Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Swedish Media Fails to Report Radical Islamic Connections to the "parking lot murder"

As already discussed twice this week in the blog, Sweden has a tendency to modify or censor inconvenient or provocative facts in reported news stories, as well as entertainment. Now it appears that a recent highly-reported story concerning a murder in the southern city of Landskrona, contained unreported details—such as that the perpetrator attended a possibly radical cellar mosque. This was however, not mentioned even once in Swedish media.

The recent story that occured at the end of March this year, concerned a young 23-year-old Lebanese immigrant man who, after entering a parking lot in Landskrona, got into a dispute with an elderly couple. The heated discussion over a parking lot space ended with the young man violently pushing the 78-year-old woman who fell to the ground and hit her head. The woman, Inger, would later die from her injuries. The "parking lot murder" was a long-running top story in Sweden as, until recently, the perpetrator remained unknown and in hiding. Now, however, a young man identified as Ahmad Akileh has been arrested for first degree murder.

Akileh, as can be read in the blog "Politiskt Inkorrekt", was born in Lebanon but upon his immigration to Sweden in 2007 was registered as coming from Iraq.

According to the blog "Jihad I Malmö" Ahmad Akileh is a Sunni Muslim and he and his family attend a cellar mosque in Landskrona. The Imam of the congregation Fekri Hamad does, according to the aforementioned blog, have close ties to the radical Imam Anas Khalifa who is connected to radical Muslim internet sites which preach Islamic messages of hatred and Jihad. Khalifa is also known for preaching Muslim intolerance towards Christians and Jews, and is a follower of the fundamentalist Salafi movement, whose exponents include the members of al Qaeda. Khalifa recently visited the Landskrona cellar mosque which indicates that the congregation still appreciates the radical philosophy of Imam Khalifa.

The building of the cellar mosque also hosts other groups such as Group 194, Swedish-Palestinian Friendship Association (Svensk-Palestinska vänskapsföreningen) and the Cultural Oriental Forum (kulturellt orientaliskt forum). According to the blogger Hans C. Petersson these were behind the anti-Israeli demonstration in Landskrona in 2009. In the demonstration Israeli flags were burned and swastikas appeared on signs.

Swedish media, including The Local reports that: "The suspect's immigrant background has become a source of major debate on internet forums and major demonstrations have been held in Landskrona with neo-Nazi and anti-fascist groups in attendance". The rather politically correct reporting by the Local clearly indicates the very Swedish approach to the story. It is clear that the newspaper doesn’t want to comment on the religious background of the perpetrator as an important fact in the story. In two other recent updates in the Local, neither the alleged murderer’s radical background , nor the protests are mentioned. Most probably, by avoiding making any connection to the Muslim community, the Swedes also avoid upsetting the radical Muslims that inhabits the country.

Clearly, a person should not be unjustly treated because of his religious association. Still, it should be in the interest of the Swedish state to investigate the background of a murderer, especially if he attends a radical cellar mosque. If the murder was an action resulting partly because of the radical ideas the man was subjected to, it would be in the interest of the Swedes to stop such radical influences in order to prevent further crime.

As long as the Swedish media conveniently represses reporting on these issues, the Swedish state can legitimize turning a blind eye to the fact that radical Islamic thought and blatant hate speech are flowing freely in the country.

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