Atilla Iftikhar (Islamabad, Pakistan), 1 March 2006
I found your article A Question of Decency and Tact by Mohammad Kalisch very interesting and would like to make a few comments.
Constructive criticism of the Muslim societies is a necessity and cannot be ignored. The many different problems of Muslim societies cannot and should be pardoned away, however there is need for balance and nuances in the critic of Muslim societies. I fear that the cartoon crisis only reflect the destructive approach chosen by some agitators unwilling to promote a balanced approach.
Freedom of expression means not that minority communities are exposed to harassment by the representatives of the media. In Austria, the notorious Holocaust-historian David Irving was given a prison sentence for uttering controversial opinions about the tragedies of the WWII. The medias in the EU have mostly shown sympathies with the Austrian court verdict against Irving in spite of the freedoms of expression.
My point is very simple: the EU media should avoid selective morality in this context! Freedoms of expressions also present responsibilities and harassment of the Muslim minority communities is not good.
Atilla A. Iftikhar