“Marked For Death - Islam’s war against the West and me” by Geert Wilders, published by Regnery 2012, (256pp) price $19. Reviewed by Bill Muehlenberg.
You have to be a rather unique individual to have been living under 24/7 police security and safe housing for ten years running: either very evil or very wonderful. His foes – which are many – see him as pure evil, but his many supporters see him as a hero – a champion of free speech, and a valiant defender of the West against a relentless Islamic assault.
I take the latter view, and the reason for his decade-long effective imprisonment is his willingness to speak out against Islam. This means you are targeted, you are hated, and you will be killed. Wilders should know – he has seen two of his fellow Dutchmen already assassinated because of their views on Islam, and another now exiled to America.
Islam is the new communism which is warring against the free West, and unless we stand against it, we will lose everything. That is why Wilders has had to go through all this misery, and that is why he has written this book. He has seen his own nation deteriorate rapidly, and he wants to see it – and the West – freed from the shackles of a seventh century political ideology.
And that is what Islam really is: “I am talking about the ideology of Islam, not about individual Muslim people. There are many moderate Muslims, but that does not change the fact that the political ideology of Islam is not moderate – it is a totalitarian cult with global ambitions. We should not treat Islam more leniently than other political ideologies like communism and fascism just because it claims to be a religion. We must treat Islam as we do every other despotic creed that calls for the submission of those who do not adhere to it.”
Despite the left’s portrayal of the Dutch politician and freedom fighter as a firebrand maverick and redneck, one certainly does not get that impression reading this important book. It is an intelligent, calm, well-argued and thought- fully written volume, buttressed by over 700 endnotes.
Wilders is not an outside observer of what Islam actually does to a Western nation: he has experienced it firsthand. For example, during his 20 years living in a borough of Utrecht he saw it transformed from a peaceful, law-abiding and clean community to a much different place.
“As Islam exploded, crime spread throughout the district – cars were vandalized, people were robbed, and eventually Dutch women no longer felt safe in the streets. Marxists claim poverty causes crime, but I noticed the opposite: crime reduced the area to poverty. . . . As lawlessness spread, Dutch residents began moving out and Dutch shops closed down.” And that has been repeated throughout Europe and the UK.
Mass migrations of Muslims, a failed policy of multiculturalism, and naive appeasement policies by the Westerners have resulted in huge and growing problems. And this has not happened by accident: the goal of Islam is the establishment of a universal Caliphate, with everyone submitting to sharia law.
The Islamic doctrine of immigration is a political strategy of taking a nation over from within. The first step is to establish a mosque as a beachhead. While we may see these as mere religious symbols, Muslims see them differently: as the beginning steps of taking over the kafirs’ (unbelievers’) lands.
He quotes Turkey’s prime minister: “The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers”. Muslim immigration, following the example of the Prophet, is the mandatory means by which a non-Muslim culture can be captured. It stops only after total submission. As Muhammad said, “There is no Hijra [migration] after the Conquest”.
Europe now has well over 10,000 mosques, and in many European cities entire areas are no-go zones for non-Muslims – including police and fire personnel. While gullible Westerners are basically welcoming these ominous developments with open arms – and closed eyes and minds – it is all one-way traffic of course.
As Mark Steyn explains in his brilliant foreword to this book: “Imagine it the other way around. Rotterdam has a Muslim mayor, a Moroccan passport holder born the son of a Berber imam. How would Saudi Arabia feel about an Italian Catholic mayor in Riyadh? The Jordanians about an American Jewish mayor in Zarqa? Would the citizens of Cairo and Kabul agree to become minorities in their own hometowns simply because broaching the subject would be too complex?”
Or as Wilders puts it, “Today, for the third time in history, Islam is waging an offensive to conquer Europe. For the first time, however, it is threatening the continent from within. The doctrine of immigration is Islam’s Trojan horse, paving the way for jihad. From the inside, Islam is now eating its way out while many Westerners look on helplessly.”
In this fine book Wilders weaves scenarios about contemporary Islamic usurpation of the West with historical and religious discussion concerning the rise of Islam, its bloody history of conquest, its antipathy to human rights, freedom and democracy, its abhorrent treatment of women, and its utter contempt of all non-Islamic faiths.
Thus he provides a solid and very helpful overview of what Islam is, what it believes, what it has done, and where it is headed, and combines that with the grim situation we find in the West today. He very carefully makes the case for the very real war we are in – a war which will be fought to the death, with only one victor, and one loser.
But he offers hope – his own story is a story of how just one person, or a small group of individuals, can turn things around. Partly through his own political party, the Party for Freedom, he has managed to radically turn around the nation of Holland. It’s basically open-slather policies of immigration, multiculturalism and uncritical “tolerance” which caused tremendous harm have been largely abandoned.
Just recently Holland, like Germany and some other nations which have finally wised up, has ditched its bankrupt and dangerous policies, and radically tightened up, mostly due to Wilders’ efforts. “Indicative of its new outlook, in July 2011, the Dutch government did something that no other nation has dared to do – it denounced the Organization of Islamic Co-operation (OIC), the tyrannical organization of fifty-seven Islamic countries, most of them barbaric dictatorships, that tries to bully Western nations into submitting to Islam’s diktats.”
It also built a stronger relationship with Israel; boycotted the anti-Semitic Durban III conference; banned public uses of the burka; toughened up naturalisation requirements; and in general took steps to resist the slow but steady Islamisation of Holland. The result: “Those who settle in the Netherlands are now obliged to integrate. ... Immigrants must benefit the Netherlands, not the other way around.”
Of course Wilders has paid a great price for all this. The death threats and non-stop police protection is a part of this. Then he had to go through a two-year trial in his own country for “hate speech” – but that was finally dismissed. As Mark Steyn said, “In twenty-first-century Amsterdam, you’re free to smoke marijuana and pick up a half-naked sex partner from the front window of her shop. But you can be put on trial for holding the wrong opinion about a bloke who died in the seventh century.”
He concludes with some steps to preserve our freedoms and resist the spread of radical Islam:
- Defend freedom of speech (and repeal all hate speech laws) -Reject all forms of cultural relativism
- Stop the Islamisation of the West -Cherish our national identity.
The rationale is this: “We have to stop pretending that Islam is merely a religion – it is primarily a totalitarian ideology that aims to conquer the West. A free society should not grant freedom to those who want to destroy it.” He finishes his invaluable volume with these words:
“If we do not oppose Islamization, we will lose everything: our freedom, our identity, our democracy, our rule of law, and all our liberties. It is our duty to defend the legacy of Rome, Athens, and Jerusalem.”
Near the end of the book he cites the assassinated US President, William McKinley: “That’s all a man can hope for during his lifetime – to set an example – and when he is dead, to be an inspiration for history.” Wilders has certainly been both an example and an inspiration – and so far he is still alive to continue in his important work.
May he long live, and may his book sell extremely well.
This review is reprinted from Bill Muehlenberg’s Culture Watch, an online commentary on current issues www.billmuehlenberg.com
Islamists drive Catholic nuns out of eastern Libya
Two Catholic religious communities have been forced to abandon their residences in Libya, and others are planning to leave, because of mounting pressure from Islamists. “The situation is critical” in eastern Libya, Bishop Giovanni Martinelli, the apostolic vicar in Tripoli, told the Fides news service. The Congregation of the Holy Family, which had been established in Derna for almost 100 years, is one of the religious communities that has left the region.
The Holy Family nuns are careful not to proselytize, as that would earn them antagonism in a land where proselytizing by non-Muslims is forbidden. But they have won the hearts of many in Cyrenaica by their love -- which probably infuriated all the more the Islamic supremacists who threatened them and forced them to flee the country.
"Islamic extremists threatened us to leave, not the Libyan people, who instead protected us by coming to visit every day until our departure", Sister Celeste Biasolo, former superior of the convent of the Holy Family of Spoleto in Derna told AsiaNews. In October she was forced to leave Libya with four other sisters, because of the spread of Islamic extremists in Cyrenaica. Two other religious communities will leave Cyrenaica after having been threatened by Islamists: the Franciscan Sisters of the Infant Jesus of Barce and the Ursuline Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Beida.
Sister Celeste Biasolo describes a climate of fear in Cyrenaica, which is especially affecting the Libyan people: "The same Muslim population is being terrorized by this situation. The people of Derna miss us and often contact us imploring us to come back. At Christmas more than 100 families called to our monastery in Spoleto with greetings for us. In Cyrenaica - she explains - the Islamists do not want to attack the Church as such, but the West, and unfortunately we are seen as foreigners.”
The presence of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Spoleto in Libya dates back to 1921. The founder of the Institute, Blessed Peter Bonilli, wanted to open a mission in Cyrenaica, in the city of Derna. Sister Celeste notes that until their de- parture, the mission of the religious and the Church in Libya has focused primarily on health care and care for the elderly. "In these years - she says - we have tried to show the joy and love of the Gospel message through our presence and humanitarian work." According to the nuns, this struck a chord with the Muslim population who continue to consider the sisters a fundamental part of their community.
The head of the Coptic Orthodox Church has criticized Egypt’s new constitution, which declares that “principles of Islamic Sharia are the principal source of legislation.” “The constitution, the base for all laws, must be under the umbrella of citizenship and not a religious one," Pope Theodoros (Tawadros) II of Alexandria said in an interview with the Associated Press. “Subsequently, some clauses were distorted by a religious slant and that in itself is discrimination because the constitution is supposed to unite and not divide.”<< Back to newsletter