There are no heroes in this story. The egregiously short-sighted WestergaardÂ won a 100,000-Danish-kroner judgment against Anders Gravers of Stop Islamisation of Europe (SIOE) for theÂ implied use of his Muhammad cartoon during a protest, andÂ threatened to sue Geert Wilders for his use of the Motoon in the filmÂ Fitna. The Danish judge, meanwhile, appears to be woefully clueless and politically correct. “Judge censures cartoonist over court outburst against ‘terrorist attacker,'” by Roger Boyes in The Times (viaÂ The Australian), January 21 (thanks to JW):
A Danish judge has had to call the cartoonist Kurt Westergaard to order after an outburst against the man who is accused of trying to kill him.“He’s just a cowardly liar, a terrorist!” exclaimed the 75-year-old, who has drawn the wrath of the Muslim world for his caricature of the Prophet Mohammed wearing a turban that resembled a bomb.
The accused man, a care worker of Somali origin, broke into the cartoonist’s home a year ago, wielding an axe. On Wednesday, at the outset of the trial, Mohammed Geele, 29, said that he had used the axe to enter the house and that his aim was to frighten Mr Westergaard and express his anger about the cartoon.
Mr Westergaard rejected his version. “He was like a religious insane young man,” he told the court in Aarhus yesterday. “I believe he entered the house as a holy warrior who wanted to kill an infidel.” He turned to look at his assailant – the first time that they had actually seen each other.
When he heard Mr Geele smashing his way through the bulletproof glass of the terrace door, Mr Westergaard dashed to the bathroom, where he has had a steel door installed since receiving death threats from the Muslim world. From there he called the police on his mobile phone. A recording of the attack captures the noise of the axe battering the door.
Mr Westergaard said he had followed police instructions by heading for the panic room without grabbing his 5-year-old granddaughter who was cowering on the sofa. He has been criticised in Denmark but recorded testimony of the girl, beamed into the courtroom, showed no obvious distress.
That doesn’t make his craven selfish cowardice any more excusable.
“The man was hammering on the door, bam, bam, bam,” she said on the video, recorded the day after the attack on New Year’s Day last year. “And then came the di-da-di-da of the sirens. I knew the police were coming.”It took eight minutes for the police to arrive. When Mr Geele raised his axe at them outside the house they sprayed him with pepper and shot him in the knee.
Crucially, yesterday’s testimony from the police revealed that he had shouted “Allah is great” several times before he fell to the ground. The prosecution is interpreting this as further evidence that he was inspired by terrorist goals. He is accused of a terrorist act along with attempted murder.
The judge reprimanded Mr Westergaard for prejudging him by calling Mr Geele a terrorist. The prosecution has so far failed to establish a clear terrorist motive.
Plain idiocy. By Islamic standards, Westergaard blasphemed. The penalty for blasphemy in Islamic law is death. Geele clearly meant to enforce that penalty. Is this “terrorism”? It depends upon how one defines the word. But it certainly is jihad — a concept that no Western government has yet realized or may ever realize constitutes a threat to free people.
Much has been made of why MrGeele shaved his whole body and covered himself with oils before travelling to Mr Westergaard’s home, suggesting that he had prepared himself for a martyr’s death with a ritual cleansing.Mr Geele shrugged off the suggestion, saying that it was natural for a Muslim to keep clean.
Yes, people regularly shave their whole bodies in order to keep clean.
The question remains whether the attacker, a father of four and an apparently well-integrated Dane, was acting out of anger, or was part of a wider terrorist mission.
He was acting out of Islamic principles regarding blasphemy against Muhammad. Is that a “wider terrorist mission”? Certainly there are many, many other Muslims worldwide pursuing the same mission, whether or not Geele had any institutional connection to any of them.