I, a Muslim
"TV documentary angers Muslims," from The Prague Post
A Czech Television (TV) documentary is threatening to raise tensions within the country's Muslim population to a level not seen here during weeks of recent global unrest over the publication of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad.
Ambassadors to the Czech Republic from Arab nations and members of the Czech Muslim community say they are outraged by a documentary aired on TV last fall that used hidden camera footage of conversations in a Prague mosque and spliced it — they say unfairly — with images of terrorism.
"The reaction is usually immediate, while in this case it took a month for any reaction to appear and two months for it to grow," says....the documentary's producer. "It was the same with the Muhammad cartoons."...
Members of the Muslim community first filed a complaint with the Czech Radio and Television Broadcasting Council (RRTV) that month, claiming the program is biased, provokes fear and manipulates footage to promote false stereotypes.
"It was made in a confrontational style," says [the]...head of the Islamic Center in Prague. "We see it as a one-sided documentary, which evokes a distorted look at Islam in the eyes of the Czech public."...
The footage in I, Muslim shows a reporter pretending to be someone interested in converting to Islam. He conducts several conversations with members of the mosque...about Islam, Europe, terrorism and the role of women.
...says he stands behind his choice to use the hidden camera footage.
"I wanted to get real opinions of the local Muslim community on the issue — find out what the differences are between Czech and foreign Islam," he says.
One Muslim in the documentary compares Islamic terrorists to Jan Palach, the Czech student who committed suicide by setting himself on fire in protest of the 1968 Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia.
Another says Islamic law should be implemented in the Czech Republic, including the death penalty for adultery...
"I have to say with 100 percent certainty that by using hidden camera I have learned things that I would never have learned otherwise," he says. "The result was alarming, and if not for the hidden camera, I would have never had any of this footage."