Sunday, December 13, 2009

One more note on Switzerland's minaret paranoia - a very telling passage from an article in Der Spiegel (two previous posts on the minaret ban are here and here):

[...] The quiet winner of this battle is Daniel Zingg, 53, a balding man with wire-rimmed glasses. He's sitting in a pizzeria across from the railway station in Langenthal and speaking in a hoarse whisper. The minarets, those "spearheads of the Sharia," those "signs of territory newly conquered by Islam," can no longer be built, he says, and thus the Swiss have solved a problem that has already become seemingly intractable elsewhere, such as in the large cities of England and France. It's a well-known fact that first come the minarets, then the muezzins, with their calls to prayer, the burqas and finally Sharia law, he says. According to Zingg, the ban is not directed against Muslims, although it is naturally true that "the Koran gives (people) the mission to Islamize the world, and the Muslims here have no other mission, otherwise they would not be Muslims."

For the past 15 years, Zingg has been giving lectures in support of Israel and against Islam. He's a politician with the ultraconservative Christian party, the Federal Democratic Union, which received 1.3 percent of the vote in the last election. He has never set foot in the mosque in his town because he has heard that anyone who walks barefoot in one becomes a Muslim. Zingg doesn't want to take that risk. [...]

1 comment:

  1. Dear Neeka,
    Thank you for keeping up the minarets issue : as for me, after two weeks of articles, reports, investigations, blogs, debates ad nauseam , I read during the week-end the first article that really strikes home. It takes the angle of our political system, and our Constitution.

    It explains how already in the 1890ies, our sacred extended referendum system had allowed to target a religious community : the Jewish one. By forbidding the ritual slaughtering of animals. The referendum was accepted. This has been erased from our collective memory : the Swiss direct democracy device is untouchable!

    The last paragraph is the most interesting, and I’ll translate it for you :
    “During the latest revision of our federal Constitution in 1999, anti-Jesuit, anti-monastery (read > "Catholic monastic orders"), anti-bishops and anti-Jew articles have been repealed . From this week, thanks to Oscar [Freysinger], we will have to live 100 years or more (until the next total revision of the Constitution), with an anti-Muslim, anti-tolerance, anti-Swiss article.”

    The author is Henri Carron, a local historian and socialist militant. It was published in Le Peuple Valaisan, Friday December 11th, 2009.

    As for me, I wrote a related editorial on the website of the International Institute for the Rights of the Child. So here is the link :

    Have a nice week in Moscow!