A letter from an anti-racist worker in Oslo warns of the dangerous anti-Muslim climate in Norway in the context of the Danish cartoon debate.
Dear IRR News,
We are experiencing extreme times here at the moment. After a Christian fundamentalist paper printed the drawings of the Prophet Mohammed, things have been on the far side of crazy.
The editors and all mainstream papers support the publishing of the drawings and proclaim this as an important battle for freedom of speech. What is actually won is not easy for me to discover, but the climate is worse than ever. The Islamic Council has done a terrific job and its spokesperson has made it perfectly clear that Muslims are angry and hurt, but will try to put this behind them and go forward because ‘we are all brothers in this country and must treat each other with respect’.
But the papers, websites and blogs and discussion groups are flooded with anti-Muslim statements now, and the word ‘Islamophobia’ is not the correct word for Norway today – it is pure hate. Thankfully the far-Right is weak, but we are very close to violence.