CREATOR OF A CONTROVERSIAL FILM THAT CAUSED THE MURDER
OF ITS DUTCH FILMMAKER VOWS TO PRODUCE A SEQUEL DESPITE
THE THREATS TO HER OWN LIFE - "60 MINUTES" SUNDAY
An activist whose film has already caused the murder of her collaborator vows to make a sequel to the controversial film, despite threats against her own life. Hirsi Ali's film, "Submission," has offended Muslims worldwide, especially those living in the Netherlands, where it first appeared on television. Ali speaks to Morley Safer for a report to be broadcast on 60 MINUTES Sunday, March 13 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Soon after the 12-minute film was broadcast, its filmmaker, Theo Van Gogh -- a famous Dutch radio and film personality related to the painter Vincent -- was brutally murdered by a Muslim who left a note decrying the film. The murder led to racial unrest, including the destruction of mosques and churches. Called "Submission," the film depicts the Koran written on a naked Muslim woman's body, and on the body of another woman scarred from beatings inflicted by her husband. The Koran, Ali is saying in her film, condones and enables the beatings and sometimes murders of women.
60 MINUTES will show a small portion of the film, which will have a sequel, the threat of murder notwithstanding. "By not making 'Submission Part Two,' I would only be helping terrorists believe that if they use violence, they are rewarded with what they want," she tells Safer.
Ali was born in Somalia and turned away from Islam and an arranged marriage when she was a young woman. She immigrated to the Netherlands and after an education, got elected to Parliament. "[Mohammed, the Prophet] has said a few things that are not compatible with democracy," says Ali. And the democracy in the Netherlands may be too tolerant of Islam, according to Ali, whose idea for "Submission" was to protest what she says is abuse of women in her adopted country. "My accusation towards the Dutch society was 'You think you are tolerant, but if you look behind those curtains in Amsterdam and Rotterdam, there are women who are abused," she tells Safer. "There are women who are taken to Morocco and Turkey and are killed there," Ali says, referring to women who stray from the Islamic faith and are killed to uphold a family's honor.
The sacred book's text on the woman's body is an expression of free speech to Ali and most of the Netherlands' 16 million citizens, but could be taken as an insult to the million Muslims in the country and millions worldwide. Safer remarks that such expression is to be expected in a democracy, where other groups, including religions, often feel insulted. A Muslim community leader in the Netherlands responds, "So that's a good argument? 'Oh, we Christians are being insulted, so you Muslims should also be insulted?' No, I don't think so," says Nabil Marmouch.