A commentor demanded, quite understandably, some links to substantiate my point in the last post on the cartoon affair ("Jyllands-Posten's acrobatics & Salon piece") that the author of this infamous "children's book" is a well known Muslim-basher rather than a harmless kiddy book author, as Jyllands-Posten keeps implying in its propaganda.
The reason I did not provide more info initially is that there isn't much out there on this topic–it's surprising how the international media have not critically examined the innocent-children's-book argument that Rose is peddling–and what little is, is almost entirely in Danish. Didn't feel like translating things.
First, I should note that I'm indebted for this insight to the gutsy investigative journalism of Rune Engelbreth Larsen. His website Humanisme.dk is an invaluable source of news and analysis on Danish social and political issues, especially when you're thousands of miles away from the action. And he ruthlessly deflates so many of the convenient rationalizations and double-standards about Denmark's "Muslim problem". Not surprisingly, he writes in Danish.
Of Kaare Bluitgen, Larsen writes the following:
»Bluitgen er i forvejen berygtet blandt muslimer og andre for bevidst at nedgøre og provokere muslimer, som f.eks. i bogen Til gavn for de sorte (2002), hvor han bl.a. foreslår, at man skal stænke blod ud over Koranen.«
"Bluitgen is already renowned among Muslims and others for his intentional insults and provocations against Muslims, as in the book FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE BLACKS (2002) where he, among other things, proposes that the Quran be splashed with blood."
Anyway, here's the whole quote that I referred to. It's from Bluitgen's 2002 book Til gavn for de sorte: Om tilslørede øjne i den danske indvandrerdebat ("For the Benefit of the Blacks: Veiled Eyes in the Danish Immigration Debate"*), in which he lambasted the Left for being overly sympathetic to immigrants and basically blames Islam entirely for the failure of Muslims to integrate successfully in Denmark (as all competent Muslim bashers do today, he claims to only have a problem with "Islamic fundamentalism"):
»Venstrefløjen skal gå i offensiven. Gå i optog ned ad Nørrebrogade i København klædt i burkha, chador, tørklæder og lange frakker slæbende på en vognpark af klap- og barnevogne for til sidst at kaste det hele i en container på Blågårds Plads og stænke Koranen med menstruationsblod.« (s. 70)
"The Left needs to go on the offensive. Stage a procession down Nørrebrogade [a neighborhood known for its highly visible immigrant population] in Copenhagen wearing burqas, chadors, and long, dragging jackets, with strollers and babycarriages, all the way to Blågårds Plads. Then they should throw everything into the trash and splash the Koran with menstrual blood." (page 70)
[* For what it's worth, I've seen a review that argues that the word "black" here actually refers to blackshirts, i.e., Fascists, as opposed to black people. Given his contempt towards immigrants, it makes little difference to my mind, though. My guess is that he relishes the ambiguity.]
I have not read the book–the quote above is found on many Danish websites–but based on the articles I've seen his argument and motivation in the above quote appears to be that Islam is so misogynistic, that it needs to be confronted head-on, and in a way that will scandalize Muslims to the maximum extent possible. He also fixates on female genital mutiliation by Muslims. Not the political philosophy or subject matter of most children's writers that I know of…
[See Uriahsposten for more quotes (in Danish).]
Here's a letter in Danish entitled "Vi nægter at lade os provokere af Bluitgens bog" ("We refuse to be provoked by Bluitgen's book") from Danish Muslim leaders rejecting Bluitgen's recent book on the Prophet Muhammad for its biased rendering of the Prophet's life (they also note his infamous quote about the Quran and menstrual blood).
The point is that this wasn't your typical children's book, as it was being written by a person well known for attacking of Muslims and Islam, and one who is widely perceived as xenophobic and anti-Muslim even by non-Muslims.
Mr. Rose should be more forthcoming about his innocent little "children's book" project and the complex reasons why illustrators were hesitant to get involved in it. This isn't simply a case of Muslim fanaticism. As this case proves, it usually takes two to tango.
[To see previous posts on this topic, go to the "The Danish Cartoon" category page, which lists I've written everything in chronological order. To navigate through the list use the ">>" and "<<" links at the bottom of the page.]
Update (2006-02-24): Fixed my incorrect translation of the verb at stænke in Bluitgen's famous quote as "to smear". Actually, it means "to splash".