Thursday, December 01, 2005

Tariq Ramadan, Denis MacShane

Concerning the question about Tariq Ramadan raised by Denis MacShane's article,  I've written a letter to the New Statesman:
Turkey's disgrace
email: letters@newstatesman.co.uk

Denis MacShane (Turkey's disgrace, 28th November 2005) refers to Tariq Ramadan mounting a campaign in 1993 to stop a play by Voltaire being staged, a case that does not cease to be cited by islamophobes like Daniel Pipes.

The denial of free speech, however, cuts both ways: as is well known, Mr Ramadan has been refused, on unspecified grounds, entry to the US to take up an academic post; he defended himself in a court case in France against a charge that he was - very indirectly - encouraging terrorism; he was barred from France, probably due to pressure from the Egyptians.

The most direct equivalent, though, comes from an article in Vanity Fair, April 2004: Shimon Samuels,  director of the Wiesenthal Center in Paris, noticed that Tariq Ramadan was going to speak at the European Social Forum in 2003 and wrote to the mayor of Paris, who had committed one million euros to the forum, saying that unless he distanced himself he was going to be "financing hate."

28 Nov 2005.
April 2004 - DAUGHTERS OF FRANCE, DAUGHTERS OF ALLAH by Marie Brenner.
...

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