Opportunity knocks

Thanks to The Dissident Frogman for this image and thanks to Kate for the lead.

The “cartoon war” is all over the news and opinion spectrum. I found several examples worth reading in full:

The Right to Satirize
Virginia Postrel

…[My response is to wonder] why Muslims don’t grow up. If your co-religionists are going to take political stands, and blow up innocent people in the name of Islam, political cartoonists are going to occasionally take satirical swipes at your religion.

Hold the line
The Dissident Frogman

It’s not done (far from it) but for the first time in years, I have the slight hope that Europe might finally wake up.

They want to fight us, on what is without a doubt a pillar of Western civilization? They want to deprive us from freedom of speech, a concept we invented 2,500 years ago, improved and expanded ever since? An idea for which we did not hesitate to pay the highest price, and which we defended against foes far more formidable and lethal than them?

So be it.

Let’s pump up the volume on this whole “Support Denmark” campaign as much as we can, as I suspect this story might be one of those moments of truth that can make a difference. Now is the moment to stand up, be counted, and hold the line. Remember, that’s how the Frankish infantry stopped and inflicted a crushing and decisive defeat to the Muslim cavalry in 732.

UPDATED: The Cartoon War: A Collision of Values
Austin Bay

The conflict once again reveals the peculiar arrogance of some European Muslim immigrants: they cannot be criticized or satirized, though they freely critique and satirize Christians, Jews, and secularists.

We Are Sorry

In the middle of all the mayhem surrounding the Danish cartoons controversy, a group of Arab and Muslim youth have set up this website to express their honest opinion, as a small attempt to show the world that the images shown of Arab and Muslim anger around the world are not representative of the opinions of all Arabs. We whole-heartedly apologize to the people of Denmark, Norway and all the European Union over the actions of a few, and we completely condemn all forms of vandalism and incitement to violence that the Arab and Muslim world have witnessed. We hope that this sad episode will not tarnish the great friendship that our peoples have fostered over decades.

Rioting with well-planned spontaneity
Rory McCarthy

And then in the early afternoon, as suddenly as it had all begun, it ended. The leaders of the mob turned to the angry young men beside them and told them it was time to leave. Obediently the crowd thinned out and began walking back to the buses, even as the Danish embassy continued to burn. By 3pm there wasn’t a single protester left on the street. Later, the Lebanese interior minister, Hassan Sabei, announced his resignation.

More lies from Danish Imams
Lorenzo Vidino

The controversy has now exploded in Denmark. Friday night Danish public television, DR, ran two interesting stories about Abu Laban, the man who organized the delegation’s trip to the Middle East. While the first profiled him, showing his extensive links to the Egyptian group Gamaa Islamiya, the second showed his double-talk. Abu Laban, in fact, was first shown speaking on Danish television condemning the boycott of Danish goods (in English), then shown interviewed on al Jazeera, cheerfully commenting on the effectiveness of the boycott (in Arabic).

The Cartoon Jihad
By Melanie Phillips

The still escalating confrontation over the Danish cartoons dramatically illustrates the now pathological reluctance of the leaders of Britain and America to face up to the blindingly obvious and the extent to which they have already run up the white flag in the face of clerical fascism. With holy war declared openly upon the west, with death threats being issued against cartoonists and editors, with Danes, Scandinavians and other Europeans being hunted for kidnap and in fear of their lives, with blood-curdling intimidation, with mob demonstrations, calls to behead westerners and rallying cries for ‘holy war’ by Islam against Europe, the governments of Britain and America are busy prostrating themselves before this terror, apologising for ‘causing offence’ and blaming the victims of this assault; while their intelligentsia earnestly debates whether it is wrong to insult someone else’s religion, for all the world as if this were a university ethics seminar rather than a world war being waged by clerical fascism against free societies and with people in hiding and in fear of their lives for having exercised the right to protest at religious violence and intimidation.

A European Awakening Against Islamic Fascism?
By Victor Davis Hanson

Americans are not confident, but we should remember at least one simple fact: Europe is the embryo of the entire Western military tradition. The new European Union encompasses a population greater than the United States and spans a continent larger than our own territory. It has a greater gross domestic product than that of America and could, in theory, field military forces as disciplined and as well equipped as our own.

Europe’s New Dissidents
Middle Eastern repression comes to the Continent.

Moreover, the cartoons didn’t mock Islam as such but its abuse by militant Muslims. One cartoon showed Muhammad with a turban in the form of a bomb. The issue, though, is much larger than the question of how to balance press freedom with religious sensibilities; it goes to the heart of the conflict with radical Islam. The Islamists demand no less than absolute supremacy for their religion–and not only in the Muslim world but wherever Muslims may happen to reside. That’s why they see no hypocrisy in their demand for “respect” for Islam while the simple display of a cross or a Star of David in Saudi Arabia is illegal. Infidels simply don’t have the same rights.

These staged riots over editorial cartoons are a gift. Most of the West is complacent nearly to the point of decadence. If we can still hear a wake up call, this 7th-century-based hysteria-on-demand should qualify. The United States should be out in front condemning these fascists. They plainly state that murder is their answer to speech with which they disagree.

Sadly, so far, we have officially been as mealy-mouthed and as politically correct as the Belgians. Maybe worse, I haven’t seen any Belgian response to this whatever, so they still have the opportunity we’ve so far screwed up.

This is a personal gift to George Bush, but his minions are not seizing it. The statist-left in this country spends so much time bashing “neo-cons” as representatives of a Jewish conspiracy and calling Christians troglodytes, that they either have to put up on the idea free speech – or stop wondering “why they hate us.” Isn’t it f***ng obvious?

If the Bush administration roundly condemned the prevarications of the Islamist cartoon war organizers, what would our own left say? Everything is relative? Who are we to judge? Dhimmitude will overcome?

George! George! This islamofascist inanity is the same rope-a-dope opportunity you’ve practiced against the Democrats to their own detriment – but you didn’t make excuses for them up front. You can do the same thing to these lying, fanatical Muslims; if the State Department stops apologizing to fascists on behalf of Danish newspapers. Or, if you can’t skewer this madness, it’s something good to know about our allies and our enemies.

The same thing is true in Europe, and if Chirac can threaten nuclear retaliation against terror attacks on France, then in this instance he has a chance to show some seriousness without nearly the same risk. He can just announce that cartoons are cartoons and Muslim fanatics need to get a grip. “We’re sorry you are offended, but you’re stupid. Stupid people are entitled to their opinions, the rest of us are entitled to ignore them.”

Now, this does tend to reverse decades of multi-cultural relativism, but so would a nuke.

Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II gives us an example of the kind of speech we need:

“We are being challenged by Islam these years – globally as well as locally. It is a challenge we have to take seriously. We have let this issue float about for too long because we are tolerant and lazy.

“We have to show our opposition to Islam and we have to, at times, run the risk of having unflattering labels placed on us because there are some things for which we should display no tolerance.”

“And when we are tolerant, we must know whether it is because of convenience or conviction.”

I, for one will be drinking Danish beer, eating Danish ham and cheese and urging the President to publicly offer Denmark a couple of Special Operations teams skilled in what I hope would be euphemistically called “counter-terrorism.”

“Made in Denmark” labels are needed for retail placement. Small Dead Animals has the start of a list of Danish items, I’m sure it can be greatly expanded.

Update: 7:30PM. I take that bit about the Belgians back. I still have no evidence about their position on the Danish editorial cartoons, but there is this indicator: an image of Saddam Hussein apparently being tortured by immersion in a pool of water is considered “too shocking.”

I bet “Piss Christ” wasn’t.