A while back I asked our Danish correspondent TB a question, and he’s been pondering the matter since then. Now he has finally delivered his answer:
I remember that you once asked me what made the Danes different in this current battle against the Islamic ideology. I have been wondering about it ever since. One could (as has been done before), when comparing Denmark to many of our neighbors, find lots of possible reasons for it.
We have great debaters like Lars Hedegaard, Helle Merete Brix, Flemming Rose, Ralf Pittelkow, Farshad Kholgi and many more. We have some great blogs like Snaphanen, Uriasposten and Hodja’s Blog. Relatively recently the Danes experienced the threat from totalitarian ideologies like Communism and Nazism. During WW2 we were blessed with some brave soldiers like Anders Lassen, and heroic freedom fighters like Bent Faurschou-Hviid (The Torch) and Jørgen Schmith (The Lemon), and others.
But most countries have their heroes and their intellectuals who dominate the mental heritage and ongoing debate about what is going on in society. So what is the explanation for Denmark’s current and unexpected lead in today’s fight?
Besides the Motoon affair which opened the eyes of the broader population (whether they want to admit it or not), one of the most important thing is that the critics of Islam are well represented in Parliament. We have brave politicians who are not afraid to call things for what they are. Here I could mention Pia Kjærsgaard, Karen Jespersen, Søren Espersen, Søren Krarup, Jesper Langballe, Naser Khader, Morten Messerschmidt and others. These people are now supported by many voters and their presence in Parliament is crucial if we want to keep any kind of hope to get out of this misery alive.
So the question is: How did they manage to get into Parliament? I mean, if you look at Sweden, for example, you will not find a single Islam-critical voice in the Riksdagen. No single voice in the Swedish parliament is raising any kind of criticism against the way the government is ruling their country. Leading them directly into Dante’s Inferno. And if anybody as much as tries to do it they will be out of a job and social recognition immediately.
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So again: how did Islam-critical politicians manage to get into the Danish parliament in such massive numbers? It is not difficult to understand how Karen Jespersen and Naser Khader became MP’s. Both are very likeable persons. And both have never been associated with DPP [Danish People’s Party, Dansk Folkeparti].
But what about the rest and most important bunch? The group of people who comprised the outcasts, saying all the despicable things that “good people” just don’t say. The group of people who have done all the hard work and thereby constituted a windbreak for all the others. How did they get in?
In my opinion there is only one person that we can thank for this. This person died recently and he was indeed controversial. He was a fool and an intellectual giant at the same time. His name was Mogens Glistrup and he led his party, Fremskridtspartiet, into Parliament back in the 1970s by, among other things, comparing tax evaders to the freedom fighters from WW2. He received 16% of the vote in his first election and made history.
Later he went to prison for tax evasion and his party started to disintegrate. But when Glistrup was released he started warning against the immigration of Muslims because of the new liberal laws. He knew what Islam was all about.
Of course he was accused of racism but he did not give a damn. I remember him from TV answering his wife, who in a documentary told him that his way of expressing himself was probably not the best, with the words: “It is not my assignment to say things that sound good. My mission is to warn the Danes. The Danes need to wake up.”
The rest of Glistrup’s political life was a disaster but his heritage is not. He prepared the ground for the DPP and thereby for a lot of tough people. Pia Kjærsgaard took over power when he went to prison and later renamed the party the Danish Peoples Party.
For more information about Mogens Glistrup and related matters, TB sent a couple of links for material he didn’t have time to translate.
First, an op-ed Glistrup wrote in 1991.
Secondly, an article by Søren Krarup entitled “King and People — and the Constitution” from yesterday’s Jyllands-Posten.