Germany's Cartoon Moment?

eu.gifI don't think it will turn out this bad, mainly because self-cencorship is actaully being enforced here, but it does smell a bit of back in wintertime when the Danish pastry was cooking. Actually, for Germany it could, cynically short term, be seen as a win-win situation since you avoid the potential upsetting of muslims and as such the preventing of just a tiny fraction of the meaningless roar we saw last time is a good thing. Furthermore, Germany's politicians (those opposing the action) can 'freely' go out and publicy lash-out against self-cencorship. However, putting this in perspective I believe that we are venturing down a very dangerous road here.

Here is a Bloomberg piece of the issue in its full length.

'German Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble urged Berlin's Deutsche Oper to reverse its decision to cancel four performances of an opera depicting the decapitated head of the prophet Mohammed.

Schaeuble, speaking in Berlin today after a conference with representatives of Germany's Muslims, joined other ministers in condemning the decision by Kirsten Harms, the opera house's director, to cancel a November production of Mozart's ``Idomeneo'' because of unspecified security concerns.

``Artistic freedom is much the same as press freedom,'' Schaeuble said, adding that Harms's decision was ``not easy.'' He said the 30-member conference agreed jointly to attend a performance of the opera should it be reinstated.

The Mozart production, directed by Hans Neuenfels and last performed in May 2004, includes a final scene in which the blood- spattered Idomeneo carries the severed heads of Mohammed, Poseidon, Jesus and Buddha.

Deutsche Oper announced the cancellation earlier this week, citing warnings by security officials including Berlin Interior Minister Ehrhart Koerting. Koerting, also speaking at the German Islam Conference, said there was no specific threat against the opera and defended what he called the difficulty of the decision.

Ali Ertan Toprak, who took part in the conference as the representative of Germany's Alevi community, a branch of Shiite Islam, told reporters that most of the participants in today's meeting regretted the decision to cancel the opera.

``We can't be defensive in this way against terrorism if we want to live in a free and democratic society,'' Toprak said.'

For more BBC also has some interesting articles.