Sam Bacile’s “Innocence of Muslims” is source of Libyan outrage

Insulting depictions of Muhammad force Israeli filmmaker into hiding

WRITTEN BY: Jason Oliva
Libyan protester burning a picture of former leader Muammar Gaddafi in March 2011
Image Source: B.R.Q via Flickr
Libyan protester burning a picture of former leader Muammar Gaddafi in March 2011

Sam Bacile, writer and director of the film “Innocence of Muslims” has gone into hiding following the violent reactions the film spurred by fundamentalist Muslims in Libya. A two-hour movie, Bacile’s film cost $5 million to make and starred 59 actors with 45 people behind the scenes.

Bacile, a California real estate developer who identifies himself as an Israeli Jew, made the film with the hopes of exposing Islam’s flaws to the world.

At the center of the controversy is the claim that in “Innocence of Muslims” the Islamic prophet Muhammad is a fraud. Bacile depicts Muhammad as a philanderer who approved of child sexual abuse.

Since Muslims find it offensive to portray Muhammad in any way, shape or form, to say there is unrest in Islamic countries would be an understatement.

Bacile’s film have inadvertently caused the death of four diplomatic officials in Benghazi, Libya, including American Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens. Ambassador Stevens’ death comes as the first American ambassador to be killed anywhere in the world since 1979.

Similar outrage has occurred in many Muslim countries following depictions of Mohammad in a Danish newspaper’s 2005 publication of 12 caricatures of the prophet.

Bacile, though apologetic about the officials who lost their lives because of his film, claims that, “Islam is a cancer, period.”

Bacile is also credited as saying via a telephone interview at an undisclosed location that the security situation regarding the American embassy in Libya should have been prepared for such a violent reaction.

“I feel the security system is no good,” said Bacile. He then urged that America should have done something to change it.

According to Bacile, “Innocence of Muslims” has been shown once, to a mostly empty theater in Hollywood.

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