Oriana Fallaci

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She received much public attention for her controversial writings and statements on Islam and European Muslims. Both agreement and disagreements have been published in Italian newspapers (among which, La Repubblica and Corriere della Sera had a series of articles), and David Holcberg at the Ayn Rand Institute supported her cause with a letter to The Washington Times.[11]

Fallaci received support in Italy, where her books have sold over one million copies.[12][13] At the first European Social Forum, which was held in Florence in November 2002, Fallaci invited the people of Florence to cease commercial operations and stay home. Furthermore, she compared the ESF to the Nazi occupation of Florence. Protest organizers declared, "We have done it for Oriana, because she hasn't spoken in public for the last 12 years, and hasn't been laughing in the last 50."[14]

In 2002 in Switzerland the Islamic Center and the Somal Association of Geneva, SOS Racisme of Lausanne, along with a private citizen, sued Fallaci for the allegedly "racist" content of The Rage and The Pride.[15][16] In November 2002 a Swiss judge issued an arrest warrant for violations of article 261 and 261 bis of the Swiss criminal code and requested the Italian government to either prosecute or extradite her. Italian Minister of Justice Roberto Castelli rejected the request on the grounds that the Constitution of Italy protects freedom of speech.[17]

In May 2005, Adel Smith, president of the Union of Italian Muslims, launched a lawsuit against Fallaci charging that "some of the things she said in her book The Force of Reason are offensive to Islam." Smith's attorney cited 18 phrases, most notably a reference to Islam as "a pool that never purifies." [18][19] Consequently an Italian judge ordered Fallaci to stand trial in Bergamo on charges of "defaming Islam." The preliminary trial began on 12 June and on 25 June Judge Beatrice Siccardi decided that Oriana Fallaci should indeed stand trial beginning on 18 December.[20] Fallaci accused the judge of having disregarded the fact that Smith had called for her murder and defamed Christianity.[21]

In France, some Arab-Muslim and anti-defamation organisations such as MRAP and Ligue des Droits de l'Homme launched lawsuits against Oriana Fallaci charging that The Rage and The Pride and The Force of Reason (La Rage et l'Orgueil and La Force de la Raison in their French versions) were "offensive to Islam" and "racist."[19] Her lawyer, Gilles William Goldnadel,[22] president of the France-Israel Organization, was also Alexandre del Valle's lawyer during similar lawsuits against del Valle.

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