Tuesday, February 07, 2006
French kissing in the USA
Still ... the US State department feels that the cartoons are insulting. (See transcript from press briefing below.) Which begs the question - has press spokesman McCormack even seen the cartoons? As ironic as it may be - he confirms that he has not (see transcript)! What part of the Sharia law about stoning women is it he feels that we should show our respect to? Which part of the burqa-laws in former Al-Qaida controlled parts of Afghanistan is it he wants us to "understand"?
When did public beatings of homosexuals in the name of religion become the US policy - if not for themselves so at least in terms of "reaching out" to the Arab world? THIS is what the cartoons wanted to address - together with the hot topic issue that illustrators felt they would be threatened if they dared to attempt to draw Mohammed (even in a less cartoon-satire way...) - which they obviously have.
Bill Clinton asked, high on sensitivity training , compared the "anti-Islamic prejudice" in Europe with a previous "anti-Semitic prejudice." Funny. I thought that most Islamic cultures in the Middle East were Semitic (as in Arabic, Aramaic, Akkadian, Syriac...) but maybe Clinton knows something about linguistic/ethnicnationalism that I don't.
Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff has a great take on the American approach to Tolerance Towards Intolerance in his WP column.
Transcript from press briefing, US State Department, February 3:
QUESTION: Yes? Can you say anything about a U.S. response or a U.S. reaction to this uproar in Europe over the Prophet Muhammad pictures? Do you have any reaction to it? Are you concerned that the violence is going to spread and make everything just --