Bush’s ‘war on terror’ and secular women from Muslim countries


Fatma Koser Kaya

Ms Fatma Koser Kaya is an immigrant from predominantly Muslim Turkey to The Netherlands.

So, prejudices say, she probably has little or no education.

No. She has a degree in international human rights law.

Probably, she never leaves home; else, her husband would beat her up, ‘like all immigrants do’.

No. She used to work as a trade union lawyer.

Now, she is a member of the Dutch parliament.

She is an MP? Probably, for a party that would abolish all freedom in The Netherlands and substitute Sharia law for it?

No. She is one of, since the recent election, three MP’s for D66, a ‘left liberal’ sister party of the British Liberal Democrats.

It is widely seen as the most secular; to many religious people, the most anti religious; of Dutch political parties.

Does she wear a burka? Or at least a headscarf?

No. See picture.

She often has necklines much too low and hemlines much to high according to strictly religious people.

When she won her seat, she kissed to celebrate that in public with men who were not her husband.

So, some people might think, she will be enthusiastic on Ayaan Hirsi ‘Ali‘s, George W Bush‘s, etc. crusade against ‘Islamofascism‘ ?

Well, this is what she writes herself in her weblog:

The fear and anger in which we live express themselves in our views on immigrants.

Also known as guest workers, foreigners, allochtones, new Dutch, ‘medelanders’ and ‘goatfuckers’ [word used routinely by the late Theo van Gogh and others for ‘immigrants from Muslim countries].

They are coloured and most are down in social stratification. Today, the underclass of The Netherlands is black.

That, however, does not define the problem as ethnic.

And the underclass of The Netherlands is Muslim.

That, however, does not define the problem as religious.

The Netherlands just have a new layer of people at the bottom.

And, in The Netherlands, people at the bottom always came from the outside.

A hundred years ago, Rotterdam was swamped by people from [Roman Catholic] Brabant.

People with names like Pastors [literally ‘priest’s’. Name of an associate of the late Pim Fortuyn, and himself the leader of a xenophobic party which failed to get any seats at the recent elections] build enormous Catholic churches – to the dismay of native Rotterdam people.

Now these ‘papist’ houses of worship are recognized as monuments.

Meanwhile, Rotterdam has been swamped by Turks and Moroccans – and they build enormous mosques.

Probably, in a hundred years time, the Mevlana Mosque will officially be a monument.

The Ayaan and Dumbya fan club in The Netherlands virulently hates Ms Kaya for writing like this.

To the hysterical Islamophobes riding on the coattails of George W Bush‘s wars, everyone from Muslim countries is the ‘evil’ Other.

I remember a very secularist Kurdish woman, whose life had been threatened by ‘fundamentalist’ Muslims, telling me how disgusted she was by the endless “Muslim Muslim Muslim evil evil evil terrorist terrorist terrorist” rants in the Dutch media.

By the racists disguising their racism as ‘criticism of religion’.

So convenient for avoiding anti racism laws.

Whether you wear a burka or a bikini, you are a liberal or conservative Muslim, you advocate violence or non violence, to the Islamophobes you are all fair game.

Like to anti-Semites in the twentieth century (and now) a Jew is a ‘dirty Jew’, whether he or she is a Communist, a Social Democrat, a Liberal, a republican or a loyal monarchist subject of the German emperor or the British queen, practices all tenets of Judaism or eats pork, is a Zionist or an anti-Zionist.

Then, Zionists of various tendencies responded: “The only people whom a Jew can trust are other Jews”.

People had to find some adequate reaction to these bullying, insulting, violent anti-Semites.

No matter what one’s viewpoint on Zionism may be, it is hardly surprising that, among various possible reactions to anti-Semitism, quite some Jews then chose Zionism.

Today, one can hear: “The only people whom a Turk can trust are other Turks”.

And “The only people whom a Muslim can trust are other Muslims”.

Shouldn’t we in all three cases look at causes first, effects only second?

Oklahoma City bombing: here.

Christian fundamentalist violent video game: here.

Edward Said and Orientalism: here.

A critique of Said: here.

12 thoughts on “Bush’s ‘war on terror’ and secular women from Muslim countries

  1. Judge strikes down Bush on terror groups
    By LINDA DEUTSCH, AP Special Correspondent1 hour, 16 minutes ago

    A federal judge struck down President Bush’s authority to designate groups as terrorists, saying his post-Sept. 11 executive order was unconstitutionally vague, according to a ruling released Tuesday.

    The Humanitarian Law Project had challenged Bush’s order, which blocked all the assets of groups or individuals he named as “specially designated global terrorists” after the 2001 terrorist attacks.

    “This law gave the president unfettered authority to create blacklists,” said David Cole, a lawyer for the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Constitutional Rights that represented the group. “It was reminiscent of the McCarthy era.”

    The case centered on two groups, the Liberation Tigers, which seeks a separate homeland for the Tamil people in Sri Lanka, and Partiya Karkeran Kurdistan, a political organization representing the interests of Kurds in Turkey.

    U.S. District Judge Audrey Collins enjoined the government from blocking the assets of the two groups. The same judge two years ago invalidated portions of the Patriot Act.

    Both groups consider the Nov. 21 ruling a victory; both had been designated by the United States as foreign terrorist organizations.

    Cole said the judge’s ruling does not invalidate the hundreds of other designated terrorist groups on the list but “calls them into question.”

    Charles Miller, a spokesman for the U.S. Department of Justice, said, “We are currently reviewing the decision and we have made no determination what the government’s next step will be.”

    A White House spokeswoman declined to immediately comment. At the time of his order creating the list, Bush declared that the “grave acts of terrorism” and the “continuing and immediate threat of future attacks” constituted a national emergency.

    The judge’s 45-page ruling was a reversal of her own tentative findings last July in which she indicated she would uphold wide powers asserted by Bush under an anti-terror financing law. She delayed her ruling then to allow more legal briefs to be filed.

    She also struck down the provision in which Bush had authorized the secretary of the treasury to designate anyone who “assists, sponsors or provides services to” or is “otherwise associated with” a designated group.

    However, she let stand sections of the order that penalize those who provide “services” to designated terrorist groups. She said such services would include the humanitarian aid and rights training proposed by the plaintiffs.

    The Humanitarian Law Project planned to appeal that part of the ruling, Cole said.

    “We are pleased the court rejected many of the constitutional arguments raised by the plaintiffs, including their challenge to the government’s ban on providing services to terrorist organizations,” Miller said Tuesday. “However, we believe the court erred in finding that certain other aspects of the executive order were unconstitutional.”

    The ruling was still considered a victory, Cole said.

    “Even in fighting terrorism the president cannot be given a blank check to blacklist anyone he considers a bad guy or a bad group and you can’t imply guilt by association,” Cole said.

    In 2004, Collins ruled that portions of the Patriot Act were too vague and, even after Congress amended the act in 2005, she ruled the provisions remained too vague to be understood by a person of average intelligence and were therefore unconstitutional.

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  2. Fortuyn party chucks the sponge in?

    Searchlight – August 2007

    Five years ago, the charismatic, flamboyant and openly gay politician Pim Fortuyn was gunned down just a few days before general elections in the Netherlands. The untimely demise of the anti-immigrant right-wing populist left his party, the List Pim Fortuyn (LPF), to pick up the torch and continue to campaign on his racist agenda.

    And, it has to be said that whatever one thinks of the so-called Fortuynistas, there is no doubt that they have, during their short and turbulent existence, rewritten contemporary Dutch history. Now, however, their era has come to an end, in its present form, at least.

    Five years after the Fortuyn’s assassination, the LPF’s party HQ closed its doors for the last time in May: the result of the fact that last year the party lost all its seats in the parliamentary elections and, in consequence, their access to state funding and resources.

    On 29 May, to make matters worse, the LPF lost its one remaining seat in the Senate. All the party has left now are a few local councillors in The Hague, Eindhoven, Westland, Spijkenisse and Duiven and an alderman in Westland. These councilors will remain in their seats until the next local elections in 2010 but there is a big question mark over whether the party will still exist by then.

    A decision about the LPF’s future is set to be made at the end of July when the party’s 1,200 members will attend a conference. Meanwhile, the office and the ideological bureau of the party have been transferred to the home of the LPF chairman Bert Snel. At present, this bureau is still receiving a state subsidy to the tune of € 227,000 (approx £ 166,000).

    In fact, no future looks possible for the LPF. In the last provincial elections, its parlous political state of the LPF was already visible. All kinds of defunct and semi-defunct parties resurrected themselves to reenter the electoral arena. Nederland Transparant, Partij voor Nederland, EénNL and the LPF itself – its name changed Lijst Five Fortuyn, in a bid to get rid of the negative baggage – fielded candidates They all lost. Heavily

    Fortuyn’s legacy is shattered and his ideas, or his presumed ideas, are held by small groups without any political responsibility. The right-wing libertarian Fortuyn set the debate about the multicultural society afire. His followers merely promote repression. While declaring freedom of speech sacrosanct, they have turned it into a synonym for insults and racism.

    According to a poll more than 25% of Dutch voters would still have voted for Fortuyn had he been alive and, dangerously, almost 40% of them think that Geert Wilders and his Freedom Party now best represent Fortuyn’s legacy.

    Though his party is more or less dead, Fortuyn’s memory remains alive. On 6 May, a commemoration of Fortuyn was held in Rotterdam attended by around 200 people who gathered for a demonstration around his statue. At the meeting, the leader of Leefbaar Rotterdam, Ronald Sorensen, and former LPF minister Hilbrand Nawijn read poems people had sent in about Pim Fortuyn. After one minute’s total silence at six minutes past six – the exact time of Fortuyn’s murder – the crowd shouted “Long live Pim!” It was the last commemoration in this sort organised by Leefbaar Rotterdam. According to Sorensen less and less people attend the last years.

    Fortuyn was also commemorated in Hilversum where a touring busload of hardcore Fortuyn fans laid wreaths in the morning and had planned to demonstrate outside the prison in The Hague where their hero’s murderer Volkert van der Graaf is jailed.

    Slogans on their placards read “Volkert, you want to come outside and play?” and “Wanted. Gunman for hire”. However, by the time they had they left the cemetery in Driehuis, the location of Fortuyn’s before his reburial in Provesano, Italy, there was just enough time left to arrive on time in Rotterdam.

    One of Fortuyn’s former bodyguards, Christian Boom demanded a reopening of the murder case because he wants to challenge the conclusion of the investigation that the murder could not have been avoided. In particular, Boom wants to know whether former internal affairs minister Klaas de Vries, former justice minister Benk Korthals and former prime minister Wim Kok can be held responsible for not taking the necessary measures to protect Fortuyn.

    Fortuyn’s brother Marten filed a complaint against the former ministers at the beginning of June, but the court answered that is not qualified to prosecute.

    Jeroen Bosch for Alert! and Antifa-Net

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