Before viewing the Geert Wilders interview linked below, I had neither seen nor read much from the Dutch parliamentarian. The interview reveals him to be serious, certainly forthright, and articulately non-apologetic in his defense of Dutch culture and identity (and by extension Western culture and identity) against the Islamization process well underway in his country and the wider West.
Fox interviewer Greg Palkot, on the other hand, comes across as what you might call the Nolo Contendere Westerner whose idea of coexistence is based on self-censorship: never, ever mentioning what makes Islam in Wilders’ choice of English “retarded,” a belief system that fails to accept, let alone uphold, freedom of conscience, freedom of speech, equality before the law, and other basic precepts of Western-style liberty. Palkot practically begs Wilders’ to soften, i.e. censor, his views so as not to inflame the Islamic world, including those “moderates” whose so-called moderation morphs into radicalism at the first barb of criticism. (In my book, I discuss at some length this phenomenon of the “Hair-Trigger Moderate.”) Wilders explains he cannot do this because such self-censorship would concede victory to those who would impose Islamic law on him and his country.
I thought of Wilders’ defiant act of plain speaking (yes, it’s gotten so bad that plain speaking is an act of defiance) in the face of political correctness and Islam (the world's two great religions) on reading a comparison of President Bush’s recent State of the Union addresses prepared by Andrew Cochran at the Counterterrorism Blog. Contrary to past SOTUs, Cochran notes, President Bush gave no indication that the “extremism” out there is in any way Islamic (or even “Islamist”). In 2007, the president mentioned “Sunni extremists” and “Shia extremists.” In 2006, he spoke of “radical Islam.” In 2008, nothing. This, no doubt, is a souce of great inspiration to the Greg Palkots of the world.
But what of the rest of us? At Dhimmiwatch, Robert Spencer comments on the president's reticence: "That suggests that [the president’s] words from his 2006 speech can now be applied to their speaker: `By allowing radical Islam to work its will -- by leaving an assaulted world to fend for itself -- we would signal to all that we no longer believe in our own ideals, or even in our own courage.' "