Ever since Theo van Gogh was assassinated in 2004, Geert Wilders has lived under continuous security protection provided by the Dutch state. Because Mr. Wilders dares to say things the establishment disapproves of, various lefties have occasionally called for the removal of his security detail as a way to silence the annoying nationalist politician.
Paul Cliteur Column: The Removal of Security for Geert Wilders
One of the recurring themes around Salman Rushdie or, in the Netherlands, Geert Wilders, is their public security. Rushdie and Wilders must be protected against jihadist murderers due to the things they have said about Islam. Jihadists conclude from criticism or satire of Islam that these critics must be killed. After all, whoever insults God deserves the death penalty. If the death penalty is not imposed by the State, then the believers should “assume their responsibility.”
Khomeini urged this against Rushdie in 1989, and with some regularity, people also in the Netherlands have been arrested with the mission of silencing Geert Wilders via a murder assignment.
Some people find the above sober presentation of the facts intolerable. They don’t want to focus on the murder contract, rather on what is said by the intended victim. Was that really necessary? Such a satirical fiction writing about the early history of Islam? You surely know that jihadists don’t like it, right? Are you not bringing difficulties upon yourself? You don’t go and stand on a tiger’s tail, do you?
Concerning Rushdie, the noise has perhaps now been muted, but concerning Wilders, you still hear it. Wout Willemsen writes in De Dagelijkse Standaard on D66 (party member) Hans J.C. van Leen, who announced on Twitter after a statement by Wilders: “Let us initiate an action that the security of this un-Dutch man be immediately lifted.”
Immediate lifting of security. With the result that Wilders can, indeed, be murdered by the next Junaid I. Van Veen also has impressive predecessors. H.J. A. Hofland (1927-2016), on a Pauw & Witteman program [talk show] in 2008, suggested the most obvious way to silence Wilders would be to stop his security. After all, Wilders puts “lives in danger”. He supposedly does things that are in conflict with “Dutch interests”. “Start lifting his personal security,” Hofland advised.
But for some, even that was not enough. Former police chief Joop Van Riessen (born 1943) speculated in 2007 about letting him “rot”. He would not “fit” into a new society that we are building together.
Hofland probably does not look down with approval from Journalist Heaven on his own advice from 2008. Perhaps, Joop van Riessen is deradicalized. Let us hope that Van Veen has also come to his senses.
— Prof. Dr. Paul Cliteur is a professor in Leiden (University) and author of, among others, “The State vs. Geert Wilders”.