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Support Of Dutch Parliamentarian Geert Wilders For His Right To Free Speech

He Exposed Dangers Of Radical Islam

The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) has announced its strong support for Geert Wilders, the Dutch Parliamentarian who is being criminally prosecuted in Holland for producing the short film “Fitna,” which documents the dangers of radical Islam. An appellate court in Amsterdam has ordered the prosecution of Wilders for allegedly inciting anti-Muslim hatred. Wilders faces prison if convicted of the charges against him.

“Fitna,” which is only about 15 minutes long, packs a powerful wallop for such a short film, but does so because its shocking content is entirely factual. The film quotes specific Koranic verses and intersperses them with actual footage of Islamic clerics exhorting Muslims to commit violence against non-believers, including the murder of Jews, of Muslim crowds screaming at hate-filled rallies, and of graphic acts of violence committed by Muslims in compliance with the Koranic verses that were quoted. The Muslim community in the Netherlands has vehemently objected to “Fitna,” not because the film is inaccurate in any way, but merely because the documentary footage reveals radical Islam in a harsh and honest light.

Wilders, who has been a member of the Dutch Parliament since 1998, is an outspoken advocate of taking steps to prevent the growing threat of Islamic jihad in Europe. As a result, Wilders has been the object of numerous death threats, and for several years has required round-the-clock security to prevent his assassination.

Wilders is also a steadfast friend of Israel, and has visited the Jewish State more than 40 times in his adult life. As recently as December of 2008, Wilders was a featured speaker at an anti-jihad conference held at the Menachem Begin Center in Jerusalem that was sponsored by Israeli Knesset Member Arieh Eldad. At that conference, Wilders spoke emphatically of the importance of Israel as the West’s front-line of defense against Islamic jihad. Among other pro-Israel statements, Wilders said:

“Israel is simply receiving the blows that are meant for all of us. If there would have been no Israel, Islamic imperialism would have found other places to release its energy and its desire for conquest.

Therefore, the war against Israel is not a war against Israel. It is a war against the West. It is jihad. Thanks to Israeli parents who see their children go off to the army and lie awake at night, parents in Europe and America can sleep well and have pleasant dreams, unaware of the dangers looming.”

ZOA President Morton A. Klein called on other Jewish leaders in the United States and in Israel, as well as the U.S. Administration and Congress, to express their outrage to the Dutch government for prosecuting Wilders. “The right to free speech is being violated. The criminal prosecution of a courageous political figure and defender of

freedom like Geert Wilders for expressing his opinion on a matter of public importance is a blatant assault on our fundamental democratic values,” said Klein.

ZOA Vice-Chairman Steven M. Goldberg added, “It’s an abomination that Geert Wilders would face prison for simply telling the truth about Islamic jihad. Wilders is a friend of Israel and the Jewish people, and it is incumbent on us to return his friendship in his hour of need. We must not remain silent.”

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