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Tuesday evening, a TV2 team was stationed outside Krekar’s Oslo home preparing to broadcast a live segment when a group of Muslims began throwing stones at them and shouting “Allahu akbar.” (Video here, but you can’t really see much.) When the TV2 car drove away, it “was struck by one or more stones.” TV2’s reporter, Kadafi Zaman, observed: “This shows that Krekar has dedicated followers.” It also underscores, as Progress Party official Mazyar Keshvari noted, that certain areas of Oslo are heading down the same road as places like Rosengård, a heavily Muslim neighborhood in Malmø, Sweden, where police officers and firefighters are now routinely pelted with stones every time they venture into “Islamic territory.”
Meanwhile Anjem Choudary, the Britain-based jihadist, told TV2 that Norway’s treatment of Krekar will enrage Muslims worldwide. Choudary said that his own people have been contacted by Krekar’s supporters in Norway – and that they’re angry. First the atrocities committed by Anders Behring Breivik last July, now the Norwegian authorities’ treatment of Krekar: these developments, said Choudary, are causing Norwegian Muslims to “wake up” – and to seek out ways to react. You can be sure they’re not reading up on Gandhi and Martin Luther King.
On Wednesday Krekar was placed in protective custody for eight weeks, and it was reported that his “movement” was calling for protests outside Norwegian embassies and consulates around the world. This was all very interesting: for years, almost invariably, Krekar had been painted by the Norwegian media as an isolated figure who had left the terrorist group Ansar al-Islam and now led a quiet, pious life centered on family, study, and private worship; now, suddenly, those same media were acknowledging that he’s a man with “supporters” and “followers” – the head of a “movement.”
Thursday brought new details about the circumstances under which Krekar had made his latest threats. Hundreds of “students” around the globe, it was reported, take online “courses” from Krekar – and those “courses” include statements that “can be perceived as encouraging terror.” According to Aftenposten, Krekar has suggested to his “students” that Norwegian authorities might be persuaded to release him from prison if, say, his followers were to carry out suicide bombings, take hostages, and/or knife Norwegians. The same day, however, a prominent lawyer, Jon Wessel-Aas, insisted that Norway was “overreacting” to Krekar: “He’s not doing anything other than wishing for God’s will to be done,” maintained Wessel-Aas, who argued that such matters of faith lie “outside the purview of a judicial system.” Norway’s treatment of Krekar, in Wessel-Aas’s view, was a simple matter of anti-Muslim prejudice: if the mullah were Christian, he wouldn’t be subjected to all this official harassment.
The circus, in short, continues. Stay tuned.
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