The European Street
Two blogs provide a feel for how the street debate over the cartoon wars are going in Europe. The Brussels Journal has a video link to Moroccan "youths" on the rampage in Antwerp’s historical center, destroying cars and beating up reporters to express their outrage at the slur on their religion.
“We had to watch how they were ripping off car mirrors. We wanted to stop this vandalism but were ordered to withdraw,” an anonymous policeman says in today’s Flemish daily De Standaard. “An ambulance was told to switch off its siren because that might provoke the Moroccans.” Another anonymous officer told the press: “There you are watching this, while citizens can see that you are powerless.” According to an anonymous police chief the authorities decided, that “it was better to have a few cars vandalized than risk open war in the streets.” On Monday the city council, led by the Socialist mayor Patrick Janssens, decided that the city would compensate the damage to cars and property.
One of the victims of the violence was Fatima Bali, a city councillor of Moroccan origin. She was on a tram last Saturday evening around 6 pm, when the vehicle was attacked. “It was very frightening,” she said. “Stones were thrown at the tram. Passengers tried to hide under the seats. Everyone panicked. Windows were shattered, a stone hit a passenger’s head – a Moroccan by the way. I hope I will never have to go through something like that again.”
You can reach the video link by clicking on the still below.
Switching to action in France Samizdata links to a video showing bloggers Erik and Arthur Wneir from No Pasaran declaring their support for Denmark while standing alone in a tide of several thousand Muslim protesters.
The arrival of the French police prevented what might have been a fairly lopsided encounter between the bloggers and the demonstrators, but Erik and Arthur expressed their disappointment: "We almost had them surrounded."