Saturday, March 01, 2008

Nick Cohen, on offensivity

(Earlier offensivity-related posts, here)

After at least 100 deaths and the storming of Danish embassies in Syria and Iran, journalists pointed out that the newspaper hadn't included a picture of M Barrot among the innocuous cartoons it had run to uphold the right to mock religion. The clerics then said an anonymous poison pen writer had sent the wounding picture to a Danish Muslim. It was, they added, an insult to their faith as great as Ayaan Hirsi Ali's championing of the rights of Muslim women.

Too many people forgot too quickly that the violence of 2005 did not have as its 'root cause' the decision of a small Danish newspaper to satirise the godly. For three months after Jyllands-Posten published, there was no rage from the 'Arab street' or any other street. Only after lobbying from the imams and sly political calculation from the powerful did the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC) unleash the protests by demanding that the UN impose sanctions on Denmark. Like the Reichstag fire and Sergei Kirov's assassination, the cartoons controversy most suited those who affected to be most outraged. (Read the rest, here)


Post a Comment

<< Home