Far-right anti-mosque video game triggers outrage in Austria

September 1, 2010

The picturesque Austrian province of Styria is overrun by huge mosques with minarets, if you are to believe an online video game designed for the far-right Freedom Party ahead of regional elections on September 26.

In a shooting range-style game, players have 60 seconds to collect points by putting a target over animated mosques and minarets that emerge from the Styria countryside and clicking a “Stop” sign. They also have the chance to eliminate bearded muezzin who call Muslims to prayer.

A man reads a flyer during a demonstration against a proposed Islam centre in Vienna June 18, 2010. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

A man reads a flyer during a demonstration against a proposed Islamic centre in Vienna June 18, 2010/Heinz-Peter Bader

The “Bye Bye Mosque” game, which has had over 60,000 visitors since Monday, has drawn sharp criticism from Austria’s Social Democrats, Green Party and Islamic community.

The game is “tasteless and incomprehensible in a country in which up until now people have lived in peace and harmony,” Anas Schakfeh, the leader of Austria’s Islamic community told broadcaster ORF. “This is religious hatred and xenophobia beyond comparison.”

The Green candidate for the Styria election has asked authorities to investigate the Freedom Party for incitement.

The Austrian debate is symptomatic of a wider trend in the United States and in Europe where Islam is becoming a political issue. Geert Wilder’s anti-Islam party doubled its seats in the Dutch parliament after elections last month and Swiss voters backed a ban on building minarets in a referendum last November.

The game ends with the line “Styria is full of minarets and mosques. So vote for Dr. Gerhard Kurzmann and the Freedom Party on September 26 so that this doesn’t happen.”

Schakfeh recently ignited a debate about Islam in Austria after he said it would be normal to see a mosque with a visible minaret in each of Austria’s nine provinces. There are four such buildings in Austria and none of them are in Styria, where 1.6 percent of the population is Muslim according to the Austria Press Agency.

A billboard depicting Heinz-Christian Strache, head of Austrian Freedom Party, in Vienna August 19, 2010. The slogan reads "More guts for our Vienna blood - Too much foreignness does not do anybody any good - So yes for HC Strache". REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

A billboard depicting Heinz-Christian Strache, head of Austrian Freedom Party, in Vienna August 19, 2010/Heinz-Peter Bader

At a national level, the Freedom Party wants a special vote on banning mosques with minarets and Islamic face veils.  Its leader Heinz-Christian Strache, mindful of an upcoming provincial election in Vienna, has said he wants to see protests in the capital like those in New York where hundreds have rallied against plans to build a Muslim cultural centre and mosque near the World Trade Center site.

The debate isn’t just coming from the right. In Germany central banker Thilo Sarrazin, a Social Democrat, has provoked uproar for saying that Muslim immigrants undermine German society, refuse to assimilate, and sponge off the state. He has also said “all Jews share a particular gene” angering people across the German community.

The Freedom Party said its “Bye bye Mosque” game was in part in reaction to Sarrazin’s comments saying they would prefer to have “Sarrazin rather than muezzin,” in Austria. Freedom wants to “deal with a situation which has already long been widespread in Europe,” Kurzmann said. He said young people needed to be informed about the problem.

With its catchy slogans and youthful leader, the Freedom Party enjoys strong support from young people in Austria, polling 17.5 percent of the vote at a national level in 2008.

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5 comments

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 Jesus says, “You will know them by their fruits, a good tree yields good fruit and a bad tree yields evil fruit. A good tree cannot yield bad fruit nor a bad tree yield good frit.”  We need to ask does Islam yield good fruit. There can only be one God and that God must be true for by definition all things that derive from him would be true.   Today’s world is ignorant as to truth and has difficulty discussing it. Jesus says, “I am the truth” Is the history of Islam good or bad? Islam is responsible for the murder of many Christians in the Sudan, Indonesia and the middle east but so are other religions. E.g Is Roman Catholicism innocent of bloodshed? Does it bring forth good fruit, or evil fruit? It has a history of Fascism and repression just like Islam. It has been well said that it has been the cause of the death of untold millions. Is Roman Catholicism Christian? Jesus says, “The truth will set you free.” Are Islamics free? Are Catholics free?   Islam seems to be described in the Bible in Rev. 9, where coming from Arabia, a land of locusts, wearing golden crowns, woman’s hair and commanded not to harm the grass or any green thing, which was the exact command of Mohammed. It is described as having a leader which was Abaddon, the destroyer, or the devil. But then also Roman Catholicism seems to fit the description of the “mystery of iniquity” which works within the Church and is well described in Rev. 13 & 17. Both religions oppose freedom of speech, particularly the Bible, because the Bible opposes them.   The West has to face up to these two religions and decide what influence, if any, they should have on their nations. Whether they want be free or enslaved. Whether they want to prosper or be impoverished. Whether they want the truth or the lie to rule their lives.

Posted by neilcadman | Report as abusive

hh, i heard something about this happen around here like 80 years ago, but i think they wer hating on jews or commis or something. Oh well maybe they wont get so carried away this time…

Posted by theobvious | Report as abusive

Just because something is branded as a religion doesn’t mean that it is good. Uneducated tolerance and ignorance are as dangerous as intolerance. I refuse to tolerate religion that is advocating intolerance and terror. I refuse to tolerate religion where followers are murdering children, women, and terrorizing whole regions. I refuse to tolerate stoning people to death, forcing women to wear NINJA SUITS! What if someone tried to bring the old Aztec religion and rituals with human sacrifice? …would you support it? It’s about time to take a stand against the Islam. Islam is a very dangerous ideology/religion and in its core is very violent. We must remember that most of the terrorist acts around the world are committed in the name of Islam. Just because millions subscribe to this so called religion doesn’t mean that it is good religion. Millions subscribed to communist/socialist values but it didn’t make communism good. Just because not every Muslim is involved in bombing, beheading, terrorism, etc. doesn’t mean that it is peaceful religion. Most Germans living in Hitler’s times were peaceful; law abiding citizens. It didn’t make Fascism good. It is time to wake up!

Posted by ImamObama | Report as abusive

“Islam is a very dangerous ideology/religion and in its core is very violent” – THIS honestly made me laugh… where do you turn to recieve knowledge… or do you make up stuff on the spot??? anyways my point is that ur 100% wrong =), first research then comment. Ok so if you actually research you will discover that islam revolves around peace!oh wow isnt that shocking *rolls eyes*. This whole word is being ruled by masons go research them their the evil ones and behind everything;)they want distruction … they fool people who dont have the common sense to think themselves and their ultimate goal is brainwahs idiots =)…

For anyone who would want to know the truth Iam a uni student who has researched religon and history .. ISLAM is all about PEACE and our beloved prophet may peace be upon him, is considered the most influential person in history due to his amazing character, just like jesus who is also one of the most respected prophets for muslims ( by all means research your self) … the media is mostly controlled by masons when a christian commits a crime or jews go killing innocent peope in Gaza their religon is not mentioned=) HOWEVER if so called muslim who doesn’t even follow his religon the right way commits a crime the headlines are “MUSLIM!!!!!!!!” I’m not shocked that society is brainwashed. When a christian commits a crime I dont go thinking that the religon he follows is evil or the rest of them are , in other words im not dum =) i have common sense… I said what I had to say I’m in quite a hurry hope I made sense , my job is done you can continue being ignorant if you wish, may God bless you and help you see the truth bye =)

Posted by Aliah | Report as abusive

@ Aliah, prove to me what YOUR saying is right. Show me some key sections from the Koran emphasizing the basis of Islam on peace. Second, show me your research about masons ruling the world.

Posted by Kendall_M | Report as abusive