Austria: Muslims Outnumber Catholics in Vienna Schools

by Soeren Kern:

Austria is also in the process of introducing new taxpayer-funded textbooks for the formal teaching if Islam in all public elementary schools across the country…. This is the first time Islam is being taught to Austrian students in the German language.

“What remains, then, is to conquer Rome. This means Islam will come back to Europe for a third time, after it was expelled from it twice. We will conquer Europe! We will conquer America! Not through the sword but through our Dawa [proselytizing].” — Yusuf al-Qaradawi, Muslim Brotherhood

Muslim students, according to new statistics, now outnumber Roman Catholic students at middle and secondary schools in Vienna, the capital and largest city of Austria.

The data—which show that Muslim students are also on the verge of overtaking Catholics in Viennese elementary schools—reflect an established trend and provide empirical evidence of a massive demographic and religious shift underway in Austria, traditionally a Roman Catholic country.

The Muslim population in Austria now exceeds 500,000 (or roughly 6% of the total population), up from an estimated 150,000 (or 2%) in 1990. The Muslim population is expected to reach 800,000 (or 9.5%) by 2030, according to recent estimates.

In the current school year, 10,734 Muslim students are enrolled in Viennese middle and secondary schools, compared to 8,632 Roman Catholic students, 4,259 Serbian Orthodox students and 3,219 students with “no religious persuasion,” according to statistics compiled by the Vienna Board of Education (Stadtschulrat für Wien) and published by Radio Vatican website on March 21.

As far as elementary schools are concerned, there are 23,807 Roman Catholic students, followed by 17,913 Muslim students, 11,119 “non-religious” students, 6,083 Serbian Orthodox students and 2,322 Protestants.

The statistics show that the only Viennese schools where Muslims remain a distinct minority are in thegymnasium, advanced secondary schools that place a strong emphasis on academic learning rather than on vocational skills. Students graduating from a gymnasium are more likely than others to be admitted to attend university in Austria.

Austria is also in the process of introducing new taxpayer-funded textbooks for the formal teaching of Islam in all public elementary schools across the country.

The textbooks are called “Islam Hour” (Islamstunde) and have been prepared by the Islamic Religious Authority of Austria (Islamische Glaubensgemeinschaft in Österreich, IGGiÖ), a Muslim umbrella organization whose main responsibility is the state-funded supply of Islamic religious education at Austrian public and private schools.

According to the IGGiÖ, the new textbooks are based on “secure and recognized sources of Islam” aimed at “embedding Islam into the lives of students.” Unlike previous versions of the books, which were criticized for being “overly martial in tone” and for not being “sufficiently oriented toward European values,” the new books have been developed based a “completely new didactic model for competency-based education.”

Previously, the main textbook used for Islam instruction in Austrian public schools was a vehemently anti-Western screed entitled “The Lawful and the Prohibited in Islam” (Erlaubtes und Verbotenes im Islam) and authored by none other than Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Among other Islamic doctrines, the book taught students that Islamic Sharia law takes precedence over secular laws, that women have fewer rights than men, and that those who abandoned Islam are to be put to death.

The book was eventually banned from Austrian schools (although it is still being openly promoted on the website of the Vienna Islamic Centre, the largest mosque in Austria) after Al-Qaradawi[1] — a spiritual advisor for the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas — began publicly endorsing suicide attacks against Jews as “martyrdom in the name of Allah.”

 

The Vienna Islamic Centre.

The new textbooks come in four volumes along with a companion CD that includes not only recitations of the Koran, but also a rap song which deals with the aspects of Ramadan.

In an interview with the Austrian newspaper Heute, an IGGiÖ project manager named Amena Shakir said the aim of the new textbooks is to “learn about how the Koranic suras [chapters] can be applied to everyday life.” Shakir added that this is the first time Islam is being taught to Austrian students in the German language and that the textbooks contextualize Islam in the Austrian countryside rather than in Arabia.

“We want our young people in Austria have a sense of home,” said the president of IGGiÖ, Fuat Sanac. “We have tried for years to bring these books into being.”

Sanac also called on the Austrian government to approve and promulgate a new “Islam Law” that would provide Muslims with more legal rights and protections than they enjoy in the current law, which dates back to 1912.

The original law was adopted to help integrate Muslim soldiers from Bosnia-Herzegovina into the Austro-Hungarian army of the Habsburg monarchy. The law recognized Islam as a religious community in Austria, and allowed Muslims to practice their religion in accordance with the laws of the state.

Read more at Gatestone Institute

Elisabeth Sabaditsch Wolff – Wake Up People, We Need To Fight For Free Speech!

images (80)

By Elisabeth Sabaditsch Wolff:

Fascist totalitarianism has returned to my country. This time it does not come with the ring of jackboots on the cobblestones. No one’s door is battered down in the middle of the night. No cattle cars haul innocent victims away to an unknown destination.
This is a soft totalitarianism. It wears a business suit, smiles, and speaks in reasonable tones in the name of tolerance and diversity.

This time its victims are the natives of Austria, who are being deliberately replaced with a violent, barbaric, alien culture.

I am one of those victims.

For a number of years I have been giving educational seminars on Islam, sponsored by the Austrian Freedom Party. They are designed to educate people about the realities of Islam.

I learned those realities first-hand: I have lived in Iran, Kuwait, and Libya. As a little girl in Tehran, I watched the beginnings of Khomeini’s revolution. I was held hostage in Kuwait when Saddam Hussein invaded in 1990. And I watched people dance for joy in the streets of Tripoli on 9-11.

My experiences made me want to understand what lay behind all the ghastliness I had experienced, so I spent a lot of time researching Islam, and then began teaching others what I had learned. I told them that Islam did not respect free speech or other human rights, and was particularly brutal in its treatment of women. I explained that these characteristics derive directly from the totalitarian Islamic doctrines. In Islam, brutal repression is not a bug — it’s a feature.

My seminars became more popular, drawing a larger audience. As a result they drew the attention of the Multicultural Left, which is very influential in Viennese politics.
On two separate occasions in the fall of 2009 a leftist magazine, NEWS, sent an undercover reporter to secretly tape my lecture. They then turned the tapes over to the authorities and filed a complaint against me for my “hate speech”. In October 2009 I learned that I was under judicial investigation only through NEWS magazine — before I received any notice from the court.

For almost a year the investigation proceeded. Then, in October 2010, I was informed of my indictment and impending trial — once again, by reading it in NEWS, not through any official notification.

The trial began in November of that year and continued until the following February. The case eventually focused on my description of a phone conversation with my sister, in which I referred to Mohammed’s sexual relationship with Aisha. My sister was appalled at the thought that I might call Mohammed a “pedophile”. I said, “What else would you call a man who has a thing for little girls?”

This statement was what the court chose to highlight, along with various “hostile” remarks about Islam. However, it became obvious partway through the trial that it would not be possible to use these things to convict me under the charge that had been laid, which was “incitement to hatred”.

As a result, on the second day of the trial, the judge at her own discretion added a second charge, “denigration of religious beliefs of a legally recognized religion.”
When the verdict was handed down in February 2011, I was acquitted on the first charge, but convicted on the second, and fined.

It was clear that the judge was determined to find a charge under which I could be convicted. The convoluted logic for her decision was this: it was not factually correct to say that Mohammed was a pedophile, because although he had sex with a nine-year-old girl, he remained married to her until she was of age. That is, he proved that he only liked little girls part of the time, so he couldn’t have been a pedophile.

I know that sounds like a passage from a dystopian fantasy by Phillip K. Dick, but it’s not — it really happened, in a court of law, in the city of Vienna, the country of Austria, in the Year of Our Lord 2011.

The reality of Modern Multicultural Europe has merged with dystopian fantasy. As Humpty-Dumpty said to Alice, “When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.”

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we have stepped through the looking glass into a strange new world.

‘EU to mull listing Hezbollah as terror group’

Photo: REUTERS

By Benjamin Weinthal

BERLIN – A discussion is under way within the EU about possibly listing  Hezbollah as a terrorist group, Austria’s Foreign Ministry informed The  Jerusalem Post on Saturday.

Austria appears to be the first EU country to  acknowledge that that the 27- member body has begun a process to designate the  Lebanese Shi’ite group as a terrorist organization.

He noted that  Hezbollah is not only represented in Lebanon’s parliament but is part of its  government, with two ministers in the cabinet.

“A listing of the  Hezbollah could, therefore, have immediate effects on the security of the  country and the stability of the government,” Schallenberg continued.

He  noted that Lebanon President Michel Suleiman seeks to create a “national  dialogue” in his country, with the goal of, for example, integrating Hezbollah’s  fighters and weapons into the state’s security forces. Schallenberg said that  the EU has up until now clearly supported Suleiman’s efforts.

He stressed  that it is important that the EU find a “joint position, especially in light of  the situation in Syria.”

News organizations reported that Hezbollah’s  militias joined forces with Syria’s regime to suppress the Syrian  rebellion.

The division among EU countries revolves around whether to  designate the entire Hezbollah as a terrorist organization, or just parts of  it.

Michel Malherbe, a spokesman for the Belgium Foreign Ministry, told  the Post on Thursday: “We believe that it could make sense, instead of qualifying Hezbollah  as a whole, to isolate armed subgroups, or individuals. This method has proven  its merits, and deserves a try.”

Critics of this approach (treating armed  wings separately from political branches) point to a statement from Hezbollah’s  No. 2 leader, Naim Qassem, who said in 2009: “Hezbollah has a single  leadership,” and “All political, social and jihad work is tied to the decisions  of this leadership.”

Qassem added, “The same leadership that directs the  parliamentary and government work also leads jihad actions in the struggle  against Israel.”

The United Kingdom classifies Hezbollah’s military wing  as a terrorist organization, but recognizes its political wing as a legitimate  political party. The Netherlands designated Hezbollah as whole to be a terrorist  group. Both Dutch and British foreign ministers have urged their EU counterparts  to place Hezbollah on the EU terror list.

Read more at Jerusalem Post

Unfit to Print – Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff’s Persecution

 

By Bruce Bawer in Frontpage:

The other day I took note here of a recent New York Times feature in which several prominent figures from the worlds of law and religion were invited to answer the question: Is religious freedom in America under threat?  I focused on one of the responses, entitled “A Campaign Against Patriotic Muslims,” in which Salam Al-Marayati, president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, maintained that when it came to his coreligionists, the answer was a definite yes.  Al-Marayati painted a picture of an America awash in “anti-Islam groups” and “Muslim haters” who make life difficult for American Muslims, whom he depicted as overwhelmingly peaceful, freedom-loving, and terrorism-hating.  It didn’t seem to matter to the Times that Al-Marayati himself is a longtime associate of and apologist for terrorists.

Another participant in the same Times feature was Noah Feldman, a Harvard law professor.  Like Al-Marayati, Feldman claimed to be concerned about a plague of Islam-hatred in America.  Feldman complained about legislative proposals in Oklahoma and Tennessee that would “ban Islamic law from the courts — a measure that the American separation of church and state makes completely unnecessary.”  Feldman concluded: “It would be nice to say these proposed laws are un-American. But they are sadly reminiscent of our history of targeting vulnerable religious minorities out of bigotry and political expediency. We can only look forward to a day when anti-Islamic sentiment seems as archaic as these other old hatreds do today.”

It’s interesting to note that while the New York Times was giving Al-Marayati and Feldman a platform from which to preach about the supposed persecution of Muslims in America, a woman named Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff was actually being persecuted, and prosecuted, in Austria – not for being an adherent of Islam but for speaking the truth about it.  Most readers of Front Page will know about Sabaditsch-Wolff, whose whole saga has been covered here, from her frank, fact-based statements about Islam at a 1997 seminar to her conviction last February on the charge of “denigration of the religious beliefs of a legally recognized religion” to her appeal to a higher court, which last week affirmed the February verdict and ordered her to pay a €480 fine or spend two months in jail.  Sabaditsch-Wolff, who refuses to pay the fine, quite rightly called it “a black day for Austria.”

Most readers of Front Page will also know exactly what got Sabaditsch-Wolff in trouble with the Austrian judiciary: she said that the founder of Islam “married” his wife Aisha when she was six and consummated the “marriage” when she was nine, and that this made him, by definition, a pedophile.  This, of course, is a plain statement of fact – and, according to the court, if Sabaditsch-Wolff had just indicated that Muhammed had had intercourse with a child, she supposedly wouldn’t have been convicted.  But the appeals court didn’t like the way she put it – she said that Muhammed had a thing for small children, or words to that effect, which added to the statement of fact something that the court viewed as an unacceptable expression of opinion about the facts.  In other words, it would appear to be illegal in Austria now to express disapproval of the sexual molestation of children, provided the child molester in question is the prophet of a certain religion.

The court underscored, moreover, that while Austrians’ freedom of expression is guaranteed by the European Court of Human Rights, that right is bound up with the obligation not to be insulting – which is another way of saying that there’s no real freedom of expression at all.

All of this is, needless to say, disgraceful.  But the question I’m interested in here is the following one: how much attention did this disgraceful episode – this landmark event in the history of modern European jurisprudence – receive in the Western media?

Well, the Austrian press covered it pretty extensively.   A statement by Geert Wilders was widely disseminated.  A number of blogs were all over the story.  But, with the exception of a syndicated Diana West column entitled “A New Silent Night Descends on Austria,” a series of Google searches didn’t turn up a single report on Sabaditsch-Wolff’s appeals verdict in any newspaper in the Western world – certainly not any major one.  A search on the New York Times website for any mention of Sabaditsch-Wolff since 1981 yielded the following strangely chilling sentence: “Your search for Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff in all fields returned 0 results.”

What about Lars Hedegaard, who has been undergoing similar judicial persecution in Denmark for statements he made about Islam at his kitchen table?  What kind of coverage has the Times given his case?  Exactly the same: absolutely none.

(Needless to say, Geert Wilders, who was hauled into court in the Netherlands for speaking the truth about Islam, has received considerable attention in the U.S. – though the media almost invariably portray him not as a victim of persecution but a perpetrator of it.)

Let’s sum up, then.  Whether motivated by fear, ignorance, multicultural convictions, or all three, editors at the New York Times – in lockstep with their colleagues at other mainstream news media – seek out contributors who they know will wring their hands over thoroughly imaginary threats to American Muslims’ religious freedom and over Americans’ purportedly unfounded concerns about the spread of Islamic law.  Meanwhile these same editors – again in lockstep with their colleagues elsewhere – turn a blind eye to the fact that in one Western courtroom after another, judges are, in fact, negating fundamental democratic rights and applying the principles of sharia.

To any objective observer, the situation is clear: it’s not Islam but free speech about Islam that’s in danger in the Western world today.  And newspapers like the Times – by routinely turning this reality upside-down and spreading lies – are effectively collaborating in the punishment of brave people for speaking the truth.

 

A New ‘Silent Night’ Descends on Austria

By Diana West at Townhall:

Ah, to be in Vienna at Yuletide. Streets sparkle with the lights of the Christkindlmarkts, the traditional markets that spring up for the season. Skaters circle the rink outside the picturesque Rathaus (City Hall). Merrymakers warm their hands on cups of gluhwein (mulled wine). What could possibly be missing?

Freedom of speech.

Freedom of speech no longer exists in Austria, as definitively proven by the Vienna high court. This week, a judge upheld the conviction against Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff on the following charge: “denigration of religious beliefs of a legally recognized religion.” In simplest terms, this means that Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff speaks the truth about Islam, and in Austria, as in other nations across the Western world currently transitioning to sharia (Islamic law), speaking the truth about Islam is not tolerated, and, more and more, is against the law.

What did my friend Elisabeth say that the Vienna high court ruled verboten? Elisabeth was convicted in February 2011 of “denigration” of Islam because in the course of a seminar she was teaching on Islam she stated that “Muhammad had a thing for little girls.”

This statement is demonstrably true. According to an authoritative Islamic text (hadith), Muhammad married his wife Aisha when she was six years old. According to the same hadith, Muhammad engaged in sexual intercourse with his “wife” when she was nine. This, at the very least, constitutes “a thing” for little girls. It also constitutes child rape under Western law and Judeo-Christian-derived morality. In all too many Islamic societies where Mohammed’s example is emulated, such child rape in “wedlock” is not a crime; indeed, it is permissible under sharia.

In fact, the court didn’t contest this. In both Elisabeth’s initial trial and her recent appeal, the factual basis of her statement didn’t come under judicial attack. Elisabeth is right, and the court knows it. What the Vienna court has twice defined now as being outside the law of Austria is the negative opinion her remark conveyed regarding Muhammad’s record of deviance from Western traditions forbidding sexual intercourse with children. (Brava, Elisabeth.) It is wrong, according to the Austrian court, to look down on sex with children if the alleged perp, centuries ago, was the Islamic prophet.

As Henrik Rader Clausen put it, live-blogging the proceedings for the blog Gates of Vienna, Elisabeth, in the court’s eyes, expressed “an excess of opinion that can not be tolerated. It is a ridiculing that cannot be justified.” Cannot be tolerated, cannot be justified by whom, by what? The answer is by Islamic law. It is literally against Islamic law to criticize or expose Islam or its prophet (Muhammad) in any adverse way. This prohibition against freedom of conscience is now part of Austrian law as well. That the verdict upheld against Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff actually imperils the most innocent and vulnerable among us — little girls whose molestation the courts have implicitly excused as a religious rite — only underscores the depravity of the Vienna high court.

Where, exactly, does this leave all of the rest of us in that community of nations whose calendars, despite the press of Islamization, still culminate in Christmas? I offer in response a clarifying quotation that pegs our existential whereabouts exactly. It comes from Afshin Ellian, a Dutch columnist, law professor, and professor of citizenship, social cohesion and multiculturalism at the Leiden University, who in 1983 fled Ayatollah Khomeini’s Islamic Revolution in Iran.

In early 2010, Ellian, commenting on the trial of Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders for allegedly anti-Islamic statements, had this to say:

“If you cannot say that Islam is a backward religion and that Muhammad is a criminal, then you are living in an Islamic country, my friend, because there you also cannot say such things. I may say Christ was a fag and Mary was a whore, but apparently I should stay off of Muhammad.”

Merry Christmas.

Diana West is a contributing columnist for Townhall.com and author of the new book, The Death of the Grown-up: How America’s Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization