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DonLever

US Ambassador Killed in Libya

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There will never be world peace so long as there is more than 1 religion, there would never be free will if there was only 1 religion. I think there is only 2 options when it comes to the middle east 1) let them be and move out of the area(hopeing to avoid the inevitable conflict. 2) wipe them off the map, before they get great war technology

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I wish they were given more attention but the mainstream media is more focused on how Mitt Romney lies and responds to the event instead of what actually happened in Libya. Even if 1,000 Libyans died trying to protect them I fear that this will unfortunately colour the minds of the masses and leave Obama and others with no choice but to act very forceful. Acting wise is seemingly not permitted.

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There wouldn't be world peace if there was only one religion either. At least history has shown that.

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I heard the info from MSNBC, but i agree, perhaps other mainstream media outlets could have done a better job covering that part of the story.

Also, Obama doesn't have any choice, he has to act and act strongly....not just for political purposes, to not be open to charges from being softer than he's already being portrayed by the neo-cons, but for national security ones as well.

And on the note he's deployed 2 U.S. warships as well as the U.S. Marine 'Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team'.

Hopefully things don't escalate from there. It'd be nice if some of those oft mentioned majority moderate muslims would step up now, in Egypt, Libya and elsewhere. Their silence is deafening.

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There will never be world peace so long as there is more than 1 religion, there would never be free will if there was only 1 religion. I think there is only 2 options when it comes to the middle east 1) let them be and move out of the area(hopeing to avoid the inevitable conflict. 2) wipe them off the map, before they get great war technology

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Getting direct revenge for this will happen. Obama-willed or not. But it will solve nothing.

Just like how killing Saddam, Bin Laden etc. Etc. Etc. solves nothing as well.

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Related to the topic, but also with an eye towards a wider regional view:

Report: US strikes on Iran would risk major war

WASHINGTON — U.S. military strikes on Iran would shake the regime's political control and damage its ability to launch counterstrikes, but the Iranians probably would manage to retaliate, directly and through surrogates, in ways that risked igniting all-out war in the Middle East, according to an assessment of an attack's costs and benefits.

The assessment said extended U.S. strikes could destroy Iran's most important nuclear facilities and damage its military forces but would only delay – not stop – the Islamic republic's pursuit of a nuclear bomb.

"You can't kill intellectual power," said retired Army Lt. Gen. Frank Kearney, who endorsed the report. He is a former deputy director at the National Counterterrorism Center and former deputy commander of U.S. Special Operations Command.

The report compiled by former government officials, national security experts and retired military officers is to be publicly released Thursday. It says achieving more than a temporary setback in Iran's nuclear program would require a military operation – including a land occupation – more taxing than the Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined.

An advance copy of the report was provided to The Associated Press.

The assessment emerges against the backdrop of escalating tensions between Israel and the U.S. over when a military strike on Iran might be required. The Israelis worry that Iran is moving more quickly toward a nuclear capability than the United States believes. The U.S. has not ruled out attacking but has sought to persuade Israel to give diplomacy more time.

Israel views a nuclear-armed Iran as a mortal threat, citing Iran's persistent calls for the destruction of the Jewish state, its development of missiles capable of striking Israel and Iranian support for Arab militant groups.

Tehran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

An oft-stated argument against striking Iran is that it would add to a perception of the U.S. as anti-Muslim – a perception linked to the U.S.-led invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan and hardened by Internet-based video excerpts of an anti-Muslim film that may have fueled Tuesday's deadly attack on a U.S. diplomatic office in Libya.

"Planners and pundits ought to consider that the riots and unrest following a Web entry about an obscure film are probably a fraction of what could happen following a strike – by the Israelis or U.S. – on Iran," retired Lt. Gen. Gregory Newbold, an endorser of the Iran report and a former operations chief for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in an interview.

The report was compiled and endorsed by more than 30 former diplomats, retired admirals and generals and others who said their main purpose was to provide clarity about the potential use of military force against Iran. They reached no overall conclusion and offered no recommendations.

"The report is intended to have what we call an informing influence and hopefully something of a calming influence, but that's something readers will have to answer for themselves," said Thomas Pickering, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations who has held informal contacts with Iranian officials as recently as the past few months.

Kearney said the assessment was meant to stimulate thinking in the U.S. about the objectives of a military attack on Iran beyond the obvious goal of hitting key components of Iran's nuclear program. "Clearly there is some (U.S.) ability to do destruction, which will cause some delay, but what occurs after that?" he said in an interview.

Other endorsers of the report include Brent Scowcroft, who was President George H.W. Bush's national security adviser; former deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage, former Sens. Sam Nunn and Chuck Hagel and two retired chiefs of U.S. Central Command, Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni and navy Adm. William J. Fallon.

The analysis includes stark assertions about one of the most volatile and complex issues facing the U.S. in a presidential election year. President Barack Obama's failure to get Iran to negotiate acceptable limits on its nuclear program is cited by his opponents as emblematic of a misguided and weak foreign policy.

The report said the Obama administration's stated objective – shared by Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney – of preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear bomb is unlikely to be achieved through military force if action is limited to a combination of airstrikes, cyberattacks, covert operations and special operations strikes.

It says an extensive U.S. military assault could delay for up to four years Iran's ability to build a nuclear weapon. It also could disrupt Iranian government control, deplete its treasury and raise internal tensions.

"We do not believe it would lead to regime change, regime collapse or capitulation," it said, adding that such an attack would increase Iran's motivation to build a bomb, in part because the Iranian leadership would see building a bomb as a way to inhibit future U.S. attacks "and redress the humiliation of being attacked."

A more ambitious military campaign designed to oust the Iranian regime of hardline clerics or force an undermining of Iran's influence in the Mideast would require the U.S. to occupy part or all of the country, the report said.

"Given Iran's large size and population, and the strength of Iranian nationalism, we estimate that the occupation of Iran would require a commitment of resources and personnel greater than what the U.S. has expended over the past 10 years in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined," the report said.

The U.S. had as many as 170,000 troops in Iraq at the height of the 2003-10 war, and U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan peaked last year at 100,000. Eleven years into the Afghan war the U.S. still has about 74,000 troops there.

Early drafts of the report were coordinated by the nonpartisan Iran Project, a private group funded in part by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a philanthropy that promotes peace and democracy. The final version includes contributions from others with national security expertise. It is based on publicly available documents, including unclassified intelligence reports.

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The most deadly nuclear threat in the middle east is Isreal. Not sure why they're so afraid of Iran getting the bomb.

More like the plans for the US conquest of the middle east are definitely put on hold if Iran has the bomb.

Perhaps there will be 2 wars in Iran. Like in Iraq. imo a long-term land occupation in Iran needs more justification than they might get a bomb. Pakistan and India have the bomb. And are in a state of war, of sorts. North Korea has the bomb. Threatened the US and can easily bomb the US at any time. But... That's okay while Iran might getting one isn't?

No, Iran needs to be made to look like a real threat. Another 9/11esque episode will do it.

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It appears this attack against the American Consulate was planned in advance and may be a direct response to the US drone killing of Al-Qaeda's #2 man in June, who was a Libyan citizen ..

The skies over Libya were clogged with U.S. Predator drones during last year’s war. But just because the war officially ended in October didn’t mean the drones went home.

A Defense Department official tells Danger Room that the U.S. has kept drone flights flying over Libya, despite the conflict that initially brought them to Libyan airspace ending nearly a year ago.

“Yes, we have been flying CAPs since the war ended,” says Army Lt. Col. Steve Warren, a Pentagon spokesman. (CAPs is a military acronym for “combat air patrols,” a term of art that typically refers to several planes flying at once for a particular mission.) The drone flights, done for surveillance purposes, occur with the consent of the new Libyan government.

The Defense Department did not release further details about the drone flights. But CNN is reporting that drone flights will assist in spotting the perpetrators of Tuesday’s lethal attack on U.S. diplomatic personnel in Benghazi.

Last year’s war brought drones to Libya in force, both for surveillance missions and to attack Gadhafi loyalists. Between April 21 and October 21, 2011, Predators launched 145 strikes on ex-regime targets. That was twice the barrage drones unleashed in all of 2011 on tribal Pakistan, the place commonly thought of as the epicenter of U.S. drone strikes.

In fact, the Libya war’s first U.S. casualty was a drone helicopter. And apparently, NATO’s announcement on October 21, 2011 that the war was over had a caveat for flying robots.

The drones won’t be the only tool in Libya to “bring to justice the killers who attacked our people,” to use President Barack Obama’s phrase about the assault on the American consulate in Benghazi. A team of about 50 Marines is en route to Libya, for an as-yet unclear mission that could range from securing U.S. personnel in the country to evacuating them. Defense Department officials have been vague all day about U.S. military assets envisioned to avenge the deaths of four Americans.

It is unknown what exactly motivated a crowd in Benghazi to attack U.S. diplomatic personnel. The attack, which took place in at least two waves and involved small arms fire and rocket attacks, was initially thought to be motivated by a movie mocking the Prophet Muhammad made by a mysterious American filmmaker. But later reports suggest that militant organizations might have planned an assault, instead of a spontaneous protest turning violent. Reuters reported that Libyan officials blamed a militant organization called Ansar al-Sharia. Noman Benotman, a Libyan former Islamic extremist, claims that the attack was a reprisal for the U.S. killing a Libyan al-Qaida leader, Abu Yahya al-Libi, in Pakistan.

The White House has taken an initially agnostic position. “There is a lot of press speculation for who did this and why but at this stage it would be premature to ascribe any motive to this reprehensible act,” Tommy Vietor, the spokesman for the National Security Council, tells Danger Room. “As the President said, make no mistake, we will work with the Libyan government to bring to justice the killers who attacked our people.” And one of the tools for that purpose will be robotic.

Spencer Ackerman article

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There will never be world peace so long as there is more than 1 religion, there would never be free will if there was only 1 religion. I think there is only 2 options when it comes to the middle east 1) let them be and move out of the area(hopeing to avoid the inevitable conflict. 2) wipe them off the map, before they get great war technology

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Allah is happy. Muhammed's mockery has been avenged.

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There will never be world peace so long as there is more than 1 religion, there would never be free will if there was only 1 religion. I think there is only 2 options when it comes to the middle east 1) let them be and move out of the area(hopeing to avoid the inevitable conflict. 2) wipe them off the map, before they get great war technology

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A world of peace starts with a secular middle east.

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There is something about not poking the bear. The more people bash and make fun of Muslims, the more fuel is put into the fire. Just an endless cycle that will not end.

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There is something about not poking the bear. The more people bash and make fun of Muslims, the more fuel is put into the fire. Just an endless cycle that will not end.

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California man confirms role in anti-Islam film

September 13, 2012

Associated Press

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — The search for those behind the provocative, anti-Muslim film implicated in violent protests in Egypt and Libya led Wednesday to a California Coptic Christian convicted of financial crimes who acknowledged his role in managing and providing logistics for the production.

Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, told The Associated Press in an interview outside Los Angeles that he was manager for the company that produced "Innocence of Muslims," which mocked Muslims and the prophet Muhammad and may have caused inflamed mobs that attacked U.S. missions in Egypt and Libya. He provided the first details about a shadowy production group behind the film.

Nakoula denied he directed the film and said he knew the self-described filmmaker, Sam Bacile. But the cell phone number that AP contacted Tuesday to reach the filmmaker who identified himself as Sam Bacile traced to the same address near Los Angeles where AP found Nakoula. Federal court papers said Nakoula's aliases included Nicola Bacily, Erwin Salameh and others.

Nakoula told the AP that he was a Coptic Christian and said the film's director supported the concerns of Christian Copts about their treatment by Muslims.

Nakoula denied he had posed as Bacile. During a conversation outside his home, he offered his driver's license to show his identity but kept his thumb over his middle name, Basseley. Records checks by the AP subsequently found it and other connections to the Bacile persona.

The AP located Bacile after obtaining his cell phone number from Morris Sadek, a conservative Coptic Christian in the U.S. who had promoted the anti-Muslim film in recent days on his website. Egypt's Christian Coptic population has long decried what they describe as a history of discrimination and occasional violence from the country's Arab majority.

Pastor Terry Jones of Gainesville, Florida, who burned Qurans on the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks, said he spoke with the movie's director on the phone Wednesday and prayed for him. He said he has not met the filmmaker in person, but the man contacted him a few weeks ago about promoting the movie.

"I have not met him. Sam Bacile, that is not his real name," Jones said. "I just talked to him on the phone. He is definitely in hiding and does not reveal his identity. He was quite honestly fairly shook up concerning the events and what is happening. A lot of people are not supporting him."

The film was implicated in protests that resulted in the burning of the U.S. consulate Tuesday in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi.

Libyan officials said Wednesday that Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other embassy employees were killed during the mob violence, but U.S. officials now say they are investigating whether the assault was a planned terrorist strike linked to Tuesday's 11-year anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks.

Nakoula, who talked guardedly about his role, pleaded no contest in 2010 to federal bank fraud charges in California and was ordered to pay more than $790,000 in restitution. He was also sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and ordered not to use computers or the Internet for five years without approval from his probation officer.

The YouTube account, "Sam Bacile," which was used to publish excerpts of the provocative movie in July, was used to post comments online as recently as Tuesday, including this defense of the film written in Arabic: "It is a 100 percent American movie, you cows."

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Leigh Williams said Nakoula set up fraudulent bank accounts using stolen identities and Social Security numbers, then checks from those accounts would be deposited into other bogus accounts from which Nakoula would withdraw money at ATM machines.

It was "basically a check-kiting scheme," the prosecutor told the AP. "You try to get the money out of the bank before the bank realizes they are drawn from a fraudulent account. There basically is no money."

The actors in the film issued a joint statement Wednesday saying they were misled about the project and said some of their dialogue was crudely dubbed during post-production.

In the English language version of the trailer, direct references to Muhammad appear to be the result of post-production changes to the movie. Either actors aren't seen when the name "Muhammad" is spoken in the overdubbed sound, or they appear to be mouthing something else as the name of the prophet is spoken.

"The entire cast and crew are extremely upset and feel taken advantage of by the producer," said the statement, obtained by the Los Angeles Times. "We are 100 percent not behind this film and were grossly misled about its intent and purpose. We are shocked by the drastic rewrites of the script and lies that were told to all involved. We are deeply saddened by the tragedies that have occurred."

The person who identified himself as Bacile and described himself as the film's writer and director told the AP on Tuesday that he had gone into hiding. But doubts rose about the man's identity amid a flurry of false claims about his background and role in the purported film.

Bacile told the AP he was an Israeli-born, 56-year-old, Jewish writer and director. But a Christian activist involved in the film project, Steve Klein, told AP on Wednesday that Bacile was a pseudonym and that he was Christian.

Klein had told the AP on Tuesday that the filmmaker was an Israeli Jew who was concerned for family members who live in Egypt.

Officials in Israel said there was no record of Bacile as an Israeli citizen.

When the AP initially left a message for Bacile, Klein contacted the AP from another number to confirm the interview request was legitimate then Bacile called back from his own cell phone.

Klein said he didn't know the real name of the man he called "Sam," who came to him for advice on First Amendment issues.

About 15 key players from the Middle East — from Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Pakistan, Iran and a couple Coptic Christians from Egypt — worked on the film, Klein said.

"Most of them won't tell me their real names because they're terrified," Klein said. "He was really scared and now he's so nervous. He's turned off his phone."

The Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate groups, said Klein is a former Marine and longtime religious-right activist who has helped train paramilitary militias at a California church. It described Klein as founder of Courageous Christians United, which conducts protests outside abortion clinics, Mormon temples and mosques.

It quoted Klein as saying he believes that California is riddled with Muslim Brotherhood sleeper cells "who are awaiting the trigger date and will begin randomly killing as many of us as they can."

In his brief interview with the AP, Bacile defiantly called Islam a cancer and said he intended the film to be a provocative political statement condemning the religion.

But several key facts Bacile provided proved false or questionable. Bacile told AP he was 56 but identified himself on his YouTube profile as 74. Bacile said he is a real estate developer, but Bacile does not appear in searches of California state licenses, including the Department of Real Estate.

Hollywood and California film industry groups and permit agencies said they had no records of the project under the name "Innocence of Muslims," but a Los Angeles film permit agency later found a record of a movie filmed in Los Angeles last year under the working title "Desert Warriors."

A man who answered a phone listed for the Vine Theater, a faded Hollywood movie house, confirmed that the film had run for a least a day, and possibly longer, several months ago, arranged by a customer known as "Sam."

Google Inc., which owns YouTube, pulled down the video Wednesday in Egypt, citing a legal complaint. It was still accessible in the U.S. and other countries.

Klein told the AP that he vowed to help make the movie but warned the filmmaker that "you're going to be the next Theo van Gogh." Van Gogh was a Dutch filmmaker killed by a Muslim extremist in 2004 after making a film that was perceived as insulting to Islam.

"We went into this knowing this was probably going to happen," Klein said.

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The US also 'sat it out' when Hitler was running around all over Europe. Bad idea.

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How many atheists do you know going around mass murdering people for not believing in the same thing as them?

I've heard of no such thing.

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So tell me how many people have been murdered from the release of the new anti-Obama film??

Can you perhaps tell me, on the other hand, how many cartoonists and film-makers and book writers have been killed or threatened to be killed because of their anti-Islamic works?

I have no problems telling someone what I think of their religion and beliefs if they try to push it in my face or life.

I condone the right for people to express themselves according to the rights afforded them by their constitution, whether or not I agree with the view expressed. I condone religious expression and I conversely condone anti-religious expression as well.

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