September 12, 2012
U.S. envoy to Libya killed over anti-Muslim movie
The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other American diplomats were killed, and the U.S. embassy in Cairo was attacked over an anti-Muslim movie.
Amb. John Christopher Stevens and three unnamed diplomats were killed Tuesday night in a rocket attack on their car in Benghazi, the White House confirmed Wednesday morning.
On Tuesday evening, Egyptian protesters climbed over the wall of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, pulled down an American flag, and then tried to set it alight.
The attacks follow the release online of an Arabic translation of a movie directed by Sam Bacile, a 56-year-old California real-estate developer, titled “Innocence of Muslims."
[UPDATE: More information on "Sam Bacile" here]
The two-hour movie, which according to the Associated Press cost $5 million to make and was financed by more than 100 Jewish donors, attacks the Islamic Prophet Muhammad, making him out to be a fraud.
The film was screened one time at a movie theater in Hollywood, Bacile told the AP.
Bacile went into hiding on Tuesday night, speaking to international media from an undisclosed location.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton condemned the attack. "The United States deplores any intentional effort to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. Our commitment to religious tolerance goes back to the very beginning of our nation. But let me be clear: There is never any justification for violent acts of this kind," she said in a statement.