Two Internet forums associated with Al Qaeda are baying for death and destruction to Denmark. Why? The occasion is the publication of a new book (pictured above), written by Danish historian and journalist Lars Hedegaard and illustrated by Danish artist Kurt Westergaard. The book is called Groft Sagt (Rough Talk) and it contains some more cartoons and commentary about the assault on Western-style liberty by sharia-minded Islam that we know as the Danish Motoon controversy.
As the Copenhagen Post reported last month:
Kurt Westergaard will contribute 26 illustrations to the new book, ‘Groft Sagt’ (Roughly Speaking), a collection of Hedegaard’s sardonic contributions to the Berlingkse Tidende newspaper column of the same name.
One of the cartoons features former Foreign Minister Uffe Ellemann-Jensen, who took a stance against the original Mohammed cartoons, calling them a caricature of Denmark’s ‘cherished freedom of expression’.
In the new drawing, Ellemann-Jensen is pictured kneeling with an inkwell that reads ‘freedom of expression’. A black-bearded man with a bomb in his turban is peeking out from the inkwell.
Hedegaard told The Copenhagen Post that there was ‘no intention to depict the so-called prophet’, but that it is always possible for someone to interpret drawings in different ways. He was pleased with the Westergaard’s input and is not expecting any backlash.
Westergaard said that he has never been against Islam as a religion, but he takes issue with terrorists using a variation of Islam as their own ‘religious dynamite’. The 73-year-old remains unbothered by the potential furore his new drawings could cause, despite the need for him to remain under the protection of domestic security and intelligence agency PET.
Westergaard, who was given free rein to illustrate the writings he thought appropriate in the new book, returned home this summer after nine months in hiding. He had been living in police safe-houses after a plot to murder him for drawing one of the Mohammed cartoons in 2005 was uncovered.
The Supreme Court is currently handling the case of the two Tunisian men charged with the plot. One has left the country voluntarily and the other is facing an administrative deportation.
Safe houses. State security. Murder plots. In other words, just your basic, pre-publication rollout of a book of cartoons and political commentary in this, our age of unanswered jihad. And now, as a jihadi-monitoring website reports, threats to Denmark over this same book. From the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism (footnotes in the original):
In his post, Abu Salem requests that all who love the Prophet Muhammad help spread the news of the upcoming publication and notify religious leaders of what “these pigs” are attempting to do. One forum visitor responded to the post, suggesting that Bin Laden attack Copenhagen, repeating the call: “Bin Laden, Copenhagen!” several times. Another forum visitor wrote: “Our blood... our souls... our children... our money... all that we have... the entire world… anything so that a single hair of your distinguished head [i.e. Muhammad] is not harmed.”5
Abu Salem’s call provoked a significant response by internet users, also appearing in discussions on several of the main Jihadi online forums. On November 13, the “Al-Hesbah” forum quoted a report by the Jihad Press6 titled “Due to the silence of the Muslims, Denmark is preparing for a new crime against the Muslims – a book offending Islam.”7 The report describes the intended publication of Hedegaard's book and reminds readers that in June 2008 al-Qaeda carried out a “successful” attack on the Danish embassy in Pakistan in retaliation for the publication of caricatures in September 2005. In addition, the report claims that Bin Laden had threatened to attack Danish targets even before news of the publication of the new book.8 An internet user named Saqr Al-Islam Al-Maqdasi cynically wrote that if the book is in fact printed and distributed, small demonstrations would arise protesting the import of Danish cheese and meat productions. However, “the best defense is offence," he wrote. Al-Maqdasi explained that the best defense of the Prophet Muhammad does not come from boycotting Danish products, but rather: "[…] by attacking Denmark everywhere so that it be known we are a nation sacrificing itself for Islam and its Prophet […] this cattle doesn’t understand anything but the language of rage, and we will decapitate the heads and set fire to the ground underneath their feet. They do not understand anything but the language of blood and scattering of body parts. I ask that Allah make successful the way of the loyal Jihad warriors, in order to blow up and set fire to Denmark." In response, an internet user called for the complete halt of imports from Denmark, suggesting that they “begin exporting some of our products! Such as car bombs, suicide terrorists and missiles.”
This, excepting dread oil, is actually an excellent description of the trade arrangement currently in force between the West and Islam. The West exports cheese and butter, to stick with the Danish example, and Islam exports, as the jihadi says, "some of our products!...car bombs, suicide terrorists and missiles." When are we going to notice we're getting a bum deal?
As Robert Spencer wisely notes: "Here is yet another opportunity for Western authorities to stand up and call madness what it is, and defend the freedom of speech as a cornerstone of any society that is not a tyranny. And no doubt it will be yet another missed opportunity."