Sayyed Fadlullah received the French Journalist, Richard Labeviere:
|What I have done is an Islamic and Humanistic Duty|
The Religious Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah received the Former editor in chief of France international, Richard Labeviere, who thanked the Sayyed for his statement that supported him. The meeting was also an occasion to talk about the freedom of speech in France, in particular and in Europe in general.
After the meeting, Labeviere said: I came to thank H.E for the statement he made to defend the freedom of opinion in Europe and France, and for defending me in particular. I explained that his position has a great impact in France, especially that it was made by a prominent religious scholar in which he defends the freedom of opinion and expression against some institutions that claim to support such freedoms but actually suppress them.
It was very significant that such a grand religious authority should talk about the universality of the values of the French Revolution, because I believe that we all meet on the basis of these values which are based on peace and human rights. Furthermore, such humanistic statements face what the Israelis are doing: killing and destruction in the region in addition to the intellectual terrorism in France and Europe as well as the extortion practiced in the name of being anti-Semitic in Europe.
I believe that such suppression of freedoms is not less dangerous than what they are doing here although what is really happening in Palestine is a silent eradication of the Palestinian people in collusion with several media institutions in the West.
On his part, the Sayyed emphasized that what he has done is an Islamic and humanistic duty that is related to the Islamic position towards injustice and freedom of expression. We do not perceive politics to be a game, but rather a mean to preserve people's rights and dignity. We also believe in the freedom of thought in a way that does not change in violence and chaos.
The French Revolution did open a window on human freedom despite the violence it was accompanied with. Therefore, we feel that it is our responsibility to declare that we are disturbed with the attitude several officials in France have adopted towards freedom, just because they are committed to defend Israel. I believe that it was shameful that the French judiciary had tried Reger Garoudi, just because he tried to discuss the Holocaust in a scientific manner, since it is the right of any human being to discuss what is going on in the world whether with the Jews, the secularists, the Muslims and Christians. We believe that persecuting thought is a result of the failure to confront it and an attempt to spread ignorance and laziness in the society. Thus, I believe that the position Labeviere took represents the true traditions of France's belief in human freedom. And I had hoped that France had not taken such a negative attitude towards the freedom of speech which should not be constrained with issues that are related to Israel and the Jews.
We are not against the Jews as such, but against the injustice the Palestinians have suffered from by those who usurped their land and displaced them all over the world, especially that the Israelis have brainwashed the world with a series of myths and legends they present as facts.
We feel sorry that Europe, with all its civilized and scientific history, is a victim of such a logic, and does not confront the successive Israeli crimes against the Palestinians, not least of which is the Gaza siege that should be condemned by the Europeans before others.