Dutch Anti-Islam Film Site Taken Down by U.S. Service Provider
March 24, 2008 12:15 PM
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A defaced image of the website promoting the film, which was removed by ISP Network Solutions.
(Source: Klein Verzet)
The current notice appears when visiting fitnathemovie.com.
The video and the site sparked a large protest Saturday in Amsterdam.
(Source: Fred Ernst / AP)
Dutch filmmaker Geert Wilders faced with possible removal by his ISP may seek possible alternate distribution means for his radical film
The Netherlands is becoming the surprising center of conflict over the extent of free speech, religion and allegations of racism. The debate centers around an upcoming film by a local politician, which expresses strong criticism against Islam faith.
Several Islamic government have sought to ban materials criticizing Islam. The most recent example of this was when
Pakistan blocked the website YouTube
for promoting non-Islamic or anti-Islamic materials,
inadvertently crippled the country's internet traffic
Nearby Denmark found itself in the center of a similar controversy when a Danish newspaper aired cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad, the most important Islamic historic religious figure, in an embarrassing light. The cartoon led to protests worldwide outside Dutch embassies, death threats and at least one murder.
Now Holland is back in the limelight. Dutch lawmaker Geert Wilders, head of a reactionary party which controls 9 seats in the 150-seat Dutch Parliament, promoted his new film which portrays Islam in an extremely critical light, only to find his website taken down amid a storm of criticism. The film was promoted on the site which formerly had a simple title image, the words "Fitna" ("Coming Soon"), and an image of a gilded Qu'ran.
website has since been taken down
, and a note is posted stating that Network Solutions, the U.S. based service provider, is investigating whether the site violates its terms of service. The note about Wilder's site states, "Network Solutions has received a number of complaints regarding this site that are under investigation."
Network Solutions hosts the website of Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based organization labeled by the U.S. government as a terrorist organization.
While the company could not be reached for comment, its terms of service do include a broad provision banning, "objectionable material of any kind or nature." While the former website gave scant details about the upcoming 15-minute film, to be released on March 31st, it is certain to be found objectionable by some. Filmmaker Wilders says the film will underscore his belief that the Islamic holy book is "fascist."
Wilders prepared to distribute the video over the internet after being met with refusal from television stations unwilling to grant it airtime. Wilders, who lives under police protection due to death threats, refuses to be deterred, and was quoted Dutch news agency
on Saturday stating, "How many ways are there left for me to be worked against? If necessary, I'll go hand out DVDs personally on the Dam." The Dam is a colloquial name for Amsterdam's central square.
On Saturday protesters crowded the Dam to voice their distaste for Wilders. Amid sleet and heavy wind, between 2,000 and 3,000 protesters of mixed ethnicities assembled "Netherlands Shows Its Colors" in an advanced reaction against the film. Protesters carried signs such as "Standing Together Against the Right-Wing Populist Witch-Hunt."
One protester, Elisa Trepp, said, "I'm very much against Geert Wilders and racism in general. I think it's really important to show not only Holland but the rest of the world that there's a lot of people who do not agree with his ideas."
Hassan Iaeti, another demonstrator, traveled for hours to make it. He states, "The government could really do something. That's in the interest of the country - stop him, just stop him."
Dutch officials fear that the film may spark violent protests worldwide. Free speech in the U.S. is currently solely limited against making statements that would incite imminent lawless action (riots) as defined by the case Brandeburg v. Ohio. Similar limits to free speech exist throughout much of Europe, much to the chagrin of free speech advocates. As the video may spark worldwide lawlessness, the government may see it fit to block the video.
However the government remains relatively apathetic to the situation by all indications. No prominent politicians showed up at the protest. Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende has said previously that he did not agree with Wilders views, but supported his right to free speech. Balkenende did add that the video could threaten Dutch interests worldwide.
In Afghanistan protesters burned effigies of Wilders and demanded the withdraw of NATO-deployed Dutch troops from the country. A Dutch court will hear complaints against the film lodged by Muslim groups, on March 28th, however Wilders can elect to release the film before then.
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RE: Dutch Christians & Muslims Were Against the Film
3/26/2008 6:32:35 PM
"Islam is an inherently violent religion" I'm sorry for you mate but you are really dumb and I can't say more because you know nothing about history. Anyway, I get one thing from all these comments, you don't know anything and you come making points and arguments. I'm tired of explaining simple things that you fail to know or even understand. You see someone blow himself and you say "hey, he was a Muslim, let's blame it on Islam" You are so Ignorant that you fail to understand anything but what you thing is correct. Go watch at least a documentary or anything that explains what Islam is and that has at least a proper name rather than the word "Anti-islam" or any other ridiculous name. Try to be fair and not base you judgments on bias information or thing you heard or felt true. This is a religion that has been around for hundreds of years and millions follow it. Do you think that 2 billion person would still follow a religion that says what you think it says.
Just try to listen to the other side instead of making judgments from one side and I'm not denying that many "crazy" people are acting in a way that makes everybody hate Islam. But again look at the real cause.
RE: Dutch Christians & Muslims Were Against the Film
3/26/2008 9:43:23 PM
Actually he seems quite right. If you cannot bother to correct someone and merely say they are wrong, it reflects more on you than it does on the person you are criticising.
What does islam mean?
It means submission, even the violence inherent in your religion is spelt out in the name!
If a person blows themselves up, and leaves a video about why he did it, and says it's because he is going to heaven to get 72 virigns, and he is doing it for allah(often also the last words he utters), where does the blame lay? First with the idiot who blew himself up for a fairytale, then with the religion which was inclculcated into him since birth, and told him that would be his reward.
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