March 14, 2010

Swedish Artist Lars Vilks No Regrets Over Prophet Muhammad Cartoon

STOCKHOLM (AP) - A Swedish artist who angered Muslims by drawing the Prophet Muhammad with the body of a dog said Wednesday he has no regrets and believes the suspects in an alleged plot to kill him were not professionals.

Lars Vilks, who has faced numerous death threats over the controversial cartoon, said he has built his own defense system, including a “homemade” safe room and a barbed-wire sculpture that could electrocute potential intruders.

He said he also has an ax “to chop down” anyone trying to climb through the windows of his home in southern Sweden.

“If something happens, I know exactly what to do,” Vilks told The Associated Press in an interview in Stockholm.

The 63-year-old artist said the suspects in an alleged plot to kill him—seven people arrested in Ireland and a Philadelphia woman held in the U.S.—were “not the real hard professionals. I think they are rather low-tech.”

He said he had learned from American media reports that the woman held in the U.S., Colleen R. LaRose, who had called herself JihadJane in a YouTube video, had visited the area where he lives, but he didn’t know whether that was correct. “I’m glad she didn’t kill me,” Vilks said, with a half-smile.

An eccentric man with disheveled gray hair and thick-lensed glasses, Vilks referred to himself as “the artist” and described his life after his Muhammad drawing was first published by a Swedish newspaper in 2007 as if it were a movie plot.

“It’s a good story. It’s about the bad guys and a good guy, and they try to kill him,” he said.

“They have this woman also which I think is a good part of the plot with this fantastic name, ‘JihadJane,’ who is actually doing some scouting there in the surroundings,” Vilks added. “As I can see it, you have something of a film there. But as I said, I believe they’re a bit low-tech.”

LaRose had discussions of her alleged plans with at least one of the suspects apprehended in Ireland, according to a U.S. official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the official wasn’t authorized to discuss details of the investigation.

Irish authorities said Wednesday those arrested there were two Algerians, two Libyans, a Palestinian, a Croatian and an American woman married to one of the Algerian suspects. They were not identified by name.

Vilks’ drawing was not among the 12 Danish newspaper cartoons of Muhammad that sparked furious protests in Muslim countries in 2006.

It drew international attention more than a year later after a Swedish art gallery refused to put it on display, citing security concerns. A Swedish newspaper printed the drawing alongside an editorial defending the freedom of expression.

Islamic law generally opposes any depiction of the prophet, even favorable, for fear it could lead to idolatry.

Swedish police have kept a close eye on threats against Vilks, but he doesn’t have round-the-clock protection. He was temporarily moved to a secret location after al-Qaida in Iraq put $100,000 bounty on his head.

The Swedish security police, SAPO, declined comment on the probes in Ireland and the U.S., but said they are reviewing potential threats against Vilks and against Sweden.

At least three Swedish newspapers reprinted Vilks’ cartoon Wednesday, citing its news value and the defense of free speech.

Vilks said he had no regrets about the drawing.

“As an artist you have to take a stand for things. If you do something you have to take full responsibility for it,” he said, adding the purpose was to demonstrate that no religious symbol was off-limits to artistic freedom.

“I’m actually not interested in offending the prophet. The point is actually to show that you can,” he said. “There is nothing so holy you can’t offend it.”

Original title: Swedish Artist Has No Regrets Over Prophet Muhammad Cartoons, Threatens Would-Be Attackers With An Axe

rad: Insulting others itself is a sign of stupidity. To response to the stupidity with a stupid act is a sign of immature minded & behavior too - my two cents opinion

The act of the most matured man :

It is reported that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had a Jewish neighbor who used to throw garbage (some said stone ) to him every time Prophet passing by the jewish's house. One day Prophet Muhammad found that he was not being thrown.

Prophet went to the jewish's house and asked about his news. When Prophet heard that the jewish was ill, Prophet Muhammad has paid him a visit.

At last the jewish has converted to Islam.

An example had shown by The Prophet Muhammad pbuh. If a muslim really facing his face to Islam, he should follow the way of Prophet Muhammad in facing or handling situation instead of following his own heart or his own logic.

- my two cents opinion
: Rad

Swedish newspapers unite to defend freedom of speech over Muhammad cartoons
David Charter, Europe Correspondent - March 11, 2010

Three leading Swedish newspapers and the national broadcaster carried a cartoon depicting the Prophet Muhammad with a dog’s body after an alleged plot to murder the artist who drew it was unveiled in the Republic of Ireland.

The threat to Lars Vilks was a threat against all Swedes, the country’s biggest daily newspaper, Dagens Nyheter, proclaimed, adding that the new year axe attack on a Danish cartoonist for drawing the Prophet meant that Scandinavian values of openness were being assaulted.

The drawing by Mr Vilks was published yesterday in the Stockholm-based Dagens Nyheter and Expressen newspapers and the Malmö daily Sydsvenska Dagbladet, in defence of one of the cornerstones of Sweden’s constitution. This states that Swedes have the right to freedom of speech and cannot be restrained from the lawful expression of their views.

The newspapers stopped short, however, of running the cartoon on their websites because of their wider accessibility around the world. Islam forbids representations being made of the Prophet

“In September 2007, al-Qaeda leaders set a price on Swedish artist Lars Vilks’s head,” said Dagens Nyheter in an editorial comment. His “alleged crime” was to draw a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad as a “roundabout dog”; a type of street installation popular in Sweden where sculptures are often placed in the middle of roundabouts. “The threats are attacks on one of the most fundamental rights — the freedom of speech — and should be viewed as a wider treat against an open and free society,” the editorial stated.

Gunilla Herlitz, the Dagens Nyheter editor-in-chief, defended the reprinting of the cartoon as a legitimate part of the story of the day. “I believe that, in this case, the cartoon is a part of the news and therefore we would like to show the readers what this is all about. But the cartoon is published in a context and is not the leading picture on the page.”

Rad: Not only to Prophet Muhammad pbuh, even to others Prophets too, no one has the right to draw in any meaning of the Prophet portrait or their caricature. Whether he is Prophet Muhammad s.a.w (pbuh), Prophet Isa a.s ( Jesus pbuh), Prophet Ibrahim a.s (Abraham pbuh), Prophet Adam a.s ( Adam pbuh) or any other Prophets.

Now they are talking about freedom in art, democracy, part of news and to show the readers what this is all about. They will have so many words to defend their wrong act. As usual people who have done something wrong will talk more to defend their wrong.

Now we can understand what the meaning of freedom and democracy to them. Free to insult people even to Prophet. Free to say wrong act done by them is not wrong. We also knew by now, not every smart man come with healthy mind. That why some of them can make joke on their prophet Jesus as we all can see from movie.

When they said cartoon is part of news, it was right but what are their purpose to draw and publish such insulting cartoon of Prophet Muhammad pbuh with such face from their imagination and with body of dog. Is it news or is it an insulting. Newspaper man should go to school and learn more about meaning of each words and the difference so that they will not wrongly use a word to a wrong situation. Not only to look smart but people must have a healthy mind clean heart too.

Lars Vilks, you got your plan but God plan always better than human. It always true.

As God (Allah ) said in Quran, the translation in english:

"O mankind! It is you who stand in need of Allah, but Allah is Rich (Free of all wants and needs), Worthy of All Praise." (Quran 35/15)

"If Allah touches you with hurt, there is none can remove it but He; and if He intends any good for you, there is none who can repel His favor which He causes it to reach whomsoever of His slaves He will, and He is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (Quran 10/117)

"If Allah helps you none can overcome you, and if He forsakes you, who is there, after Him, that can help you. And in Allah (alone) let believers put their trust." (Quran 3/160)

"And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him. He will make a way for him to get out (from) every (difficulty), and He will provide him from (sources) he could never imagine." (Quran 65/2-3)

The Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) said, the translation in english:

"Allah says: Son of Adam: Fill your time with My worship and I will fill your heart with richness, and end off your poverty. But if you do not, I would make your hands fully busy (i.e. in worldly affairs) and I would not end off your poverty." (At-Tirmidhi said that it is a good Hadith)

I don't believe your God allow you to do such insulting. better for you to reconcile your act and come to learn Islam and what is the real knowledge inside Islam. Muslim never provoke Jesus, we believe Jesus pbuh is one of the prophet from God. Only you always provoke us and Prophet Muhammad pbuh. Can you see some Discrepancy on you.


umihoney said...

Pray that we are always on the right path. Thank you for sharing.