FrontPage interviews Canadain author Howard Rotberg, who's latest work, The Second Catastrophe, is largely banned in his home country for offending Muslims.
FP: Let’s begin with the trouble you began having after the release of your novel.
Rotberg: Several years ago, at a book lecture at the Waterloo Ontario store of the monopoly book retailer in Canada (with 72% of Canadian retail book sales), I was attacked by a Palestinian and an Iraqi, who shouted me down, with shouts of “you have no right to be heard if you are pro-Israel.” Then when I could no longer speak, and folded up my notes, and audience members asked the hecklers to be quiet and let me speak, the Iraqi shouted “he is a fucking Jew.” The lecture was stopped.
The only employee present was a young woman with a hijab. She later told some people in attendance that she was Palestinian and knew the hecklers. She later reported to her boss, fraudulently, that I said that “all Muslims are terrorists.” Later she changed the allegation in a written statement, also fraudulent, that I said that “all Middle Easterners are terrorists.” No matter how ridiculous, the PR person for Chapters stated in a press release that they were sorry that patrons had to hear racist statements from both the hecklers and the guest author.
Later an allegation appeared on the internet that I supposedly said at the lecture that “all Arabs and Muslims deserve to die.” In this case I got the internet site to furnish me with the IP address for the computer from which emanated this terrible allegation. Then I obtained a court order compelling the internet service provider to disclose the name and address of the computer owner. The allegation was posted in the name of a Jewish person, but I had reason to believe that such a person could never state that.
When I got the court order I found out that the source of the internet posting was a Palestinian family who lived a few doors away from the Jewish family whose name they appropriated for the internet allegation. I also did some detective work and found that the daughter of the family was a school friend and fellow member of the local university Muslim Students Association with the Palestinian, then 18 year old, book clerk, who started this little fraud. It had large repercussions. When I complained to the President of the book chain about the press release, she did not take it well. In one week, the book chain “banned” my book, returning some 300 copies to the publisher, and stated on their web site that the book was “unavailable”. Of course, refusing to carry it on their website was an indication of their animus; it costs the chain nothing in terms of shelf space to have it available by web-ordering, but the “fatwa” was a complete one.
FP: So what’s happening now?
Rotberg: I am still trying to get a court case heard against the book chain, but their lawyers are quite successful in stalling the case. Canadian newspapers do not want to cover the matter, because they receive large advertising dollars from the book chain.
In the McCarthyesque tragic-comedy of “tolerant” intellectuals running around looking for evidence of Islamophobia in Canada, people like me don’t stand much of a chance. Fortunately in the U.S. you have good people like yourselves, Mr. Horowitz, Daniel Pipes, Phyllis Chesler, Steve Emerson, and Robert Spencer. In Canada, we have one good group called Canadian Coalition for Democracies, but except for them, and some authors like David Soloway and Ezra Levant, I feel quite alone. More.
One difference between the Nazis and today's political jihadists is that the Nazis would just crudely gather books and publicly burn them in a pile. The Islamists are working within the system to destroy it. Using litigation and crying racism or Islamiphobia anytime someone dares to question the religion of peace. This squelching of free speech, under the guise of multiculturalism and sensitivity, is another step towards sharia law and the erosion of our very freedom. Welcome to the List of things that offend Muslims Mr Rotberg. Other authors who have been fatwa'ed.
One difference between the Nazis and today's political jihadists is that the Nazis would just crudely gather books and publicly burn them in a pile. The Islamists are working within the system to destroy it. Using litigation and crying racism or Islamiphobia anytime someone dares to question the religion of peace. This squelching of free speech, under the guise of multiculturalism and sensitivity, is another step towards sharia law and the erosion of our very freedom.
Welcome to the List of things that offend Muslims Mr Rotberg.
Other authors who have been fatwa'ed.
- Salmon Rushdie
- Nawal Al Saadawi
- Naguib Mahfouz
- JK Rowling
- Robert Spencer
- Taslima Nasreen
- Carl I Hagen
- Mark Steyn
- Dr Racheal Ehrenfeld
- Abdullah bin Bejab al-Otaibi and Yousef Aba al-Khail
- Passant Rashad
- These 11 books
- Walid Shoebat
- Ayaan Hirsi-Ali
- Wafa Sultan
- Various newspapers, and magazines.
- Here are some cases against the Bible, one, two, three.
Giving up freedom of speech in order to spare the feelings of any religion is a bad trade, especially so in Islam's case.
Michelle Malkin has another cartoon to upset Muslims.
Liberty and Culture: Freedom of Speech and the Islamic Threat.
NeoCon Command Center: Here's Your Sign.