Hege Storhaug, HRS
Først en viktig påpekning: ARS har bestemt seg for å dreie fokus bort fra rasisme til ”kampen mot islamofobi”. De mener dette er en sak som vil være lettere å selge inn i søknader om offentlige midler, og de har forstått at rasisme er et langt mer utbredt fenomen blant ikke-vestlige. Dette har jeg fra internt hold.
Her er kapitlet om ”islamofobi”:
ARTICLE 5: PROHIBIT AND ELIMINATE ALL FORMS OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION AND TO ENSURE ALL EQUALITY BEFORE THE LAW
96. In general reference to article 4.
97. The major issue involved in Islamophobia: The NGO Human Rights Service (HRS) is of concern as a state funded advocate of anti-muslim prejudice. This is feeding into the already growing problem of Islamophobic tendencies in Norway (see 2 B, no.2, 79-80 further up). One example of this is the Norwegian organization Human Rights Service (HRS). HRS has a constant negative focus on Islam and Muslims, with articles criticizing Islam and Muslims strongly dominating their web page15. HRS is both a major actor in and of themselves and a major resource for anti-Islamists.
98. Their activities are to a large extent funded by the Norwegian state; in fact, they are included at the same point in the state budget as the Norwegian Centre against Racism, the Norwegian Organisation for Asylum Seekers, SOS Racism, and other NGOs working against discrimination.
99. In their presentation of the Geert Wilders trial, the Head of Information at HRS Hege Storhaug states: “This is about his right to focus on the discomfort that parts of Islam have brought to Europe – facts that the elite vehemently denies, or perhaps more correctly put completely ignores: That the Koran and Islam in themselves advance values and actions that are in full collision with humanity and human rights”. This is representative of the HRS discourse; while employing a certain level of nuance, the actual focus has a distinct anti-Islam bias, in article after article through a number of years.
100. They have also presented Geert Wilder’s speech in the British Parliament March 5th 2010 with admiration, in their presentation of his speech describing Wilders as a man who sees the dangers of Islam clearly. This is the speech where Wilders asks whether this will be London in forty years or “Londonstan”; where he asks if we will choose “freedom or slavery”; where he says that we need “Fewer Chamberlains, more Churchills”; and where he concludes: “We will never surrender.”
101. In 2009 HRS employed the highly controversial American writer Bruce Bawer as advisor. Bawer’s book “While Europe Slept: How Radical Islam is Destroying the West from Within” was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award for 2006 in the criticism category, a circumstance that led to controversy. According to the New York Times16 on of the board members of the Circle, Eliot Weinberg, stated that Bawer’s book was an example of “racism as criticism”. Later the president of the Circle’s board, John Freeman, wrote on the organization’s blog17 “I have never been more embarrassed by a choice than I have been with Bruce Bawer’s ‘While Europe Slept’ […] It’s hyperventilated rhetoric tips from actual critique into Islamophobia.”
102. Bawer himself states in the book that rising Muslim birth-rates and a “refusal” to integrate will allow them to dominate European society within 30 years, and that the only way to avoid such a disaster is to abolish the politically correct and multicultural doctrine that, according to him, is rife within the continent. He also suggests a physical solution for the problem he perceives: “European officials have a clear route out of this nightmare. They have armies. They have police. They have prisons. They’re in a position to deport planeloads of people everyday. They could start rescuing Europe tomorrow.”
103. In his article on the trial against Wilders published on Human Rights Service’s web page Bawer stated bluntly: «In fact, Wilders has only done one thing: he has made visible important truths about a very dangerous ideology.»
• The authorities need to seriously consider if the HRS contribute to integration in light of public grants given by the government (chapter 651, item 71). The overarching goals for this grants programme is to, and we quote; «support organisations that work to ensure that everyone has equal opportunities, rights and obligations as regards participation in society and making use of their own resources. Support can be given to nationwide organisations that develop expertise about what promotes social inclusion and what constitutes an obstacle to equal opportunities, and that disseminate experience and know-how to local and national authorities and the general public. Support can also be given to organisations that contribute to safeguarding the rights of asylum seekers in the community and that build knowledge about asylum seekers’ needs in order to look after their interests in society».