Austria to limit building of mosques
Now this is interesting. There is no transgression of human rights legislation because Muslims will still be free to practise Islam, and prayer rooms in buildings may be as abundant as required. What is noteworthy is the objection to the symbolism of mosques and minarets being built to ‘advertise the power of Islam’.
This has been the concern behind the colossal new London mosque planned for the site of the Olympics. In magnitude it will be bigger than St Paul’s Cathedral or Westminster Abbey, and its location will bring the eyes of the world upon it in 2012. It is considered by many to be an overtly political statement and a religious assertion of supremacy, and petitions have been signed by thousands to halt the proposal.
But neither Herr Haider’s objections nor the petition against the London mosque are likely to realise their objectives. There is no will in the West to contend either for two thousand years of culture or religion. There is simply acquiescence, accommodation, compliance, deference, and, ultimately, submission.
There is, of course, no reciprocity. While Muslims may build their mosques even in the Royal Parks of the Supreme Governor of the Church of England, Christians may not build churches in Islamic lands. And where they exist, they are firebombed, vandalised, and believers live in fear of the consequences of daring to follow their Lord. And the West utters not a word.
Even as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia bans visitors from all items and articles belonging to religions other than Islam, there is no objection from any Western government. If you are visiting Islam’s holiest land, you may no longer take your Bible, even for your own devotional purposes. There is also a ban on crosses, crucifixes, statues, carvings, and items with religious symbols such as the Star of David. They will be confiscated, permanently.
Pace Herr Haider, could one ever conceive of the West banning mosques, Qur’ans, crescent moons, and prayer mats?
Daniel Pipes has a strategy for dealing with the Saudi government. He suggests that until they change their ‘detestable policy’, its airline should be disallowed from flying into Western airports. Cranmer would go further, and demand of Western governments that they cease diplomatic relations and all trade agreements with a country which the United States has termed ‘among the most religiously repressive in the world’. But, of course, it is about oil. The land which spawned Osama bin Laden, and spreads the Wahhabi poison throughout the world and into the mosques of the United Kingdom, is ultimately untouchable.
Reciprocity may well be requested of equals, but when there is an ascendant power, with a victor and a vanquished in sight, reciprocity is simply a nice word for political consumption, and a vain dream of self delusion.