The news that the new mayor of Rotterdam will be the first muslim Mayor in the Netherlands has created some controversy. Not only in the Netherlands, but around the international blogosphere as well. Gates of Vienna bestowed the title of Sultan of Rotterdam on Ahmed Aboutaleb, wondering whether the creeping islamisation of the Netherlands is turning into a gallop.
From what I know of Aboutaleb, I see no reason to consider him any less, yes even a lot better, then the majority of our current crop of indigenous 'leaders'. As far as I know he was the *only* one, who, in the wake of the van Gogh murder, had the courage to say out loud that those who do not subscribe to the Dutch notions of freedom and society should pack their bags and move. Aboutaleb is viewed by much of the Moroccan population in Holland, as a 'traitor', because of this.
In the past Aboutaleb has shown no inclination to favouritism towards Dutch-Moroccans, or muslims (not that I'm aware of, anyway). He has shown himself to be a relatively effective functionary. The manner of his nomination, however, is a completely different matter.
Mayors are traditionally appointed by the crown, but recent months saw some experimenting with binding referenda (Utrecht, Eindhoven) in which the citizenry were given the choice between two short-listed candidates.
That also was the biggest bone of contention yesterday. Aboutaleb wasn't even on the short-list. All of a sudden he was put forward as a candidate. Leefbaar Rotterdam (the Rotterdam chapter of the late Fortuyn's movement) resisted the nomination, as they wanted to put the nomination to a referendum. But the PvdA (sharing the position of largest political bloc with Leefbaar Rotterdam) somehow managed to force the issue, which seems to be somewhat of a coup d'etat by the Rotterdam socialist party. Leefbaar Rotterdam were furious, but can't explain why publically, because the deliberations were secret (records will not be opened for another 75 years or so).
There is something rotten in this state of affairs. And it casts a shadow on the position of someone who *could* be a very good Dutch mayor. Anti-islam though I am, I have nothing against the person of Aboutaleb. In matters of integration and islam he has shown himself to be much more sober and straightforward then many of our indigenous politicians. If the majority of muslims were as intelligent and courageous (and truly integrated) as he was, we wouldn't be in the mess we are in.
There is still the controversy of his double nationality (he has both a Moroccan and a Dutch passport), which reared its ugly head before (see here and here, for instance). And with good reason I might add. But his nomination has been hailed as an example for the Moroccan 'youth' : they can succeed in Dutch society if they would just apply themselves. Thus, the big thing he has going against him is his darling status with the MC crowd. Everyone is looking at his nomination and is seeing a form of affirmative action. It is not something he deserves, but there it is. Life isn't fair...
For the moment I am not worried. I reserve the right to reconsider my opinion of the man, should his actions require such. But as far as I am aware, Aboutaleb is as far removed from the fire-breathing clerics in Saudi Arabia, Iran and God knows where-else, the subhuman scum that make up Al Qaeda and affiliates and cretins like Enait as anything.
In this business of resisting the islamisation of Europe and the rest of the (Western) world, it is good to remember Wilders' maxim: Against the ideology of islam, not necessarily against muslims. Aboutaleb has shown himself to be a valuable member of Dutch society, to the point of denouncing his co-religionists for the crass stupidity of condoning the van Gogh murder. There is a problem in the Netherlands. There is no denying this. However, Aboutaleb is not it.
Of course, my guess would be that the biggest, overriding objection to his mayorship among Rotterdammers is the fact that he once was an alderman in Amsterdam. Aboutaleb has got his work cut of for him.
[UPDATE001] Now isn't that the *cough* coincidence: Morocco has been granted an “advanced status” in preparation for a gradual integration into the European Union.