On May 18-20, 2010, the 37th Council of Foreign Ministers for the Organization of the Islamic Conference met in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.
One of the most important items on the ministers’ agenda was the creation of the Third OIC Observatory Report on Islamophobia (download the pdf here). As you may recall, the OIC launched the Islamophobia Observatory back in 2007, and my, how time flies! We’re already up to the third report.
The document is 74 pages long, and not all that easy to wade through. I’ll undertake a more thorough analysis when I have time, and just touch on a few highlights here.
I would have been mortified if we had been left out this important survey of Islamophobia, and, sure enough, there we are on page 50, in the illustrious company of Pamela Geller and Paul Belien. Regular readers of LGF will remember when Charles Johnson pounced all over this one:
xiii) Belgium: Fascist Summit Meeting Held — on February 24 some European far right groups met in a VB-sponsored event in the Belgian city of Ghent featuring Frank Vanhecke of the Vlaams Belang (a European party promoted by “anti-jihad” bloggers such as Pamela Geller, Gates of Vienna, and Brussels Journal), Nick Griffin of the BNP (British National Party), Bruno Gollnisch of the National Front, and Andreas Molzer of the Austrian FPO.
And, in fact, the OIC has once again cited Charles Johnson as a resource for this item.
Many other “Islamophobes” are highlighted in the report. As one would expect, Geert Wilders features prominently, and is mentioned no fewer than fifteen times in its pages:
The anti Muslim campaign of Geert Wilders was emulated by other right wing extremist politicians in Europe to gain political support. Incidents under the following categories increased:
a) Incidents related to mosques by 100%. b) Desecration of Muslim graves by75%. c) Incidents related to hijab and burqah by 500%. d) Political and social campaigns against Islam and Muslims by five times. e) Intolerance against Islamic sacred symbols by more than 100%. f) Discrimination against Muslims in education, workplace, airports, etc. by100%. [Page 2; wacky italicization in the original]
The Swiss minaret ban also earns some serious attention, as do Islamophobic churches and citizens’ groups all over the USA.
However, there is not a single reference to the English Defence League in the entire document. This is surprising, since the EDL had already become quite prominent by the time the report was put together, with several well-publicized demonstrations to its credit. Perhaps there was a lag time in the preparation of the material. Or was the EDL simply not Islamophobic enough to earn the OIC’s attention?
The most interesting part of the report is at the end of the main report (pp. 30-32), when the authors draw their conclusions and make their recommendations. I’ll list the eighteen conclusions below, mark the interesting clauses, and add a few observations of my own:
a) It is of foremost importance to recognize and acknowledge the problem of Islamophobia as well as discrimination and intolerance in terms of its historical, cultural and psychological depth and develop the essential willingness to adopt a multifaceted approach towards finding solutions.
The most important task for the OIC is to continue repeating the spurious equivalence between “Islamophobia” and “discrimination and intolerance”. They keep pounding away at this theme until non-Muslims have heard it so many times that it becomes one of the premises of the argument, rather than a false conclusion.
In this regard, a “multifaceted approach” means all the different tactics that Islam customarily employs to cow and intimidate the infidel. Examples include:
– – – – – – – – –
- Accusations of “racism”
- Abuse of social welfare programs
- The teaching of Islamic history and culture in schools using Saudi-approved textbooks
- Endowment of more schools of Middle Eastern Studies in major Western Universities
- Repeated public initiatives to force the media to provide “balance” when reporting Muslim issues
- Attempts to restrict the lexicon used in public discourse about Islam, forcing the omission of words like “jihad”, “terrorist”, “Wahhabism”, “dhimmi”, etc.
- Carefully staged public demonstrations (often with the explicit or implicit threat of violence)
- Occasional outbreaks of violent mayhem to underline the above point
- Lawfare — the abuse of the legal system through the filing of expensive civil suits against those who criticize Islam
- Hate speech prosecutions, carried out with the co-operation and assistance of useful idiots on the Left
- The building of more mosques and community centers in as many places as possible
- Agitation for special rights for Muslims — halal food, footbaths, separate swimming for men and women, prayer breaks at work, toilets that face Mecca, no public eating during Ramadan, etc., etc.
- Introduction of legislation to codify various (apparently innocuous) aspects of sharia in local or national law
- Resistance to and sabotage of any efforts to reduce or restrict immigration
Expect to see more of the above tactics employed with increasing frequency between now and the fourth report on Islamophobia.
b) There is also a need for an intellectual and ethical strategy to avoid political exploitation of the issues related to discrimination and intolerance.
In other words: “We must subvert any attempts by non-Muslims to resist the implementation of any portion of our agenda.”
c) Discrimination and intolerance against Muslims is not only a matter of discrimination against a specific religious group, but it also deeply affects international relations as well as the internal stability of Western societies. As such, it is a multifaceted question and must be addressed through a holistic approach.
Once again, this is the implicit threat of violence, which is always present when any Muslim organization discusses the rights of Muslims in non-Muslim societies. “Give in to our demands, or you will have trouble with OPEC, face more terrorism originating from the Muslim world, and experience rioting, rape, arson, and looting in your own countries.”
d) Various forms of intolerance and discrimination need not be subject to an artificial hierarchy. Within this framework, there should be complementarity between efforts dealing with different forms of discrimination.
e) The quality of life of Muslim minorities — particularly those living in Western societies — must be improved. This will lead to better understanding and integration leading to a lessening of mutual mistrust.
“We need more jizyah payments. If you meet our demands, we will not riot and burn things.”
f) Muslim minorities should not be seen as second class citizens, must not be demonized, marginalized, feared or despised.
“Muslims must be seen as the superior class, with special privileges. Infidels should be rightfully recognized as their inferiors, as specified in the holy Qur’an.”
g) The war on terror must not become a war on Muslims.
In other words, the OIC insists that we must never, ever look who is committing terrorist acts, nor what their motivations are. Terrorist acts are either the result of poverty, or misunderstanding, or racism; or they are simply inexplicable random tragedies, like tornadoes and earthquakes.
h) It should be recognized that Muslims have the same basic needs and desires as others, which are material well-being, cultural acceptance and religious freedom, without political or social intimidation. In that vein, Muslim should not be marginalized or attempted to be assimilated, but should be accommodated. Accommodation is the best strategy for integration.
This is the core of the matter. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has made it quite clear: there will be no assimilation of Muslims in Western societies. The demand for assimilation is a form of racism.
Notice that even the weak-dishwater second line of European multicultural defense — integration — is not included here. “Integration” is multi-speak for accepting foreigners into our countries without requiring them to learn our language, adopt our cultural practices, or abide by most of our laws. “Integration” has created Little Peshawars and Turktowns and Little Somalias all over Western Europe.
But even integration is not good enough. Only “accommodation” will do, and accommodation requires infidels to change their own practices to accord with Muslim restrictions, and adjust their law and official policy accordingly.
In a word: “accommodation” means submission.
i) Everybody and especially policy makers and opinion leaders must speak out swiftly, clearly and forcefully against Islamophobia, intolerance, discrimination and any manifestation of racism against Muslims. By doing so, they will be helping to protect their fellow citizens from hate-filled segments of society. They must also condemn those who discriminate in word or in action. Authorities in this respect have a special OIC-CS-3rd OBS-REP-Final-April, 2010 — 31 — responsibility to protect their citizens. They must see to it that tolerance and nondiscrimination are not in short supply.
In other words, infidels must adhere to sharia definition of “slander against Islam”, as outlined in the Koran and the hadith and implemented in the fiqh.
It will be impossible for Western governments to comply with this demand without instituting at least a partial version of sharia in their countries. Nevertheless, many Western leaders are all too eager to accommodate their restive Muslim citizens on this issue, and some countries (and the EU itself) have already implemented a version of it.
j) Declaratory statements are needed and are welcome, but are not enough. All concerned must put into practice what they preach. In other words, they must not only share the same basic values, they must also act in line with this conviction.
k) In this context, it has to be recognized that ethnic and religious identity is but only one element of societal structures and political cultures. On the other hand, the concept of identity is not static, but is changeable according to circumstances, as their content or the meaning attributed to them is subject to constant new evaluation and evolution.
“We get to change the rules whenever we want, and you still must do as we say.”
l) Uttering of matter that is grossly abusive or insulting in relation to matters held sacred by any religion and likely to cause outrage among a substantial number of the adherents of that religion should be prohibited by law.
m) Legal prohibitions must be enacted on publication of material that negatively stereotypes, insults, or uses offensive language on matters regarded by followers of any religion or belief as sacred or inherent to their dignity as human beings, with a view to protecting their fundamental human rights.
n) Public insults and defamation of religions, public incitement to violence, threat against a person or a grouping of persons on the ground of their race, colour, language, religion, nationality, or national or ethnic origin should be legally prohibited.
“Forget free speech. Forget the First Amendment. You now live under the strictures of sharia — get used to it.”
o) Adequate protection against acts of hatred, discrimination, intimidation and coercion resulting from defamation of religious, and incitement to religious hatred in general, should be provide in the national legal and constitutional systems in addition to taking all possible measures to promote tolerance and respect for all religions and beliefs.
The above sounds as if the OIC is willing to accord the same respect towards other religions that it demands for Islam, but don’t be fooled: this is a smokescreen.
The fixed and unchangeable rules laid down in Islamic scripture and codified in sharia law require discrimination and intolerance towards the practice of any religion but Islam.
Therefore, in this context “respect for the religious beliefs” of Muslims can only mean that Muslims must be allowed to oppress, intimidate, harass, subjugate, and, yes, discriminate against all other religions.
It’s in the Koran. Interfering with their right to do this is an intolerable restriction on their freedom of religion.
p) All forms of discrimination on the grounds of race, ethnicity, and religion should be condemned, combated and prohibit by law, at both the national as well as the international levels.
“We will be pushing for sharia in your national legislatures as well as the UN.”
q) A more accurate assessment of Muslims-particularly in the West-should abandon the false precept of a monolithic Islam. Instead it should focus on the multiplicity of cultures belonging to Muslims around the world, and highlight results from surveys which regularly point to the important role played in an individual’s relationship to Islam by acculturation, secularization, and individualization.
“Once again, Islam means whatever we say it means. We get to change the rules whenever we want.”
r) To more effectively address critical issues of religious [discrimination], a more ad hoc, a rapid response mechanism must be initiated. Modern technology and communications can be used as a more powerful tool for major religious leaders and organizations of all faiths. They need more initiatives to join together, condemning all forms of discrimination, intolerance and oppression against ethnic and religious minorities. Together they can speak out whenever and wherever abuses occur, whether it be their own religion or government or someone else’s that is the oppressor or the victim.
“You must crack down on Islamophobia on the internet and talk radio.”
After its conclusions, the report adds this:
The Observatory would also like to draw attention to some important recommendations contained in reports from European Institute for Fundamental Rights Agency (EFRA) and Open Society Institute (OSI) that form annexes to this report.
It is also essential to underline the importance of the following aspects in the context of public discourse related to Muslims and Islam:
a) Political rhetoric: Responsible politicians, both of the government and of the opposition, must underline the importance of correct and unbiased discourse and should also refrain from hate speech and other manifestations of extremism and discrimination. A message of encouraging tolerance, non-discrimination, understanding and respect for all must be voiced.
b) The media: The media can play a very positive role in promoting inter-cultural and interreligious dialogue, understanding and harmony. This is what is expected from responsible journalism. On the other hand, the media may also play a very negative and divisive role in projecting wrong and inaccurate messages. Therefore, with due respect to the freedom of expression, governments can assist or encourage creation of selfregulatory media bodies to deal with manifestations of discrimination and racism. The media, on the other hand, should conduct its functions in a responsible manner.
This makes it clear that the OIC will accept nothing short of full accommodation. Politicians and statesmen must censor themselves so that they display not the slightest hint of intolerance or disrespect for Islam.
Geert Wilders, are you listening?
And the media must censor themselves, or else expect government bodies to censor them if they do not. There is only the briefest nod towards freedom of expression, because freedom of expression has an entirely different meaning in Islam: You can say whatever you want, provided that your words accord completely with the tenets of Islamic law, as handed down to Allah through his prophet and written in the Koran.
Any speech which violates these rules is blasphemous, and must be punished accordingly.
If you think all this blather represents nothing more than the orotund bloviations of Islamic functionaries, and can be safely ignored, think again: the OIC is an official body that claims to represent the entire Ummah, and the fifty-seven nations which make up its membership have recognized this relationship via international treaty. The OIC speaks officially for the heads of state of the countries it represents.
Furthermore, the OIC is officially recognized by the United Nations as an international body that represents Islam, and its member states exert an overwhelming influence on the deliberations of the General Assembly.
This means that the OIC will push harder and harder at the UN to get its agenda implemented. The UN has already passed many odious resolutions against “Islamophobia” that mandate “respect for all religions, especially Islam”. The administration of Barack Hussein Obama allowed one of the most recent examples to pass without a murmur of objection.
If you’re a European, remember the reverence with which UN is regarded by your functionaries in Brussels. UN resolutions routinely form the framework for laws and regulations laid down by the bureaucrats of the EU and forced upon individual European countries.
In other words, this report and all the other official pronouncements of the OIC matter very much to all of us infidels. They will eventually trickle down through the maze of NGOs and international bureaucracies and be implemented in our own countries.
No one can say we weren’t warned: the plans are all out there in the public record where everyone can read them.
We disregard them at our peril.
Previous posts about Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu and the OIC: