Sakset/Fra hofta

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Ayaan Hirsi Ali er overlatt til seg selv. Den nederlandske statsministeren antyder at det ville være best om hun slo seg ned utenlands. Sikkerhet må hun nå sørge for selv. Det landet som en gang tok imot Spinoza, vil idag helst bli kvitt en brysom islam-kritiker, skriver Anne Applebaum, Salman Rushdie og Sam Harris.

Det gir et annet perspektiv å se Nederland fra USA. De tre bruker meget sterke ord om Nederlands behandling av Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Det ligger en egen mentalitet til grunn. Den sier: -La oss ikke lage bølger. Akkurat som «fornuftige» mennesker sier om Lars Vilks. Javel, man har ytringsfrihet. Men er det nødvendig? som formann for Norske P.E.N. Anders Heger har antydet.

Fravær av prinsipiell tenkning og manglende evne til analyse, gjør at man ender opp med å spørre Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Er det nødvendig å være så krass?

Man vil helst ikke snakke om Theo van Gogh. Det har man allerede satt en klamme rundt. Det gjelder om å unngå en gjentakelse, og da er det kritikeren som må moderere seg.

Nederlands regjering vil ikke lenger betale for Ayaans sikkerhet i utlandet. Det fikk holde med ett år.

The reasons given were financial, but there was clearly more to it. To put it bluntly, many in Holland find her too loud, too public in her condemnation of radical Islam. She doesn’t sound conciliatory, in the modern continental fashion. Compare her description of Islam as «brutal, bigoted, fixated on controlling women» with the German judge who, citing the Koran, in January told a Muslim woman trying to obtain a divorce from her violent husband that she should have «expected» her husband to deploy the corporal punishment his religion approves. Hirsi Ali herself says she is often told, in so many words, that she’s «brought her problems on herself.» Now the Dutch prime minister openly says he wants her to deal with them alone.

Fortunately, Hirsi Ali is already back in the United States, under professional, full-time, well-resourced and for the moment privately organized protection. But this week, the Dutch parliament is due to debate her status once again. And once again, the Dutch will be confronted with the facts that Hirsi Ali remains a Dutch citizen; that the threat to her life comes at least in part from groups based in Holland; that she lives abroad because the Dutch political situation forced her to; and that when she speaks out, she does so in defense of what she believes to be Dutch values.

Whether or not the Dutch like it — and I’m sure most of them don’t — revoking her police protection will send a clear message to the world: that the Dutch are no longer willing to protect their own traditions of free speech. Resources will be found, and she will recover. But will Holland?

Man kan si det samme om Europa: Vil Europa overleve hvis det støter fra seg Ayaan Hirsi Ali? Salman Rushdie og Sam Harris kan ikke få verdsatt henne høyt nok.

She is one of the most poised, intelligent and compassionate advocates of freedom of speech and conscience alive today, and for this she is despised in Muslim communities throughout the world.

The details of her story have been widely reported, but bear repeating, as they illustrate how poorly equipped we are to deal with the threat of Muslim extremism in the West.

Så kort og konsist kan det sies: Store deler av borgerskapet i Vest har overtatt muslimenes måte å se kritikere på: De ødelegger dialogen.

t is important to realize that Hirsi Ali may be the first refugee from Western Europe since the Holocaust. As such, she is a unique and indispensable witness to both the strength and weakness of the West: to the splendor of open society, and to the boundless energy of its antagonists. She knows the challenges we face in our struggle to contain the misogyny and religious fanaticism of the Muslim world, and she lives with the consequences of our failure each day. There is no one in a better position to remind us that tolerance of intolerance is cowardice.

Having recapitulated the Enlightenment for herself in a few short years, Hirsi Ali has surveyed every inch of the path leading out of the moral and intellectual wasteland that is traditional Islam. She has written two luminous books describing her journey, the most recent of which, «Infidel,» has been an international bestseller for months. It is difficult to exaggerate her courage. As Christopher Caldwell wrote in The New York Times, «Voltaire did not risk, with his every utterance, making a billion enemies who recognized his face and could, via the Internet, share information instantaneously with people who aspired to assassinate him.»

The Dutch Parliament will be debating Hirsi Ali’s case this week. As it stands, the government’s decision to protect her only within the borders of the Netherlands is genuinely perverse. While the Dutch have been protecting Hirsi Ali in the United States, it is actually far more expensive for them to protect her in the Netherlands, as the risk to her is greatest there.

There is also the matter of broken promises: Hirsi Ali was persuaded to run for Parliament, and to become the world’s most visible and imperiled spokeswoman for the rights of Muslim women, on the understanding that she would be provided security for as long as she needed it. Gerrit Zalm, in his capacity as both the deputy prime minister and the minister of finance, promised her such security without qualification. Most shamefully, Jan Peter Balkenende, the Dutch prime minister, has recommended that Hirsi Ali simply quit the Netherlands, while refusing to grant her even a week’s protection outside the country during which she might raise funds to hire security of her own. Is this a craven attempt to placate Muslim fanatics? A warning to other Dutch dissidents not to stir up trouble by speaking too frankly about Islam? Or just pure thoughtlessness?

Et brutt løfte

Da det offisielle Nederland inviterte Ayaan inn i politikken ga de henne et løfte, ikke bare om beskyttelse, men om å stå for demokratiske verdier. Ayaan var beviset på at demokratiet er universelt, at en somalisk kvinne kan nå like langt politisk og filosofisk som en europeer. Sådan sett er hun et symbol på både menneskelig og kvinnelig frigjøring. Men så var det haken: Ayaan måtte kritisere kvinneundertrykking innen islam, som hun så på nært hold. Det skapte problemer for nederlandske myndigheter. Det er derfor et stort nederlag for det nederlandske samfunn at regjeringen snur ryggen til henne.

Regjeringen skal debattere hennes sak denne uken. Det minner om de nederlandske soldatenes svik i Srbrenica.

A Dutch Retreat on Speech?

A refugee from Western Europe