The September 11 attack on the American consulate in Libya resulted in the death of our American ambassador and “three others.” Two of those “others” were former Navy SEALs, Glen Doherty of Encinitas and Tyrone Woods of Imperial Beach. The third, Sean Smith, was a San Diego native.
According to the Obama White House—which for days refused to call the violent murder of an American ambassador an act of terrorism—other individuals residing in Southern California were, at least indirectly, culpable for these deaths.
These “co-conspirators” had produced a low-budget movie that intentionally insulted Muhammad and Islam. The film was reportedly screened in a Hollywood theater to an audience that didn’t include a single paid admission.
The prime mover of this project, an Egyptian émigré named Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, was quickly tagged by the mainstream media as a “Coptic Christian.” This moniker was ill-suited to a felon who recently spent time in prison for bank fraud, previously pled guilty to drug charges and had tenuous ties to Coptic congregations in the Los Angeles area.
(No wonder some speculated that Nakoula might be a naïve publicity hound or a radical double-agent—not someone motivated by concern for Coptic Christians who would surely be targeted for even more persecution if the film were disseminated in Egypt.)
Subsequently a 14-minute trailer of the film was placed on the Internet, and Arabic dialog was dubbed in. This virtually unknown clip was eagerly employed by Islamic radicals to incite crowds in Egypt and has since become the pretext for dozens of violent demonstrations.
The American “spokesman” for the film, Steve Klein, is an ex-Marine who served honorably in Vietnam and whose insurance agency is based in Hemet. Klein says he had limited contact with or knowledge about Nakoula, aka Sam Bacile.
Klein’s anti-Islamic sentiments have been publicly aired on previous occasions but doubtless intensified after his son, an army medic in Iraq, was seriously injured by a suicide-bomber in 2007.
As more information becomes available, it seems the amateurish video had little to do with the apparently preplanned attack in Benghazi. Instead, the trailer was used as a convenient scapegoat for a politically-craven administration that on September 11 didn’t provide adequate consulate security in a highly unstable country loaded with terrorists.
Obama’s blame-the-video narrative did, however, divert attention from the failure of his apology-rich foreign policy and from the fact that al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri had previously called for revenge for the drone-killing of a senior Libyan terrorist.
I’d wager that deadly drone attacks provided more incentive for committed Islamic terrorists to kill Americans than an insulting Internet video.