Dutch politician, and leading European Islamophobe Geert Wilders says Anders Breivik, who perpetrated the massacre of dozens of people in Norway is actually inspired by Al Qaeda.
And, while rejecting the massacre of innocents in Norway, Wilders affirms his support for the “anti-Islamization” to which the killer was committed.
Wilders says the Norway massacre must not be allowed to discredit the broader anti-Muslim campaign in Europe, which the “Freedom Party” Wilders leads has spearheaded.
The Dutch politician, whose party supports his country’s ruling coalition in parliament, has been in the spotlight as a result of the attack. The perpetrator of the Norway massacre, Anders Breivik cited Wilders’ anti-Muslim views extensively and approvingly in his manifesto explaining that he carried out the massacre to spark a “civil war” to rid Europe of Muslims.
In a Dutch-language statement on the website of the Freedom Party (known by its Dutch initials PVV), Wilders wrote:
The brutal murders a few days ago of dozens of innocent Norwegian citizens has deeply shocked the PVV. We mourn and stand with the Norwegian people who have have been struck with this enormous blow.
Wilders forcefully rejected any responsibility that his hate-filled anti-Muslim propaganda could have inspired the killer and instead sought to cast the blame back on Muslims, writing:
The manifesto of the perpetrator makes clear that this is a madman. He wants to work with Al Qaeda (which he cherishes great admiration for)…
He then goes on to state that Breivik’s act must not be allowed to discredit his anti-Muslim campaign:
Neither the PVV nor I are responsible for a lone idiot who twisted and violently abused freedom-loving anti-Islamization ideals, no matter how much some people would like that. We are democrats at heart. The PVV has never, ever called for violence and will never do. We believe in the power of the ballot box and the wisdom of the voter. Not bombs and guns. We fight for a democratic and nonviolent means against the further Islamisation of society and will continue to do so. The preservation of our freedom and security is our only goal.
It seems impossible to imagine a politician in any European democracy speaking openly of “freedom-loving anti-Semitic ideals” or “freedom-loving anti-Jewish ideals” yet Wilders’ words indicate just how acceptable this kind of sentiment has become when directed at Muslims.
And, despite his affirmations that he doesn’t support violence, Wilders has been the leading European supporter of violent Israeli settlers, bent on expelling Palestinians from the occupied West Bank by any means necessary. Last year Wilders spoke at a conference of Israeli settler leaders who advocate following Israel’s violent colonization of Palestinian land in violation of international law with formal annexation of the territory.
Along with becoming an iconic figure for European and American Islamophobes, Wilders has been a leading force in the Dutch government’s shift to embrace Israel’s extreme right-wing government.