A great deal has been written in the past few months about Geert Wilders, the right wing Dutch MP who is preparing to release a ten minute film on what he believes to be the "terrible things" contained within the Koran – a text he regularly refers to as "fascist" and thinks should be banned in the Netherlands.
Despite various death threats and warnings from the Dutch government, who have already made plans for evacuating their foreign embassies if it all goes the way of the Danish cartoon controversy, Wilders has insisted on releasing his film and will do so in March.
The latest news is that a death threat has been made against him on a website with links to al-Qaeda, reported by a Dutch newspaper as reading: “In the name of Allah, we ask you to bring us the head of this infidel who insults Islam and Muslims and ridicules the Prophet Mohammed.”
The reason I'm blogging about him is I've just seen a video of a TV interview with him in English, which was the first chance I've had to see him in action, if you will. Personally I found it hard to sympathise with someone acting in such a deliberately provocative, even dangerous manner in order to further his own political agenda (he's anti-immigration). It also seems like he's presenting a very simplistic view on Islam, somehow believing he can convincingly write-off the world's second largest religion in ten minutes.
Yet again it raises important questions about freedom of speech (it seems to be free speech week on the blog). What do people think about him? Is he a dangerous troublemaker or a hero of free speech? Have a look at this interview and leave some comments...