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A Showdown on Freedom of Speech in Europe

The freedom of speech could live or die with Salwan Momika.

Will Europe embrace and defend the freedom of expression or blasphemy laws? And once Europe makes its choice, what will the United States of America do in turn about the same issue? The showdown is coming in Europe, and it’s coming quickly. Sweden has ordered Salwan Momika, an Iraqi freedom fighter who has burned the Qur’an in protest against the violence does in its name and in accord with its teachings, and to stand for the freedom of expression, to be deported. On Friday, he stated his case on X. Will he be heeded?

Morocco World News reported back on February 8 that “Sweden is set to deport Salwan Momika, the controversial man behind last year’s Quran-burning protests, as local reports indicate that a Swedish court has upheld the deportation order against the controversial man.” On Friday, Momika wrote: “My extradition to Iraq means that Sweden will participate in my execution, and that it will be the turn of the rest of those who stand against the Islamization of the West.” Exactly so. But does anyone Sweden or elsewhere in the West care?

Momika added: “The persecution I am subjected to in Sweden is tantamount to defending Islam and supporting the project of Islamizing Sweden and the West, granting asylum and protecting Islamists, and while those who criticize Islam are expelled and persecuted, this means that the law on freedom of expression is in real danger and Islamic values ​​may be imposed on Western societies and the application of Sharia law. Islamism will inevitably come to them unless we take action.” Well, it’s quite clear that the laws on freedom of expression are indeed in danger. If they weren’t, Momika wouldn’t be facing deportation; he would be being feted and lionized as a hero in Sweden.

If Momika is forced to return to Iraq, he will almost certainly be killed, as he himself explained: “I am in a humanitarian and moral struggle against the @Migrationsverk and Muslims, and I need your solidarity with me. If Sweden does not want me to stay here, then give me guarantees that your authorities will not demand me if I seek asylum in another country, and provide me with protection to reach another country because I cannot travel because Iraq has previously issued an international arrest warrant against me and distributed it to the international police.” He concluded: “How can the Swedes be so calm when Sweden is being Islamized before their eyes? What would you say to future generations? Will you tell them that one day an Assyrian came and told us about Islam and warned of its dangers while we handed him over to Iraq to be killed?

Swedes and other non-Muslims in the West can be so calm because they have no idea what’s at stake, or what’s coming. Momika has been trying to tell them. Back in June 2023, he explained why he wanted to burn the Qur’an in the first place: “I want to protest in front of the large mosque in Stockholm, and I want to express my opinion about the Quran… I will tear up and burn it.” He added: “This is democracy. It is in danger if they tell us we can’t do this.” Indeed. And now that danger has come to pass in the form of the deportation order against Momika. If a man can be expelled from Sweden for defending the freedom of expression, then the freedom of expression is no longer permitted in Sweden.

That’s what the 56-nation (plus the Palestinian Authority) Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) wants Sweden, and the West in general, to do: abandon the freedom of expression and adopt Sharia blasphemy restrictions. Reuters reported in early July 2023 that OIC Secretary-General Hissein Brahim Taha called for Western countries to ban Qur’an burning using laws against hate speech: “We must send constant reminders to the international community regarding the urgent application of international law, which clearly prohibits any advocacy of religious hatred.” This was an unmistakable indication of how “hate speech” laws can be weaponized to compel Western countries to abandon the freedom of expression and submit to Sharia blasphemy laws.

Salwan Momika is in serious danger, and so is the freedom of expression. Given the fact that the Western political and media elites already have a well-established admiration for authoritarianism and distaste for the freedom of speech, can the acceptance of the OIC’s demands be long in coming?

Article posted with permission from Robert Spencer

Robert Spencer

Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and author of the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Complete Infidel’s Guide to Iran. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.

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