“I shot Fortuyn for Dutch Muslims.”
This was the startling claim of Volkert van der Graaf, a thirty-four-year-old non-Muslim Dutchman, as he confessed to the May 2002 murder of “far right” politician Pim Fortuyn. Eighteen years later, Volkert van der Graaf is free to receive the gratitude of the Islamic community for which he did, in his mind, such a signal service. His freedom is yet another indication, as if we needed another, of Europe’s wholesale cultural collapse, and the inability or unwillingness of European authorities to face up to the consequences of what they have done by inundating their nations with Muslim migrants with a vastly different sociocultural perspective from that of the natives.
The Dutch-language Post Online reported Thursday that “van der Graaf (50) was convicted on appeal in 2003 by the Amsterdam court of appeal. The court had also imposed an eighteen-year sentence upon him, after a demand from the Public Prosecution Service for a life sentence. The Justice Service saw the murder not only as an attack on the politician, but also on democracy. The court did not follow that line of reasoning. The prosecution also demanded a life sentence on appeal, but the sentence remained unchanged.”
Even worse, “in recent years, Van der Graaf no longer had to be in prison because – since May 2014 – he was on parole. He had to comply with various conditions, such as a duty to report and a ban on talking to the media. Van der Graaf then successfully challenged a number of conditions in legal proceedings.”
Consequently, on Thursday, the murderer was officially free completely from all obligations to the state. A Dutch official explained that “the person concerned has fully undergone the imposed sentence and is no longer under the supervision of the Public Prosecution Service or the probation service; there are no more conditions for him.”
No one seems to mind, because after all, Fortuyn was “far-right.” Probably only in the post-modern, post-Christian Netherlands of hashish cafes and taxpaying licensed prostitutes could an openly homosexual politician such as Fortuyn (whose kitchen featured portraits of Marx and Lenin) be described as “far right,” but such is the way of the world today. Fortuyn held only one position that earned him that label: the incompatibility of traditional Islamic values with the liberal, secular societies of the West.
Fortuyn’s homosexuality led him to this view. “I have gay friends,” he explained, “who have been beaten up by young Moroccans in Rotterdam.” He noted that Muslims had belittled and insulted him, saying that, as a gay man, he was “lower than a pig.”
As a result of these incidents and others, Fortuyn concluded that Islam was “backward” and asserted that “Christianity and Judaism have gone through the laundromat of humanism and enlightenment, but that isn’t the case with Islam.” He pointed out that “in Holland homosexuality is treated the same way as heterosexuality. In what Islamic country does that happen?”
Fortuyn proposed curbs on Muslim immigration to the Netherlands and called for the assimilation of the Muslims already in the Netherlands into the secular, multiethnic, multicultural, tolerant framework of modern Dutch society. “We need to integrate these people; they need to accept that, in Holland, gender equality and tolerance of different lifestyle is very, very important to us.”
Van der Graaf, on the other hand, charged that Fortuyn was making Dutch Muslims into “scapegoats,” and that he was exploiting “the weak parts of society to score points.” Van der Graaf compared Fortuyn’s rise to that of Adolf Hitler, and portrayed his murder as a noble attempt to save the Netherlands from the “far right.”
Eighteen years later, the Muslim population of the Netherlands has grown significantly, despite that fact that it includes many who believe that Islam is absolutely incompatible with secular society and that Sharia, with its institutionalized discrimination against women and non-Muslims as well as homosexuals, must ultimately be imposed. Van der Graaf has not only been freed; he has won. The Netherlands of today is at least in part the Netherlands he has made. And now he has to live in it.
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 19 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is The Palestinian Delusion: The Catastrophic History of the Middle East Peace Process. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.