Islam And The Need For Western Vigilance
The Brussels Journal 2 July 2012
By Geert Wilders
A few hours ago, Geert Wilders spoke at the Western Conservative Summit in Denver, Colorado. What follows is the complete transcript of his speech.
Thank you, dear friends, ladies and gentlemen, for inviting me to the Western Conservative Summit. It is always a pleasure to come to America. I was here a few weeks ago to meet with my dear friend, congresswoman Michele Bachmann, to talk about Islam and the threat to America and Europe.
It is also a pleasure to be in Denver, the gateway to the West. This is America’s conservative heartland where the spirit of the pioneers still lives.
I know that I come at a sad moment. Many of you have been affected by the enormous wildfires raging not far from here. Thousands have been evacuated and some of them are even staying in this hotel. Few things are as terrible as losing your homes. I want to express my deepest sympathy with all the people affected by this disaster. And I want to offer my condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in the fires.
I am impressed by the solidarity and the help which the people of Denver extend to the victims. You live in a great and generous city. Denver is also privileged to be the home of Colorado Christian University and the Centennial Institute with its motto "Faith, family and freedom”. Your motto shows that you have your priorities right. Faith, family and freedom are the pillars of our Judeo-Christian civilization and need to be defended.
I feel honored to have been invited to address you today about the situation in Europe and in particular in my own country, the Netherlands. This situation serves as a warning to what might happen in America if you fail to be vigilant. As U.S. President Andrew Jackson said: "Remember, my fellow citizens, that eternal vigilance is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing.”
But first, let me start by introducing myself. I am one of the 150 members of the House of Representatives in the Netherlands, a small country of almost 17 million people in Western Europe. I am the leader of the Party for Freedom. My party is the third largest of eleven parties represented in the Dutch parliament.
Perhaps many of you think that life for this politician in the Netherlands resembles the life of the members of your own Congress. Unfortunately, that is not the case. For the past eight years I have been living under 24 hour police protection. Wherever I go, plainclothes policemen go with me. I live in a government safe house, heavily protected and bulletproof.
I am driven every day from the safe house to the Dutch parliament in armored police cars with flashing blue lights.
I have not walked the streets on my own in the past eight years. When I occasionally go to a restaurant or a movie theater, the police will have to check everything first. My wife and I have lived in army barracks and prisons cells just to be safe from assassins.
Why do I need this protection? I am not a president or a king; I am a mere parliamentarian.
I have, however, been marked for death for criticizing Islam. I was placed under police protection in early November 2004 when an Islamic fanatic murdered th Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh because he had criticized Islam. Van Gogh was slaughtered in broad daylight in the streets of Amsterdam. A few hours later, the police found a letter written by the assassin threatening to kill me as well.
What have I done, you might ask, to deserve those death threats? I have candidly expressed my views about Islam.
My views, in a nutshell, are that Islam, rather than a religion, is predominantly a totalitarian ideology striving for world dominance. I believe that Islam and freedom are incompatible.
Some people do not want to hear this message. That is why they threaten to murder everyone who states this truth.
I am not the only one who has been marked for death. The British author Salman Rushdie, the Scandinavian cartoonists Kurt Westergaard and Lars Vilks have all been victims of assassination attempts.