Going Native

I wrote yesterday about the Dutch ambassador to Indonesia and his vigorous defense of Islam rather than his own country during an appearance at an local madrassa.

Today our Flemish correspondent VH sends some additional information about Koos van Dam and his stance towards Islam, Geert Wilders, and the PVV. It seems that the ambassador “went native” a long time ago:

The Dutch ambassador has been anti-Israel for ages, and also had contact with the PLO in the early seventies while it was forbidden by the government.

In the Indonesian press he defends Islam and “dialogue”, instead of freedom of speech. He ridicules Wilders as representing only a minor party, and as someone who finds hardly any support for his “polarizing” views. According to him, Wilders made the film to gain “domestic political support” (“untuk meraih dukungan politik dalam negeri”).

Moreover, he even supported the ban on Fitna and the persona non grata issue:

– – – – – – – –

April 7, 2008

Speech by the Netherlands’ Ambassador (Nikolaos [Koos] van Dam) at a dialogue with Islamic Parties and Organisations at the Muhammadiyah on the film Fitna

Dear Professor Din Syamsuddin, Dear Dr. Hedayat Nur Wahid, Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen,


“As I already said, we [governments of Indonesia and the Netherlands] have the same opinion about this movie and the way we should respect each other. We both sharply reject this movie. In this regards, I would also like to thank His Excellency the President of the Republic of Indonesia, Dr Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono for his statement on this movie and his appeal to all Indonesians to abide by the law and react within the confines of the law.” [emphasis added]

The statement he refers to:

April 1, 2008

“Indonesia has banned a controversial film made by a Dutch MP which accuses Islam of inspiring violence.” […] “President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono said Geert Wilders, leader of the Dutch right-wing Freedom Party (PVV), would be barred from the archipelago.” [emphasis added]

Just to give you an idea: the ambassador once called the desire of the Arabs to chase all Jews into the sea as “an authentic effort” [Interview Volkskrant, 14 August 1998]

Mon Dieu.

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