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Most popular on Closer this week:

  1. Islamizing Europe – Muslim Demographics
  2. Een wekelijks portie burgerschap 8 – Wat meer radicalisering graag
  3. Public Anthropology – 10 years from Researchpages to Closer 1999/2000 – 2009/2010
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Featuring the Dutch (municipal) elections
Pickled Politics » The mythical Muslim vote

Yet his thinking is representative of a wider issue, which is the continued failure to treat Muslims as individuals. The BNP do it, the media does it and too many public figures do it as well. As Sunny has pointed out a number of times, there is nothing wrong with multiple identities, nor the idea that someone’s identities will probably influence they way they vote. Yet the moment we start talking about things like the ‘Muslim vote’, we are putting people into a box and expecting them to behave in a certain way because of their label. We do not talk of chasing the ‘white vote’, as we see white people as individuals, albeit with multiple identities that might inform their politics..

DutchNews.nl – Wilders goes for headscarf ban in the Hague

A ban on headscarves for city council workers and in all institutions and clubs which get local authority money will be the most important point in the PVV´s negotiations to join governing coalitions in Almere and the Hague, says party leader Geert Wilders.

Dutch parties tussle over approach to far right | Reuters

A Dutch Labour politician’s call to keep far-right leader Geert Wilders out of a new government has stirred anger among other parties who consider the move undemocratic and likely to drive voters towards him.

When social media websites don’t work in politics | Radio Netherlands Worldwide

Social media are becoming more and more important in election campaigns, although only a very small percentage of the electorate actually reads, watches or hears what their political frontmen and frontwomen have to say on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube or their blogs.

With only a few days to go before Wednesday’s local elections in the Netherlands, Dutch politicians are putting in their final efforts to win the support of their prospective voters. In the old days, local candidates simply handed out flyers while canvassing in the streets of their municipality, but these days, modern social media have taken the place of the oldfashioned flyer or placard.

The Dutch government falls: Wild things | The Economist

The local elections on March 3rd will give a first hint of the parties’ strengths. Mr Wilders’s party is running only in two municipalities, partly because of a lack of experienced candidates. But that may not stop it doing well in June.

Controversy over bilingual election campaign | Radio Netherlands Worldwide

While the tax department is allowed to send information in Turkish, politicians may only use Dutch.

Can you distribute brochures in Turkish asking voters to elect a candidate of Turkish descent to the town council? Integration Minister Eberhard van der Laan says it is not permissible because it goes against the principle that immigrants should become part of Dutch society. Some ethnic candidates disagree, saying their message will not reach many citizens.

Turkish and Chinese-language election campaign literature for the municipal elections on 3 March has sparked controversy in the Netherlands.

Dutch news – Local Elections Scarcely a Prelude to General Elections

The cabinet’s fall comes shortly before the local elections, which as already scheduled are to be held on 3 March. The municipal elections can however scarcely be seen as a poll for the Lower House elections.

DutchNews.nl – Local Elections 2010

Elections will take place in most of the country’s 431 local government areas on March 3, 2010.

In this section you will find an explanation of the voting system, useful links and the main news relating to the local campaigns..

People power at Dutch local election meeting < | Expatica The Netherlands

A local election meeting in the Netherlands’ fourth city of Utrecht has made seven parties commit themselves to a ban on road construction.

nrc.nl – International – Bitter election campaign looms

The municipal elections of March 3 will be a first demonstration of the new balance of power. Blows dealt then may be fatal, since there will be very little time to recuperate. All parties are looking to get into a winning mode as soon as possible. For those who lose next month, there won’t be much time to recover.

Elections Special: Rijswijk Expat City – News – The Hague Online

“Patrick Créchet is the french candidate for Rijswijk”. Wrong! I want to be the representative of all the people living in Rijswijk, the Dutch people as well as the Expats. Having been living nearly 20 years in The Netherlands, I know that this country enjoys contact with the outside world. Furthermore, the Dutch people want us here; we bring welfare. That is part of the Dutch Policy. By voting, we do our duty and show that we are here. That is, participating in “living together” with the respect which we must have to our host country. Voting on 3 March could be a small step for integration, but is above all a big step to feeling more comfortable.

TRT – Turkish banners debate in Dutch elections

Ahead of the March 3rd elections in the Netherlands the country is discussing propaganda in minority languages

nrc.nl – International – In spite of numbers, Dutch Muslims are political non-entity

Several Muslim parties will participate in Dutch municipal elections on March 3. But in spite of a sizable Muslim electorate, they have so far been unable to garner many votes.

Reuters AlertNet – ANALYSIS-Dutch looking away from Europe, world

Local elections on March 3 will offer an early glimpse into how the break between Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende’s centre-right Christian Democrats and his deputy Wouter Bos’s Labour Party will play out with voters.

nrc.nl – International – Minorities quick to abandon ballot box

Only one out of every three minority voters intend to vote in the upcoming Dutch municipal elections, while 44 percent did so 2006.

The secular contract
“Religious freedom” and its critics « The Immanent Frame

Three aspects of the approach sketched by Obama in Cairo are new, or at least newly placed front-and-center in American foreign policy. First is the administration’s willingness to see Islam (and, by extension, all transnational, globalizing religions) as a no-longer-ignorable “player of impact,” for both good and ill, in setting national and international agendas, ranging from the provision of health care to economic development and environmental sustainability to women’s rights, conflict resolution, and democratization. Second is the “for good” part of that formula. Even before 9/11, the agency of religious actors abroad has been perceived and framed primarily in terms of counterterrorism policy: how do we defeat Al-Qaeda and the Taliban? But this is just one part of the security and prosperity puzzle. The enormous constructive—or potentially constructive—roles of religious actors beyond our shores, while never formally denied by past administrations, have rarely been viewed as an asset to be developed. Oddly, for a religious nation such as ours, believers elsewhere have been seen as adversaries or obstacles, and not as partners.

Are There Secular Reasons? – Opinionator Blog – NYTimes.com

if one argues, as the professor of law Steven Smith does in his new book, “The Disenchantment of Secular Discourse,” that there are no secular reasons, at least not reasons of the kind that could justify a decision to take one course of action rather than another.

http://politiken.dk/newsinenglish/article911102.ece

Politiken has reached a settlement with the descendants of the Prophet Mohammed, apologising for the offence the Mohammed cartoons have caused. Political condemnation.

An Interview with Emma Tarlo, Author of Visibly Muslim » Muslimah Media Watch

An Interview with Emma Tarlo, Author of Visibly Muslim
February 24th, 2010
Sara

Last week, I reviewed Emma Tarlo’s book Visibly Muslim: Fashion, Politics, Faith. This week, I got the chance to speak with her further about the book and her experiences writing it.

Ilham Moussaid: “It is with Sadness I watch my life reduced to my headscarf” | loonwatch.com

Ilham Moussaid is an NPA candidate in forthcoming elections in France. The fact that she wears a headscarf has politicians from every corner in an uproar. French sensitivity to the scarf is bordering on fanaticism.

BBC NEWS | Europe | Islam a political target in Norway

With less than six months to go until Norway’s general election, increasing tensions over immigration and Islam appear likely to play a significant role in the vote.

This tide of anti-Muslim hatred is a threat to us all | Seumas Milne | Comment is free | The Guardian

The attempt to drive Islamists and young Asian activists out of the political mainstream is a dangerous folly

FT.com / Europe – Intolerant kingmaker defies Dutch clichés

It goes against all the clichés of the Dutch as a liberal, easy-going nation that the man likely to emerge as the kingmaker in the next general election has such extreme views on immigration and Islam.

Radicalization
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/weekend/2010/0227/1224265260630.html

For The Irish Times , this story began with a note in a book, about an Irishman who had died fighting in 1980s Afghanistan. Foreign Correspondent MARY FITZGERALD traced his origins to a terraced house in Clonmel, where a father still grieves for John Burke, Tipperary man and Ireland’s only known jihadi ‘martyr’

Qaddafi calls for jihad against Switzerland: Is it funny? / The Christian Science Monitor – CSMonitor.com

Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi called for jihad against Switzerland, the latest in a tit-for-tat dispute dating back to the 2008 arrest of one of Qaddafi’s sons. Some find humor in the latest from the dictator.

IRR: Spooked: how not to prevent violent extremism

A report published today by the Institute of Race Relations finds that the government’s Prevent programme for tackling extremism fosters division, mistrust and alienation.

Entitled Spooked: how not to prevent violent extremism, the report suggests that the Prevent programme has been used to establish one of the most elaborate systems of surveillance ever seen in Britain.

International Crisis Group – Peter Harling- The Middle Easts Dangerous Equilibr

President Obama’s first year of “engagement” has yielded little more than simmering crises and a frustrating diplomatic stalemate. But for all its pitfalls, the United States cannot quit the Arab world.

Anthropology
American Anthropologist, vol 112, no. 1 (p. 140-142) Public Anthropology – Blogging Anthropology: Savage Minds, Zero Anthropology and AAA Blogs

In this review essay, the academic merits of three anthropological blogs (“Savage Minds,” “Zero Anthropology” [formerly “Open Anthropology”], and the official blog of the American Anthropological Association) are considered. The review examines differences between group-blog projects (such “Savage Minds”), single-voiced blogs (such as “Zero Anthropology”), and official blogs representing central anthropological institutions (the AAA’s blog) and identifies roles and strengths of each of these blog forms.

The New Yorker Features Anthropology of Drinking Habits « American Anthropological Association

The February 15 edition of The New Yorker includes the Annals of Anthropology article “Drinking Games” (p 70-76), by Malcolm Gladwell, highlighting the alcoholism studies work of AAA member Dwight B. Heath. The article includes comments from anthropologists Craig MacAndrew and Robert B. Edgerton as well.

Misc.
Islam in Bosnia: an interview with Armina Omerika | TwoCircles.net

Islam has been practiced in Bosnia for centuries. Freelance writer Claudia Mende asks Armina Omerika, an expert in Islamic studies at the University of Erfurt in Germany, whether the Bosnian Islamic tradition could serve as a model for the integration of Muslims in other European societies.

The Muslim News – Book Review: Information on Muslims in Europe

Book Review: Information on Muslims in Europe

By Abdul Adil

Yearbook of Muslims in Europe, Vol 1. Edited by Jørgen S Nielsen, Samim Akgönül, Ahmet Alibaši?, Brigitte Maréchal, Christian Moe. Leiden, Brill, pp562, 2009, HB, $584.

The Yearbook of Muslims in Europe is an account of the Muslims in 37 European countries.

The new Muslim anti-Semitism

Why Jewish-Muslim relations were better in the Middle Ages.

Cautious reactions over women lawyers in courts – Arab News

There are mixed opinions after the minister of justice indicated Saudi women lawyers could be allowed in courts for the first time.

German Ad Takes Aim At FGM, Misses Mark – FGM – Jezebel

It is important to raise awareness about FGM – the U.N. recently called for renewed efforts to fight against the deplorable practice – but we would like to think it possible to do so without sending the message that white, blonde, and naked equals “perfection.”

Fatwa seeking death for gender mixing shocks society – Arab News

A Saudi cleric has shocked the international and Saudi communities after he issued a fatwa last Tuesday calling for those who promote co-educational environments to be put to death.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/58b05334-2262-11df-a93d-00144feab49a.html

In The Future of Islam, John Esposito has written the handbook for this new age of engagement. Intolerant of the extremists bent on provoking a clash of civilisations – western Islamophobes and violent Islamists alike – Esposito’s book is a calculated appeal to the moderate middle ground upon whom the success of Obama’s policies depends.

Dutch
Wereldjournalisten Contemporaire Indonesische Islam: Socio-Culturele en Politieke Dynamieken

Professor Dr. Azyumardi Azra uit Jakarta geeft een lezing in Leiden over “Contemporaire Indonesische Islam: Socio-Culturele en Politieke Dynamieken”. De lezing is in het Engels.

‘De vijand zit in Nederland’ – interview • Binnenlands Bestuur

Speciale wetgeving moet intimidatie door Marokkaanse jongeren stoppen, vindt burgemeester Albert van den Bosch van Zaltbommel. Hij wordt zelf bedreigd. ‘De mensen zijn het zat. Maak je dáár als overheid eens druk over!’

Kroonprins verdiept zich in islam – Trouw

Kroonprins Willem-Alexander heeft jaren hard gewerkt aan zijn imago. Niet zonder succes, aldus een gisteren verschenen biografie.

Allochtonenweblog: Klachtenbrief over het uittrekken van schoenen in moskee

Publiciste Bernadette de Wit was een van de velen die het verkiezingsdebat in de Badr moskee bezocht. Het debat werd georganiseerd door de Raad van Marokkaanse Moskeeen Noord-Holland en de jongerencommissie van de Badr moskee. De Wit werd bij binnenkomst verzocht haar schoenen uit te doen. Dat weigerde ze. Ze nam vanuit de hal deel aan het debat en schreef na afloop een klachtenbrief.

CDA wil strafdienstplicht voor allochtone crimineel – Binnenland – de Volkskrant

Het CDA wil dat allochtone jongeren die strafbare feiten begaan, bijvoorbeeld vrouwen uitmaken voor hoer en ze openlijk bedreigen, harder worden aangepakt.

Islam voor Nederland: Alweer moskee in Marokko ingestort. Eén dode

Eén persoon is vandaag om het leven gekomen toen een koepel van een moskee in de Noord-Marokkaanse stad Zayo gedeeltelijk ingestort. Drie anderen raakten gewond aldus het officiële persbureau MAP. Vorige week kwamen 41 mensen om in Meknes toen een minaret was ingestort.

Wereldjournalisten De Islam voor tieners

Een stortvloed mooie Arabische woorden van acteur Peter Faber overspoelt de tieners voor wie het toneelstuk De Boodschapper is bedoeld.
beeld/2010/02/KaderAbdolah.jpg – Kader Abdolah

De voorstelling is gebaseerd op het boek met dezelfde naam van Kader Abdolah. Het is een kennismaking met de geschiedenis van de Islam.

waar werd oprechter trouw, dan tussen man en vrouw: Mijmeringen bij het Hoofddoekjesverbod

De staat moet zich zo min mogelijk bemoeien met de kleding en het geloof van de bewoners. In die zin is de oproep tegen het dragen van hoofddoekjes die Geert Wilders deze week deed niet liberaal. Of het juridisch onmogelijk is, zoals de NRC schrijft, is niet van belang. De vraag of je het hoofddoekenverbod moet willen invoeren, is belangrijk.

Joost Niemöller » Hoofddoekjesverbod: de fout van Wilders

Geert Wilders kondigde in Almere en Den Haag aan dat een hoofddoekjesverbod voor ambtenaren zijn belangrijkste verkiezingsitem is. Keppeltjes en kruisjes mogen wel. Hiermee neemt hij afstand van het principe van de scheiding tussen kerk en staat. En stelt hij zich buiten het bestuur. Jammer.

Bruggenbouwers » Te verschijnen in april: ‘Fethullah Gülen & De Vrijwilligersbeweging’

Deze bundel behandelt de transnationale Gülenbeweging, oftewel Vrijwilligersbeweging, zoals de Turkse islamgeleerde en inspiratiebron Fethullah Gülen deze zelf betitelt. De beweging staat wereldwijd in de belangstelling, en Gülen wordt vaak genoemd als vooraanstaande intellectueel. Bovendien zijn er in de laatste jaren tal van academische congressen aan zijn ideeën gewijd. Tegelijkertijd wordt de beweging echter in Turkije en daarbuiten ook met argusogen gevolgd. In dit boek belichten diverse deskundigen een aantal dimensies van de beweging, met name op het gebied van dialoog en educatie. Het bevat een reeks analyses van Gülens gedachtegoed en de praktijk van de beweging, in de context van sociale cohesie wereldwijd en in Nederland in het bijzonder. Ook wordt aandacht besteed aan Gülens visie op maatschappelijke en religieuze thema’s in het licht van de moderne tijd. Deze bundel behandelt een hoogst actueel onderwerp, waarover in Nederland en België nog maar weinig bekend is.

‘Predikanten zijn te laf om te waarschuwen voor de islam’

Voor christenen is de PVV van Geert Wilders de beste partij om op te stemmen. Dat zei Peter Frans Koops, lijsttrekker van de Spakenburgse Vrijheidspartij in Dit is de Dag op Radio 1. Hij ging in debat met predikant Hans Wachtmeester die juist van mening is dat christenen niet op de PVV horen te stemmen.

Mawlid 2010 – Wij Blijven Hier!: Het schrijversplatform van moslims

Daarnaast het jaarlijkse Mawlid Festival wat dit jaar zal plaatsvinden in Den Haag op zondag 14 maart. Er zullen sprekers uit Egypte, Amerika, Engeland en Nederland komen spreken over dit onderwerp. Er zullen optredens zijn van Spoken Word artiesten uit Engeland en locale nasheedgroepen met Turkse, Pakistaanse en Indonesische roots. Verder een Kinder Mawlid voor kleintjes van 4 tot 10, een Mawlid markt met versnaperingen en verschillende koopjes (o.a. kleding en boeken) en een Mawlid Talentenjacht.