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8/4/17

US-Dutch Relations: Dutch Wary of Trump’s new Holland Ambassador, Who Imagines “No-Go Zones” in Netherlands

Pete Hoekstra US Ambassador to the Netherlands and Donald Trump
Donald Trump's choice of Pete Hoekstra to represent the United States as ambassador to the Netherlands has alarmed Dutch observers familiar with the former congressman’s bizarre and entirely false claim that parts of their country have been surrendered to Islamist radicals, creating “no-go zones” for non-Muslims.

Hoekstra, who was born in the Netherlands but raised in Michigan as a staunch social conservative, might find himself largely unwelcome in his parents’ homeland, where even opponents of Muslim immigration, like the opposition leader Geert Wilders, typically cast themselves as defenders of liberal social values, like support for gay rights and abortion.

News of Hoekstra’s nomination prompted stunned reports in Dutch publications about the shockingly racist, anti-Chinese campaign ad he ran in 2012, his repeated efforts, during an 18-year career in Congress, to deny gay couples the right to marry or adopt children, and his leading role in the fight against government-funded health insurance.

Most baffling of all, though, was Hoekstra’s absurd claim, just two years ago, that the Dutch government had ceded control of sections of their country to Islamist radicals.

Martijn de Koning, an anthropologist at the University of Amsterdam whose research focuses on the Dutch debate over Islam, drew attention to video of comments Hoekstra made in 2015 at a conference sponsored by the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

Hoekstra’s contribution to a panel discussion of Muslim migration to Europe was to claim that a “stealth jihad” was underway which had plunged the Netherlands into such “chaos” that “there are cars being burned, there are politicians that are being burned, … and yes, there are no-go zones in the Netherlands.”

The former member of Congress went on to tell the conference that he and his wife had narrowly escaped from Budapest that summer, one day before thousands of Muslims seeking refuge from the war in Syria arrived in the Hungarian capital. “The little railroad station that we went through in Budapest,”

Hoekstra recalled, “the next day it was surrounded by 10,000 invaders, or refugees.”

What should make Hoekstra’s nomination to represent the United States in Europe alarming to Americans is that he is part of a far-right movement against the imaginary threat of Islamic Shariah law that uses the fear of terrorism to stoke hatred of Muslims.

Read complete report and watch video : Dutch Wary of Trump’s Ambassador, Who Imagines “No-Go Zones” in Netherlands

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