Controversial Dutch MP Geert Wilders In Canada: News, Questions, References

Posted on Friday, May 13 at 09:15 by Janet M Eaton

Below find  three articles  on the visit to Canada and speaking tour of
Dutch anti-Islamist, far right politician Mr. Geert Wilders, the leader of
the  third largest political party in the Netherlands, the Freedom Party.
For more on Wilders see BBC profile article which notes that attempts by
the Freedom Party leader to carry his anti- Islam message abroad have
brought him into conflict with other Western states.:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-11443211 For more on the Party he
leads see:
http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/europe/news/article_1535311.php
/Dutch-Freedom-Party-ready-to-govern-claims-Wilders

According to the following articles, two from the Toronto Star and
one from the Globe and Mail, Wilders  spoke to about 150 people at 
an invitation-only event at the National Arts Centre [NAC] on this
past  Tuesday . On Monday he  spoke at Canada  Christian College as
well as with Sun News Network host Ezra Levant. 
A representative of the NAC Rosemary Thompson said  "We only realized
yesterday afternoon that the speaker would be Mr. Wilders. So that's the
situation that we're in." Obviously the NAC does not agree with Mr.
Wilders's views."  She pointed out that the federal Immigration Department
did allow the Dutch MP, who has repeatedly compared Islam to Nazism, entry
into Canada.

At his Canada Christian College speech in Toronto on Monday, Mr.
Wilders  said: "Our Western culture is far superior to Islamic
culture ... and only once we are convinced of this will we be able to
defend our civilization." 

(note the  Canada Christian College  is  a private institution with
ties to Jerry Falwell and the US evangelical movement and its
president , Charles McVety, is one of the most outspoken political
players in this country´s Christain right movement . See References
provided below on the Christian Right. )

Wilders, during an interview on The Source with Ezra Levant, said :
"Canada should ban Islamic schools, outlaw the wearing of burkas and put a
stop to the building of mosques.  If Canada wants to protect its
democratic freedoms and Western beliefs, it must act now and keep "Islamic
ideology" outside of Canada's borders"

Gloria Galloway questioned in her Globe and Mail article below :
"why the  National Arts Centre was hosting Dutch MP accused of being
anti-Islam?" and as noted above discovered that the Director was unaware
Wilders  had been booked until it was too late to do anything about it.
More to the point, one has to ask why the Canadian federal Immigration
Department  has allowed entry into Canada of  this  anti- Islamist hard
right MP who has repeatedly compared Islam to Nazism, and who, according
to 'Toronto Life Magazine'  says there is no such thing as moderate Islam,
believes Muslims are a danger to democracy in Canada, and  that if they
want to have their Islamic culture should stay in the country they came
from.  Why has the Canadian government allowed this religious radical,
Geert Wilders, into Canada to proselytize and spread his  vindictive
beliefs,  when they deny or deliberately stall the entry into Canada of
those who come to speak on the dire impacts of Depleted Uranium (DU) on
babies in Iraq, of politically active Palestinian supporters,  of
well-known US anti-war activists and  journalists like Amy Goodman  who
provide a pro- democracy and critical perspective? 

Janet M Eaton, PhD
Wolfville, NS

--------------------------------

REFERENCES ON THE CHRISTIAN RIGHT IN CANADA:

 Maude Barlow said in her 2005 book "Too Close for Comfort: Canada's
Future within Fortress North America": " Increasingly, the sometimes
narrow convictions of Christian sects are being exploited by politicians
in both Canada and the United States [where the tendency is highly
developed] to introduce into the political realm a degree of
inflexibility, passion, and rancour that tend to undermine the spirit of
accommodation and tolerance that is essential to the functioning of a
democratic society. Our civil liberties are threatened as a result."

See also:

[] Maude Barlow's "Too Close for Comfort  (pages 24- 31) section
entitled  Northward Christian Soldiers
http://www.mcclelland.com/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9780771010880
and
[] Marci McDonald's book "The Armageddon Factor' 2010
"To most Canadians, the politics of the United States - where
fundamentalist Christians wield tremendous power and culture wars
split the country - seem too foreign to ever happen here. But The
Armageddon Factor shows that the Canadian Christian right -
infuriated by the legalization of same-sex marriage and the
increasing secularization of society - has been steadily and
stealthily building organizations, alliances and contacts that have
put them close to the levers of power and put the government of
Canada in their debt."
http://www.randomhouse.ca/catalog/display.pperl?isbn=9780307356468

[] Marci Mcdonald's Walrus article.
"Stephen Harper and the Theo-cons:The rising clout of Canada´s
religious right"
Provides, among other insights,  knowledge about Canada Christian
College president McVety and his links to the PM, to US evangelism
and his political activism in Canada.
http://www.walrusmagazine.com/articles/2006.10-politics-religion-
stephen-harper-and-the-theocons/

-----------------------------------------------

RECENT ARTICLES ON GEERT WILDERS IN CANADA:

[1] http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/why-
is-national-arts-centre-hosting-dutch-mp-accused-of-being-anti-
islam/article2016836/?from=sec368 Globe and Mail Why is National Arts
Centre hosting Dutch MP accused of being anti- Islam? By Gloria Galloway
Posted on Tuesday, May 10, 2011 1:01PM EDT

The federally-funded National Arts Centre was surprised to learn it
was hosting a talk by a Dutch politician facing charges of inciting
hatred for making anti-Islamic statements in his own country. Geert
Wilders, who is taking part in a cross-Canada speaking tour hosted by the
International Free Press Society and the Canada Christian College, is
infamous for his descriptions of Islam as a fascist religion, his
declaration that Muslim youth are violent and his calls for a ban of the
Koran. Mr. Wilders, the leader of Holland's Freedom Party, spoke to about
150 people at the invitation-only event at the National Arts Centre
Tuesday, along with Sun News Network host Ezra Levant and two other
speakers. There was no sign of the protesters that had picketed outside
his speech in  Toronto the previous night. 


"He arrived and he spoke, he took about four questions, then he got
on a plane and went somewhere else," NAC spokeswoman Rosemary
Thompson said. Earlier in the day, she explained that the centre was
unaware Mr. Wilders was going to be taking to its podium when the event
was booked. "The way this started was that the International Free Press
Society called the  catering department about a month ago and said that
they had a Dutch MP coming to Canada for a speaking tour and that it was
part of the Tulip Festival," Ms. Thompson said, stressing the centre was
not sponsoring the event. "We only realized yesterday afternoon that the
speaker would be Mr. Wilders," she added. "So that's the situation that
we're in." 

At a speech in Toronto on Monday, Mr. Wilders is reported to have
said: "Our Western culture is far superior to Islamic culture ... and only
once we are convinced of this will we be able to defend our civilization."
The National Post, which was permitted entry to the Toronto event, quoted
him as saying Muslim immigrants to Europe have changed the social and
political landscape and that an increasingly vociferous Islamic lobby has
led to the harassment of Christians, female genital mutilation and
polygamy. The Toronto speech was held at the Canada Christian College, a
private institution. The Ottawa speech was held at the arts centre, which
receives nearly half of its funding from the federal government. 

"Obviously the NAC does not agree with Mr. Wilders's views," Ms.
Thompson said. She pointed out that the federal Immigration
Department did allow the Dutch MP, who has repeatedly compared Islam to
Naziism, entry into Canada. The same department, headed by Immigration
Minister Jason Kenney, was quick to refuse entry to British MP George
Galloway in 2009 for allegedly supporting the banned Middle East group
Hamas. Mr. Galloway, who was eventually allowed into Canada after the
courts overturned the ruling that kept him out, said the aid he brought to
Palestinians was humanitarian in nature and that he did not support the
banned organization.

--------------- -----------------------------------------------------



[2] http://www.torontosun.com/2011/05/09/wilders-controversial-
crusade-against-islamic-ideology-continues

Wilders controversial crusade against 'Islamic ideology' continues
224
By Terry Davidson ,Toronto Sun
First posted: Monday, May 9, 2011 8:14:43 EDT PM

Canada should ban Islamic schools, outlaw the wearing of burkas and
put a stop to the building of mosques, a controversial Dutch
politician said on Monday during a stop at Sun News Network. If
Canada wants to protect its democratic freedoms and Western beliefs, it
must act now and keep  "Islamic ideology" outside of Canada's borders,
said Geert Wilders, leader of Holland's Freedom Party, during an interview
on The Source with Ezra Levant. "If (Muslims) want to have Islamic
culture, (they should) stay in the country where (they) came from," said
Wilders, who is doing his first-ever speaking tour of Canada. "There is no
moderate Islam... There is no good part of the Qur'an." Wilders has also
called for the ban of the Qur'an - Islam's holy book - in Holland and
other democratic countries, likening it to Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf. In
Toronto to speak at Canada Christian College Monday night, Wilders called
Islam an "ideology of hate" and said there is only one kind of Islam - a
radical one. Throughout the interview, Wilders kept coming back to one of
his core beliefs: Islam is not a religion, it's an ideology of
"totalitarian" philosophy, intolerant of any other religion or viewpoint.


One particularly stark warning Wilders had for Canada was the banning of
Islamic schools. "If we start educating children with an ideology of hate,
then we've lost them," said Wilders, adding toward the end of the
interview that "Canada should stay Canada." He also said if Muslim women
are forced to wear burkas covering their faces, they will never find jobs
or have friends in Canada, and will be forever be dependent on their
husbands. While some of Wilder's points are valid when it comes denouncing
radical forms of Islamism - a rejection of Western civilization and the
subordination of women, for example - he is painting Islam with too wide a
brush, says a prominent voice in the Muslim community. "He's not making
the distinction between Islam and Islamism," said Tarek Fatah, founder of
the Canadian Muslim Congress. "He should call for a separation of religion
and state...You can't just ban Islam." Bernie Farber, CEO of the Canadian
Jewish Congress, said Wilders is playing on the world's fears of Islamic
terrorism and should take "greater care" when conveying his message.
"Geert Wilders knows how to offend in the grossest possible way," said
Farber. "There are huge issues with Islamic extremism here and around the
world, but to paint every Muslim with the same brush...is not the way we
do things here." An organized protest outside the Canada Christian College
drew no more than 20 people while Wilders spoke.

 ---------------------------------------------------------------------

[3] http://www.torontosun.com/2011/05/08/antiislamic-dutch-politician-
speaking-in-canada-for-the-first-time

Anti-Islamic Dutch politician speaking in Canada for the first time
First posted: Sunday, May 8, 2011 6:29:58 EDT PM

 Protesters are getting ready for Geert Wilders' first Canadian visit as
the controversial anti-Islamic Dutch politician rolls into town for a
private speech to local Christian groups Monday night. The Freedom Party
leader maintains that because Canada helped out Holland during the Second
World War, it is only fitting to repay them by raising awareness the
country is in danger of a hostile takeover and being "Islamicized."
"Freedom is the most precious thing we have," he said Sunday at a Toronto
hotel. "(Canadian soldiers) didn't give their lives to free Europe, (so
that) not 50, 60, 70 years later we would face another totalitarianism
ideology called Islam." Toronto's invitation-only event is being emceed by
the Sun's Ezra Levant, who will also interview him Monday on Sun News.
London, Ottawa and Nashville are also on the schedule because Wilders said
they are known as "the Bible belt" - areas with devout Christians. "What
happened in Europe will also happen here," Wilders said. "We should wake
up to the fact that Islamization means less freedom to us and our
children." 

The Islamic Society of Toronto and the Canadian Islamic Congress
could not be reached for comment on Sunday. However, Anti-Racist
Action and the First Nations Solidarity Working Group are organizing
protests in the cities Wilders is speaking in. "As Muslims, racialized
people and/or anti-racist allies, we are alarmed at this invitation
extended to Wilders by the Canada Christian College and International Free
Press Society Canada," the groups said in a press release. "It is also
very clear that after all the hysteria about free speech, the event has
been organized so as to deter any dissenting voices or protest." In
addition to being invitation-only, tickets cost $20 and must be purchased
with a credit and proper name just to find out the location of the
speeches. Wilders is adamant he doesn't hate all Muslims - he hates the
"ideology" of Islam "that wants to rule every aspect of life." He blames
politically-correct politicians for adding fuel to the fire by insisting
people of all cultures are equal. 

"If you say your culture is better than the Islamic culture, you're
not a racist," Wilders said. "The majority of Muslims are law-
abiding, they want a good life for their families. There are moderate
Muslims but there are no moderate Islams. The stronger the people become,
the harder it will be to fight the ideology." In the Netherlands within
the coming years, there will be a ban on the burka, Wilders notes. In
Canada, the government needs to shut the borders to immigrants coming from
the Middle East. "For the people who are (already in Canada), behave,
assimilate or we will send you packing," he suggested. "For the people to
not make the problem worse, stop the immigration from non-Western
countries and stop the Islamization process and the building of new
mosques. This is really what we should do."

 

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