So it was red faces all round in the media and political circles this weekend after the AD newspaper reported that an American imam had called for Geert Wilders to be whipped for his anti-Islam statements.

It later transpired the imam had said nothing of the sort – but by that time the damage had been done.
Wilders’ PVV party was jumping up and down again and calling for Khalid Yasin to be expelled and for an emergency debate in parliament.
You have to ask how on earth the AD journalist managed to turn ‘judicial slap on the wrist’ into ‘traditional punishment such as a whipping’ unless he or she is either deaf or has absolutely no grasp of the English language.
And you have to wonder why so few of the media actually sent a reporter to listen to what this apparently hate-mongering imam was saying? After all there was a massive hue and cry about his very presence in the Netherlands last week with all sorts of political parties calling for him to be banned.
Still, the net effect of all this and last week’s court decision to prosecute Wilders for inciting hatred has had the desired effect. If there was a general election tomorrow, the PVV would win 20 seats in parliament, more than double its current total and making it the third biggest party in parliament.

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