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来夏参院選 今野氏比例擁立か 民主・安住氏が意向 (河北新報 2006/05/21)
民主党：議員辞職の今野氏が参院比例区くら替え立候補へ (毎日 2006/05/20)
毎日新聞 2006年5月20日 20時15分
Ex-Dutch Lawmaker to Stay in Netherlands
Friday May 19, 2006 8:01 PM
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (AP) - A Somali-born former member of parliament who resigned this week after admitting she lied on her asylum application 14 years ago will stay in the Netherlands until her citizenship is reviewed, her spokeswoman said Friday.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali was in her apartment in The Hague under orders from her lawyers not to speak to the media or appear in public, said the spokeswoman, Ingrid Pouw.
She remains under constant police guard, as she has been for several years since receiving death threats for speaking out against Islamic radicalism.
Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk said Hirsi Ali's naturalization was invalidated by her lying about her name and birth date, but she acceded to demands by parliament to reconsider the ruling. That process could take several weeks, and Pouw said Hirsi Ali would stay until then.
Hirsi Ali acknowledged fabricating her application, saying she feared retribution from her family when she fled to the Netherlands in 1992 to escape an arranged marriage.
But she said she had confessed the lie publicly years before, even though Verdonk claimed she had not been aware of it.
Hirsi Ali previously had been offered a position with the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, in September, according to AEI President Christopher DeMuth.
U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick said Thursday she would be welcome in the United States.
In addition to her Dutch naturalization problems, Hirsi Ali must leave her apartment in The Hague by Aug. 27, after her neighbors sued the Dutch government last month and alleged that her presence endangered the neighborhood.
Hirsi Ali's free-market VVD Party named Laetitia Griffith, a former member of parliament now serving on Amsterdam's city council, to fill Hirsi Ali's parliament seat. Griffith, 40, was born in the former Dutch colony of Suriname and immigrated legally to the Netherlands in 1987.
Dutch lose a leading critic of Islam, but many are glad she's gone
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands -- Former Dutch lawmaker Ayaan Hirsi Ali has stood at the white-hot center of the debate on Islam in Europe. She bluntly urged Muslim women to throw off their veils, and angered Muslims by linking Islam with terrorism.
Yet she earned no praise from the anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim right, nor from the women she tried to defend. They found her abrasive and a troublemaker. While Muslim extremists called her a heretic and wanted her dead, the average Muslim woman wanted her to just go away.
After her political career was derailed this week by an exposed lie on her asylum application, the Somali-born firebrand has been silenced, confined by her lawyers to her well-guarded apartment in The Hague.
But around Europe her case resonates with common issues: how to accommodate an assertive Muslim minority, how to meld different cultures into the European context; and whether Islam -- as Hirsi Ali suggested -- can be reformed from within.
She rose to prominence in Holland amid the European backlash over the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in the United States. Dutch Muslims -- 6 percent of the population -- were blamed for rising crime and failing to integrate into their adopted countries.
A Muslim who renounced Islam, Hirsi Ali went farther than most. She called Islam a backward religion and Mohammed a "tyrant" by modern standards.
She became internationally known when filmmaker Theo van Gogh was murdered in November 2004 by a Muslim radical incensed by the film "Submission," for which she wrote the script.
Submission was a fictional study of abused Muslim women, with scenes of near-naked women with Quranic texts engraved on their flesh.
Muslims called it blasphemous, but Hirsi Ali said the film gave voice to her dream of an Islamic Age of Enlightenment.
"If we Muslims learn to think differently and instead of total submission move to a moral concept of dialogue with God ... in my eyes that would be a first step toward emancipation," she told The Associated Press last month in one of her last interviews before her resignation.
Most native Dutch could hardly disagree. But her confrontational manner rankled in a nation used to dealing with issues through quiet, reasoned and often lengthy debate until consensus is reached.
"She certainly was provocative, more than this society is accustomed to," said Galen Irwin, an American professor of political science at Leiden University, who has lived in the Netherlands for three decades and taught Hirsi Ali soon after she arrived in the country in 1992.
"She was more abrasive than many people here were ready for, but it's hard to see how things can change if no one stands up and says they must change -- even if that's not very Dutch," he said.
Hirsi Ali quit parliament Tuesday after Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk -- a friend and political ally -- said her 1997 naturalization was invalid because she gave a false name when she moved to the Netherlands, escaping an arranged marriage and fearing reprisals from her family.
Hirsi Ali, 36, acknowledged her real name was Ayaan Hirsi Magan, that she had lied about her age and had not told the authorities she had lived in three countries since leaving Somalia. But she reminded the nation that she had confessed to the lies years ago, both in public and to her party which offered her a parliament seat anyway.
While sympathy for Hirsi Ali swelled after her teary farewell address Tuesday, opinion surveys reveal that the Dutch are deeply divided.
According to a snap poll released Wednesday by pollster Maurice de Hond, 60 percent said her departure was not a loss for Dutch politics. Asked whether it was right that she be stripped of her citizenship, 49 percent said yes, and 43 percent said no. The internet poll carries a 3 percent margin of error.
"Is she the first immigrant to lie on her application? I'm ashamed of my country," said Lara Clarkson, a woman of Dutch-Indonesian descent who said it was wrong to strip Hirsi Ali of her passport.
"She was too big for the Netherlands, too ambiguous to be pigeonholed," said Clarkson. "She gave a good kick to things that were rusted into place. In 20 years, people may look back and say: 'man, she saw it all so clearly'."
She was reviled by Muslims, a hatred that seeped into the generation of schoolchildren who hiss when she appears on television in school. In the playgrounds in heavily immigrant neighborhoods, she is sometimes referred to as "that black witch."
"She has done more harm to us, worsened our position more than anything else I can think of," said Rita Joosten, an activist with advocacy groups for immigrant women.
Joosten said that while women's groups are opposed to female circumcision and domestic violence -- issues that Hirsi Ali put on the agenda -- she had linked those problems with Islam, whether she intended to or not.
"That has contributed to an 'us' and 'them,' where it's Islam that's backward and Islam that needs to reform."
Joosten said that, in her circles, most women consider Hirsi Ali an unwitting pawn of the far right, noting that she has been offered a job with a conservative think tank in Washington, the American Enterprise Institute.
Irwin said that most Dutch politicians, while criticizing Verdonk publicly for her decision, were privately celebrating Hirsi Ali's downfall.
"I imagine most people in The Hague will be glad to see her go. She was a pain. She didn't conform to the rules of her party, or to control of any kind," he said. (AP)
May 20, 2006
No longer hiding
The outing of Vito puts 'The Sopranos' squarely into the cultural war sparked by the debate over same-sex marriage.
By Paul Brownfield, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
May 19, 2006
The expression "gay mafia" first went mainstream in 2002, when fallen super-agent Michael Ovitz gave an interview to Vanity Fair in which he claimed a cabal of the gay and vengeful were largely responsible for the demise of his management business.
His subsequent apology notwithstanding, most everyone around town saw it as some manifestation of Ovitz's unraveling egomania (after all, his list of names included known heterosexuals), though the phrase "gay mafia" had been kicking around Hollywood for years.
Not quite as long, of course, as gay men had been rising to power as agents, actors, producers and top executives while leaving it off their business cards. And rising as mob men, as "The Sopranos" conjures it, taking "gay mafia" literally and to its most logical extreme. Several episodes ago, in one called "Live Free or Die," mob captain/ancillary character Vito Spatafore (Joe Gannascoli) went into hiding after being spotted dancing in leather chaps at a gay bar in Manhattan.
At that point you thought he had about half an episode to live. Instead, his "outing" has turned into an outing — Vito fleeing through the night to his cousin's place in New Hampshire only to stumble upon a yuppie Pleasantville for gay men, a leafy, idyllic hamlet called Dartford, where even the volunteer fire department looks like a kind of a gay men's chorus.
Sunday promises some form of resolution, Vito having returned from his hide-out, inexorably drawn back to the literal family he abandoned and the figurative one itching to exact retribution.
In mob culture, men kiss each other on the cheek in greeting, but homosexuality is a sin punishable by death, although you get a pass in prison, Tony tells his psychiatrist, Dr. Melfi. In the culture too, we still have our old-school rules: Audiences get a pass when gays are presented as burlesque (see "Will & Grace," which ended its long run on NBC on Thursday night) or as victims of disease and/or harassment.
But "The Sopranos," through Vito, means to get at the culture war over gay marriage that won't go away any time soon.
Although Tony's crew is eager for him to order Vito clipped, Tony is inclined to give him a pass: The guy's a solid earner, and Tony's pretty sure he's not the kind of homosexual who would annoy him, bringing kitchen curtain samples by the Bada Bing.
"I find it disgusting," Tony tells Melfi of his attitude on homosexuality. "Men kissing men, holding hands in the street. Every … TV show now, they rub your nose in it." He pauses. "Although that, the lesbian thing," he adds, "with Jennifer Beals, it's not bad."
That "The Sopranos" would reference the low-rated "L Word" on rival pay network Showtime is an inside joke but also an outside one — an expression of the double standard that exists in the culture, where chick-on-chick love is hot, but guy-on-guy relationships are still somewhat verboten.
It was into this maelstrom that "Brokeback Mountain" launched a thousand reactive parodies while also conspicuously not winning the Academy Award for best picture.
In Dartford, Vito falls into a relationship with Jim, a rugged-but-soft firefighter who owns the local diner; they have to brawl before Vito can start calling him Johnny Cakes, and before Vito can say: "Sometimes you tell lies so long, you don't know when to stop."
Gay mobster in hiding at a bed-and-breakfast in leaf-peeping country sounds about as rich with comedic potential as mobster in therapy and on Prozac. But "The Sopranos" has mostly played it as poignant and tragic — it's of a piece with "Brokeback," even though Gannascoli has said he brought the idea to the show's writers several years ago, after reading a book about a gay mobster.
With his bum hip, Vito's signature duck walk adds a Chaplin-esque isolation and sadness to the character. But being gay does not make him significant; it only highlights his essential disconnect with the crew: He kills other men, but he also cuddles with them.
Panel bars UN links to two more gay rights groups
By Irwin Arieff
A U.N. panel this week barred two more gay rights groups from having a formal voice at the United Nations after blocking two others earlier this year, diplomats said on Friday.
Votes to deny the groups "consultative status" at the world body took place in the U.N. Economic and Social Council's Committee on Nongovernmental Organizations, which wrapped up its latest eight-day session on Friday.
A total of 2,870 nongovernmental organizations have such status, enabling them to distribute documents and speak at meetings of some U.N. bodies and conferences.
The committee, which holds sessions twice a year, this week rejected applications from The Lesbian and Gay Federation in Germany and ILGA-Europe, a chapter of the International Gay and Lesbian Association.
During its first 2006 session, which took place last January, the committee rejected the Belgium-based International Gay and Lesbian Association and the Danish National Association for Gays and Lesbians.
The United States -- which voted against U.N. recognition of the two groups considered in January, prompting criticism from several human rights groups and 45 members of the U.S. Congress -- voted in favor of the two groups put to a vote this week.
But motions by Iran to reject both applicants were nonetheless approved 9-7. Voting "no" both times were Cameroon, China, Iran, Ivory Coast, Pakistan, Russia, Senegal, Sudan and Zimbabwe. Voting against rejection were Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, Peru, Romania and the United States. India and Turkey abstained.
While some committee members expressed concern the rejections revealed a discriminatory pattern, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the Vatican's U.N. observer, said U.N. consultative status was not a question of human rights.
All four committee votes are subject to review later this year by the full 54-member Economic and Social Council.
In reversal, U.S. backs U.N. role for gay groups
But overall vote still goes against consultative status
By JOSHUA LYNSEN | May 17, 6:19 PM
UPDATED: May 19, 9:36 AM
United Nations member states again denied gay groups the ability to officially influence proceedings, but the United States is now backing efforts for inclusion.
Mark Bromley, a spokesperson for international human rights organization Global Rights, said United Nations members opposed granting consultative status to a German gay organization and the International Lesbian & Gay Association's European office.
The two groups were denied the consultative status May 16 and May 17, respectively. The special status is required for any organization hoping to speak at United Nations meetings or lobby member nations.
"We were pretty outraged," Bromley said, "as were a lot of other organizations."
Bromley said that Global Rights, which has consultative status, assisted both groups with their bids to join. Global Rights supports gay rights, but also advocates for other human rights issues. Bromley said that no gay-focused organizations have yet received consultative status from the United Nations, despite several attempts in recent years.
An estimated 3,100 organizations have consultative status at the United Nations. Those groups primarily participate in social and economic discussions.
Another vote is pending for a Canadian gay organization seeking consultative status. Bromley said that application likely also would be denied.
According to Global Rights, most nations voted to reject the applications from ILGA and the German group. Opponents included China and Iran. France and the U.S. were among the nations that voted to support the applications. Bromley said it was significant that U.S. officials voted May 16 and May 17 to support the applications. In a vote earlier this year, U.S. officials opposed applications by gay-focused groups.
"I think that sort of the big change from our perspective – and the small victory – is that the U.S. government changed its vote," he said. "That's a real step forward."
Following the January vote, a coalition of 40 organizations, led by the Human Rights Campaign, Human Rights Watch, the International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission, and the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, urged Bush administration officials to support future bids by gay groups.
Lesben- und Schwulenverband in Deutschland (LSVD)
International Gay and Lesbian Association
Landsforeningen for Bøsser og Lesbiske (LBL)
Lesbian couple first to divorce
Thursday May 18, 2006 8:58 AM
A couple are to become the first lesbians to divorce - just two months after tying the knot.
Liz King, 40, and 36-year-old Daphne Ligthart were among the UK's first homosexual couples to seal their union. They registered their partnership in Ashford, Kent, on February 11 under the Civil Partnership Act.
However, it emerged that the couple are splitting up and now face the prospect of dividing their joint assets.
Ms Ligthart told The Sun: "Liz told me she didn't love me anymore, that she hadn't done so for years. I was absolutely flabbergasted.
"I asked her why she had gone through the wedding and she said it was to make me happy. But it was all her idea."
The first weeks of their partnership were said to have been joyful, with the couple enjoying a romantic honeymoon to Amsterdam.
"She even asked if I would change my name by deed poll because she liked the sound of it. We seemed more in love than ever," said Ms Ligthart.
However, within a month Ms Ligthart said she became aware that Ms King was acting "different". She said: "Liz is into athletics and is a triathlete. She began spending a lot of time training with another girl at her athletics club.
"They were together every day and this girl began coming round the house when I was at work."
Ms King told the newspaper: "I have nothing to say except I feel sorry for Daphne at this time."
生誕２５０年でコンサート・ＣＤなど続々 モーツァルト「狂騒曲」 (朝日 be/business 2006/05/20)