By Dr. Hubertus Hoffmann
For many years the independent World Security Network Foundation (WSN) has promoted the Human Codes of Tolerance and Respect through its global project www.codesoftolerance.com to enhance tolerance and respect towards other religions, races and ethnic minorities with a focus on Islam (also on Facebook).
Below are our WSN proposals on how to react to the 14-minute trailer that mocks the Holy Prophet as a womanizer, child molester and ruthless killer (called “Innocence of Muslims”, posted in YouTube) and the angry reactions across the Muslim World, including the killing of U.S. Ambassador John Christopher Stevens in Benghazi (Libya) and three of his staff members:
1. A double strategy of containment, condemning the insulting video clip on one side and violence against people who have nothing to do with the film on the other is necessary. We also have to promote the Golden Nuggets of tolerance we all share in our global village (see Hubertus Hoffmann, Codes of Tolerance Speech in Dubai UAE here).
2. The video clip violates the world religion of Islam, as well as insulting attacks on the Holy Qur’an, the Holy Bible in Nigeria or India or the Holy Torah the Palestine. In a world of 7 billion individuals you will always have some who misbehave and hurt the religious convictions of others.
3. The U.S. must enforce all possible measures against hate speeches and crimes in America and not simply argue that this is not possible because of the First Amendment. The burning of the Qur’an by Terry Jones in Florida led to the killing of UN personal in Afghanistan and now this film has resulted in the killing of the U.S. Ambassador in Libya. U.S. federal prosecutors and courts must act now to protect Americans. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938 in U.S. 465 in 1987 under which several Canadian films were defined as “political propaganda,” requiring their sponsors to be identified. Something like this should be required with hate propaganda films as well.
4. Republican U.S. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney said in a statement on September 11, 2012: “It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks. “This was not only wrong and far from the style of a true president but also a counter-productive attack on the acting president. He too needs a double strategy approach and must avoid collecting voters on a national tragedy.
5. If a single American insults Islam with one YouTube video, he is not representing 300 million Americans at all. The only man who represents all Americans is the U.S. President.
6. Under the fixed rules of The Holy Qur’an it is forbidden to attack people who did not insult you. All acts of self-defense have to be directed against the attacker personally. Therefore a protest against the film is in line with Islam, but not any attack on U.S. citizens. Moreover, any slogan suggesting that “America” is responsible for the act of one man contradicts Sharia and the Holy Qur’an. Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, Afghan President Karzai, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki or the new Prime Minister of Libya Mustafa Abushagur should condemn the short film, but it is just as important to make clear these Islamic rules do not allow attacks on any people who have not attacked you. In a symbolic gesture, these Muslim leaders as well as imams in the Arab world must invite American citizens in front of TV cameras to make that statement very clear. This is their political and religious responsibility; otherwise they themselves offend against the Holy Prophet and the Holy Qur’an. Not only U.S. officials, but all Western leaders, foreign ministers and diplomats must make that very clear in letters to them now.
7. I demand that the city of Benghazi name an important street or public place in front of the U.S. consulate after U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, for, together with his country, the United States of America, he contributed to making the revolution in Libya and the overthrow of Col. Gaddafi possible.
8. We have to cut the dangerous tit-for-tat strategy of the radicals who provoke a spiral of confrontation, while making it clear that a majority of 99.99 percent of the people tolerate and respect all other religions and want a global village of peace and love. We should not leave the public attention and media coverage to the few criminals only.
This artile of the global World Security Network Foundation is dedicated to U.S. Ambassador John Christopher Stevens and three of his team-members killed serving a free and better Libya as true American patriots and global concerned citizens.