We Are Making Fools of Ourselves in the Eyes of the World

[ By Leon de Winter in Amsterdam] Fear of fanatical Islamists prompted Ayaan Hirsi Ali to leave the Netherlands, her adopted home, and now she has been forced to return. Paying for her bodyguards in the United States is too expensive for the Dutch government — what a disgrace. There are exactly five people that the Dutch government has to protect against death threats from radical Islamists. This sort of protection is expensive. Society bears the costs because freedom of opinion, a cornerstone of our culture, is on the line. The extremists, for their part, are prepared to risk their own lives to kill those under government protection. The costs of protection are completely disproportionate to the outcome: the continued existence of our values and norms.