Posts tagged ‘lars vilks’

August 11, 2010

Here we go again: Danish Mohammed caricature to be republished

THE MOHAMMED CARICATURE CONTROVERSY five years ago shook the world, although it’s hard to know which side of the world received more of a shaking: outraged Muslims across the globe who felt insulted by what they perceived as neo-imperialist European contempt for their religious values, or the so-called “West,” whose most outspoken pundits chose to depict the Muslim response to the provocation as a “clash of civilizations.” The crisis, which ensued from a series of cartoons sponsored by the conservative Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, led to an estimated 100 deaths around the world. It has been causing aftershocks ever since, most recently in the form of a spate of Holocaust-denying caricatures from the Muslim world and a physical assault on Swedish artist Lars Vilks (whom I’ve written about here) while he presented a provocative art lecture in Uppsala last spring…

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June 3, 2010

Threatened Swedish artist invited to complete his lecture

IT’S BEEN A DIFFICULT month for Swedish artist Lars Vilks. It’s bad enough that the man’s greatest claim to artistic fame is a crude sketch of the Prophet Mohammed with a human head and a dog’s body that he jotted down in 2007 – it’s not exactly the “Mona Lisa,” after all. He has been receiving death threats ever since. On May 11 Vilks was physically attacked by a mob of outraged Muslim students at the University of Uppsala while he delivered a lecture on freedom of expression and art, during which he showed a short film depicting gay young men with Muhammed masks engaging in sexual intercourse. In the following days his enemies hacked his computer website and set his house on fire…

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June 3, 2010

Sweden locks down on “Everyone Draw Mohammed Day”

GLOBALIZATION CAN BE A wonderful – and a terrifying – thing. On “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day” yesterday, the Pakistani government blocked both Facebook and Youtube, and the Swedish government closed its Islamabad embassy – all because the American TV series “South Park” presented the Prophet Mohammed in a bear suit and a Swedish artist called Lars Vilks published a caricature of him as a dog, prompting a wave of death threats as well as physical attacks against Vilks’s person and his home. Government spokesmen in Stockholm did not provide a specific reason for the embassy closure, pointing instead to “the general security situation in Pakistan.” In Lahore, demonstrators trampled Swedish, Danish, and Norwegian flags, demanding that Pakistan break off diplomatic relations with the three Scandinavian nations. The diplomatic lockdown appears to be a reasonable precaution: two years ago a suicide bomber killed…

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May 15, 2010

Past the point of no return? Swedish artist attacked again

The home of Swedish artist Lars Vilks was attacked with Molotov cocktails overnight

SWEDISH ARTIST LARS VILKS has long argued that freedom of expression stops when it comes to art and religion. But even he must be surprised at the amount of hatred and violence that outraged Islamists are aiming at him for drawing a single sketch.

In September 2007, Vilks published a caricature in a Swedish newspaper. (I have already written about Vilks in detail here.) It depicted the Prophet Mohammed with a human head and a dog’s body standing in the middle of a traffic circle. He immediately received death threats and the Swedish government has kept him under police protection ever since. In March of this year, an American woman calling herself “Jihad Jane” and seven persons in Ireland were arrested for plotting his assassination.

Last Tuesday evening, Vilks…

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May 12, 2010

Heads up! Muslim protesters attack Swedish cartoonist

Controversial Swedish artist Lars Vilks

WATCH OUT, AIR PASSENGERS! Islamic terrorists have hit upon a new and ingenious weapon: human heads. Their own, in fact. And this impacts not only everyone’s security, but our press freedom as well.

Last night at the University of Upsala, 63-year-old Swedish artist Lars Vilks turned up to present a film about a new art project of his regarding religion and press freedom. Witnesses described the atmosphere in the packed lecture hall as “extremely aggressive.” Expecting trouble, a dozen police officers stood at attention nearby, standard procedure for the controversial artist’s appearances ever since he published a caricature of the prophet Mohammed in the form of a dog in the Swedish newspaper Nerikes Allehanda in August of 2007. The officers painstakingly checked the briefcases and knapsacks of all 260 spectators. When Vilks finally entered the hall, about twenty men and women started shouting at him. “Swine!” one man called out. Another yelled: “You are a failed artist!” Vilks proceeded to take photos of the demonstrators with his cell phone, provoking them even further…

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