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Defending Free Speech in an Islamic Europe

“Keep the Faith. Don’t be intimidated. You might as well be killed standing than crawling on your knees.” – Lars Hedegaard

LISTEN to this interview with Lars Hedegaard Founder of the Danish and International Free Press Societies that aired on the Lisa Benson show, Sunday, March 13, 2016:

Hedegaard discusses his struggle and survival fighting a Palestinian émigré shooter disguised as a Danish postman in an attempted assassination in February 2013 by who fled Denmark. Today he lives under 24/7 protection of the Danish security police in what he calls “a near Fort Knox-like complex.” He addresses Denmark’s inundation in the current massive wave of Muslim immigration, desperate assertion of border control and repression of free speech concerning the Islamization of Europe.  See our original interview with Hedegaard published in the New English Review Press collection, The West Speaks. 

Hedegaard was forthright, honest about his experience in the face of the attempt on his life in February 2013 by a Palestinian émigré, a well educated engineer who had become radicalized.  The perpetrator, “BH”, as Lars discussed on the program fled Denmark only to be arrested in Turkey in April 2014, later traded to release Turkish diplomats in Mosul, Iraq in October, despite Danish extradition requests. “BH” could have ended up in Syria with the Islamic State, as did a colleague who Hedegaard said had been killed by the Americans recently. Almost Kafkaesque  was Hedegaard’s discussions of the fines levied recently on him and others in the Danish Free Press Society publishing group, other Danish  media and Pegida.dk for revealing “BH’s” true identity.

His discussion of the political and social environment in neighboring Sweden, that we heard from Kent Ekeroth, Sweden Democrat and Riksdag parliament deputy in our interviews with him, is appalling. Hedegaard spoke of Geert Wilders being denied speaking in Sweden by hordes of protesters, persecuted Jews of Malmo fleeing Sweden for safety and the rapine misogyny of Muslim migrant males inflicted on unwary Swedish girls and women.  In Sweden, today, “it is nearly impossible to hold an open meeting.”

Hedegaard gave to truth to power about the ineptness of the current center right ruling coalition government in Denmark.  He suggests that the public outrage in his country presages a move to the right politically in the hopes that might stanch Islamic immigration and bolstering free speech from intimidation by the EU and sharia Islamic blasphemy.

While Denmark’s Jews may not be as threatened as our Sweden’s; nevertheless, Hedegaard cited the recent occurrence of a 16 year girl Islamic convert from Kundby, Denmark and her 24 year old boyfriend, an ISIS returning fighter ‘mentor’, caught attempting to bomb a Jewish Day school in Copenhagen. More of that, as Hedegaard opined, might spur sending Denmark’s 6,400 Jews to Israel, Canada or the US which as he pointed the Jewish community made many contributions to the Scandinavian country.

Hedegaard readily admitted that he is not a man of the right by virtue of his former Marxist political background that he now rejects. Nevertheless, he believes that background has enabled him to analyze the dangers of Islamization to his country, Europe and the West.  His response to a final question about what message he wanted to send to the Lisa Benson Show program listeners, “Keep the Faith. Don’t be intimidated. You might as well be killed standing than crawling on your knees.”  Brought a rejoinder from host Benson about a General saying, “keep up the fire.” That reminded this writer of how Danish editorial cartoonist, Kurt Westergaard, responded to a similar question in a 2009 interview , “free speech, use it!!”

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.

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)

Sweden’s Jews Threatened by Muslim Antisemitism

Earlier today, I exchanged an email with a French Jewish resident here in  Florida seeking assistance to gain permanent resident status in the US, given his retirement  here. Under US immigration law he and his wife can only remain in the US for a maximum of 180 days annually and must return to France to obtain fresh tourist visas.  He is an accomplished professional and like many of France’s 600,000 Jews disturbed about the threats coreligionists face from Muslim second and third generation émigrés. He and his family came as émigrés from North Africa to escape Islamic hatred only to be threatened again in his home community in France. Both our colleague Nidra Poller and French commentator, Michel Gurfinkiel have written  graphically about  the predicament of French Jews  threatened by  Islamic and other forms of Antisemitism. That was crystallized by three French and one Tunisian Jew killed on January 9, 2015 in the Antisemitic attack by Jihadist Amedy Coulibaly at the Hyper Cacher Kosher supermarket in Paris.

There are continuing assaults against Jews daily in major cities throughout France. The dilemma faced by French is reflected in the increasing numbers making aliyah to Israel and  others who have opted to seek sanctuary here in the U.S. many of whom have taken  up residency in Florida. There are a number of French Jewish synagogues that have sprouted in Florida to take care of the spiritual and community needs of francophone brethren. The necessity of applying for formal resident status in the U.S. was reflected at the conclusion of an email exchange,  “I was aware many years ago about the coming change in France and the blindness of French politicians.”

That blindness also  faces Jews in Malmo, Sweden denied their rights of free expression ,opposing politicians in Sweden’s third largest  city who tolerate virulent Islamic Antisemitism  from  the large émigré community.  That is the subject of a Gatestone Institute article by Ingrid Carlqvist and Lars Hedegaard, the co-editors of Dispatch InternationalSweden Imports Jew-hatred. The authors wrote:

If anyone had thought that the slaughter of four Jews in a Paris supermarket — for the reason that they were Jews — would have caused the Swedish mainstream press and the government to explain who is behind Europe’s growing anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish violence, he would be sadly mistaken. With the exception of one television program, the connection between anti-Semitism, Islam and Muslim mass immigration remains a mental no-go area in Sweden.

[…]

Swedes now tend to view all immigrants as victims of totalitarianism and refuse to acknowledge that not all immigrants think like Swedes. They cannot comprehend that people would flee unless they were hated and threatened.

Swedes have a minimal knowledge of the Jew-hatred that is part and parcel of Islam, and the authorities and politicians refuse to acknowledge that Jews are now fleeing the southern city of Malmö due to its steadily growing Muslim population. Quite simply, most Swedes have never realized that one minority group may expose another minority group to violence and intimidation.

There are other reasons Malmö’s politicians turn a blind eye to Jew-hatred. Malmö is Sweden’s third-largest city and probably has the greatest proportion of Muslims. (It is hard to give exact figures because Swedish law forbids registration based on religion.) It is normally assumed that approximately one-third of Malmö’s 300,000 inhabitants have a foreign background and that their number is steadily increasing. Currently, most refugees come from Syria and Somalia, and most are Muslims.

The reason for hatred foisted on Malmo’s Jews  is the Socialist-Muslim alliance:

Malmö has nearly always been governed by Social Democrats — a party that has every reason to keep on the good side of Muslims. In municipal elections, the Social Democrats can normally count on 30% of the general vote, and on 70% of the Muslim vote.

This circumstance was undoubtedly the most important reason the city’s former Social Democratic Mayor, Ilmar Reepalu, refused to do anything about rampant Jew-hatred. He surely must have been aware that the perpetrators of anti-Semitic excesses were his own voters.

For many years, Malmö’s Jews have reported a growing number of hate crimes against their synagogue and themselves, but nobody has taken their complaints seriously. Eventually, a journalist by the name of Andreas Lovén from the local newspaper Skånska Dagbladet wrote in a series of articles that Jew-hatred was causing more and more Jews to move to other Swedish cities or to Israel.

For the first time, it was openly said who was behind the anti-Semitism — the city’s Muslim population. Many Jews told the paper that they dared not let their children grow up in Malmö — the town where, on January 25, 2009, a Muslim mob was allowed to pelt a peaceful Jewish demonstration in support of Israel with bottles, eggs and smoke bombs (see video).

Instead of breaking up the anti-Israel demonstration, which took place without a police permission and which seriously threatened the Jews and friends of Israel assembled at Malmö’s Great Square (Stortorget), the police chose to revoke the Jews’ right to assemble.

This decision was harshly criticized by Parliament’s judicial ombudsman, who wrote: “To permit counter-demonstrators to more or less systematically prevent their opponents from voicing their opinions at public gatherings is unacceptable in a democracy.”

Obama’s Envoy on Global Anti-Semitism  weighs in:

The situation got so bad [in Malmo] that in April 2012, President Barack Obama sent his special envoy and head of the Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, Hannah Rosenthal, to Malmö to read the riot act to Mayor Ilmar Reepalu. She pointed out that the problem is not only the many hate attacks on Jews but also the fact that the mayor has exacerbated the situation by statements such as: “Jews have themselves to blame as long as they don’t distance themselves from Israel’s abuse of Palestinians.”

Last month, Swedish television aired a program on Jew-hatred in Malmö, which clearly documented that the hate emanates from the city’s Muslim population. The reporter had donned a Jewish skullcap and a Star of David and went around town to see what happened. He was immediately met with verbal abuse and was spat on.

A later program dealt with the claim of anti-Muslim hatred in Sweden. A female reporter walked the streets of Södertälje with a veil. Most of the town’s immigrants are Christian Syrians and Assyrians, with Muslims in a clear minority, and she was not accosted a single time.

Sweden’s Jewish organizations have other priorities- combating Islamophobia and attacking one of the authors of the Gatestone Institute article:

Regrettably, Sweden’s biggest Jewish organizations are as blind as the media when it comes to Nazism with its Jew-hatred, supremacist ideology and hunger for world domination. The SKMA (Swedish Committee Against Anti-Semitism), equates Jew-hatred with hatred of Muslims, and attacks everyone who will speak out about the true genesis of “Swedish” anti-Semitism. The SKMA refuses to talk about Muslim Jew-hatred, and gladly walks side by side with imams to protest against “growing xenophobia”.

In December 2013, the SKMA criticized the Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism, an Israeli organization, for having “ articles dealing with anti-Semitism in Sweden spread Islamophobic messages” and thus “given legitimacy to the Swedish Muslim-hater Ingrid Carlqvist.” SKMA accuses Carlqvist of equating Muslims with Nazis, which is a lie. What Carlqvist has written many times is that Islam, that is the ideology, can be compared with Nazism with its Jew-hatred, supremacist ideology and hunger for world domination.

The authors concluded:

The question is how Swedish Jews will fare in an increasingly Islamic Sweden, when not even their own organizations will point out where the Jew-hatred comes from, but would rather attack Swedes who speak the truth about why Sweden went from a safe haven for Jews to a country Jews are fleeing. As long as the SKMA refuses to acknowledge that the vast majority of the Swedish Jew-hatred comes from Muslim immigrants, how can one expect ordinary Swedes to understand what kind of threat the Islamization of Sweden is to all of us who live here?

The first to go down the road of extermination are the Saturday People; then come the Sunday People.

Whether France, Sweden, the UK or elsewhere in the EU, Antisemitism is rampant as reflected in various studies and surveys. It is bolstered by the hatred of Muslim émigrés whose children now flock to the black banner of the Islamic State intent on killing all infidels.  Especially Jewish infidels as did Amedy Coulibaly at the Paris kosher market on January 9th.  Hence, like the French sojourner who wrote me, politicians in France and Sweden are blinded by the votes of the Muslim émigrés in their midst denying Jews rights of free speech and safety.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image is of a boycott Israel Protest Rally in Malmo, Sweden in 2012.

Muslim Assassin Arrested in Denmark: Failed attempt on Danish Free Press Advocate Lars Hedegaard

Lars Hedegaard II

Lars Hedegaard, Editor of Dispatch International in Copenhagen

In the wake of the disturbing news yesterday about the arrest in Winchester, UK of Paul Weston Liberty GB Party leader for quoting Churchill, came stunning news about another free speech defender, Lars Hedegaard, editor of Dispatch International in Copenhagen. Hedegaard is also head of both the Danish and International Free Press Societies. The gunman who failed in an attempt on Hedegaard’s life on February 5, 2013 has been apprehended and arrested by the Danish security police. He has been identified as a 26 year old Danish citizen of Middle East origin.

Here is what we wrote about the harrowing incident:

On February 5, 2013 Lars Hedegaard went to his door in Copenhagen to face a person he thought was a mailman. After handing Hedegaard a package, the “mailman” immediately pulled out a gun and fired a shot barely missing Hedegaard’s head. When the assassin dropped  the weapon, a scuffle ensued and the assassin retrieved the gun but failed to fire it a second time promptly fleeing the scene. The perpetrator of this attempted assassination has yet to be apprehended by Danish police. Such are the dangers of being the founder of both the Danish and International Free Press Societies and prosecuted by Danish courts for something protected in the First Amendment of the US Constitution – the right to criticize a religion, Islam.

Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, Austrian human rights and free speech advocate, commented:

I am heartened to hear that Lars’ potential killer has been apprehended. It is my hope that he will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law, without any “migrant bonus” as has been the case in far too many instances in Europe.

In our Iconoclast post on August 27, 2013 regarding death threats against Hedegaard and five colleagues. Those threats arose from the press conference  arranged by The Danish Free Press Society (DFPS) with ex-radical Danish Imam, Ahmed Akkari, in Copenhagen to present Akkari in his news guise as a former Muslim who elected to leave Islam by choice. Akkari and another Danish Imam fanned the flames of the Danish Mohammed Cartoons across the entire Muslim Ummah in 2006.  Akkari revealed that virtually all Danish Mosques are led by extremists. Akkari went through a personal transformation through self-introspection prompted by reading a veritable bibliography of Western Enlightenment during long arctic winter nights in Greenland.

We wrote about Hedegaard’s ringing defense of free speech in the face of troubling Danish and Western denial:

[We] often remind Hedegaard that he is channeling a mythic Danish figure, Holger Dansk.  The legendary Holger Dansk was the Danish warrior for Emperor Charlemagne who never lost a battle and whose statue rests in the catacombs of the Kronberg palace in Copenhagen.  Holger Danske’s statue depicts him partially asleep a sword in his lap waiting for the signal to spring into battle to protect fellow Danes. Holger Danske was the symbol of the Danish resistance during the Nazi occupation in World War Two. Hedegaard knows how his fellow Danes are sowing the seeds of self destruction by diminishing their freedoms and liberties while heedlessly protecting the forces of their destruction, radical Islamists in their midst.  Politically correct leftist multiculturalists in power in Denmark and elsewhere in the EU are abetting their agenda; infiltration and Islamization of the West.  We in America must be ever vigilant to prevent that from occurring here.  As Hedegaard said about his own legal battles in Denmark,“This is a fight for liberty against tyranny. It will be long and hard but losing is no option.”

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EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The New English Review.