Sweden's refusal to condemn 'organ libel' is bogus
Sweden's foreign minister, Carl Bildt, has refused to condemn a "blood libel" published by one of Sweden's leading newspapers, Aftonbladet. The article outrageously claims that Jewish soldiers in Israel killed Palestinians to harvest their organs.
According to the New York Times, the writer of the article, Donald Bostrom, has acknowledged that "he has no idea whether the accusations are true." Yet a widely-read Swedish newspaper was prepared to publish this undocumented and highly volatile accusation without requiring its author to present any credible evidence.
This accusation is reminiscent of the medieval blood libels that falsely accused Jews of killing Christian children to use their blood for religious rituals.
Not only has foreign minister Bildt refused to issue to a personal condemnation of the current "organ libel," his foreign ministry explicitly disavowed the denunciation issued by Sweden's Ambassador to Israel, who had called the article "shocking and appalling."
In a self-righteous statement, Mr. Bildt claimed that condemnation of the article would be inappropriate because freedom of expression is a part of the Swedish Constitution.
This is a bogus and ignorant argument, as anyone who understands freedom of speech will attest. I have devoted much of my life to defending freedom of speech, and consider myself something of an expert on the matter. Nobody is talking about censoring the Swedish press or imprisoning the writer of the absurd article.
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