Van Gogh and the imam

Several sites, among them the great ones like Jihad Watch and LGF have posted about the sermon 'sheik' Fawaz Jneid of the as-Sunnah mosque in The Hague gave prior to the murder on Theo van Gogh. In the Dutch media and elsewhere the link has been made between this sermon, in which Fawaz calls on Allah to afflict van Gogh with a terrible disease for which there is no known cure. Especially since it has emerged that Mohammed Bouyeri and other members of the Hofstad group were or may have been attending the mosque when this sermon was given.

Yesterday evening the current events program NOVA (NL) asked the imam to explain himself. You can watch the segment here (click on 'BEKIJK ITEM') but the whole thing is in Arabic (the good imam apparently doesn't speak a word of Dutch) with Dutch subtitles.

In short: The imam claims the sermon was a way to 'channel the aggression against van Gogh in a peaceful way'. It was really a peaceful thing to do. It is better to let off steam in this way and he never condoned the murder of van Gogh. In fact, it was wrong and un-islamic. Because islam is (wait for it...) a Religion of Peace (tm).

The imam further claimed he and the members of the Hofstad group are anything but friends. According to the imam, he's received letters from members, including Bouyeri and Nouredin el F., currently on trial for planning terrorist attacks, in which they condemned him for not being u true muslim.

He further does not think he incited to violence (which, in all honesty, is true) and he does not expect to be in trouble with the ministry of Justice, even though the latter *have* started an investigation. Still, fervently and loudly wishing someone was dead: Couldn't that just possibly inspire someone else to grant you your wish?

First thought when seeing that segment: A religion that inspires such pent up hate and anger that the imam saw the urgent need to give such a noxious sermon just to prevent something worse from happening (which, as we all know, did not succeed), does such a religion truely deserve the label 'Peaceful'?

Anyway, in the same sermon Ayaan Hirsi Ali also got her share of the venom. She did contemplate filing charges against Fawaz, but decided against it (NL):
Our system of Justice is rational. With mysterious theological language and fatwah-like pleas there is no way to do anything. Bad luck for me.

She did however reject the notion that the sermon 'channeled' the anger among muslims:
You do not channel anger with screaming emotions

In the mean time we're coming up on the second anniversary of the murder on Theo van Gogh tomorrow. No official commemoration has been planned (NL. Cheap bastards!), but Peaktalk is doing a commemoration of its own, devoting the entire week to Theo van Gogh, Hirsi Ali and the freedom of expression.

Me, I have a pristine pack of Camels waiting for me in our smoking room (or 'the Blue Dungeon' as mrs. KV likes to call it). Tomorrow night I shall open the pack, pour a glass of fine scottish single malt whisky and smoke, and smoke, and smoke. It's what Theo would have wanted (heh) ... (1)

(1) Van Gogh was a dedicated smoker who made it a point to light up during every interview he ever did, whether he was interviewer or interviewee. His own site, still present on the net, is called 'De Gezonde Roker', Dutch for 'The Healthy Smoker'.

[UPDATE001] Jihad Watch commenter Hans points to a Dutch language transcript of Fawaz' sermon. Reading that, I get the distinct impression this was just a tad bit more then just 'channeling anger'. From that document, page 9, index 093
You should say to them that insulting Allah and insulting Muhammed is not insulting a weak community in the Netherlands. [...] How do you feel about a confrontation with 1.5 billion muslims?
You mean like Denmark?

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