Swedish Artist, Critic of Islam, Still Defiant

STOCKHOLM—Swedish artist Lars Vilks was comparing notes a few months ago with the editor-in-chief of the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Both had faced death threats over drawings of the Muslim Prophet Muhammad.

Mr. Vilks said the editor, Gérard Biard, appeared reassured that the police patrols, bodyguards and other security measures around the paper’s new Paris office would keep him and his co-workers safe.

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  • eMan14

    I hope Mr. Vilks finds some young blood to join him in is defiance. It would at least be a sign of hope that not all is lost in Sweden.

  • Frau Katze

    Interesting point. If someone is a parent, there is an instinct to survive to bring the children up. But the last thing we need is for our own people to stop having kids —Muslims specialize in large families.

    For Mr. Vilks, who has long been a critic of Islam, the assault was a chilling reminder that the danger hasn’t gone away.

    “There’s this physiological effect that the more things settle down, the more you feel like nothing will happen,” he said in a recent interview. “But looking at it from a more rational perspective, the risk for a new attack grows bigger the more things returns to normal.”

    Still, he said he isn’t afraid and refuses to go underground. His address in southwestern Sweden will remain listed and he will continue to paint whatever he wants, he said.

    “Perhaps I would feel differently if I had kids, but then it would be tragic if you had to compromise with yourself because of the circumstances,” he said.