***updated with new Mo Cartoon tie to Germany bombing plot***
You may wonder, after seven months, why the Mohammed Cartoons graphic remains in the top-right corner of this blog. It’s because while most of the dhimmi press may have “moved on,” the jihadists have not. And some of the few outspoken defenders of free speech and free thought who stood up to the thugs still face threats today.
In Jakarta, Indonesia, 31-year-old Teguh Santosa is on trial for publishing copies of Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad on a newspaper Web site on Feb 2, 2006. The trial’s opening hearing began on Aug 30.
Teguh Santosa is the editor-in-chief of the online edition of the Rakyat Merdeka newspaper service. He may go to jail for five years if he is found guilty.
The 12 cartoons were first printed in Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in Oct 2005 and then reappeared in several other European papers. Santosa republished three of them.
The Moslem community around the world were furious and the publication of the cartoons sparked serious protests. In Indonesia, the largest Moslem community in the world, several Moslem organizations held rallies and urged the government to break off the diplomatic relationship between Indonesia and Denmark.
Denmark temporarily closed its embassy in Indonesia last February for the safety of its employees.
According to Moslem belief, drawing or representing the Prophet Muhammad in any kind of image is totally blasphemous.
“The defendant’s publication of caricatures or illustrations of the Prophet Muhammad is a disgrace toward Islam,” prosecutors said.
After the session Teguh said that he had never, even for one moment, intended to disgrace Islam.
Teguh Santosa decided to upload the cartoons to show his readers what had caused so many problems. At the time the subject was under intense public debate.
Later after uploading the cartoons; Teguh’s office was visited by a few radical Moslem organizations. They urged Rakyat Merdeka to remove the images and apologize. The newspaper did so, but this was not enough for them so they filed this case into the court.
Santosa will begin his defense on Sept. 6.
Geoffrey at Beyond Wallacia urges:
Publishers, editors, journalists and readers are urged to protest this case. Messages of support to Teguh Santosa and the Alliance of Independent Journalists may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meanwhile, as Geoffrey points out, the cartoonist for Indonesia’s leading daily newspaper, Kompas, is being feted by the Islamic Republic of Iran for his entry in a $12,000 first-prize competition to mock millions of murdered Jews.
Defame the Jews, win a jackpot.
Offend the Muslims, risk your life.
Update: Thanks to several readers who sent word of this new Mo cartoon tie-in…
THE publication of caricatures depicting the Prophet Mohammed was the trigger for a failed attempt to bomb passenger trains in Germany, police have concluded.
One of the main suspects, Youssef Mohammed el Hajdib, who was arrested in Germany on August 16, “interpreted (the cartoons) as an insult to Islam by the western world,” Joerg Ziercke, the director of Germany’s federal police, told Focus magazine in an interview to be published on Monday.
He and the other main suspect in the failed plot, Jihad Hamad, who was arrested in Lebanon on August 24, were also influenced by the killing of the al-Qaeda leader in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, in June, the police chief said.
“The two main suspects believed international terrorism had lost one of its chief leaders,” said Mr Ziercke.
The two men had “a certain base ideology” when they came to live in Germany, but gained more radical views “through al-Qaeda Internet propaganda”, the police chief said.
El Hajdib and Hamad are suspected of having hidden bombs in suitcases on two regional trains in Germany. In all five men have been arrested as part of the investigation, three in Lebanon and two in Germany.
The bombs did not explode because of faulty timed detonators. But the two men were serious about their plot, Mr Ziercke said, and had studied the German rail timetables for weeks, possibly even since the start of the row over the publication of cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed last year.
According to another account of the police findings, published today in the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung, the men initially planned to strike during the World Cup football finals hosted by Germany in June and early July.
They reportedly decided against that plan due to the risks associated with staging an attack on one of the world’s most watched sporting events.
Lebanon’s general prosecutor has opposed extraditing the suspected plotters in their custody, saying they were Lebanese nationals and should be tried, sentenced and, if convicted, jailed there.
Allah Pundit’s been tracking the case. Background here.
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