Anti-Islam MP Geert Wilders made a rare mistake when he referred to a journalist who had been raped in Afghanistan in attacking the decline of the left-wing elite, writes Hanneke Sanou.
‘You are using someone’s misfortune to make a political point, perhaps you should think about it,’ an angry Labour leader Mariëtte Hamer told Geert Wilders after he attacked journalist Joanie de Rijke for appearing to sympathise with her Taliban rapists.
‘I don’t think about anything at all,’ the blond politician answered. The day should go down in history as ‘Geert Wilders spoke the truth day’.
But the day already has a name. Wilders’ contretemps with most of parliament came on the so-called ‘day of reckoning’ or, in a reference to days gone by ‘Wednesday, minced meat day’, an annual event which sees the cabinet defend its policies.
True to form, the opposition proceeded to put the policies in the grinder and the ‘piles of propaganda’, as Socialist leader Agnes Kant put it, in the shredder.
Most commentators were soundly asleep when Geert Wilders decided to contribute to the debate by mauling the reputation of a Dutch journalist who had been raped in Afghanistan.
She has reportedly forgiven her assailants and is trying to move on. This, says Wilders is proof of ‘the crumbling morality of the elite’.
Femke Halsema, Hamer and a few others understandably pounced and made minced meat of Wilders who then spoke his historic words. Let us savour them slowly because in the run-up to the European elections it is not very likely he’ll slip up again.
Hanneke Sanou is a freelance journalist
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