alone among our co-religionists.

They didn’t heed the warnings by ancient Jewish Sage, Moses Maimonides, the Rambam, in his Epistle to the Jews of Yemen in 1172 C.E. about Islam and the Prophet Mohammed:

“After him [the biblical Esau] arose the Madman [ha-meshugga the Prophet Mohammed] who emulated his precursor since he paved the way for him. But he added the further objective of procuring rule and submission, and he invented his well known religion.”

“Remember, my co-religionists, that on account of the vast number of our sins, G-d has hurled us in the midst of this people, the Arabs, who have persecuted us severely, and passed baneful and discriminatory legislation against us […] Never did a nation molest, degrade, debase and hate us as much as they. Therefore when David, of blessed memory, inspired by the holy spirit, envisaged the future tribulations of Israel, he bewailed and lamented their lot only in the Kingdom of Ishmael, and prayed in their behalf, for their deliverance, as is implied in the verse, “Woe is me that I sojourn with Meschech that I dwell beside the tents of Kedar.” (Psalms 120:5).

In October 2010 we sent an open letter published in The Iconoclast about a previous act of Jewish myopia by Chancellor Arnold Eisen of the Jewish Theological Seminary in Manhattan concerning the institution’s sponsorship of interfaith programs with Muslim Brotherhood front group, Islamic Society of North America. We noted the Rambam’s letter and his flight from Muslim Spain, Al Andaluz:

Maimonides fled his native Cordoba during the era of the fanatic Berber Almohads who stormed across the Straits of Gibraltar to take over Al Andaluz in Muslim occupied Spain. The Almohads perpetrated some of the more heinous pogroms of Spanish Jewry.

Rabbi Melchior  was among  the hundreds of  Danes, including Prime Minister Prime Minister Helle Thorning Schmidt who  attended  the funeral to render  comfort to  the bereaved family of  37-year old  Dan Uzan, the Danish Jewish Economist and voluntary security guard at the Great Synagogue. He was killed by Danish Muslim terrorist, Omar Abdel Hamid el-Hussein.  El-Hussein ,prior to his murder of Uzan at the Great Synagogue , had  fired 40 rounds of  automatic fire into a Free Speech event at the Krudttønden Café with Swedish Artist Lars Vilks  and others present. He killed documentarian and filmmaker, 55 year old Finn Norgaard.

El-Hussein, the Danish-born son of Palestinian émigrés, was alleged to be a gang member, convicted of a stabbing, and spent time in a Copenhagen lockup, where it was alleged he was radicalized.  Danish security police had listed him as a dangerous risk, but apparently somehow he slipped through the cracks.  With the aid of like-minded Muslims who procured the weapons for el- Hussein he carried out his personal Jihad against Christian and Jewish infidels, last Sunday.

El-Hussein’s attitude is not uncommon in liberal Denmark given the evidence of rejectionist attitudes among young Danish Muslim criminals uncovered in the clinical work of Danish psychologist, Nicolai Sennels.  We should not forget the eruption a decade ago in 2005 of global attacks throughout the Muslim Ummah. They were caused by a political cartoon of Mohammed in a bomb-like Turban drawn by Kurt Westergaard for Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten.  Most mainstream media and at least one academic press at Yale University were loath to reproduce Westergaard’s and the other 11 cartoons published by the Jyllands Posten.  Westergaard wasattacked in his home by a Somali émigré Muslim jihadist wielding an axe intent on doing bodily harm.  Swedish artist Vilks, who drew sketches of Mohammed as a roundabout dog, was at the Kruttodonden free speech forum emerging unhurt. His home in Sweden was firebombed by émigré Muslim Jihadis.

One of the Danish Imams Ahmed Akkari who triggered the conflagrations and murders in the wake of the Danish Mohammed cartoons incident, was revealed by Lars Hedegaard in August 2013 as having rejected Islam during an introspective sojourn in Greenland.  Akkari told a press conference that virtually all Mosques   in Denmark were headed by  extremists. Hedegaard, Danish and International Free Press Society co-founder,  was a victim of a Jihadi attempt on his life in February 2013 by a Danish Lebanese Muslim émigré who fired a shot at him masquerading as a Danish postal worker delivering a package to his home. Hedegaard’s attacker subsequently fled to Turkey where his extradition request in 2014  was refused and subsequently  he  disappeared into Syria to presumably join up with ISIS.

Apparently the several hundred Muslim who participated in the interfaith Ring of Peace at the Oslo synagogue didn’t get the message preached by a Copenhagen Imam  on the eve of last weekend’s  deadly attacks. The Algemeiner reported a translated MEMRI video of Hajj Saeed, the Imam of the Al-Faruq Mosque in the city,  on Friday February 13th rejecting  interfaith dialogue with Jews.  Imam Saeed is shown in the MEMRI video  preaching against the backdrop of a black flag of international Muslim extremist group Hizb ut- Tahrir  saying:

Interfaith dialogue is  a “malignant idea,” and claimed that, “the people responsible for interfaith dialogue want to make all religions equal. [By doing so] they want to equate Truth with Falsehood. Between heresy and deception, between the religion of the Prophet Muhammad and man-made laws, legislated by these criminals in order to rule the world.”

Regarding Jews specifically, Saeed said that the Prophet Mohammad had Jewish neighbors in Medina, but instead of trying to call for reconciliation with them, “in the manner of…those who call to reconcile Truth with Falsehood,” he called them to accept Islam. And when they rejected his call to Islam, “he waged war against the Jews.”

Whether in Oslo,  Copenhagen or in Washington, interfaith  peace gatherings involving Muslims, Jews, Christians and others, should draw attention to  murders  of  Jews, mass beheadings of  Christians in Libya, burning of fellow Muslims in Syria and Iraq.  Jews in Oslo who shout Allahu Akbar at such gatherings may be myopically hoping they share the same G-d.  Maimonides  told them early a  millennium ago that Allah is not their G-D.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image was taken on Feb. 21, 2015 of more than 1,000 people forming a “ring of peace” around the Norwegian capital’s synagogue, an initiative taken by young Muslims in Norway after a series of attacks against Jews in Europe, in Oslo. (AP)

Lars Vilks Free Speech Event Turns Deadly in Copenhagen

Vilks Self Portrait

Lars Vilks self-Portrait.

Today’s deadly assault by a masked gunman who sprayed more than 200 rounds of automatic fire into a Café in Northern Copenhagen. The exchange of gunfire by  the gunmen with Danish security police  took the life of one 40-year old man at the Free Speech, Blasphemy and Islam  event  where both Swedish Artist Lars Vilks the honoree and the French Ambassador were present. They were unhurt in the attack. Three security police were injured in the shootout at the Krudttønden Café.

Listen to this BBC recording of a speaker at the Krudttønden Café when gunfire sent everyone to the floor. According to a later reports from AFP, Reuters and BBC:

A  second, perhaps related, incident, close to Copenhagen’s main synagogue in the city center, saw a 55-year old  Jewish man shot in the head, who subsequently died of  wounds,  and two policemen were  injured, police said in a statement early Sunday.  The BBC reported  “early on Sunday, police said they had shot dead a man  who opened fire on them near a railway station in the neighborhood of Noerrebro where they had been keeping an address under observation.”

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt described the assault as “a terrorist attack”, while the United States branded it “deplorable”.

French ambassador to Denmark Francois Zimeray, who had been present at the debate but was not hurt, told AFP the shooting was an attempt to replicate the January 7 attack on the Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris which killed 12 people.

“They shot from the outside (and) had the same intention as Charlie Hebdo, only they didn’t manage to get in,” he said by telephone from the venue.

We interviewed  Vilks when he appeared at Rabbi Jonathan Hausman’s Massachusetts synagogue in 2010 during a tour of the US under the auspices of the International Free Press society.  He discussed several attacks on him, including   a firebombing attack by jihadis at his home in Sweden. This followed the publication in 2007 of his Mohammed as a roundabout dog sketches and assault against him at an Uppsala University lecture.   We noted his raison d’être for the Mohammed cartoon:

Vilks created the Mohammed sketch for an exhibition in Sweden entitled “Dog in the Roundabout.” He explained that Sweden’s road/highway system is dotted with roundabouts (rotaries). Often, parks are created in such rotaries or there is simply open area in which people take their dogs for walks. In 2006, there was a national competition to create dogs in roundabouts. With his artist’s eye, Vilks drew dogs in the roundabout. He then began to play with different forms of dogs…solid form, blurry form, different sizes, dogs in different settings, interchanging the body of a dog with the head of a man, Mohammed. Vilks has stated that this series of drawings stirred the ire of the Muslim world. The catalyst for his sketches was the growing violence and changes in Swedish cities caused by Muslim immigrants who displayed unbridled anti-Semitism and anti-Western animus.

Vilks_cartoon

Vilks cartoon Mohammed as roundabout dog.

See a separate interview with Vilks in our collection, The West Speaks. Today’s fatal attack at the Krudttønden Café unfortunately reminds us that blasphemy under Sharia can result in death.

Update from Nidra Poller in Paris:

Now the Danish police are saying there was just one gunman. They have published CCTV photos of him. They describe him as “North African origin.” The event was a tribute to Charlie Hebdo. Debate  is  lively in France and we’re not hearing the “nothing to do with Islam” melody. Europeans are aware that all our liberties are under attack. It’s not just a question of blasphemy. That’s just the beginning. 

The Local in Denmark has updates:

Update, 6.18pm: 

The civilian killed in Saturday’s shooting attack was a 40-year-old Danish citizen, police have said. Police added that they have founded the suspected getaway vehicle but two suspects are still at large.

Update, 6.08 p.m.: Reports of up to 200 shots fired:

The French Ambassdor to Denmark told AFP from inside the venue that shots rang out in the midst of a debate on Islam and free speech in Copenhagen.

“They fired on us from the outside. It was the same intention as [the January 7 attack on] Charlie Hebdo except they didn’t manage to get in,” Francois Zimeray said by telephone.

Swedish artist Lars Vilks, the author of controversial Prophet Mohammed cartoons published in 2007 that sparked worldwide protests was also at the debate.

Three police officers were reported wounded outside the building, Danish media reported, quoting eyewitnesses.

Zimeray said earlier on Twitter that he was not harmed.

“Intuitively I would say there were at least 50 gunshots, and the police here are saying 200,” he told AFP.

“Bullets went through the doors and everyone threw themselves to the floor. We managed to flee the room, and now we’re staying inside because it’s still dangerous. The attackers haven’t been caught and they could very well still be in the neighborhood.”

A Femen activist, Inna Shevshenko, said on Twitter that there were several dozen people in the room.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius condemned the attack, saying in a statement that France “remains by the side of the Danish authorities and people in the fight against terrorism.”

Vilks has been under police protection since his 2007 cartoons were published.

The French president’s office said Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve was headed to the scene.

Update, 5.57 p.m.:

Police have confirmed that one civilian has died and three police officers are wounded. Police continue to hunting for two suspected gunmen in a dark Volkswagen Polo. The suspects were said to be wearing all black and speaking Danish.

Vilks himself was unhurt in the attack.

Police say they believe Vilks, known for his depictions of the Prophet Muhammad, was the target of the attack. He was attending a debate on the theme of ‘Art, blasphemy and freedom of speech’ at the Krudttønden cultural centre in the Østerbro area of the Danish capital. The attack took place after a speech by the French Ambassador to Denmark.

Delegate Dennis Meyhoff Brink, a satire researcher, told Jyllands Posten that he heard 30 shots over a two minute period. Danish security police then ordered everyone to remain inside. According to reports, the focus of the attack was on the entrance to the building, and the gunman did not enter the main hall.

“[Security police] came running through the room brandishing guns, and they took Lars Vilks out a back door.”

According to Brink, the shots were fired just as the French Ambassador, François Zimeray, had finished speaking. Zimeray immediately took to Twitter to confirm that he was still alive:

Copenhagen police confirmed to the Berlingske newspaper that three officers were wounded in the shooting and that two suspected gunmen were at large. The suspects wore black and spoke Danish.

The meeting was held under tight security, with delegates subject to searches as they entered the building.

The newspaper Ekstra Bladet writes that the police are treating the attack as an act of terrorism.

Helle Merete Blix, one of the organizers of the meeting, told Danish channel TV2 News that the meeting continued following the drama:

“We couldn’t get away, so the debate meeting carried on,” she said.

More soon

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EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of Danish Police Searching for Gunman after Attack on Free Speech event at Krudttønden Café 2-14-15. Source Martin Vesty/Scanpix.