Flamboyant Fortuyn received 31.000 votes less than William of Orange
Wafa Bubnad, IOL Correspondent
HAGUE, November 21 (IslamOnline.net) – Late anti-Islam and
–immigrants flamboyant politician Pim Fortuyn was declared the
greatest Dutchman of all times in a recent nationwide survey, though
organizers admitted the overall counting proved otherwise.
announced results suggested that of 300,000 people who picked their
favorite by phone, Fortuyn came ahead of legends like William of Orange,
the founder of the Netherlands who helped keep the country out of French
hands in the late 17th century.
also indicated that Willem Drees, prime minister from 1948 to 1958, came
third followed by Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-1669) and Vincent Van Gogh
(1853-1890), two of the greatest painters in Europe’s art history.
the site of the TV program which broadcasted the poll said that because
of technical problems not all the votes came in before the end of the
the program the remaining votes were counted and it turned out that
William of Orange received 161.000 votes while Fortuyn received 130.000.
the program called "The Greatest Dutchman/woman of all Time"
decided to officially stick to the first outcome because it had been
agreed that only the votes received during the program would be counted.
did decide to add an article to their Web site to clarify what happened.
of One Moment”
shot dead by an animal rights activist in May 2002 just a
few days before general election.
openly gay and former sociology professor, he formed Leefbaar Fortuyn
party, which began as a fledgling group but captured significant support
in recent local elections.
party, however, triggered widespread protests for saying that Dutch
borders should be closed to immigrants.
Vilda, a Dutch political analyst, said Fortuyn’s influence is
short-lived, calling him a “man of one moment”.
is the man of such critical moments experienced nowadays by Dutch
society as the people saw Fortuyn as the only one who could save them
from what they term the threat of Islamic extremism,” he told
continued: “It really nags me that the Dutch have chosen Fortuyn, who
practiced politics for only six months and gained notoriety for his
anti-Islam stands, as their best favorite ever.
around the world choose the really greatest figures, who left their
indelible marks on history like British prime minister Winston Churchill
(1874-1965) and German chancellor Konrad Adenauer (1876-1967).”
said the polled sample could have been influenced by the recent killing
of controversial filmmaker Theo Van Gogh, who directed the derogatory
documentary on Islam Submission.
Dutch Muslim community swiftly
condemned on November 2, the killing of van Gogh, who was
shot and stabbed to death while cycling on an Amsterdam street.
Gogh made his film with a controversial politician of Somali descent, Ayaan
Hirsi Ali, who is a vocal critic of women's treatment in
series of Muslim sites and mosques have come under racist
attacks that are possibly linked to the murder.
Arab European League (AEL), a rights group that has
offices in Belgium and the Netherlands, expressed Saturday, November 20,
concerns about the eruption of a new wave of Islamophobia and xenophobia
in both countries.
is also a form of anti-Semitism and on that level it is now clear that
some European countries didn’t learn their lesson of history,” it
said in a statement on its Web site.