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Geert Wilders' Courageous Journey
by Andrew E. Harrod
Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders has released in 2012 his autobiographical account of his internationally known condemnation of, and personal conflicts with, Islam, with a forward available online by his fellow comrade in letters vis-à-vis Islam, conservative columnist Mark Steyn. Marked for Death: Islam's War against the West and Me recounts how an individual Dutchman became aware of an aggressive and authoritarian agenda in Islam as a faith-based political ideology. Through personal travels to the Middle East and the example of Muslim migrants who sought not to assimilate to Holland's world-renowned tolerant culture, but rather despised and sought to dominate it, Wilders recognized the incompatibility of Islam's canonical core with a free Western civilization. Wilders in turn personally experienced this incompatibility as his continuing condemnation of Islam brought him not the intellectual interchange due a debater in public forums, but rather personal and legal endangerment. Yet Wilders persevered and prevailed, thereby giving an example of how the free world can once again overcome a totalitarian threat.
As Steyn writes in his forward, the Wilders "who emerges in the following pages is not the grunting thug of media demonology but a well-read, well-traveled, elegant, and perceptive analyst." Wilders traveled and worked in Israel following his 1981 high school graduation, beginning a lifelong passion for this country that has led to at least annual visits throughout the years, over 50 trips in all. During this initial stay in Israel, Wilders also made his first visit to a majoritarian-Muslim country, Egypt.
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