Cote D’Ivoire seems to have attracted the attention of the anti-Muslim agitator Pamela Geller. Alasanne Ouatarra, you see, is Muslim. To Geller, his victory in the November 28 elections presages “an Islamic takeover of the Ivory Coast.” She approvingly cites this piece:
we are witnessing one of those watershed moments in history: Ivory Coast is about to toggle from a (mostly) Christian country to a Muslim country. The winner of the election is a Muslim — the head of the Muslim rebel forces in the north of the country — and the loser is a non-Muslim. Ivory Coast is on the verge of officially joining the Ummah.
Muslims do not need to be in the majority to force Islamic rule on a country. They simply need to be present in numbers sufficient to terrorize, threaten, bribe, and defraud their way into power. The exact percentage varies according to circumstances, but absentintervention from an external force, full Islamization can be expected by the time a country becomes 40% Muslim.
This is clearly ridiculous drivel. Yet, at the same time, it is worth watching the extent to which this line of criticism gains traction. There is a fairly vibrant anti-Muslim movement here in the United States, of which Geller is arguably the online leader. Her online protestations of the Park 51 Islamic Cultural Center in lower Manhattan, for example, resulted in some very real-life protests. It also gained the support of mainstream political leaders, like Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich.
It is worth observing if this this line on Cote D’Ivoire stays in the extremist blogosphere or if it trickles toward the mainstream. If politicians start to echo this kind of garbage, the unity that has so far been achieved in support of Outtara’s electoral victory may begin to fracture.