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Another Victory for the 'Stealth Jihad' By: Kathy Shaidle
FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, November 28, 2008

In what one observer decried as “a very Orwellian moment,” the fight against radical Islam suffered a setback in the halls of the United Nations last Monday. Islamic countries won UN backing for an anti-blasphemy measure called “Combating Defamation of Religions,” which passed 85-50 with 42 abstentions in a meeting of the UN General Assembly’s Third Committee on November 23.

The measure calls on all countries to ensure their legal systems provide protection against “acts of hatred, discrimination, intimidation and coercion resulting from defamation of religions.”

Sponsors of the proposal say it is merely “aimed at preventing violence against worshippers regardless of religion,” and indeed, “Combating Defamation” is at first glance slightly less Islamic-centric than previous UN resolutions with similar aims.

However, the resolution is part of a ten year plan launched by the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) in 2005, to “ensure the renaissance of the Muslim Ummah” or worldwide Islamic community. Sure enough, the document claims that “Islam is frequently and wrongly associated with human rights violations and terrorism.”

Catherine Loubier, spokeswoman for the Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister, quickly and succinctly expressed reservations about the resolution, stating, “Canada rejects the basic premise that religions have rights; human rights belong to human beings.” (Ironically, however, Canada is one of the few Western nations that still has a law forbidding blasphemy on its own books, although it hasn’t been invoked in 70 years.)

Other nations expressed their disapproval during voting, when more countries than expected either abstained or opposed the resolution outright. According to one report, this is a hopeful sign that a “push back against the Islamic bloc-driven campaign is gaining traction.”

The executive director of the independent group UN Watch, Hillel Neurer, declared that “Combating Defamations of Religions” is “just the latest shot in an intensifying campaign of UN resolutions that dangerously seek to import Islamic anti-blasphemy prohibitions into the discourse of international human rights law.”

“Muslim moderates, bloggers, women seeking basic freedoms -- all of these will be the first to suffer from the worsening climate of state repression in the name of state-supported Islamic orthodoxy,” due to resolutions like this one, said Neurer, which are designed solely to intimidate anyone who criticizes radical Islam.

Robert Spencer agrees. The author of the new book Stealth Jihad: How Radical Islam is Subverting America without Guns or Bombs told FrontPage that the latest UN anti-blasphemy measure is “a thinly veiled attempt to restrict speech that Islamic authorities find offensive or inconvenient, including honest discussion of the motives and goals of jihad terrorists and of how they make use of Islamic texts and teachings to gain recruits and justify their actions.”

Spencer adds that the right to free speech is threatened by such measures, even though that right is “the only possible cornerstone of peaceful coexistence in a genuinely pluralistic society.”

“Combating Defamations of Religions” is yet another attempt to increase Muslim hegemony around the world, says the Jihad Watch director.

An expert in the field of Islamic terrorism and anti-Semitism, Phyllis Chesler told FrontPage that this latest salvo in the OIC’s attempts to silence any criticism of Islam “should be the final straw.”

“Democracies should now pull out of the United Tyrannical Nations so that it will in no way be bound by such resolutions. Artists, intellectuals, dissidents, feminists have all been silenced or killed by Islamic terrorists in Muslim countries and increasingly in Europe,” mentioning murdered filmmaker Theo Van Gogh, his colleague Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Rachel Ehrenfeld, who was sued by a Saudi billionaire for writing a book exposing the financial backers of Islamic terrorism.

Chesler says radical Islam is getting bolder in its demands and advances, while “Western societies are either increasingly duped or terrified” by signs of creeping sharia and Muslim supremacism.

“What Islamists call ‘blasphemy’ we in the West call ‘free speech,’” Chesler states bluntly. “The UN is a collection of tyrannies, not democracies, whose demented defamation of only-Israel should be reason enough for America and Europe to stop paying taxes and depart from the UN.”

Anne Bayevsky, a professor at Toronto’s York University who heads up the watchdog group EYE on the UN, explained to FrontPage that the Organization of Islamic Conference “wields enormous power throughout the UN and is using the organization to undermine radically universal human rights standards.”

Bayevsky points out the “great irony” of a Muslim group touting “freedom of religion” while in many Islamic countries, apostasy is punishable by death.

She describes UN resolutions like as “Combating Defamation of Religions” as part of  “the corpus of soft international law, molding public opinion and changing minds” and an “assault” that “ought to be of tremendous concern to freedom-loving people everywhere.”

“There is only one solution,” Bayevsky declares, echoing Phyllis Chesler. “The taxpaying citizens of free states ought not to be paying for their own demise.  A United Democratic Nations is long overdue."

Kathy Shaidle blogs at FiveFeetOfFury.com. Her new book exposing abuses by Canada’s Human Rights Commissions, The Tyranny of Nice, includes an introduction by Mark Steyn.

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