Cross posted from C/Net News
Posted by Steven Musil
Network Solutions has suspended a Web site that a Dutch lawmaker was using to promote a yet-to-be-released film critical of Islam.
The Web hosting service said it was investigating whether content on the site--Fitnathemovie.com--was in violation of the hosting service's Acceptable Use Policy.The 15-minute movie, called Fitna--an Arabic word that means "test of faith in times of trial"--describes Islam as "the enemy of freedom," according to comments made by Geert Wilders, a Dutch lawmaker and the film's maker. Dutch officials fear the movie could spark violence, as happened after Danish newspapers published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
Wilders had been using the site to promote the movie, but the site was pulled after the Web-hosting company said it received "a number of complaints" regarding the site.
"In this situation with the dialogue that's happening throughout the world we've made the choice to suspend the site as of last night," Susan Wade, spokeswoman for Network Solutions, told the Associated Press. "This site is suspended so people can't see the content right now but the customer still has access to their site. They can make whatever changes are necessary as we complete our investigation."
Wilders plans to show his film despite the setback, Dutch news agency ANP reported.
"If need be, I will personally distribute DVDs in the Dam," ANP quoted him as saying. The Dam is the central square in Amsterdam.
The Dutch government has expressed great concern about the upcoming film release and has made emergency evacuation plans available to all its consulates and embassies worldwide. It is also hardening security measurements around military installations abroad.
It is feared that the film will lead to violent demonstrations such as the protests against the Jyllands-Posten Mohammed cartoons that were published in the Danish newspaper 'Jyllands-Posten' in 2005. This previous Muslim violence resulted in the burning of the Danish embassy in Syria and other acts of violence around the world, including the murder of a catholic nun and people from several different religions, including Muslims.
Egypt is closely monitoring the situation. The European Union has alerted its diplomatic missions around the world to expect a reaction to the release of the film.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy has officially declared that France will provide every necessary support to aid the Netherlands in the suppression of any Muslim violence that might be the result of the film.
NATO has said it fears that the consequences of the Fitna film will affect the safety of troops in action in Afghanistan.
Critique and censorshipIn February 2008, Pakistani regulators internally banned YouTube for several days due to a "blasphemous" video clip believed to be a trailer for Fitna. Google eventually complied with the Pakistani protest and the material was removed. In their attempt to censor, Pakistan accidentally caused the YouTube site to be unavailable worldwide for hours.
Widespread critique of the film has spawned protest actions including a protest of 1,000 people in Dam Square in Amsterdam. Protesters consider the content of Wilder's unseen film to be incendiary and an inappropriate political expression for a politician in a country with a multi-cultural population.
In early March 2008, a preliminary version of the movie's official website, fitnathemovie.com, was put online. The index page of the site contained a picture of the Qur'an accompanied by the text "Geert Wilders presents Fitna" and "Coming soon". On March 22, however, the hosting provider of the website, the Internet company Network Solutions, replaced the page with a message stating that the company "is investigating whether the site's content is in violation of the Network Solutions Acceptable Use Policy. Network Solutions has received a number of complaints regarding this site that are under investigation."
Threats and consequences
Zabihullah Mujahid has stressed that the Taliban will increase their attacks on Dutch military and humanitarian peacekeepers in Afghanistan, if the film was ever aired.Wilders is the subject of a fatwa, allegedly associated with Al-Qaeda, calling upon Muslims to assassinate Wilders in the name of Islam.Syria's Grand Mufti, leader Ahmad Badr al-Din said that if Geert Wilders pictures the image of a burning Qur'an in his film, the Dutch people will be held responsible and possible attacks against Western public interests are not out of the question.
Iran has threatened to review its diplomatic stance with The Netherlands, should the film be aired.
Prime minister Jan Peter Balkenende of the Netherlands is worried about possible repercussions for Dutch citizens and economic interests.
The publication of the film was investigated by the Dutch ministry of Justice to find out whether the release of the film could be prevented, but this could not be done.
Wilders accuses Balkenende of capitulating to Islam.
On March 6th 2008, the Dutch government raised its national terroristic threat level from the status 'limited terroristic threat' to 'substantial terroristic threat' because it fears Muslim terrorists will launch attacks against European targets, with the film as one of the causes.
Planned releaseWilders has stated that he will try to get the film on the Internet before the end of March 2008. A news article on Reuters has stated that the movie has an expected release date of March 28
Transposted Wikipedia entry: "Fitna movie"
Note from Radarsite:
This is just the latest disgusting example of moral weakness and cultural capitulation that will be the death of the West. Is it really that easy to intimidate a whole culture? The answer, apparently, is Yes. There just aren’t enough adjectives in my limited vocabulary to convey the depth of my disgust and anger towards these cowardly elements within this imperilled Western Society of ours. They try to couch their withering fear in PC euphemisms and high-sounding moral stances, and pretend that it is tolerance, but make no mistake about it, we're on to you, it’s not tolerance, it’s nothing less than base ignoble fear that drives you into the arms of our enemies to grovel before them and hope that they accept your cowardly apologies. “We apologize for those close-minded right-wingers amongst us who are calling you mindless brutes, primitive animals, and all of those other nasty things. We are not one of them. We are the ‘good people’…”
You’re not the 'good people', you're not even a culture any more, you are nothing but a sickly little tribe of groveling weaklings. You are beneath our contempt, and don’t be fooled for a minute — you have deservedly earned our enemies contempt as well. You are traitors to your people and you will suffer the same disgraceful fate all traitors suffer — to be ostracized by both sides and trusted by neither.You are lost and you are blind. God help you — and God help those poor societies that nurtured you, who you are stabbing in the back.
Shame, shame, shame.
This drama, however, is still unfolding. We shall soon see what happens. And what happens here will happen to us all.
Radarsite highly recommends Velvet Hammer's in depth and ongoing coverage of this breaking story.
Update: (Hat tip to Velvet Hammer) Czech NS party to release Fitna on their website: