Swedish Journalists Ingrid Carlqvist and Maria Celander Indicted for ‘Thought Crimes’ Against Islam (Video)
- Posted by Amy Mek
- On October 5, 2020
- 0 Comments
- Aftonbladet, Blasphemy Laws, Dan Park, Hate Speech, Helsingborg, Ingrid and Maria, Ingrid Carlqvist, Ingrid och Maria, Islam, Linda Sege, Malmö, Maria Celander, Quran burning, Rasmus Paludan, Scania, Socialist, Sweden
Ingrid Carlqvist and Maria Celander are Swedish journalists who were indicted for “hate speech crimes”, known in Sweden as “incitement against an ethnic group”. Their “crime” was publishing an op-ed written by an ill woman on their website expressing concerns over whether the large numbers of Muslims employed at Swedish pharmacies filling prescriptions would follow the dictates of their religion and discriminate against kafirs (unbelievers).
Ingrid felt that this was a “totally reasonable dilemma” because “Muslims have a duty to put their Muslim brothers and sisters before the kafirs.” During a recent interview with Swedish news station SVT24, Ingrid explained:
…this woman had thought about what might happen if there is a shortage of medicine in the pharmacies. The fact is that Muslims have a duty to put their Muslim brothers and sisters before the kafirs. She speculated about what might happen if they hoard medicine for their own, and she therefore might not be able to obtain the medicines she and other Swedes need. And we think this a totally reasonable dilemma that we must be allowed to discuss.
However not all Swedes were in agreement with Ingrid and Maria’s assessment. Sweden’s “democracy and hate crime unit” was called to investigate Carlqvist and Celander after an unknown person reported them to the authorities for their perceived thought crimes.
As previously reported at RAIR, the Swedish government funds a radical online “hate” monitoring group, “Näthatsgranskaren”. The group is headed by Tomas Åberg, a former disgraced police officer. The group mass reports Swedes who write critically about migration and Islam online to police officers, who have raided speech offenders home, roughed them up, placed them under arrest and collected their DNA. As Ingrid explained:
It is the special hate crime section of the police that’s been coming after us… and that is the department that gets the most resources nowadays. They have a bunch of police officers hunting down people who commit thought crimes, while rapists and murderers are running free.
Sweden’s socialist prosecutor, Linda Sege claims that publishing the article was a crime committed with intent and now the pair risk spending two years in prison. Their hearing will take place on November 2, 2020 is Helsingborg District Court.
Linda Sege is the same controversial prosecutor who put the famous street artist Dan Park in prison for his art. Park was arrested, fined, and sentenced to jail for “hate speech” in Swedish Courts not once but several times. See the following two examples of Park’s ‘criminal’ art:
Together, Carlqvist and Celander have over 60 years of experience as journalists working for numerous mainstream publications. About a decade ago, the pair realized that reporting on facts and truth in Sweden was no longer possible at their mainstream media publications. The women explained, “reality didn’t seem to matter as much. It was more about hiding things than telling the truth.” Marie continued, “facts were concealed because they were uncomfortable”.
Sweden’s media, government and law enforcement have proven to be most concerned with concealing and suppressing facts and discussion regarding Islam explains Ingrid:
They think we are a nuisance because we know so much about Islam, we talk about it, we understand what is going on, and we see how the media is distorting reality. We can see through it, we were there, we know how they do it. That’s why they want to silence us.
The editorial degradation of facts has expanded beyond the media and has pervaded the internet explains Ingrid:
So at that point it was more of an editorial problem, but what has happened in recent years is that it has become a societal problem, where people share their opinions on the internet, and are then indicted for “hate crimes”.
Much like in an Islamic country ruled by Sharia, the two journalists and other “thought criminals” are ostracized, threatened, hunted by police and considered “extremists” for reporting on facts related to Islam. Thankfully, the Swedish government has not fully embraced Sharia and enacted the death penalty for blasphemers explains Ingrid:
You might say that we already have Sharia law in Sweden, or at least parts of Sharia, the Islamic Law. Because according to Sharia it is forbidden to criticize Islam, to mock Muslims or laugh at them. The penalty is death. I don’t think we will start executing people, but you could say that Sweden is already following Sharia in the sense that it is forbidden to criticize Islam.
Despite the harassment from the Swedish government, the women have vowed to not be silenced of intimidated, “I can promise you that they have come after the wrong journalists! Neither of us will ever be silenced!”
Ingrid, however, sent a stark warning of the threat their potential convictions pose to Sweden’s democracy, “If police officers, prosecutors and judges bow down to Islam, and go after people like us who try to warn people about Islam, then we are moving towards a totalitarian society.”
Watch the following exclusively translated interview by RAIR with Ingrid and Maria about their upcoming court appearance:
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Transcript: many thanks to Tania Groth for the translation:
Interviewer: The Swedish journalists Ingrid Carlqvist and Maria Celander are political commentators and opinion journalists and run their own website www.ingridochmaria.se. This spring they were reported to the police for a “hate crime”, known in Sweden as “incitement against an ethnic group,” after they published a story about Islam. We talked to them about the indictment, and the situation with free speech in Sweden. Ingrid Carlqvist, and Maria Celander: I started my career in 1996 when I got into the school of journalism, and then I went on to the newspaper Kvällsposten, where I met Ingrid. So we have worked together since 1997-1998. We worked at Aftonbladet, Punkt SE, freelanced for Metro, Svenska Dagbladet and so on. I got into the school of journalism in 1979, when I was 18 years old, and have worked for several newspapers. So together we have 60 years of experience in journalism. Interviewer: How would you say that the professional role of the journalist has changed during the last five years? Ingrid and Celander: We started to notice that already ten years ago, and that’s why we left the mainstream media. I was working the night shift at Aftonbladet and discovered that they were not interested in the truth anymore. The editors decided every angle, and the reporters had to work until they found that angle. That was not at all the case when I started as a reporter. Back then, my boss would send me out on a job, and when I came back I could tell him: “You were totally wrong, it was completely different from what you said.” And he would say: “OK, then write that!” And now that [attitude] is totally gone. Interviewer: How do you think the public trust in journalists has changed? Carlqvist and Celander: Oh, very much. Around 2010 we both started to notice that the reporting wasn’t fair anymore. I was working at the news agency TT then, and the angle was given to me in advance. Reality didn’t seem to matter as much. It was more about hiding things than telling the truth. Interviewer: Was this in any specific area? Celander: Especially the news reporting. It is supposed to be objective and mirror reality, unpleasant as that might be. You are supposed to find the relevant facts, but both Ingrid and I noticed that many facts were concealed because they were uncomfortable. So at that point it was more of an editorial problem, but what has happened in recent years is that it has become a societal problem, where people share their opinions on the internet, and are then indicted for “hate crimes” — Interviewer: And now this has happened to you? Can you tell me a bit about what has happened that you have been indicted on the charge of “incitement against a minority group”? Ingrid and Celander: Yes. We have warned about Islam for many years, because it is a new force in our country and politicians and journalists bow to it. We know a lot about Islam, and we have talked about it from different angles for ten years, because it is a new force in our country and politicians and journalists bow to it. And then we were sent this op-ed from a person who is ill, and who had thought a lot about what will happen now that so many Muslims work in pharmacies. You see hijabs everywhere. And this woman had thought about what might happen if there is a shortage of medicine in the pharmacies. The fact is that Muslims have a duty to put their Muslim brothers and sisters before the kafirs. She speculated about what might happen if they hoard medicine for their own, and she therefore might not be able to obtain the medicines she and other Swedes need. And we think this a totally reasonable dilemma that we must be allowed to discuss. Interviewer: You thought it was for the good of society that this discussion was put on the table? Ingrid: Of course! There are so many things about Islam that nobody wants to discuss. Just look at the Quran burning that the Dane, Rasmus Paludan, was planning. There are so many things about Islam that Swedes don’t understand and don’t want to understand, because they don’t want to realize that there is an ideology worse than Nazism that already affects our society in a very negative way. We Swedes are always told that we are so racist, but has anybody been indicted for saying that WE are racist? No! There is one group that has this extra protection and that is the Muslims. Interviewer: So you published this op-ed on your website and then what happened? Celander: Quite some time passed, half a year I think, and then suddenly we were informed that someone had reported it as a possible hate crime. Then Ingrid was questioned by the police, but we did not really think they were going to pursue it. We thought it was on very loose grounds. But after a few months I was also summoned by the police, and a week ago we were informed that we have been indicted. The trial will be held in Helsingborg on November 2. Interviewer: Normally when people write [prosecutable] things on social media, it is the writer that gets indicted. But in your case, you didn’t write this op-ed, you just published it. Why are the authorities focusing on you and not the person who wrote it? Ingrid: If that’s the norm, then for example Facebook ought to be indicted for what people write on their platform! Yes, one would think so. However, the Swedish law about incitement against an ethnic group says that the person who distributes the message is responsible. So basically that’s why they are coming after us. Another very sinister wording in this law, is that you don’t actually have to incite actively against a group; all that is required is that you have shown contempt. Interviewer: And what is that? Ingrid: It’s a very wide concept, and in the long run this means that if someone feels offended by something, then it’s illegal/criminal. And that means you can never know what’s legal to write about, and what isn’t. And we believe this is a serious journalistic dilemma because the whole point of journalism is to problematize and provoke and put the spotlight on problems and phenomena. Of course that means someone might get offended; that goes for all journalism. So, if this development is allowed to continue, we are in deep trouble concerning free speech in Sweden. Intervier: Have they told you in what way you have shown contempt Ingrid: No. They have not shown us which part of the article it is. And I want to say, we are journalists, we know this job. We scrutinized the article and removed some wording because we thought it was too harsh. And when that was done we came to the conclusion that this is a dilemma that we need to be able to shed light on and discuss. And the reason they are coming after us, as you say, why aren’t Facebook responsible for what people write on their platform, even though they are the ones spreading the messages, is that they want to send a signal: If they can come after two journalists, even though we are now non grata in the mainstream media because we are doing the job they stopped doing, they can shut others up. They think we are a nuisance because we know so much about Islam, we talk about it, we understand what is going on, and we see how the media is distorting reality. We can see through it, we were there, we know how they do it. That’s why they want to silence us. But I can promise you that they have come after the wrong journalists! Neither of us will ever be silenced! What has also happened is that Swedish authorities are coming after journalists who get donations from their audience, and tax them. Interviewer: Will you be affected by this? Ingrid: That threat is always hanging over our heads. But we maintain that the donations we get are not taxable because it’s political work, and that is tax-exempt in Sweden. We don’t do conventional news journalism, we only do op-eds. Interviewer: Are you worried that free speech is threatened in Sweden? Ingrid: Absolutely! Just look at the latest incident with the [purportedly illegal] Quran burning in Malmö; that shows that the noose is tightening. The groups who shout the loudest, and that are violent, can get anything they want just by threatening violence. It’s a major problem, as we see it. Interviewer: The Swedish constitution says that everyone has a right to organize public meetings, but we now see that demonstrations against Islam will be forbidden everywhere in Scania [Southern Sweden]. What do you think about that? Ingrid: It’s horrible. You might say that we already have Sharia law in Sweden, or at least parts of Sharia, the Islamic Law. Because according to Sharia it is forbidden to criticize Islam, to mock Muslims or laugh at them. The penalty is death. I don’t think we will start executing people, but you could say that Sweden is already following Sharia in the sense that it is forbidden to criticize Islam. Interviewer: This prosecutor who is dragging you to court, has she done things like this before? Ingrid: She has. Her name is Linda Seger, and she is the one who put the street artist Dan Park in prison for his art. It is the special hate crime section of the police that’s been coming after us… and that is the department that gets the most resources nowadays. They have a bunch of police officers hunting down people who commit thought crimes, while rapists and murderers are running free. Interviewer: How will you prepare for the trial? Ingrid: We will build a solid defense with the help of our lawyers, and insist that we can’t throw away our free speech because someone might feel offended. That’s not reasonable in a democracy. We have great confidence in our lawyers and will specifically argue just that. Interviewer: What would you like to say to the prosecutor and the justice system in Sweden? Ingrid: Now it’s for real. If you don’t stand up for the things you are supposed to, which is to ensure that justice is served, and that we have a legal system that upholds the rule of law, then democracy in Sweden will soon evaporate. If police officers, prosecutors and judges bow down to Islam, and go after people like us who try to warn people about Islam, then we are moving towards a totalitarian society. It is really serious now.