The release of the film from the Dutch politician Geert Wilders that attacks Islam, in particular the Noble Quran itself is proof of the hypocrisy of Europe’s talk about "free speech". Wilders’ call to ban the Quran contradicts the very same free speech which he and others used to uphold not only the release of his film but also the now infamous Danish cartoons, both designed to offend, provoke and incite hatred towards Islam and Muslims. The same license of ‘free speech’ granted to those who fuel propaganda against Islam is denied to those who speak out against western imperialism. This prejudiced use of a so-called inviolable principle is not only consistent with the policies of many European governments, who regularly fuel their own propaganda. It is also consistent with Europe’s unique history of racism and xenophobia towards minorities of all creeds and colours.
Advocates of secular liberalism have always argued that, through the abolition of religion from life’s affairs, it could do what religion could not: that is to harmonize society so that people of different creeds and practices could live together. Yet, the illusion, that Secular Europe is some bastion of tolerance, now appears ridiculous. Regular demonstrations of intolerance by secular extremists towards millions of Muslims who reside in Europe hardly compare well with Europe’s self-confessed intolerant past under the Church. Assimilation through controlling mosques, silencing of political dissent and demands of blind allegiance to some undefined set of values are now the norm in many western capitals.
Wilders’ call to ban the Noble Quran also illustrates an absolute inability of the enemies of Islam to tackle Islam in an intellectual and rational manner over many centuries. For all their condemnation of Muslims (and others) that their responses to insults to their faith are emotional, their own arguments are reduced to gut hatred and repeated calls to ban a whole spectrum of things: the hijab, the niqaab, political parties and now the Noble Quran. By contrast, it is the Quran itself that appeals to the rational mind to think and debate about man’s creation and purpose.
Governments in Europe that support a war on Islam, occupation in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine, and support tyrants in the Muslim world will doubtless welcome more propaganda to fuel their imperialist adventures. But no one should be in any doubt that these policies only fuel the desire in the Muslim world to see a strong Islamic government, independent of colonial shackles to replace the spineless dictators who jump when ordered for western interests, yet barely raise a word against these repeated attacks on Islam.
Hizb ut-Tahrir’s message to Muslims is to respond to such attacks as the beloved Prophet SAW did; for he was ridiculed, and his message was banned. Yet, he debated with reason, the wisest of arguments and the best styles. These attacks only served to increase his determination to carry the Dawah. Over the coming weeks, Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain will be organizing a series of public talks and debates to address the issues of free-speech, Shariah law, oppression of women and rise of racism and fascism in Europe.
We also call upon Muslims to redouble their efforts to re-establish the Khilafah (Caliphate) State, the only real solution to the ongoing problems in the Muslim Ummah. The Khilafah State will not only liberate the Muslim Ummah from colonialism and occupation but stand firmly against those who attack the Deen of Islam.
Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain
21st Rabi al Awwal 1429
28th March 2008