Mohammed Cartoon Row Redux


Registered Member
Link said:
(CNN) -- Newspapers across Europe Wednesday reprinted the controversial cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed that sparked worldwide protests two years ago.

The move came one day after Danish authorities arrested three people allegedly plotting a "terror-related assassination" of Kurt Westergaard, the cartoonist behind the drawing.

Berlingske Tidende, was one of the newspapers involved in the republication by newspapers in Denmark. It said: "We are doing this to document what is at stake in this case, and to unambiguously back and support the freedom of speech that we as a newspaper always will defend," in comments reported by The Associated Press.

Newspapers in Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands also republished the drawing Wednesday as part of their coverage of Tuesday's arrests.

The image, by Morgenavisen Jullands-Posten cartoonist Westergaard, was one of 12 cartoons about the Prophet Mohammed originally published in September 2005. Westergaard's cartoon depicted the prophet wearing a bomb as a turban with a lit fuse.

Violent demonstrations erupted across the world in early 2006 after other newspapers reprinted the images as a matter of free speech. The uproar came as some Muslims believe it is forbidden by the Quran to show an image of the prophet.

Many protesters directed their ire at Denmark, prompting the closure of several Danish embassies in predominantly Muslim countries, including Indonesia and Pakistan. There were also attacks on other diplomatic missions in Iran and Syria among others.

The Danish Foreign Ministry has said it is keeping a watch on the situation at its embassies and has yet to report any incidents.

Muslim leaders in Denmark Wednesday attacked the republication of the cartoon, as well as the alleged murder plot, while calling for calm. Imam Mostafa Chendid, chief of the Islamic Faith Community, told AP his group was discussing whether to hold a demonstration before parliament, adding: "We are so unhappy about the cartoon being reprinted."

"No blood was ever shed in Denmark because of this, and no blood will be shed. We are trying to calm down people, but let's see what happens. Let's open a dialogue."
What do all of you think about this? Is the republication of the cartoon proper support for free speech, an unnecessary provocation, or both? How far should governments go to regulate speech which could incite violence?
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For a Free Scotland
If they are not in themselves advocating violence, I see no problem with it; I think any government intervention in the matter is a violation of the principles of a liberal democracy.

If we decide to ban these publications, let's also ban Harry Potter, The Laramie Project, Brokeback Mountain and the Satanic Verses. These have violent, angry reactionary movements (over a dozen people have died in protests/assainations related to the Satanic Verses) over non-violent material.

Freedom marches on.