Freedom is the most precious of all our attainments and the most vulnerable. People have devoted their lives to it and given their lives for it. Our freedom in this country is the outcome of centuries. It is the consequence of a history that knows no equal and has brought us to where we are now.
These patriotic words didn’t come from one of Ronald Reagan’s speeches, or even from the quill of Thomas Jefferson. They were spoken less than a year ago by a Dutch Member of Parliament (MP) named Geert Wilders. He’s on trial in the Netherlands for “inciting hatred and discrimination.” The above and following quotes are from his pretrial speech last January. In recess since June, the trial resumes this week, and we should all pay close attention.
Wilders is far from a household name, but many know him as the man who equates the Holy Qu’ran to Hitler’s Mein Kampf and says that it too should be banned in his country; who emphasized this point by producing a seventeen-minute film called Fitna, which paired images of violent jihad with direct quotes from the Qu’ran; and, most recently, who gave a speech in New York City on September 11 against the planned Cordoba House Islamic center at Ground Zero.
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Even those most familiar with the name struggle with it. The easiest way to say it in English is “Kyeert Wildars” (short i, roll both rs if you can), or if that’s too hard, “Kurt Wilders” (short i, like “ill,” not “ice”). He’s been misrepresented by the left as an anti-Muslim fascist — and also by some conservative mouthpieces like Glenn Beck, who agree — but mostly, Wilders and his trial have gone ignored in this country.
Read More: By Robert Small, American Thinker