Gordo’s roundup of Middle East news has too many stories for me to link to them individually. He’s fished articles saying that there’s no evidence Iran’s developing nuclear weapons, Israel’s building settlements on private Palestinian property, and Iraq and Lebanon are going to hell.
Jill explains why it’s idiotic for Dutch officials to try prohibiting women from wearing veils. Jill calls it a burqa ban; in fact it’s a lot more – it’s a ban on any facial cover, including not just the burqa, which nobody wears without coercion, but also the far more widespread headscarf. Jill is right on when she says,
I’ll add that it’s problematic because it relegates an entire class of women to the private sphere. Many women who wear the burqa, by choice or by coercion, are not going to (or not going to be allowed to) take it off when they step outside. Instead, they’ll be prisoners in their own homes.
I’ve ranted a few times before about how Europe is unable to deal with non-European immigrants. The Netherlands looks to outsiders like a liberal paradise for everyone, but it brims with anti-Muslim bigotry. Theo van Gogh was just a high-profile case that went against the trend of hate crimes being directed against Muslims. Since Nuremberg-style laws are out of favor, the Dutch government is looking for slightly subtler ways of throwing Muslims out of the public sphere.