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CA man linked to anti-Muslim film questioned by federal authorities (Video)

posted at 5:02 pm on September 15, 2012 by

The Grand Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayyeb, of Al-Azhar University, in Cairo, has demanded a U.N. resolution criminalizing blasphemy against Islam, Egypt Independent reports (h/t Weasel Zippers).

In a statement released Saturday, Tayyeb called on Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to criminalize the defamation of Islam, so that “misled” individuals who commit “heinous acts of abuse to the Prophet” could be duly punished.

The chances of that happening—or at least of such a resolution, were it to be passed, being honored by a nation like the U.S., where free speech is valued as a fundamental human right—are remote. Or so you’d think.

video report by Reuters notes that a 55-year-old California man linked to the anti-Islam film Innocence of Muslims has been “taken in for questioning” by federal officials. The Associated Press in a separate dispatch (h/t Drudge Report) states that Nakoula Basseley Nakoula was previously convicted of financial crimes and that authorities are merely exercising due diligence by inquiring into whether he has violated the terms of his five-year probation.

Nakoula, the report goes on to emphasize, was not arrested or detained but voluntarily accompanied federal probation officers to a Los Angeles sheriff’s station. He was wearing a coat, hat, scarf, and sunglasses to conceal his appearance. It is unclear whether he returned to his home, which the media have been buzzing for several days.

It is entirely possible that Nakoula’s questioning at this point in time is pure coincidence and not a pretext on which to grill him about his role in the film. After all, on Friday the president himself articulated his support of Americans’ right to criticize Islam. His unwavering support for that proposition came on the heels of a statement two days earlier in which he said, “Since our founding, the U.S. has been a nation that respects all faiths and rejects all effort to denigrate the religious beliefs of others.”

Feel free to decide for yourself on which occasion Obama had his fingers crossed behind his back.

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