Freedom of Expression Alert! Gates of Vienna Taken Down By Google
*** UPDATE: The new Gates of Vienna can be found at http://gatesofvienna.net/ ***
*** UPDATE 2 – 22 January 2013, Old Gates of Vienna blog restored – related post on new blog HERE ***
In a gross act of censorship Gates of Vienna has been removed by Google from its Blogger platform. After many years of talking truth to power, those with power have decided to pull the plug.
Many people involved in the Anti-Sharia movement became involved due to the threat that sharia posed to freedom of speech. We saw as long ago as the Satanic Verses affair in the 1980s that sharia principles and freedom of expression are incompatible. In the 21st century we saw this again with the Danish Cartoons crisis. It seems clear that you can have freedom of speech or you can have sharia, but you can’t have both. The censorship of Gates of Vienna is the latest episode is the systematic erosion of freedom of expression by those who favour sharia.
The apparent connivance between Western governments and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) does not bode well for the continuance of free and open societies in the Western world. Sharia principles are increasingly becoming embedded in Western societies and the assault on Gates of Vienna provides yet more evidence of this.
Censoring blogs because those with power in society do not like their content represents a move in the direction of tyranny. It will be interesting to see which blogs will be next on Google’s ‘hit list’.
While Google is a private company that is entitled to make its own decisions one would have expected that it would be in favour of the free flow of information. After all, Google grew in the soil of a knowledge based economy.
The International Civil Liberties Alliance (ICLA) condemns Google’s decision to censor Gates of Vienna. It sees this censorship as a direct attack on the principle of freedom of expression on which any free society is based. However we are confident that Gates of Vienna will be back very soon with a new online location. We look forward to the new incarnation of this very influential blog. The current Gates of Vienna Newsfeed can be found at Vlad Tepes Blog.
The words of Winston Churchill are an appropriate way to conclude this post about freedom of expression (quoted from HERE):
“The stations of uncensored expression are closing down; the lights are going out; but there is still time for those to whom freedom and parliamentary government mean something, to consult together. Let me, then, speak in truth and earnestness while time remains….
.…We must recognize that the Parliamentary democracies and liberal, peaceful forces have everywhere sustained a defeat which leaves them weaker, morally and physically, to cope with dangers which have vastly grown. But the cause of freedom has in it a recuperative power and virtue which can draw from misfortune new hope and new strength. If ever there was a time when men and women who cherish the ideals of the founders of the British and American Constitutions should take earnest counsel with one another, that time is now.”
16 October 1938