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Geert Wilders, the far-right Dutch politician, poses with police officers who responded to the shooting at Muhammad Art Exhibit in Dallas. Photograph: AP

The gun attack in Dallas, Texas, at a contest to draw cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, evokes memories of the January shootings at the Paris office of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Two gunmen were killed and a security guard injured at the Muhammad Art Exhibit, organised this weekend by the American Freedom Defense Initiative. Coincidentally, the French magazine will pick up a Freedom of Expression Courage honour in New York tomorrow, awarded by the literary group PEN. When six writers pulled out of the ceremony in protest, Salman Rushdie accused them of cowardice and condoning terrorism. The six argue that the award validates “selectively offensive” racist and anti-Islamic material.…  Seguir leyendo »

It was only a matter of time before this would happen in the United States.

Violence in the West aimed at those who draw cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed has become increasingly common.

In January, 12 people were killed by two gunmen at the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine in Paris, which had run a number of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.

A month later in Copenhagen, Denmark, at an event featuring Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks, who had also drawn cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, one of the attendees was killed by a gunman who had pledged allegiance to ISIS.

On Sunday, two men opened fire outside the "Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest" in Garland, Texas.…  Seguir leyendo »

Why Tolerate Terrorist Publications?

While most of us would agree that religious fundamentalists, foreign and domestic, sometimes do serious harm to our society, there are other kinds of fundamentalists who are also dangerous: I refer to legal fundamentalists.

More precisely, the tranche of lawyers, academicians, journalists and publishers who, over the years, have developed into First Amendment fundamentalists and have become a powerful influence on our government. Currently, they appear to have persuaded our attorney general that the amendment bars him from taking action against Inspire magazine, published on the Internet by Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

The organization is a sworn enemy of the United States, and its web publication is available throughout the land.…  Seguir leyendo »