Theodore on Theodoor

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 09.01.26

Submission, the 2004 film for which Theo van Gogh paid with his life

The source of Mohammedan rage against the Dutch filmmaker

Theodoor van Gogh, writes Dalrymple, was

a brash and combative man, who took his freedom of expression for granted.

But such freedom, Dalrymple points out,

is an historical exception rather than an historical rule, a reversible achievement rather than a free gift of God. There are many who would rather kill than brook contradiction of their opinions or beliefs, even while they live in the most tolerant of societies.

Dutch confidence

that unconditional tolerance can be on its own the unifying principle of a viable society has been dented. For tolerance to work, it must be reciprocal; tolerance appears to the jihadist mere weakness. Unilateral tolerance in a world of intolerance is like unilateral disarmament in a world of armed camps.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 09.24.46Van Gogh’s work exposed

a raw nerve of Muslim identity in Western Europe: the abuse of women.

This abuse is

essential for people of Muslim descent for maintaining any sense of separate cultural identity in the homogenising solution of modern mass society.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 09.28.45Were it not for the abuse of women, Islam would go the way of the Church of England.

Mohammedanism

is as vulnerable in Europe to the forces of secularisation as Christianity has proved to be. The majority of Muslims in Europe, particularly the young, have a weak and tenuous connection to their ancestral religion. Their level and intensity of belief is low; pop music interests them more. Far from being fanatics, they are lukewarm believers at best.

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 09.29.49The abuse of women appeals to men because

it gives them a sense of power, however humiliated they may feel in other spheres.

The oppression of women by Muslim men in Western Europe

Screen Shot 2015-04-22 at 09.39.44gives those men at the same time a sexual partner, a domestic servant, and a gratifying sense of power, while allowing them also to live an otherwise westernised life. For the men, it is convenient. Religious sanction for the oppression of women (whether theologically justified or not) is the main attraction of Islam to young men in an increasingly secular world.

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