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    Israël - Palestina Info: News in English about the Netherlands

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    News in English about the Netherlands Elections in the Netherlands: gains for socialists and nationalists
    Geplaatst door abby op Wednesday 29 November @ 16:32:10 GMT+1 (1488 maal gelezen)

    Elections in the Netherlands: gains for socialists and nationalists27.11. 2006
    http://www.zionism-israel.com/log/archives/00000297.html
    Original content copyright by the author
    Zionism & Israel Center http://zionism-israel.com

    Despite the tensions with the growing Dutch Muslim community in recent years, which culminated in the murder of cineaste Theo van Gogh in November 2004, this was not a hot topic in last week's elections. Most major parties have agreed on a more rigorous approach on the issue of immigration and integration, and after years of debate and polarization, most of the public had gotten weary of the subject.

    Last week's elections dealt with 'classic' issues like job opportunities, social security and health care. This is caused by the painful cuts and reforms in social security by the center-right government of the last 4 years, and the growing number of people who are dependant on health care. But there is also a tendency to turn inwards and to fence ourselves off from the outside world, as exemplified by the Dutch rejection of the European Constitution in 2005.

    The outcome of the elections shows a growing divide between the left and the right, with the socialists winning 17 seats on cost of the social democrats, and a new right-wing nationalist party winning 9 seats on cost of the conservatives (by warning for a 'tsunami of islamisation' hitting the Netherlands). Both use populist arguments and offer clear solutions to problems the country faces.

    Foreign politics hardly played a role in the election campaign. There was a controversy about Turkish candidates being removed from the list because they would not acknowledge the Armenian genocide. Further the left-wing opposition made it clear that they want an investigation on the Dutch decision to support the US invasion of Iraq, and one week before the elections a report about Dutch abuses of Iraqi prisoners in 2003 surfaced, causing some election fuss.

    The Israeli-Palestinian conflict was only discussed once in a TV debate on Muslim issues, in which only the left-wing parties participated, and further in a debate organized by the main Jewish pro-Israel organization CIDI, where the socialists and the greens where absent. For me this subject was very important, and it was very frustrating that it was impossible to vote for both a strong social and environmentalist program and a fair policy towards the Middle East. I hate to say it, but all the left-wing parties are anti-Israel, and want sanctions if it doesn't abide by international law and break down the 'wall'. I also hate to say that the right-wing nationalists, who want a total stop on immigration and a ban on the building of mosques and on burqas, are very pro-Israel. In their eyes, Israel is at the forefront of the global war on terror and on Islam, which is a backward religion in their eyes.

    On the other hand, most liberals view the Middle East conflict as a source of radicalism which also spills over to European Muslims, and causes tensions between the West and the Arab world. They blame the Middle East, meaning Israel, for our problems with Islamic radicalism. At the Muslim debate, the green and socialist representatives went on at length explaining that the West applies double standards by allowing Israel nuclear power but denying Iran the same right, and allowing Israel to perpetrate 'state terrorism' while boycotting the Palestinians for their violence, and how much Muslims feel abandoned and betrayed by the West for this appalling lack of justice and consistency.

    How unjust indeed, all those Israeli privileges: the EU maintains an Association Treaty with it just like with any Arab Mediterranean dictatorship; the West does not support all of the countless UN condemnations of the Jewish state; it gets away with all its crimes against humanity, as if it is not worse than Sudan (getting away with killing off hundreds of thousands of innocents in Darfur), China (getting away with the occupation of Tibet), Russia (getting away with the leveling of Grozny), or Syria (getting away with assassinating dissident politicians in Lebanon), just to name a few examples.

    Given the fact that Muslims in Europe care much more about Palestine than about Chechnya or the Amazigh or the Kurds, to please them it is indeed appropriate to focus on Israel and its 'crimes' against the Palestinians. There is no indication however that countries that are anti-Israel and anti-USA are free from the danger of terrorist attacks or tensions with their Muslim minority population, and even if the Israeli-Palestinian conflict were solved, there would be much resentment over Saudi-Arabia and Pakistan serving US interests, or Western troops 'occupying' Afghanistan or Iraq, or racist attitudes of the majority population in European countries.

    One important reason outside of the political field that causes much tension is that many youths from Muslim descent grow up in between two different cultures. Their parents came mostly from the countryside in Turkey or Morocco, are often illiterate and hardly speak the language of the country they now live in. Their offspring have to adopt a new identity, a mix of the culture of the homeland of their parents and the country they grow up in. They are an easy prey for radical islamists, who give them a new identity and security in a complex world in which their parents cannot help them find their way . Racism and unemployment intensify this, and the defiant and aggressive behavior of some of these youths reinforces racism and unemployment.

    There is no easy way out, and politicians on both the right and the left who come up with simple solutions are fooling us and themselves. We cannot turn back history to the homogeneous society that existed in many European countries some 50 years ago, nor can we excuse the behavior and attitude of radicalized youths by referring to their identity problems or unemployment. And we should not fool ourselves either with the belief that we can resolve our problems with the growing Muslim population by severing our relations with the USA and Israel and supporting the Palestinians. There are many reasons why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict should be solved, and also why Europe bears some responsibility in this. Problems with our Muslim population should not be one of them, and we should not give in to pressure from them to pursue a one-sided Middle East policy. Israel as well as moderate Palestinians and Arabs deserve our support, and Arab hostility towards Israel and the Jews, in the UN, in their media and in their mosques, should be condemned unequivocally, as well as the Arab boycott of Israel that is mostly still in place.

    Ratna Pelle
    Original content is Copyright by the author 2006. Posted at ZioNation-Zionism and Israel Web Log, http://www.zionism-israel.com/log/archives/00000297.html where your intelligent and constructive comments are welcome. Disributed by ZNN list. Subscribe by sending a message to ZNN-subscribe@yahoogroups.com. Please forward by e-mail with this notice, cite this article and link to it. Other uses by permission only.
     






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    News in English about the Netherlands Anti-Semitism on the rise in Holland (Rachel Levy)
    Geplaatst door abby op Friday 11 August @ 23:02:02 GMT+1 (1580 maal gelezen)


     
    The Israel Information and Documentation Centre reports complaints rose dramatically since June
    Rachel Levy

     There has been a dramatic increase in anti-Semitism in Holland in recent weeks, according to a report by the Israel Information and Documentation Centre (CIDI).

    The CIDI, which registers anti-Semitic activity in the Netherlands, said complaints rose dramatically after Israel invaded the Gaza Strip in June and the conflict with Lebanese group Hizbullah began last month.

    CIDI spokesman Nathan Bouscher also said two of the organizers of a Jewish pro-Israel rally last week received death threats. Phone messages included comments such as “Zionism is murder” and “Death to you dirty fascists”.

    Physical attacks

    One of the organizers was also physically assaulted on the street, most likely by the same man who threatened the two by phone. The pair reported the threats to the Dutch police.

    Commenting on the report, Hans van Baalen, MP for the Liberal VVD Party said: “It is time to act strongly against anti-Semitism. We are fooling ourselves if we think that anti-Semitism disappeared along with the Nazis.”

    He deplored that the Dutch authorities “are too indifferent.”

    Reprinted with permission of the European Jewish Press

    (08.07.06, 10:43)



    Meer lezen... | Score: 0

    News in English about the Netherlands WRR: Dutch must engage 'political Islam'
    Geplaatst door abby op Wednesday 19 April @ 04:16:12 GMT+1 (3178 maal gelezen)

    [Crazy Scientists?! - Abby]
    *************************

    Dutch must engage 'political Islam'
    by Michel Hoebink

    11-04-2006


     The Dutch authorities must work to establish good relations with the political aspects of Islam. That is the conclusion of a report by the Dutch Scientific Council for Government Policy (WRR). The report, which was presented this week to Dutch Foreign Minister Ben Bot, has been released at a time when the EU is also dealing with the problem of a Palestinian government led by Hamas.
     
    In recent years, a climate of fear and suspicion between the Muslim world and the west has led to distorted mutual perceptions. In this atmosphere, Islamic politics are often equated with the views and behaviour of anti-democratic and violent fundamentalists like Osama bin Laden. The WRR report argues that this image is unfair. Within Islam there are many more and varied political views.
     
    Fundamentalists
    Of course there are fundamentalists such as the Taliban and the followers of al-Qaeda, who advocate a literal interpretation of the Qu'ran and reject democracy and human rights. But Islamic politics also includes progressive movements and thinkers who emphasise the spirit rather than the letter of the Qu'ran and who often seek to justify democracy and human rights on the basis of Islam.
     
    The report also draws attention to the fact that, over the years, many Islamic activist movements have gone through a process of moderation. Movements like the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt who - in the 1970s - were still calling for a radical overthrow of the secular state. Today they act as normal political parties willing to cooperate with others within the limits of a democratic system.
     

     
    "The Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has become more moderate in recent years"

    Pure Islam
    This is not really new. But Dr Wendy Asbeek, one of the authors of the report, thinks that these facts need to be explained in the Netherlands today:  
    "In the Dutch media, we regularly hear opinion makers and experts claim that fundamentalist Islam is the only 'pure Islam'. This calls for a counter-discourse that shows the diversity and especially the dynamics of political Islam."What are the consequences of this analysis for Dutch government policies? The report calls for nothing less than a "paradigm shift". The Dutch authorities and also the EU must learn to view political aspects of Islam as a potential ally in their efforts to advance democracy and human rights in the Muslim world.
     
    Hamas
    The release of the report is timely because at the moment the Dutch government and the EU are wrestling with the question of how to deal with the Islamic movement Hamas, which won the Palestinian elections in January. Wendy Asbeek:  
    "The report will surely contribute to making cooperation with Hamas debatable. It is important to approach such movements pragmatically and to judge them on their deeds. We should have the courage to enter into dialogue." Thus far, European efforts to foster democracy in the Middle East have often been based on supporting non-religious, secular movements. According to the report, this policy has failed because such movements lack popular support. Progressive Islamic movements do enjoy popular support and therefore constitute much more attractive partners. For many Muslims, democratic reforms are much easier to accept if they are formulated from within their own religion and culture.
     
    Weakened
    It is not unlikely, however, that if western support is forthcoming to progressive Islamic movements - it will weaken the popular support that made them so attractive in the first place. The authors of the report are aware of this danger. Wendy Asbeek: 
    "The possibilities are limited. Besides  direct support, it is also possible to help create conditions under which progressive Islam can flourish. But at the end of the day, democratisation has to come from within these countries."

    ***********************
    Copied from:
    Radio Netherlands
    http://www.radionetherlands.nl/currentaffairs/isl060411

    More about the Nutty Professors on:
    NIS News Bulletin
    http://www.nisnews.nl/public/120406_1.htm


    Meer lezen... | Score: 0

    News in English about the Netherlands The Inner Tour - movie in Amsterdam 23-4-2006
    Geplaatst door abby op Monday 10 April @ 15:00:25 GMT+1 (1971 maal gelezen)

    Unique gathering of Israelis and Palestinians in the Netherlands

    (Bekijk de poster in pdf)

    We would hereby like to invite you to a very special movie night, organized by MeetingTheEnemy

    We will be showing the movie

    THE INNER TOUR


    Location:
    Studio 7 (1st Nassaustraat 7-bg (ground floor), Amsterdam)

    Date and time:
    Sunday evening, 23rd of april 2006, 19:00 (7pm)

    Synopsis:
    A group of Palestinian tourists, originally from the occupied West Bank, makes a three day bus tour through Israel in 2000, a land which is no longer familiar to them, but which still dominates their daily lives. Director Ra'anan Alexandrowicz follows them on their journey.

    After the presentation, we will have the opportunity to reflect on the film, as well as on all of the current and recent events involving the region. As usual, the evening wouldn't be complete without some tasty delicacies from the Middle East, so everyone is encouraged to bring treats.

    Directions:

    From Central Station: take busline 18 or 22 to Haarlemmerpoort. Go right over the bridge, then left, and then the 1st Nassaustraat on the right.
    Tramline 10: exit at Nassaukade, cross the bridge, turn right, first street on the left (parallel to the tram tracks).
    Tramline 3: exit at Nw.Willemsstraat, cross the bridge, turn right immediately, first street on the left.

    To sign up
    (or to request more information), mail to volkert{apestaartje}ncp.org
    The amount of seats is limited, so don't wait too long. We hope to see you all there!



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    News in English about the Netherlands Dutch Jews and Dutch Moroccan Muslims join to fight Dutch intolerance
    Geplaatst door abby op Wednesday 01 March @ 13:43:47 GMT+1 (1865 maal gelezen)

    AMSTERDAM - 28 February, 2006 (www.expatica.com

    Mayor Job Cohen launched a new organisation with representatives of the Jewish and Moroccan communities in Amsterdam on Monday.
    The founders said the 'Joods Marokkaans Netwerk Amsterdam' (JMNA) will strive to turn intolerance in society into a climate of respect.
    A demand has grown for dialogue within both the Jewish and Moroccan communities in the Dutch capital following several anti-Semitic incidents in recent years. The most high-profile was in 2003 when young Moroccans disrupted Remembrance Day in 2003.
    About 30 representatives from various organisations have come together to form the JMNA.
    The organisers hope it can combat expressions of anti-Semitic, Islamophobia and other forms of discrimination. Moreover, the JMNA, the founders say, will oppose the 'hardening' in Dutch society and the growth of the 'us and them' mindset.
    Members of the JMNA will spread the message of tolerance through their personal networks and contact with government agencies, the media and the business community. The group will also organise debates and educational courses.
    The JMNA intends to organise a trip to Morocco to study how Jews and Muslims there live together.



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    News in English about the Netherlands Dutch intolerance (Rabbi Soetendorp interview)
    Geplaatst door abby op Monday 27 February @ 21:50:31 GMT+1 (4407 maal gelezen)

    Editor's comment from JoodseInfo.Net: The following article, by H.D.S. Greenway of the Boston Globe and published last week in the International Herald Tribune, includes a detailed interview with Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp. Rabbi Soetendorp who lives in Den Haag, (The Hague), here in The Netherlands, is the founder of the Jewish Institute for Human Values. He is also known internationally for his unrelenting position with respect to interfaith dialogue between people of all religions.
    SPECIAL REPORT: Dutch intolerance
    By H.D.S. Greenway

    BERLIN- When it comes to welcoming immigrants, the Dutch have long been among the nicest guys in Europe.

    When the Jews were kicked out of Spain in 1492, the Dutch opened their doors to them when others didn't. When the Pilgrims were in trouble in England, the Dutch took them in before they sailed for America. In modern times, the ever-tolerant Dutch took in guest workers and asylum seekers, many of them from Muslim countries, and left them to their own devices.

    But now, as in other European countries with large Muslim populations, the Dutch are having second thoughts.

    The events of Sept. 11, 2001, were especially shocking because so many of the hijackers had lived in Europe. Could the Muslim minorities in Europe be a Trojan horse?

    Madrid and London had their terrorist bombings, but the trauma for Holland came with the 2004 murder of filmmaker Theo van Gogh by a young Dutch Moroccan who objected to a film van Gogh had made about Muslim mistreatment of women. How could this have happened in Holland, and by a thoroughly integrated young man who spoke fluent Dutch?

    After 9/11, and especially after the van Gogh murder, some Dutchmen began to say harsh things about their Muslim neighbors. Some mosques were vandalized. One of the first to defend the Muslims of Holland was Awraham Soetendorp, 63-year-old rabbi and founder of Holland's Jewish Institute for Human Values, who has done as much to reach out to Muslims as any cleric in Europe.

    I met Soetendorp at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland last month, and he told me that "when a mosque is attacked, all places of worship are attacked. When I hear slurs against Muslims I get the same nauseating feeling in the stomach as when I hear anti-Semitic remarks. I can feel a whole people and a religion of 1 billion people being stigmatized," he said. "We cannot commit that crime."

    Today, Soetendorp works tirelessly trying to bring Muslims, Christians, Jews - and Buddhists and Hindus, too - into interfaith dialogues, dialogues that used to be considered marginal, but "are now moving into the center," he says. Some say that such dialogues may be among the best defenses against the virus of extremism that has infected a tiny but dangerous sliver of Muslim youth in Europe.

    Some Muslims I have talked to believe they have something to learn from Jews, who for the most part are better organized in their dealings with governments, national and local, and have been more successful in gaining official recognition and space for their religion than Muslims.

    Apart from organizational skills, the Jews of Europe have something else to inspire Muslim immigrants.

    For 2,000 years, Jews have stubbornly maintained their faith and their community under tremendous pressure to assimilate into the broader Christian world. For that they paid a terrible price. Over the centuries, frightful persecutions and pogroms have afflicted the Jews of Europe, culminating in the unparalleled horrors of the 20th century. Yet they have hung onto their faith and their traditions.

    There is still anti-Semitism in Europe, some of it coming from Muslims agitated by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But organized state anti-Semitism is a thing of the past, and Muslims in Europe wish to emulate the status that Jews have achieved.

    As Soetendorp says: "The Jewish community has been established in the Netherlands since the 17th century, and, although it has not always been easy, the Jews have shown, on the whole, that they can keep their identity but remain good and loyal citizens of our country. The stronger you are in your own identity, the more open you are to others."

    This has resonance for European Muslims who want to keep their faith and traditions, and yet be loyal citizens, in the secular countries they now call home. For you can sense the pressure throughout Europe these days. Why don't these people assimilate? If they don't want to be like us, why do they come here?

    For Soetendorp, this kind of talk has dangerous echoes.

    Yes, Holland has been a tolerant country, he says, but in the early '40s when the Dutch were under occupation, all of a sudden too many Dutchmen became intolerant of the Jews among them.

    "God forbid" that there should be a major act of terrorism in Europe on the magnitude of 9/11, says Soetendorp. For if there is, he fears, innocent Muslims would become scapegoats and be ostracized as once were the Jews."

    H.D.S. Greenway's column appears regularly in The Boston Globe. The above article can also be read on the web site: www.iht.com/bin/print_ipub.php?file=/articles/2006/02/21/opinion/edgreen.php
    Received via joodseinfo.net - a free news and non political information service of www.joodseinfo.net


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    News in English about the Netherlands Dutch MPs to decide on burqa ban
    Geplaatst door abby op Friday 20 January @ 03:11:55 GMT+1 (1701 maal gelezen)

    By Mark Mardell
    Europe editor, BBC News, Brussels

    The Dutch Parliament has already voted in favour of a proposed ban
    The Dutch government will announce over the next few weeks whether it will make it a crime to wear traditional Islamic dress which covers the face apart from the eyes.

    The Dutch parliament has already voted in favour of a proposal to ban the burqa outside the home, and some in the government have thrown their weight behind it.

    There are only about 50 women in all of the Netherlands who do cover up entirely - but soon they could be breaking the law.

    Dutch MP Geert Wilders is the man who first suggested the idea of a ban.

    "It's a medieval symbol, a symbol against women," he says.

    "We don't want women to be ashamed to show who they are. Even if you have decided yourself to do that, you should not do it in Holland, because we want you to be integrated, assimilated into Dutch society. If people cannot see who you are, or see one inch of your body or your face, I believe this is not the way to integrate into our society."

    'Identifiable'

    I interviewed Mr Wilders inside parliament after several security checks. Two tough bodyguards stood close by throughout. This country, once the epitome of easy-going liberalism, is edgier, less tolerant these days.

    Theo Van Gogh was a well-known critic of fundamentalist Islam
    Mr Wilders' name was included on a list of "infidels, who deserved to be slaughtered", which was found pinned to the body of filmmaker Theo Van Gogh.

    Van Gogh was murdered two years ago for making the film about women and Islam called "Submission". It starts with a shot of a woman's face covered by a burqa. Slowly the camera shows that, from the neck downwards, she's naked but for a thin veil.

    Mr Wilders has explicitly linked his wish for a burqa ban with terrorism.

    "We have problems with a growing minority of Muslims who tend to have sympathy with the Islamo-fascistic concept of radical Islam," says Mr Wilders.

    "That's also a reason why everybody should be identifiable when they walk on the street or go to a pub or go into a restaurant or whatsoever."

    'Freedom of choice'

    Famala Aslam is a Muslim lawyer who has represented women who have stopped wearing the burqa while training as child-care assistants. She would not cover her face herself, but does wear a traditional dress and headscarf from eastern Turkey.

    She showed me how that can be adapted.

    Banning or isolating a certain group of the population is just asking for problems
    Famala Aslam, Muslim lawyer
    "Other women are stricter; and they hide the face - you can only see the eyes," she says. "And other women choose to wear the niqab, and they veil the face totally."

    I asked her what she would say to people who would say: "If you want to fit into the West, live here, wear a business suit; wear jeans - don't wear what you're wearing. Don't wear a niqab."

    Ms Aslam says she believes that the freedom of choice and the freedom of religion is something that people need to fight for.

    In the city of Maaseik, in Belgium - which lies a few hundred yards from the Dutch border - a ban on wearing the niqab is already in place. Mayor Jan Creemers said he brought it forward because old people were afraid and children cried when women started appearing in long black robes with their faces covered.

    Belgium ban

    Women can now be fined 150 euros (£102) if they are found to be wearing the niqab.

    "There were six ladies who wore the niqab. I think two or three weeks after the council passed this law, five have dropped it," says Mr Creemers. "One lady is still wearing it but the last step in the procedure will be that she must go to jail."

    The husband of the woman who defies the ban is being held in connection with the Madrid bombings. But the police here are not too happy with the ban. They say it has made relations with the Moroccan community worse and gives young people a reason to resent society.

    Ms Aslam says if the ban becomes law in the Netherlands, some women will adopt the veil as a political statement.

    "A lot of women are not fully feeling like Muslims," she says. "But because of the public opinion, they are feeling like: 'I have to be a Muslim'. And banning or isolating a certain group of the population is just asking for problems."

    The Dutch government will soon decide whether to ban the burqa. Perhaps it will not become illegal in this marketplace or in the street. But they are likely to ban it in public places like stations, airports and cinemas - something many Muslims will regard as provocation in a Europe increasingly uncertain of its own identity.


    Article copied from the BBC website at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4616664.stm
    (with thanks to JoodseInfo.Net and Icare)


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    News in English about the Netherlands November 9, 2005 - International Day Against Fascism and Antisemitism
    Geplaatst door abby op Tuesday 08 November @ 03:57:37 GMT+1 (1569 maal gelezen)

    AMSTERDAM - November 7, 2005 - In Germany on 13 February 2005 thousands of Nazis and right-wing extremists met, abusing the commemoration of the bombing of Dresden. This was the biggest demonstration of right-wing extremists in the history of the Federal Republic of Germany.
    Unfortunately this is not the only example. All over Europe, fascist organisations abused the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the end of the 2nd World War. During meetings they also had the chance to spread fascist ideology and to demonstrate strength in a legitimised way.
    The victims of the war that were commemorated at such events did not include any Jews, Roma, homosexuals or disabled.
    Fascist organisations aim to rehabilitate racism and National Socialist ideology. Denying the Holocaust is one of the most dangerous tools that fascist propaganda uses.
    Through distortion, invention, misquotation, manipulation and mistranslation self-appointed 'revisionists' try to prove that the Holocaust is something that never happened. In public, these 'revisionists' pretend to be serious scientists with only deviating opinions and often they are believed and given podium.
    The crimes against the Jews are minimised and denied, in particular the mass extermination of Jews in the gas chambers of the extermination camps. They claim that there is no evidence that gas chambers really existed.
    Some even claim the Holocaust did not happen because there was no single, systematic 'master plan' for the extermination of the Jews. Some even blame the Jews themselves to be responsible, or the Holocaust to be just a big lie made possible through Jewish conspiracy. In the minds of many Nazis and right-wing extremists the war crimes committed by the Allied Forces were as bad as the war crimes of the Germans.
    During the commemoration events of the end of WWII fascists did not refrain from using those unacceptable statements.
    But not only fascists make use of antisemitism as a focus for their hatred. Antisemitism as well as racism, xenophobia and discrimination of minorities are on the rise in Europe. In France for example racist and antisemitic violence nearly doubled in 2004, hitting its highest level in a decade and this growth is showing no sign of slowing down. These are reasons to be concerned.
    Each year around 9 November the UNITED network http://www.unitedagainstracism.org organises a European-wide campaign to commemorate the "Kristallnacht" pogrom, to protest against intolerance and to build a better future of tolerance and respect.
     
    The strength of UNITED campaigns is that the diversity of the European movement against racism, fascism and intolerance takes part in a common action.
    There are many different approaches and philosophies, different methods and ways, but one common vision of intercultural understanding and peace.
    UNITED campaigns generate publicity and mobilise people but they are also a unique opportunity to inspire each other and to learn from each other's experiences. As a sign of reconciliation and mutual understanding different groups commemorate the 'Kristallnacht' pogrom together. Eye-witnesses tell about their experiences to young activists, youth groups take the occasion to develop models of responsible and progressive commemoration of the Holocaust.
    UNITED against fascism and antisemitism, Jews and Roma groups organise joint commemorations and Christian groups cooperate with gay organisations. Together we want to highlight the danger of discrimination, racism and division and we stand together for peace and understanding.
    The variety and creativity of many simultaneous activities on different levels all over Europe make the campaign successful.

    A list of activities taking place in your country is available on the web site:


    Meer lezen... | Score: 0

    News in English about the Netherlands Islamic Radicalism in The Netherlands at Odds with Dutch Liberal Traditions
    Geplaatst door abby op Friday 04 November @ 22:22:17 GMT+1 (1422 maal gelezen)

    By Jeff Swicord
    Amsterdam
    02 November 2005
     
    Holland is known for its social tolerance. It has legalized gay marriage, prostitution, euthanasia and marijuana. But many people in the country seem to draw the line when it comes to radical Islamists.


    November 2, 2004:  Dutch filmmaker Theo Van Gogh is brutally murdered on an Amsterdam street. 

    His murderer, 26-year-old Mohammed Bouyeri, was angered by Van Gogh's film "Submission" about violence against women in Islamic societies.  The murder would turn the traditionally tolerant Dutch against Holland's one million-strong Islamic community. 

    Geert Wilders is a conservative member of the Dutch parliament. "I believe that we have ignored for political correctness -- wrong reasons of political correctness -- the problems that we have with radical Islam for too long." 

    Holland, like most industrialized countries in Europe, began to import labor during the economic expansion of the 1960s and 70s.  Most immigrants came from the Islamic countries of Turkey and Morocco.  Initially, the Dutch expected the workers to leave one day.  But many stayed, became Dutch citizens, and raised their families here. 

    Holland became one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Europe.  But in recent years, tension between liberal Dutch society and the more conservative Islamic community began to boil over in a string of violent events, which culminated in the Van Gogh murder. 

    In the aftermath of the bombings in Madrid and London, many in Europe have second thoughts about the causes of radical Islamist violence.

    "We are not tolerant.  Tolerance is a myth.  This is how we sell ourselves to the foreigners."  So says Stan van Houck, an author who was a Dutch radio journalist for 30 years.  He says Holland has no history of multiculturalism.  And what we are seeing now are the growing pains of Dutch society coming to terms with its multi-ethnic, multi-religious future.

    "Here in Holland we call people who are second or third generation Moroccan or Turkish, who have the Dutch nationality, we call them "allochtoon," says Mr. van Houck. “Meaning, they don't belong here, more or less.  Which is absurd because they are a part of the Dutch society.  It also shows a mentally that we were not prepared for a multicultural society and we didn't accept it also."

    The lack of acceptance is seen in the job market.  According to a recent study Turkish and Moroccan job applicants were far less likely to be hired than their Dutch counterparts, even when they were more qualified. The official unemployment rate is 4.5 percent.  But among Turks and Moroccans, it is more than 16 percent.

    According to Fatih Dag, Chairman of the Eaisofiah Turkish Mosque in Amsterdam, that type of overt discrimination marginalizes Muslims and drives young men to the more radical Islamist elements.

    "Many of these guys are very marginalized young men.  They have totally failed in society. They have nothing.  For them it is very attractive to get radicalized."

    Mr. van Houck adds, "They radicalize here because of the fact that they don't have hope.  They don't have hope and they don't have expectations." 

    Parlimentarian Geert Wilders, known for his controversial views, disagrees.  He says the problem is not a social issue it is simply hate.

    "It is an illusion to think that if the integration will be successful, that there will be any change in the radicalism of Islam,” he said. “The amount of terrorism in the Netherlands, there is unfortunately no connection at all.  There is only hate in the hands of the radical Islamists."

    Faut Eacas, Imam of the Eaisofiah Mosque says radicalization is also a backlash against what is going on in the broader Islamic world.

    "Look at what is happening in some of the Islamic countries,” the imam told us. “For example Iraq, Palestine, and Chechnya.  People are influenced by incidents there.  And also for the fact that they are not able to do something for their brothers. And they think that killing somebody here they can solve the problem."

    "I also don't believe in the theory of some people that it is because of some problems in the Middle East,” says Geert Wilders. “Whether it is the U.S. or Dutch participation in Iraq or the Dutch friendship with Israel.  Or the Israeli-Palestinan conflict.  I mean, you see a lot of theories about why people would get furious with the Dutch.  This is not at all the case."

    A backlash against Islamic culture is brewing in the Dutch parliament.  A proposal backed by right-wing parties is expected to make the Netherlands the first country in Europe to ban the Burka.  Muslim groups insist that only a few dozen women in the Netherlands wear the Burka.  They say the ban is just a distraction that will only add to the already tense cultural climate. 


    The above report was published on the web site: http://www.voanews.com/english/2005-11-02-voa65.cfm


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    News in English about the Netherlands Powerful New Documentary Exposes European Antisemitism
    Geplaatst door abby op Sunday 30 October @ 19:36:53 GMT+1 (2234 maal gelezen)

    October 27, 2005
    Dear Wiesenthal Center Supporter,

    I wrote to you earlier this year while we were in production of our new film, Ever  Again. Just completed, this powerful, new documentary, narrated by Academy  Award™ winning actor/director, Kevin Costner, presents the frightening reality of what is happening to Jews in Europe today.

    Perhaps it was only appropriate that Ever Again had its world premiere in Los Angeles, the very same day that Simon Wiesenthal passed away. While filming, everywhere I turned, I discovered the words of Mr. Wiesenthal ringing true, "I never thought that I would live to see such hatred of Jews again in my lifetime."

    In England, France, Holland, Belgium, and Germany, my crew interviewed victims of the new antisemitism, government officials, and Jewish community leaders. Chilling  perspectives were provided by those who blame the world’s problems on the Jews - the inciters and perpetrators of antisemitic acts including physical attacks, firebombings of synagogues and Jewish community centers, and the vandalism of Jewish homes and businesses. Undercover crews captured explosive new material in interviews with both Islamic fundamentalists and neo-Nazis.

    But, we need your help. Your support can ensure that Ever Again is seen by those who can effect change: the lawmakers, politicians, cultural leaders, educators, media, religious authorities and others. This film and its critical message must be seen by people everywhere.
    By partnering with us, we will be able to distribute and screen the film throughout Europe and the Americas - in Parliaments, at the European Union, the Council of Europe, to the Jewish world and other faith communities, as well as on  television so that millions of people will be alerted to this growing danger.

    As you know, the Wiesenthal Center has been on the frontlines combating the resurgence of antisemitic violence and rhetoric directed against Europe's Jews. While filming, we witnessed this virulent hatred first-hand. What we discovered was frightening and shocking:

    • Public school teachers in the Netherlands and France fear teaching the Holocaust because of threats made by Moslem students and their parents.
    • Jewish men who wear yarmulkes or women who wear head coverings or religious jewelry are verbally and sometimes physically assaulted on a regular basis.
    • Neo-Nazi skinheads have been taking over government-funded youth centers in Holland because officials no longer think they are a threat.
    • Islamist ideology and preachers in major cities like London, Paris, Brussels and Amsterdam continue to fuel antisemitic hate and violence.
    • Neo-Nazi rallies and skinhead concerts are drawing increasing numbers of youth in Germany, Belgium and France.
    Timely and incisive points of view are provided by French Interior Minister, Nicolas Sarkozy; British Member of Parliament, Louise Ellman; Harvard University Law Professor, Alan Dershowitz; Dr. Judea Pearl, father of murdered Wall Street Journalist Daniel Pearl; Ziaddin Sardur, a leading moderate Moslem intellectual and author; and Center Founder and Dean, Rabbi Marvin Hier.

    Years ago, Simon Wiesenthal expressed the fear that we would "repeat the old mistakes under new conditions." We must fight back today. We simply cannot afford to stand by while antisemitism and other forms of bigotry take root in Europe again.


    Sincerely,

    Richard Trank
    Producer, Moriah Films



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