Filip Dewinter on Free Speech, Dieudonné and Jean Marie Le Pen


Filip Dewinter on Free Speech, Dieudonné, and Anti-Semitism

30 March 2009

Our Flemish correspondent VH has translated an interview with Vlaams Belang leader Filip Dewinter that appeared in Joods Actueel.

First this note from the translator:
http://www.brusselsjournal.com/english sent me a tip for this interesting interview with Filip Dewinter. I made a transcript and translated it.

The gap between Vlaams Belang and Jean-Marie le Pen is getting too wide to bridge, and though it might appear to be a strategic move, Dewinter sounds sincere in his doubt about any further cooperation with Le Pen. VB is very positive about the idea of inviting Israel to join NATO.

All parties in Belgium — except for one — are a bunch of potential Nazis. The exception is Vlaams Belang.

Another Socialist Islamo-fascist is unmasked: recently the French comedian Dieudonné gave a show in Brussels, Belgium. All political parties had someone in the theatre to enjoy the performance, including the Flemish Socialists, with whom Fouad Ahidar had a great time, and the latter confessed to Belgian TV that he is a major fan of Dieudonné.
The only party that refused to show up was Vlaams Belang.

And now the interview by Joods Actueel [“Jewish Actuality”] with Filip Dewinter of Vlaams Belang, transcribed and translated by VH:

You must have heard and read about it: the French comedian Dieudonné
was in our country yesterday. Now, you were not present there?

Dewinter: No, I was not present.

What is your position towards Dieudonné and the anti-Zionist party he founded last week?

Dewinter: He is a provocateur who naturally takes every opportunity to gain the interest of his audience. Whether it is about his anti-Zionist party, or his presence at the event of Jean-Marie le Pen or his anti-Semitic statements, he provokes.
His plea of provocation is obviously his main propaganda tool. I regret that, and I think he at the very least goes much more than one bridge too far. But still, it’s his free speech.
In my humble opinion I think he has the right to say what he wants to say, although I definitely do not support his opinions, and not a hair on my head was willing to be present at Dieudonné’s show. And that is my right to freedom of expression.

You may know that he is also a big fan of Robert Faurisson, the man who trivialized the Holocaust, and he recently give him an award, presented by someone with a costume like those worn in concentration camps.
I know that you have a good relationship — so I was told — with Jean-Marie le Pen; you have a picture of him at your home. And Dieudonné is also a big fan of Jean-Marie le Pen. Apparently, Jean-Marie le Pen is the godfather of one of the children of Dieudonné. So how do you view these two?

Dewinter: First, I would like to argue that the rudeness in his umpteenth provocation by — as mentioned — having someone in concentration camp togs hand out an award… naah, that is something so utterly disgusting that there are no words for it. But let me say again: he increasingly seeks to stretch the envelope of provocation all the time and therefore scans in the least the limits of the permissible and even of freedom of expression. Because it is questionable what this has to do with freedom of speech, this insulting of an entire population, in this case the Jewish community.

But to answer the second part of your question: Yes, Jean-Marie le Pen does what he can’t refrain from doing. I am absolutely not impressed at all with those statements by Le Pen about concentration camps and the Holocaust as part of the anti-Semitic remarks he made earlier and repeated yesterday once again, and I repudiate them in the strongest terms.
Because the only aim of all that is to be controversial enough to mobilize the dwindling number of voters in the face of the European Elections. But anyway, the roads of VB and Jean-Marie le Pen are ever more explicitly diverging from each other. I cannot currently say whether we are still prepared or willing to form a group with Jean-Marie le Pen in the European Parliament.

But you have that photo of Jean-Marie le Pen with you which is still prominent on the fireplace.

Dewinter: Firstly I have no fireplace in my home, and for that matter my private desk belongs to my private life…

And do you find that the right to freedom of expression should be absolute, that everyone should be able to say everything?

Dewinter: No, not everything. Free speech stops when it becomes a call to violence. There is a restriction on free speech. But we need not have laws to muzzle the freedom of expression for that…

Is not that a bit of the strategy that VB has always made use of?

Dewinter: Take for example the statements about what he [Dieudonné] says, the complaints, the court proceedings, the conviction, that remain in the picture, not that one should grant it to the man, and he always says that he is a comedian. Well then, treat a comedian as a comedian, laugh at him and leave it there.

The court procedure against the Vlaams Blok did not quite lay any shell-less eggs for you, so that is something of which one might also say: a provocation, media exposure because of that, and being a victim.

Dewinter: If you allow me to say something in brief about that conviction of Vlaams Belang: the man in the street already knew by intuition that this prosecution was unjust, and this is of course because of the principle that a party should not be sentenced by a court but by the voters at the time of elections, through the ballot box.

Then I have a further question: last night, I think for all political parties [except Vlaams Belang] in our country there was at least one person present. And as far as I know — but there may have been be more — Fouad Ahidar of the SP.a [Flemish Socialist Party]. What is your reflection on this, that someone of what one may say is a leftist party — and this Fouad Ahidar represents the left wing of a leftist party — is present with someone who in France has a reputation of being “extreme right”? Some say “les extrèmes se touche” [extremes closing ranks] and some people here assert that it is about Jew-hatred. That the friends of extreme groups agree with each other. The extreme right with the extreme left. How do you see this?

Dewinter: I have a different view on that. I believe that Fouad Ahidar was there as an Islamist, a Muslim, and the anti-Zionist tendency, the anti-Semitic tendency, and the unfortunate Jew hatred of Dieudonné — because that what it is about — suits Fouad Ahidar, and in fact in a way he sympathizes as a Muslim. I think it is about this. And it is not particularly “les extrèmes se touche” that is the issue here, but rather the fact that anti-Semitism, hatred of Jews and so forth, is part of radical Islam and is also increasingly put into practice by less radical Muslims. I think one has to look there for a clue, and not particularly the fact that the extreme left and extreme right find each other in the anti-Semitic lead of Dieudonné.

Some have suggested that one possible solution might be for Israel to become a member of NATO, so that when it is attacked the rest of the EU or NATO is also attacked. What is your position on an Israeli membership of NATO, and maybe the EU?

Dewinter: As far as a membership of NATO is concerned, I have no problem at all with that, and I think it might even be very good when Israel joins NATO, because NATO defends freedoms and democratic values, characteristic of European civilization, and I have always said so and will repeat it again, that Israel is an outpost of the free West in Islamic-occupied territory. Thus as far as I am concerned, Europe should more explicitly support Israel, instead of always wanting to be the critic, and holier than the Pope, in its approach towards Israel. Israel happens to be in very difficult circumstances, is besieged by radical Islam and receives criticism instead of help.

Secondly, I have my reservations about the plan for accession of Israel to the EU. Let me explain why: I think in terms of its civilization, its culture and so forth, and even economically, Israel would fit perfectly into the EU. But there is of course the geographical aspect, that Israel is not geographically a part of Europe. And how can countries that are a geographical part of Europe be kept outside the EU, when we would have Israel join the EU, which is in a geographical respect very far away from Europe, in the Middle East?


Byzantijns badhuis ontdekt in Israël

Archeologen hebben in Israël een badhuis ontdekt uit de Byzantijnse tijd.

Dat heeft de Israëlische oudheidkundige dienst bekendgemaakt.
Archeoloog Gregory Serai leidde de opgravingen en vertelde dat het badhuis uit ongeveer het jaar 500 stamt. Het badhuis, dat werd ontdekt tussen Beersheba en Gaza, meet ongeveer twintig bij twintig meter.

De vondst toont volgens Serai aan dat het gebied in de Byzantijnse tijd dichter bevolkt was dan tot nu toe werd aangenomen. Uit vondsten die in de buurt van het badhuis werden gedaan blijkt bovendien dat de bewoners van de streek voornamelijk in hun levensonderhoud voorzagen met de productie van wijn.De opgravingen werden verricht omdat in het gebied binnenkort een spoorlijn wordt aangelegd. (novum/edp)

25/03/09 23u24 (HLN)


Ik snap mensen zoals Le Pen en Dieudonné niet.

Dat Jean-Marie Le Pen een racist is in de ware zin van het woord, dus gebaseerd op de huidskleur, kan men zeker en vast niet zeggen.

Dat hij antisemiet is zeker en vast wel.

Je zou toch mogen denken dat iemand die al een veroordeling opliep van om en bij de 200.000 euro omdat hij de Holocaust als een ‘detail’ in de geschiedenis van WOII vindt, wel iets slimmer zou zijn geworden. Maar nee, hij zei het gisteren nog maar eens. Hij is zoals zoveel Europeanen in feite afgunstig op de joden en vooral slecht ingelicht over hun geschiedenis.

Maar een racist is Le Pen niet. Toch niet in de zin van het woord. Want hij heeft meerdere gekleurde leden in zijn partij en zijn grootste fan is de Franse ‘zwarte’ komiek Dieudonné die naar de Europese verkiezingen van 7 juni trekt met een anti-Zionistische partij. De liefde is blijkbaar wederzijds, want Jean-Marie Le Pen is peter van zijn dochter. Dieudonné M'Bala M'Bala werd in 1966 geboren in een Parijse voorstad. Zijn moeder is Frans en zijn vader Kameroenees.

Dieudonné M'Bala M'Bala stond al langer bekend als antisemiet nadat hij tijdens één van zijn optredens de negationist, Robert Faurisson, uitnodigde op het podium. Dieudonné werd in Frankrijk al veroordeeld voor uitspraken over de Shoah en de Joden.

Wat bezielt die mensen toch? Hoe kan je nu de moord op miljoenen mensen afdoen als een detail in de geschiedenis van WOII of beweren dat het allemaal gelogen is, terwijl er nog overlevenden uit de hel van Auschwitz rondlopen die kunnen getuigen wat ze daar hebben meegemaakt. Hoe kan je zeggen dat het maar een detail in de geschiedenis van WOII is, wanneer er zoveel bewijzen zijn dat het allemaal echt is gebeurd. Foto’s, filmmateriaal, de ontdekking van de kampen door de geallieerden, waar ook mijn oom bij was? Bewijzen die aantonen dat het helemaal geen detail, maar een weloverwogen plan was waarbij gestreefd werd naar de totale uitroeiing van een volk? Waarom wordt er nooit verteld dat het in 1349 ook al eens is gebeurd in Europa, nadat de pest was uitgebroken en men de joden beschuldigde dat zij het drinkwater hadden vergiftigd? Toen werden ze twintig jaar lang vervolgd en uitgemoord over heel Europa.

"De kiezers hebben het recht om te kunnen stemmen op een anti-Zionistische partij die zonder schroom uitkomt voor haar standpunten", aldus Dieudonné. “Het Zionisme streeft naar een zuivere Joodse staat in Israël.”

Ja? Zelfs indien het zou kloppen, maar het klopt niet…en dan? Streeft men in moslimlanden ook niet naar een ‘zuiver’ islamitisch volk? In tegenstelling tot Israël, waar nog 1,4 miljoen Arabieren wonen, worden andersgelovigen in moslimlanden vervolgd en vermoord. Zouden al diegenen die het altijd op Israël hebben gemunt, en dat is in Europa dan vooral links, niet beter daaraan denken? De Kopten in Egypte (The Rubbish people), de intelligentsia in Iran, de tegenstanders van een islamitische staat in Turkije, om er maar enkele te noemen.

Dat iemand wordt veroordeeld om zijn gedachtegoed keur ik af, zeker wanneer de president van Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad net hetzelfde zegt onder het goedkeurend oog van Europa. Je kunt niemand van gedachten doen veranderen door ze te veroordelen, je kunt het wel door ze te laten praten met mensen die het kunnen weten, of die het hebben meegemaakt.

Toen Dieudonné in Sint-Joost aankondigde zelf in de politiek te stappen, om een"culturele oorlog" te starten tegen de heersende partijen zei hij dat hij zichzelf en een deel van de bevolking beschouwt als "slaven van het Zionistische systeem".

Ik weet één ding. We zijn geen slaven van het Zionistische systeem, we zouden hier in Europa blij moeten zijn dat ze er zijn en de regio in het Midden-Oosten onder controle houden. Als we hier dan al slaven moeten zoeken, dan zijn diegenen die werken de slaven van al diegenen die profiteren en dat zijn zeker niet de joden.

Voor de politiebewaking bij het ‘optreden’ van Dieudonné in Sint-Joost zal de uitbater van de zaal ‘Le Marignan’ nu zelf de politiekosten moeten betalen.
De beslissing werd donderdagochtend genomen door het college van de politiezone Brussel-Noord, op basis van een artikel van het politiereglement uit mei 2003. De factuur voor het inzetten van een 80-tal agenten (voor amper 70 vreedzaam protesterende mensen) zou meer dan 25.000 euro bedragen.

Was dat dan nodig? Ik heb hier nog nooit een jood weten protesteren met geweld zoals andere gemeenschappen wel doen waar we minder gemakkelijk kunnen mee samen leven.


Proud to be a leftist?

By Caroline B. Glick in JewishWorldReview

In an interview with Teheran Times two weeks ago, Norman Finklestein, the notorious Hizbullah and Hamas supporter and all-purpose anti-Semite, called Israel a "vandal state," and "insane state," a "terrorist state," and a "satanic state."

Last week Finklestein was the keynote speaker at both Emory University and Fordham University during their weeklong annual anti-Israel hate festivals.
Speaking to a cheering crowd at a packed auditorium on Emory's Atlanta campus, Finklestein claimed that Israel conducted its recent Operation Cast Lead in Gaza for two reasons. These did not include Hamas's deliberate targeting of Israeli civilians, Hamas's alliance with Iran, its charter that calls for the physical eradication of the Jewish people, its illegal imprisonment of Israeli hostage Gilad Schalit, or its decision to renew its attacks against Israel after a six month period of relative restraint.
In Finklestein's view, the first reason Israel launched Operation Cast Lead was because Hamas had begun expressing interest in peace. In his words, "Hamas were being too moderate, too reasonable. They wanted a diplomatic settlement to the conflict. To Israel, this is a recurring nightmare."

The second reason that Finklestein alleged that Israel launched its offensive was because, well, Israel is just plain mean. As he put it, the operation was Israel's way of "reminding the Arabs who were [sic.] in charge." It was an attempt to "restore the Arab world's fear of Israel."

Finklestein cited an unnamed "chief military analyst" to support his claim that Israel conducted a "massacre" in Gaza and did so with malice of forethought.
According to Emory's student paper, for his libelous, wholly fallacious remarks, Finklestein received a prolonged standing ovation.
In 40 university campuses throughout the US and Canada as well as in Europe and South America, last week students marked what Palestinian terror apologists have dubbed "Israel Apartheid Week." This was the seventh such week in the US, and the fifth in Canada.
In the lead up to this annual Israel vilification week, pro-Israel students were physically assaulted at San Francisco State University and at York University in Canada by their anti-Israel counterparts. In both cases, university officials opened disciplinary proceedings against the pro-Israel students.

At SFSU, two students were arrested by police for assaulting college Republicans who held an anti-Hamas rally. The two — from the campus's Palestinian student club and its Socialist union — now insist not only that the charges against them be dropped, but that the university re-educate its students to ensure that they understand that criticizing Hamas and other genocidal terror groups is a form of prohibited hate-speech.

THE LIBELOUS assertion that Israel — the only free, pluralistic, liberal democracy in the Middle East — is analogous to apartheid South Africa first took hold at the 2001 UN-sponsored anti-Jewish diplomatic pogrom at Durban, South Africa. In the action plan approved by the various non-governmental organizations that participated in the conference, activists were called on to bring about the international demonization of Israel as a racist state, and of Zionism — the Jewish national liberation movement — as a form of racism.

When Israel Apartheid Week was launched the next year, many local Jewish student and community activists in the US and Canada demanded that university authorities ban the clearly bigoted event from their campuses. To their chagrin, university presidents and administrators would do no such thing. Claiming that doing so would restrict academic freedom, the propaganda war against the Jewish state went forward and grew. And, in its wake, the freedom of pro-Israel students on college campuses throughout the West has become increasingly constricted and threatened.

Both through formal speech codes barring criticism of anti-Israel propaganda and violence, and through academic and physical intimidation of pro-Israel students by an increasingly vocal and aggressive coalition of pro-Palestinian professors, Muslim and leftist students, Israel's supporters on university campuses find themselves under assault. Today, seven years after the Durban Conference, Israel Apartheid Week has become a mainstay on the academic calendar, nearly as taken for granted as Homecoming Week and mid-terms.

The use of the term "apartheid" to describe Israel was a deliberate move on the part of Israel's enemies. It was aimed at neutralizing the capacity of Israel's supporters to defend the Jewish state and attack its enemies. Case in point is the campus debate which preceded Israel Apartheid Week at the University of Toronto. The student paper published two topical opinion pieces on the upcoming events. One asserted that Israel is an apartheid regime. The other argued that Israel isn't an apartheid regime.

On the surface, this seems fair enough. But it is nothing of the sort. Israel is the only free country and free society in the region. Pinning its defenders down by confining discussion of the region to the pros and cons of a complete lie serves to only obfuscate the depravity of Israel's enemies, not to enlighten the public about Israel.

While Israel provides the full rights of citizenship to its Arab minority, Jews are denied the rights of citizenship in every Arab League member state, and the Palestinians' fundamental demand is that no Jew be permitted to live in a future Palestinian state.
Then too, while Israeli women enjoy full equality under the law, women and girls in the Arab and Muslim world are systematically subjugated and enslaved. Muslim men who wantonly murder their wives, sisters, mothers and daughters can expect to receive little to no punishment for their crimes. The same holds for men who abuse their female relations. For their part, women in the Muslim world have either no legal rights to citizenship and civil rights or those rights are severely limited.

Gays, blacks, migrant workers, Christians, Hindus and Buddhists are systematically persecuted for their sexual preferences, their skin color and their religious beliefs. Even dogs feel the wrath of these societies where, since they are considered "unclean," children and adults alike routinely engage in their torture and killing.

But under the full protection of self-described liberal university professors, administrators and presidents, and due to the indifference of groups like the World Council of Churches, the American Civil Liberties Union, the National Organization of Women, Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, anti-Israel propagandists have been allowed to co-opt the language of liberty to advance the political fortunes of terrorists who aim to destroy liberty.

THE ACTIVE and passive support conferred on anti-Israel leftists and Muslims by these officials and groups has provided them with the ideological cover to take their activism to the next level: anti-Jewish violence aimed at intimidating states, universities, businesses and private organizations into cutting off all ties to Israel. Evidence of the success of this campaign is rife throughout Europe today.
In just one notable instance, for the past week Israeli tennis players, Amir Haddad and Andy Ram have been suffering the consequences of the Left's collusion with these anti-Jewish groups in Sweden. Haddad and Ram competed in the Davis Cup tennis championships in Malmo, Sweden.
In an article in Yediot Ahronot on Sunday, Ram wrote, "In my entire athletic career, I have never before experienced such hatred and such a mixing of sports with politics
In spite of repeated entreaties by Israel, Swedish authorities refused to move the games from Malmo to Stockholm. With its enormous Muslim population, in recent years Malmo has been the site of some of the worst Islamic violence against non-Muslims - and particularly Jews, women and girls - in the Western world.

Due to threats of violence against Ram and Haddad, Swedish authorities barred fans from attending their tennis matches. As they played their opening match in an empty stadium on Saturday, thousands of violent Muslims and leftists rioted against police and attempted to break down the barriers protecting the stadium with the stated aim of killing Ram and Haddad.

The protesters claim that their desire to murder Israeli tennis players is due to Operation Cast Lead. But this is pure propaganda. Their desire to murder Ram and Haddad stems not from Israel's military actions to defend its citizens from murder, but from the protesters' hatred of the Jewish state. And that hatred stems from the same source as their misogyny, their hatred of the US and their support for the likes of Osama bin Laden and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

A 2005 Swedish government report indicated that in 2004, incidents of rape had increased 50 percent throughout the country. A Malmo police report noted that 68 percent of the rapists were minorities. As Islamic scholar Robert Spencer has noted, Islamic teaching views rape as a legitimate act against women and girls who behave in "non-Islamic" ways. In much of Scandinavia as well as in Muslim neighborhoods in France, women have begun wearing veils in order to protect themselves against roving gangs of Muslim young men. The defilement of women and girls, like gay bashing, has nothing to do with IDF operations in Gaza. It has to do with the pathological nature of the cultures that condone and encourage the violence, and the Western governments and intellectuals who make excuses for it.

ALL OF THIS is hidden away from the public thanks to Western liberals' willingness to accept the legitimacy of events like Israel Apartheid Week. Due to the complicity of leftist authorities, the international discourse about the Arab and Islamic world and the cultures they have produced is diverted to false allegations against Israel.
Any attempt to point out that Hamas is genocidal; that Iran stones women to death, and systematically executes homosexuals; that Saudi Arabia is the most repressive society on the planet; that Egypt permits and indeed encourages female genital mutilation; that Jordan does not prosecute fathers, sons, husbands and uncles who murder their female relatives; is attacked and delegitimized. Those who raise these issues are accused of hating Muslims and of being secret Zionist agents.

So too, Islamic violence in the West is swept under the rug. For example, to date, no mainstream US media organ has reported that in Buffalo, New York Muzzamil Hassan decapitated his wife Aasiya on February 12 after he stabbed her to death. Just a few years earlier that same mainstream media had embraced this murderer as a paragon of Islamic moderation after he established Bridges TV network, which was supposed to show the American public how moderate Islam is.

For some reason, the same media don't consider it noteworthy that their moderate Muslim poster boy chopped off his wife's head a week after she filed for divorce. Certainly, no connection can be drawn between her ritual slaughter and Islam.

Sunday was International Women's Day. Throughout the West, feminists spent the day congratulating themselves for their great sacrifices for women's rights.
Last Wednesday Saudi authorities arrested a woman for driving. Her arrest drew no protest from her Western sisters. Obviously, they were too busy defending Finklestein's freedom to disseminate lies about Israeli women to ignorant college kids to care.