On the night of September 30, 2005 the day Jyllands-Posten published the famous Muhammed cartoons three men met in Copenhagen to plot their course of action. Their intent was to wreck the country that had permitted this affront to Muslim sensibilities. One of conspirators was Ahmed Akkari, who now says that he is sorry. Here is the part of his story he is willing to reveal to Dispatch International.
Akkari refuses to answer several of the most important questions relating to the fateful events of 2005-2006. For example: Who were the other two? Who participated in the group of imams and others who traveled to the Middle East to stir up trouble leading to the deaths of more than 100 people, the burning of Danish embassies (and one Norwegian) and a boycott of Danish goods? Exactly what were the conspirators doing in the Middle East and who did they meet?
DIs editors Ingrid Carlqvist and Lars Hedegaard interviewing Ahmed Akkari.
As Akkari explains to Dispatch International, he cannot give such information right now because he is under contract to write a book, where everything will be revealed. The book is due out in February. In it he promises to tell what the conspirators talked about
To one of DIs concrete questions, he does, however, give an answer. It relates to the fact that the Muslim wrecking crew brought with them a dossier that not only contained the twelve cartoons from Jyllands-Posten but drawings and photos that had never appeared in any Danish publication. For example a photo from a French pig-squealing contest and a drawing of a praying Muslim man who was being mounted from behind by a dog.
Where did these phony pictures come from?
They came by mail, is all Ahmed Akkari is willing to say.
Why should we believe that you are being honest when you now claim to regret your previous actions?
I dont demand that people should trust me. People are defined by their actions, says Akkari.
Im the kind of a man who likes to think and that can be a curse. I used to be far away from religion but was later attracted to it and came to accept religious answers. I finally got to the point where I accepted the double standards and the hypocrisy. Thats when you stop thinking.
Ahmed Akkari eventually came to realize there is no more clarity in religious answers than in those provided by political philosophy. Besides, it became clear to him the Islamic religion is infested with politics, which put him in a bad mood.
I understood that the religious people turn up and down for their religious arguments. They will use every means to strengthen their position.
But it wasnt easy for him to rid himself of an ideology that had become so rooted. For a while he tried to return to religion but gave up the attempt.
We are living in free societies. If Muslims were to gain control, that would be the end of freedom and if I want to enjoy that freedom, I must accept the values it is based on. I was hit by a very bad conscience and realized the gravity of what I had helped bring about. Now I want to contribute something to this society and I hope that my book will do that.
Were there foreign interests behind the Muhammed crisis?
Not at the beginning, but in December 2005 and January 2006 strong Islamic forces outside the country became very interested.
Were Muslims really hurt by the cartoons or did they pretend to be in order gain more power?
Some were genuinely hurt, but not those in the leading group. They just utilized the situation to gain positions of power. We knew that we could turn our demand for a ban on criticism of religion into political gain. Once you start banning one thing, more demands will follow.
This is indirect violence against freedom of opinion.
Did you accomplish anything? Are people more afraid to speak their mind than before the Muhammed crisis?
Yes we did score some gains. The freedom we used to have in Scandinavia to tell it like it is is under pressure. Spontaneity is threatened.
In recent years Denmark has experienced two clearly religiously or politically motivated assassination attempts on cartoonist Kurt Westergaard in 2010 and on historian Lars Hedegaard in 2013. Did the perpetrators act on their own or did someone in their environment put them up to it?
Its always the environment. You become indoctrinated to separate people into groups and use Islam to justify this segregation.
Its totally foreign to our culture to kill people you dont know simply because of their opinions.
Yes, but Islams religious leaders glorify this type of crime. It is quite normal to believe that the Danes are only out to malign us due to pure evil. Many Muslims dont understand Danish culture and are therefore easily aroused by Islamic propaganda.
A police officer told me (LH) a while ago that the guy who tried to blow my head off is bound to be caught because there will always be people who know what he did and sooner or later they will talk. Do you agree that there are people in the Muslim community who know the identity of the would-be assassin?
But they will not inform the police?
Is there an Islamic plan to conquer the West?
Yes, there is such a plan and there is a mentality of conquest.
Its hard to understand. Muslims come here claiming to have fled from oppression in their home countries and then proceed to undermine our freedom?
I dont understand it either. But they cling to the belief that holiness is always better.
But still they are not satisfied with their own societies where Islamic righteousness has been in the saddle for centuries?
The people arriving now are not fleeing from Islam but come for economic reasons. We think they understand why our society can provide them with all these benefits but they dont. They dont subscribe to our ideals of freedom but they must be made to do it.
Our politicians are naive. We must demand loyalty and love of country. We cannot ask them to give up their faith but if they will not show loyalty, we will have parallel societies.
As an example of Danish naivety, Ahmed Akkari mentions religious schools. When Muslim private schools are criticized, some will point to the fact that there are also Christian private schools. But here is a huge difference. In Christian schools the pupils, in addition to learning about the Bible, are also taught Danish culture and songs, learn about the flag etc. Not so in Muslim schools.
They teach kids to live in a fantasy, the utopian notion that everything is perfect in Islam.
You have previously explained that all Danish mosques and Muslim organizations are run by extremists. What should we do about that?
We must democratize these institutions and we must not permit Mosques to be attached to Muslim organizations.
Just a few decades ago nobody in Demark could imagine that we would one day be confronted with the kind of problems you have described and we seem to have no defense against Islamization?
We must believe in education and the power of humanism and democracy. Everything is possible.
But critical thought is not permitted in Islam?
That will change in about 15 years when the present generation is ripe for the retirement home. The next generation will come to understand that religion is a personal matter and not something you should impose on society.
Dispatch International is not convinced and points to the fact Muslims have had 1400 years to complete that operation but Akkari remains optimistic that something is going to change.
Who will win this battle for civilization?
In dark moments one is inclined to think that the intolerant will always win, but I hope that the young generation will lead us to a change of culture and have the courage to be tolerant and to ask questions like Im doing. When people tell me that God will punish me for expressing doubt, I answer: Let me worry about that.
How is your family taking it?
My mother in particular is not happy about my recent transformation. I have asked her to show motherly love towards me but there is no unconditional love in Islam. My mothers love depends on what she reads about me.