While we were conducting our hugely successful International Freedom Congress on free speech in the age of jihad, our embassies were being viciously attacked in the continuing war on ..... free speech.
Here's my column this week for WND. It was written prior to the conference and the jihadist attacks on our embassies in Egypt and Libya (Egypt still has not apologized, but we have and our apology is still on the US embassy's website).
I will have much more on the conference (videos, coverage etc.) as time permits, but the acts of war in the Middle East and Noth Africa have taken priority.
Swedish artist Lars Vilks (who lives under constant death threat) speaks as Pamela Geller (left) and Robert Spencer, Lars Hedegaard and Anders Gravers listen. "Jihad Jane," a Philadelphia convert to Islam, is projected on the screen. She was convicted of an assassinaton plot against Vilks (one of many)
Exclusive: Pamela Geller holds conference on free speech at kowtowing U.N.
Deadlines require that I write this column before the International Freedom Congress of my organization Stop Islamization of Nations, set for Tuesday, Sept. 11, at the U.N. Plaza Millennium Hotel. But the big story going into the Congress is the left’s increasing thuggishness and the necessity for defenders of freedom to take ever-greater precautions to protect themselves and enable their message to be heard.
The event was a first great counter-offensive in the war on free speech – the first international attempt to counter the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s bid to impose restrictions on free speech under a global blasphemy law. The International Freedom Congress represented a quantum leap in media action, as it discussed, beyond rhetoric, practical steps to address the phenomenon of the Islamic war against free speech. The world’s leading forces for freedom were there. And so were the enemies of freedom, determined to stop us.
Security concerns were intense surrounding our event. We hired our own security team, at great expense, and they had to undertake extensive preparations with the New York Police Department and hotel security. I’m told that New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly even held a meeting solely to discuss how to handle it. The focus of concern was Lars Vilks, the Swedish cartoonist who was one of our featured speakers, and who has had to endure numerous death threats and attempts on his life since drawing a cartoon of Muhammad. Certainly leftist and Islamic supremacist thugs would do their best to get to Vilks.
Even before the Congress began, Vilks was targeted for being there. A group of leftist Swedish artists pulled out of an exhibition rather than appear with Vilks, just because he was standing for freedom with us. It’s funny (not) how those in the art world fashion themselves as cutting edge, outside the box, brave culture warrior, when in fact they step an’ fetch it for Islamic supremacists and leftist totalitarians. They are neither brave, nor virtuous, nor talented. They are on their bellies at all times.
And in a supreme act of cowardice and dhimmitude by the Swedish museum Jamtli in Östersund, they disinvited Vilks to present his work at the exhibition. Lars Vilks is singular in his courage and steadfastness for human rights, freedom of expression, freedom of speech and equality of rights under the law. He has received hundreds of death threats, suffered assassination plots and been physically attacked. He is a true hero and artist who stands for human rights.
Museums gleefully show a crucifix immersed in urine (Andres Serrano) or elephant feces desecrating the Madonna, mother of Christ (Chris Ofili) but a Muhammad cartoon? Fuggeduhbouddit.
Nor was it just Vilks who had the leftists in a rage over the International Freedom Congress. United Nations security personnel also held a meeting about my event, and my source who was present at the meeting told me, “You sure don’t have any friends over there.” Good. I would consider it an indictment of my work if I did have a friend in that collective negation of humanity. But it’s indicative of how much the U.N. is in thrall today to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that they consider someone who tells the truth about jihad and Islamic supremacism to be their enemy. The corruption and compromise with evil at the U.N. in New York City is extensive; is that where they transferred all the sex offenders from the Congo?
The left is increasingly bent on shutting down and shutting up freedom fighters, and yet there has been scarcely any discussion of this creeping fascism in the public sphere. We are relinquishing our most cherished freedoms, our unalienable rights, with nary a whimper. What is wrong with everyone? When Simon Deng, Nonie Darwish, Robert Spencer and I spoke recently at Temple University, they shouted, chanted, cursed and yelled, determined to silence and intimidate us. It reminded me of the storm troopers disrupting the classes of non-Nazi professors in 1930s Germany. And there is going to be more and more of that, so long as there is no outcry against it. And where is such an outcry going to come from, with the mainstream media on the side of the leftist brownshirts?
America is entering a dark and difficult time.