Friday, 11 April 2008

Getting to know Islam

This story is a few days old now, but it is still worthy of notice:
A primary school in Amsterdam wished to provide its pupils with an understanding for other cultures. But during a visit to a mosque, the children were told they were dogs.
Developing an understanding of other cultures, and being called a dog, are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

With a view to developing understanding and respect for other cultures among children, primary school De Horizon regularly organises outings to various religious organisations. The chairman of the El Mouchidine mosque told the children from group 7 (aged 10) and their chaperones however that non-Muslims are dogs.

Muslims have quite a wide range of such dehumanising insults to throw at the infidels. For example, London's King Fahd Academy teaches children that Christians are pigs, and Jews apes.

In a letter to the children's parents, the school expresses its regret at the incident: "We are shocked that during the guided tour, the mosque's chairman told the children and chaperoning parents that non believers were dogs. We consider this statement as unacceptable since we allow our children to partake in this project to develop respect for freedom of religious choice".

In the meantime, the school's management has addressed the mosque on the undesirable behaviour of the chairman. Both parties will say nothing further on the matter. "We will resolve the matter amongst ourselves and I have no inclination whatsoever to discuss the matter with the media", as newspaper De Telegraaf quoted the school's spokesperson Mariet ten Berge. "We have been to the mosque before and it always went well".

I can't imagine quite how the school is going to broach the matter to the mosque authorities! "Could you please maintain a veneer of respectability, and keep your more bigoted views to yourself next time; we don't want the children getting the right idea about Islam", perhaps? Or maybe the grovelling "We're deeply sorry that some of the children took your honoured chairman's remarks out of context - it won't happen again", will be more to the taste of the school's management?

Angry parents had sent the letter on to De Telegraaf but were reportedly rapped on the knuckles by the school's management. "The school wishes to play this down. That is precisely the problem", as one mother commented.
In this story, and the school's response to it, you have a microcosm of the general attitude of the authorities to Islam, and those who expose the wrongdoing of its followers. A Muslim does something wrong, and every effort is made to hush it up, "resolving the matter amongst ourselves". Meanwhile, those who do no more than publicise the misdeeds of the Muslim are themselves denounced, or at least "rapped on the knuckles", for having the nerve to criticise the Poor Oppressed Victims. I'm rather surprised that the parents in question have not, as yet, been accused of "Islamophobia"!

I wonder whether the school is planning to continue sending children to visit this mosque? Certainly, this report contains nothing approaching an indication to the contrary, and the school's desire to deal with the matter privately, and to downplay any criticism of the mosque authorities, suggests that they hope for rapprochement, and the continuance of this mutually beneficial relationship.

Oh well, at least the children got a more balanced look at Islam than they would have done from simply listening to some dhimmi schoolmistress repeating platitudes about "Religions of Peace".

A comment at Dhimmi Watch, where I first saw this story, quotes the following news report (I have no idea what the source was, since no link is given), in which the mosque chairman seeks to explain his statement:
According to a press release by Mohamed Guennoun, chairman of the El Mouhahidine [sic] mosque, the report above is based on erroneous information. He had never called unbelievers dogs and he rejects such statements.


When one 12 year old asked if Muslims are obligated to go to the mosque he had answered: No that is not obligatory. But there are those among us - those who think extremely - who think that if you as a Muslim don't go to the mosque five times a day to pray then you're really an unbeliever and not more than a dog.

Guennoun stresses that he was speaking of the extremists. He doesn't belong to that group and he rejects their way of thinking.
All the children, however, seem to have got the impression that he was calling them dogs. Bloody Islamophobes!


JuliaM said...

"Angry parents had sent the letter on to De Telegraaf but were reportedly rapped on the knuckles by the school's management."

Whew! They got off lightly. They could have been given detention...!

Alex said...

If what took place in the Amsterdam mosque had happened in this country - which it might do at any minute - no doubt "Jacqui" Smith would soon be on hand to reassure us that Muslims who refer to "infidel" children as "dogs" are not followers of Islam.

She's already denied the existence of Muslim terrorism on the grounds that it's incompatible with Islam: so having swallowed a camel, why should she strain at a gnat?