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Free speech and incitement

September 13th, 2012
10:43 AM ET

A panel discusses the anti-Muslim film that has contributed to protests in the Middle East.

Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, founder and CEO of the Cordoba Initiative says, “The Quran states explicitly that no soul shall be responsible for the sins or the crimes of another. And while this film is indeed offensive, and those who have done this have done this deliberately to offend Muslims, we should not kill innocent people."

James Rubin, former assistant secretary of state under president Clinton – and Amanpour’s husband – said of the U.S., “We are a country where the word ‘tolerance’ is built deeply into our system, and we have to make that true both through law enforcement, through education.”

Rubin added, “We can defend somebody’s right to speak but that doesn’t mean we can’t condemn what they say. And we have to be very clear on that. And we can’t let the Arab Spring be hijacked by the extremists and remember that it’s a good news story – a positive development for the people of the Middle East.”

soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    Eu sou contra a este trabalho que os cineastas fizeram ao construir este filme anti – mulçumano cada ser humano tem a sua ediologia uns mulçumanos outros católicos outros cada um tem a sua maneira de pençar o que estes sir. fizeram foi criar conflitos étnicos e foi um trabalho de merda para estes cineastas eles deviam comer essa merda dese filme que eles criaram os cidadãos pacificos não querem complicações com o a b ou c eles querem viver a sua vida tranquila

    September 13, 2012 at 11:27 am | Reply
  2. Nufascistleft

    Thank goodness democracy and freedom DOES exist in the middle east. No no in any Arab country of course, but in Israel where all are equal under the Law

    Shame then that Obama having thrown Mubarack under the bus intend to do the same the same with the Jewish State

    September 13, 2012 at 11:42 am | Reply
    • y22nxdf2

      Arab israeli citizens had their homes stolen by jews, are attacked constantly and harassed by police and army. Some of you there are more "equal" than the rest.

      September 13, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Reply
    • QB

      You haven't take you daily pill?

      September 13, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Reply
  3. Ahmad

    No one has the right to insult our prophet and this swine person has to be punished . But Quran also states that we don't have to kill innocent people

    September 13, 2012 at 11:42 am | Reply
    • Nufascistleft


      Muslim & Arabs denigrate Christians and Jews on a daily basis. See any of th 57 Muslim / Arab flags burned lately. Or muslim ambassadors killed by Jews or Christians?

      September 13, 2012 at 11:45 am | Reply
      • Moe

        Arab muslims and Christians live in peace since ever. Jews on the other hand cant handle being the only "species" that is actually the source of all world trouble. If there were no jews, Arabs wouldn't have a problem with U.S. hypocratic double standard way of imposing fake democracy around the world just to protect what you call Israel!
        If there were no jews, Iran wouldn't work on a nuclear technology.
        If there were no jews, the credit crunch would never happen.

        you know it, i know it, everyone knows it. have you ever seen a muslim insulting jesus? or even moses or david? to us they are all holy prophets of the same god and all are brothers to Mohammad PBUH.
        We are not violent nation, we are just willing to give up everything for what we believe in. Poor you, who do you belive in? sharoon or netinyaho... I pitty you 😉

        September 13, 2012 at 11:59 am |
      • JohnS

        @Moe – Just reverse your statememt. Replace Jews in the sentence with Muslims. I think it works out even better. I don't think I have ever heard of a Jewish: Hijacker, Suicide Bomber, Embassy Attacker, Family member 'Honour Killing' or Beheading an Innocent Victim. If the Jews were gone, then it would be the Christians(I forgot, they are already attacking them), then the Budists(what did the Taliban do in Afghanistan and India in the name of religion), the Hindu, etc, etc. I am not stating an opinion, just historical facts. I am just suggesting that there would be more peace if there was more tolerance and even ignoring the words of those we do not like or agree with.

        September 13, 2012 at 12:32 pm |
      • Gazzah

        Only very friendly movies. So innocent!

        September 13, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
    • authorsnote

      Actually, we do have every right to insult your prophet. That is the point that is missed entirely by these thugs and murderers. We can criticize without fear of reprisal in our country. It is called freedom, a concept crushed in most religiously led countries. As we say, 'get over it and move on.'

      September 13, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Reply
      • Sarfaraz Sindhi

        Why do feel the need for this only now, and which prophet would you insult for Christian Hitler, Christian Franklin Roosevelt, Christian Charles De Gaulle, Christian Churchill, Christian Stalin etc.

        September 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
      • Gazzah

        What about manners?
        Also I would like to hear you criticizing Jews or denying the holocaust.
        Does your freedom stop here?

        September 13, 2012 at 2:55 pm |
    • Teodoro C

      Ahmad, the Kuran itself contains insults and very derogatory statements against "infidels", meaning Jews, Christians and Pagans. Should then the Kuran be punished (meaning banned or similar) for affirming its ideas? Life is built upon the premise of reciprocity: if you think that you have the right to affirm your ideas regarding the truthfullness of Islam and critize other religions, as the Kuran does and lots of Imams do in public forums, then you have to acknowledge that same right to whoever critizes Islam. Resorting to violence or calls for "punishment" only prove what the detractors of Islam are saying, namely, that it's a religion of violence and intolerance, or at the very least, the peoples who profess it.

      September 13, 2012 at 12:34 pm | Reply
      • Sarfaraz Sindhi

        Wow, and I believe you would have to agree that it was not 1400 years old Quran that brought Christian Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt, George Bush Jr, Tony Blair, Augusto Pinochet, Robert Mugabe, or World War I, World War II, Korean War, Vietnam War, Gulf-War 1-2, the history is witness that Christian-Americans have killed more men/women/children in wars than in any other. I am pretty much sure they all didn't read Quran but I guess humanly changed Bible.

        September 13, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
      • Gazzah

        The use of violence is ALWAYS wrong, but we are not talking about criticizing but of insulting.
        Rather uncalled for!!

        September 13, 2012 at 3:00 pm |
    • seidan1

      Everybody has the right to insult your profit, he was an illiterate, murdering, child rapist. Feel free to come find me and we can discuss it in person.

      September 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm | Reply
    • Carvalho

      What right do you have to call another human being, made as image of God, a swine? Do you believe you are better then others just because you wouldn't do the same???? If you think your prophet was a real one, let your Alllah deal with the ones mocking him...Be blessed!!!

      September 13, 2012 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • M

      Bad things are said against Jesus, Muhammed, Abraham every single day. People need to grow up and know that it is wrong to kill another human being – period !

      September 13, 2012 at 2:17 pm | Reply
    • jo

      Ofc you muslims always tend forget that last think..

      September 13, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Reply
  4. Obladyno- Egypt

    Strange... since if you are a christian on a muslim world, they can kill you just because you pray on a different direction then they do. (that is a matter that is mostly used on the predatory killings around the muslim world)
    Look at that girl that was going to be killed because she burned some pages of the "love for all" book. First she was a traitor, she should be killed on the public square, she needed to be killed right away to let others learn that what she made was a massive crime... they found out that it was one of there Prophets that placed the burned pages on her backpack.
    Now they just forgot about it and are investigating...
    So the girl burned the page: she must be killed right away since it made a massive crime.
    It was there leader that burned the pages and tryed to get the little girl killed: We will see if this is true. Carry on people nothing to see.

    Great rules...

    September 13, 2012 at 11:52 am | Reply
  5. Gideon, Nigeria

    This Middle East or Muslims are not peaceful people at all and should not hide in the guise of firm publication to destroy the peace they all cry out for in Liby and the Middle. That the NATO has come into their aide does it mean they are now fighting their comrade after winning a war. God forbid we Christians are in the part of peace because vengence is not our'sz but from God.

    September 13, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Reply
  6. Garamasala

    James rubin- Zionies jew

    September 13, 2012 at 12:11 pm | Reply
    • JohnS

      So you made up a new word.Zionies", are we supposed to be impressed? What is it sipposed to mean? It MUST mean something intelligent, brave, and resourceful, because you have the word 'Jew' right after it.

      September 13, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Reply
  7. TheDeuce

    Everyone has assumed that this film has incensed people across north Africa and the Middle East to violence against the U.S. I would disagree. I think that "the film" in question is simply an excuse. An opportunity. And with massively high unemployment, poverty, and incredibly poor education levels, coupled with a bit of inflammatory rhetoric which uses a hijacked religion to achieve the goals set by a faith long since corrupted by radicalism, what we are seeing today is an inevitability; a natural result. Comments like "we can't let the Arab Spring be hijacked by the extremists" only evidences a sincere deficit of understanding on the reality currently on the ground in the region. Plus, if people really mean what they say in this regard, they'll have to do much more than go on a talk show and talk about how "we can't let -whatever- be hijacked by the extremists." It will take concrete action, which will be misconstrued as trying to interfere and meddle in the affairs of, will incense believers and people, and will lead to more violence, so you end up back at the same point. This is a problem without an answer, except for endless violence. The real solution to this problem will only come with the end of the human race.

    September 13, 2012 at 12:36 pm | Reply
  8. Susan

    Its a shame that I live in a country that is so full of ignorance and hate!

    September 13, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Reply
    • reese

      No one religion is better than another and the proof is in the name-calling. We are all connected. If you get still and really listen to your hearts you would know this. This is where God lives. Peace!

      September 13, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Reply
    • Sarfaraz Sindhi

      I am very pleased to read your comment, it only makes it clearer that educated people like you have very positive image of Islam and its founder, rather than brainwashing media. God bless you Susan.


      September 13, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  9. Nufascistleft


    It is silly JEWHATERS like you who propagate the hate in the world. If they were no Jews eh? What you gonna do annihilate them all just like hitler?

    Ever thought about the unbelievable contribution Jews make to the world. The Nobel prize winners the thinkers the artists the philosophers.the cultural and polital leaders etc
    What do 1.6 BILLION Muslims contribute as compared to. Just 17.5m Jews eh?


    Only in Israel is their a growing Christian community in the middle east

    Seems to me most of the religious problems in the world are Muslim on Muslim and Muslim on Christian

    Maybe it's time JEWHATERS like you looked at your hatred and reconsidered Eh?

    September 13, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Reply
  10. Nufascistleft


    Muslims insult Jesus and Christians VERY FRIGGIN DAY. The Saudi Arabia mufti just called for ALL CHURCHES to be DESTROYED

    Muslims are torching churches all over the middle esta nd north Africa almost everyday

    Have you ever thought of doing some basis research or does your JEWHATE blind you to simple truths

    September 13, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Reply
    • Søren

      "The Saudi Arabia mufti just called for ALL CHURCHES to be DESTROYED" You're laying LAYING .... please give the link of the source (academic journal, newspaper article, magazine, book).....

      September 13, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Reply
  11. Nufascistleft

    Garamasala Arabist JEWHATER

    September 13, 2012 at 12:11 pm | Reply

    September 13, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Reply
  12. Nufascistleft

    Muslims are rioting and killing Christians and Muslims all over the middle east and north Africa today, as we speak.

    Not a Jew in sight. Care to comment resident JEWHATERS ?

    September 13, 2012 at 1:13 pm | Reply
  13. Rasheeed

    i want to sat that not because several thusands of radicals kill and burn you say that all muslims are killers and terrorists most mslims are peacefull and they condemn these attacks

    September 13, 2012 at 1:26 pm | Reply
  14. abelyx

    Nobody killed anyone because "The Life of Brian" from Monty Python, almost 50 years ago!

    September 13, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Reply
  15. Agree

    I agree with this article! It is fully irrational behaviour of Arab crowd (for me manipulated), about film that haven't been seen in any cinema or even by Youtube – in exeption of short trailer! People please, even I am Christian and this film also sickened me, but it is not cause for killing! Unless we are still in Stone Age!

    September 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm | Reply
    • Sarfaraz Sindhi

      Don't you get it still, US has been sending all countries to stone-age by militarily pounding them, and you talk about 'unless in stone-age'. Look at Iraq and Afghanistan if you haven't seen those personally.

      September 13, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Reply
  16. Antiislam

    How many times do muslims do their anarchies just to force their islamic ego?
    Their muslims think only their selves can do all destructions to satisfy their own islamic ego.
    See the revenge will come soon.
    More violence More reasons to destroy islam.
    More muslims regrouping More efficient for a bomb to kill them all.

    September 13, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Reply
  17. Tom

    Religion is the cancer of human race.

    September 13, 2012 at 2:13 pm | Reply
    • Sarfaraz Sindhi

      Hmm and yet I have seen atheists dying of cancer, what's got that to do with them, then?

      September 13, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Reply
  18. Nufascistleft


    Communism and fascism killed millions more people than any religious followers

    September 13, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  19. Sarfaraz Sindhi

    If it has to be Free-Speech than I would love to see caricature on CNN of Hitler passing by Jewish family in New York. That would be rather great understanding of Free Specch

    September 13, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Reply
  20. jake

    NO ONE can hurt THE Prophet Mohammed before our EYES!!
    We are Muslims, We Have Honor.

    September 13, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Reply
    • Gazzah

      We are Moslems, but no one can hurt our prophet. He is who he is.
      Just ignore those who only know hate.

      September 13, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Reply
  21. Gazzah

    The best is to ignore all those who only know hate and insult.

    September 13, 2012 at 3:09 pm | Reply
  22. Nufascistleft


    When the mufti of Saudi Arabia called for all churches to be destroyed. Did u say anything?
    When the mufti of Jerusalem called for the killing of all Jews. Did u do anything
    When mullas say Jews are descended from pigs and monkeys did you say anything?
    When Christians are killed all over the ME and N Africa Did you do anything
    When apostates from Islam are killed or maimed. Dd you say anything
    When Hamas called for the killing of Jews and the PLO called forthe eradication of Israel. Did u do anything
    When ahmadinejad and the mad mullah calls for the annihilation of all Israel Did u say anything?

    Thought not. You only see hate direct at not spewing from them do you?

    September 13, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Reply
  23. Nufascistleft


    When cartoons are broadcast of The Prophet on CNN will that also make you happy ?

    September 13, 2012 at 3:25 pm | Reply
  24. Wais

    It is shame for US government, which allows such mean people, how are insulting humanity and making violance between humanity. And from other side she is saying that we respect all religions. it is not true!!!!!! We want justace!!!!!

    September 13, 2012 at 4:02 pm | Reply
    • Pat

      People have to be allowed to voice their opinions no matter how disgusting they are. Freedom of speech protects you even if what you say is horribly reprehensible. The US government didn't make this video and they don't support it either, but the government can't censor people's opinions.

      September 14, 2012 at 12:21 am | Reply
  25. Tola

    Before the advent of Islam or Christianity what has our forefathers worshipping? The way we all reach God may b diferent but I believe is the same God. Bcos I call Jesus son of God and u call him Prophet of God doent need to cause trouble . Everybody wll b judged accordingly. I think killing of innocent people is barbaric and uncalled for!

    September 13, 2012 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  26. Pat

    I'm Christian and American, I watched the movie and found it very offensive and was actually made angry that someone would maliciously attack another's faith like that. But if this video is the source of the recent violence, why is people's anger directed toward the US? With free speech people can say nearly whatever they want, do people in these countries not understand that the US government has nothing to do with this video? I'm angry at the the person who made the video, but I think it's exceptional that he had the right to voice his insipid disgusting opinion without fear for legal recourse.

    September 14, 2012 at 12:13 am | Reply
  27. Huey Newtron

    This link leads to a bit of satire which is totally Not Safe For Work. It is also Not Safe for Children. It is offensive. It is crude. It is vulgar. It is totally relevant to this conversation. Warning, if you are easily offended, do not click this link.

    September 14, 2012 at 12:20 am | Reply
  28. Jose

    The government has incited riots with their war on drugs using false and hateful speech on pot smokers. If they can get away with the war on drugs, they can certainly get away with muzzling anyone who wants to criticize Islam.

    September 14, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Reply
  29. Vic

    I too am Christain and American. I respect other religions including Islam. This film was made by dishonest people who deceived even the actors in it. Their intention clearly was to incite violence. The people responsible for this film are NOT HONORABLE PEOPLE.
    Time for all to learn to respect others!! And to be objective, We all belong to groups and countries that have done things that were not right. LEAVE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE THAN YOU FOUND IT!

    September 14, 2012 at 11:37 pm | Reply
  30. turban

    quran is a copy of jewish bible – i think the arab writer was jealous of jewish ascendancy......

    September 16, 2012 at 7:40 am | Reply
  31. turban1

    quran a copy of jewish bible – jealous of jewish ascendency

    September 16, 2012 at 11:47 pm | Reply
  32. turban1

    ......the jews proposed to be the "chosen" people – and thus closed out a lot of people – including the arab – thus the arabs (and others) would start their own to rival the jewish ascendency

    September 17, 2012 at 2:45 am | Reply
  33. turban1

    Brian is not coming out – he's been a naughty boy....they're all as bad as each other – each claiming ascendency –
    they would do a lot better by keeping it to themselves and giving up – a lot more could be achieved.....

    September 18, 2012 at 3:16 am | Reply
  34. turban1

    i don't like jewish ascendency either – but they believe they are the chosen many parts of the old testament are also in the quran – just with an arab twist – cmon – its obvious – arabs were then – as today – living in jewish shadow – west made the mistake of giving the lands back to the jewish people – instead of shared by all –
    its all wrong – handbags at dawn

    September 19, 2012 at 1:22 am | Reply
  35. turban1

    Ahhh – Here it is –
    In Jewish and Christian tradition, Abraham is the father of the Israelites through his son Isaac, whose mother was Sarah. His oldest son is Ishmael, whose mother is Hagar, Sarah's Egyptian handmaiden.

    In Islamic tradition, Abraham is considered a prophet of Islam, the ancestor of Muhammad, through his son Ishmael, whose mother is Hagar (هاجر).
    * it seems they both say they came from Abraham – But it seems that islam only "say" this – because of the references to building the kaaba – Why would Abraham build Both the Jews and the muslim ???

    September 30, 2012 at 7:32 am | Reply
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