October 16, 2010 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - In an update on what has become a cause célèbre among defenders of freedom of expression in the West - Geert Wilders' prosecution by the Dutch government over his alleged discriminatory statements against Muslims, the online DutchNews.nl Wilders not guilty on all counts - Update states, "The public prosecution department on Friday afternoon stated that Geert Wilders is not guilty of discriminating against Muslims. Earlier on Friday it announced he should also be found not guilty of inciting hatred."
Wilders, leader of Netherlands' Freedom Party [Partij voor de Vrijheid, PVV] has been threatened with death by Dutch Islamists, who claim that his many statements in opposition to Islam and the Qur'an, constitute hate speech which under certain constructions is a criminal offense in the country.
The trial has been closely followed stateside by many concerned about national security and the prospect of a European politician being jailed and/or fined for what amounts to "insulting Islam," a grave offense against Shari'a, Islamic law.
If Wilders had been found guilty, he could have faced a large fine and imprisonment for up to a year. This would have set a troubling precedent in a country which has almost literally been under siege by its rapidly growing Muslim population, most of whom originated in North Africa [primarily Morocco]. There is hardly a day when there aren't incidents of Muslims intimidating, mugging or committing other serious crimes against non-Muslim Dutch citizens and parts of Holland's major cities have been deemed "no-go" zones by the police, areas which have largely been ceded to the Islamists for fear of violent retaliation.
The decision to free Wilders was certainly political in that regardless of the prosecutors' statements, the firebrand politician does indeed seem to have violated the spirit of the law under which charges were brought.
This undoubtedly could cause futures problem for the besieged nation, arguably the most liberal in Europe, as the next "offender," to run afoul of what some have termed an Inquisition, may not be as prominent as Wilders and hence may not be able to command similar public support.
The implications of the trial are substantial throughout the West, including the United States where Shari'a proponents are constantly equating simple criticism of Muslims or Islam itself as constituting a hate crime.
Recently, domestic Islamist organizations including the Council on American Islamic Relations [CAIR, named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the landmark terror financing prosecution U.S. vs. Holy Land Foundation] have been particularly active in alleging widespread American Islamophobia, in hopes of forcing U.S. legislation to be more in-line with Europe's widespread and onerous hate crime laws.
As has been noted on the pages numerous times, allegations of Islamophobia in the U.S. are a myth, as measured by FBI crime statistics which found only 123 incidents of "hate crimes" based upon religious discrimination against Muslims in its most recent reporting year. In the 2008 DOJ study, Jewish Americans were about 10 times as likely as Muslims to suffer similar incidents of religious discrimination. Even Christians suffered a greater incidence of such offenses. [see, CAIR Continues Big Lie Regarding "Hate Crimes" Committed Against Muslims - FBI Stats Prove That Widespread American Islamophobia Is Nonexistent]
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