Iranian President Blames Israel for Anti-Islamic Film
Although both Egypt and America have credited Egyptian-born Nakoula Basseley Nakoula with producing the anti-Islamic film “Innocence of Muslims,” and Nakoula himself has admitted his role, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is blaming Israel for it.
According to The Jerusalem Post, Ahmadinejad said, on Friday, that the film was “an Israeli plot” designed to “divide (Muslims) and spark sectarian conflict.” Jews throughout the world are concerned about being linked to the innocence of Muslim film, which has been credited with sparking violent protests in Cairo and perhaps Libya. A protest against the film in Pakistan also turned violent on Friday. Indeed, according to ABC News, “Three people were killed and dozens injured on a holiday declared by Pakistan’s government so people could rally against the video.”
Nakoula, himself, was so frightened of backlash against the film that he called police to protect him. Because Nakoula originally said that he was an American-Israeli filmmaker and that “Innocence of Muslims” had been funded by wealthy Jewish donors, the rumor that Innocence of Muslims was an Israeli film spread, not just through the grapevine, but also through traditional media outlets.
Nevertheless, in the weeks following the attack, Nakoula’s true identity has been revealed and many media outlets corrected the stories they ran, calling Nakoula an Israeli. It is probably that Ahmadinejad is aware that Nakoula is an Egyptian, rather than an Israeli. If he is, he may have intended to stir up anti-Israeli sentiment as part of the ongoing feud between Iran and Israel over Iran’s pursuit of nuclear weapons.
Ahmadinejad is not the only Iranian who has reacted to the film. The Jerusalem Post also reports that Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said that the film was linked to the “Islamophobic policies of arrogant powers and Zionists.” Meanwhile, Canada’s National Post reports that a “senior official” in the Iranian government, said that Iran would “track down” those who were responsible for the film. Indeed, says The Post, First Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahim said that Iran “condemns … this inappropriate and offensive action,” and that it would “search for, track, and pursue this guilty person who … has insulted 1.5 billion Muslims in the world.”
Filed Under: Politics
About the Author: Miranda has a B.A. in political science and has worked over a decade as a news reporter, financial news writer and political blogger. More about Miranda