Den indiske författaren Kanchan Gupta har
ett lite annat perspektiv på minaret-
konflikten än vad vi är vana vid i Europa:
Turkey’s Islamist Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan
was being faithful to his creed when he declared,
“Mosques are our barracks, minarets our bayonets,
domes our helmets, the believers our soldiers.”
Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi, a fascist Sunni imam
with a huge following among those who subscribe to
the Muslim Brotherhood’s antediluvian worldview,
was more to the point when he thundered at an event
organised by London’s then Labour mayor Ken
Livingstone, “The West may have the atom bomb, we
have the human bomb.” Sheikh Qaradawi, who is of
Egyptian origin, frequently exhorts Muslims not to rest
till they have “conquered Christian Rome” and believes
“throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews
people who would punish them for their corruption.
The last punishment was carried out by Hitler”.
Islamic schools in Britain funded by Saudi Arabia use
textbooks describing Jews as “apes” and Christians as
“pigs”. Theo Van Gogh, who along with writer Ayaan
Hirsi Ali produced Submission, a film on the plight of
Muslim women under sharia’h, was shot dead by
Mohammed Bouyeri, a Dutch-Moroccan Muslim, in
Amsterdam. Rallies by radical Islamists, which were
once rare, are now a common feature in European
capitals with banners and placards denouncing
democracy as the ‘problem’ and Islam as the ‘solution’.
Such crude though accurate assertions of Islamism,
coupled with the relentless jihad being waged overtly
— exemplified by the London Underground bombings
and the riots in Parisian suburbs — and covertly as
exposed by Channel 4’s stunning investigation in its
Dispatches programme titled ‘Undercover Mosque’,
have now begun to raise hackles in Europe.
The first signs of an incipient backlash came in the form
of French President Nicolas Sarkozy demanding a ban
on the burqa (the sharia’h-imposed hijab is already
banned at public schools in France). Any doubts that
may have lingered about Europe’s patience with Islam’s
rage boys running thin have been removed by last
Sunday’s referendum in Switzerland where people
have voted overwhelmingly to ban the construction
of minarets which are no longer seen to be representing
faith. For 57.5 per cent of Swiss citizens, the minaret,
an obligatory adjunct to a mosque which is used by the
muezzin to call the faithful to prayers five times a day,
is now a “political symbol against integration”.
They view each new minaret as marking the trans-
mogrification of Christian Europe into Islamic Eurabia.
The Islamic minaret, according to Swiss People’s Party
legislator Ulrich Schluer, has come to represent the
“effort to establish sharia’h on European soil”. Hence
the counter-effort to ban their construction.