Morsi's Sharia Justice: Death Penalties for Expatriate 'Innocence of Muslims' Producers (Updated)
On September 23, 2012, Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood President Muhammad Morsi issued presidential order No 1/2012 appointing 3,649 judges to Emergency State Security Courts (ESSC). The ESSC, which operated during Egypt's 31-year state of emergency under the previous Hosni Mubarak regime, and the military transition to Morsi's June, 2012 election to power, have notoriously violated basic due process guarantees.
Today (11/28/12), consistent with both that three decades long ignoble history, and Islam's ongoing, millennial, Sharia-based rejection of freedom of speech, an Egyptian state security court issued a verdict which sentenced six (or seven) expatriate Coptic Egyptians to the death penalty for "blaspheming" Islam. Egyptian Judge Saif al Nasr Soliman stated,
The [seven] accused persons were convicted of insulting the Islamic religion through participating in producing and offering a movie that insults Islam and its prophet.
Their specific "crime" was involvement in the production of the amateurish film, "The Innocence of Muslims," which, despite its crude cinematography, accurately depicts some of the less than salutary behaviors of Islam's prophet, Muhammad, as described in the sacralized Muslim biographical sources.
Morsi, on September 13, 2012 proclaimed:
The Islamic sanctities and prophet Mohamed is a red line for all Muslims...We do not accept and we consider an enemy anyone who assaults our prophet through words or deeds. I represent all the Egyptian people, I deprecate and I stand against whoever tries to abuse or exercise abuse of any kind against our prophet or any of the Islamic holy sites.
During a phone conversation with President Obama (Thursday 9/13/12), the Egyptian President asked that Mr. Obama "put an end to such behavior." One day earlier (9/12/12) the Egyptian cabinet demanded that the Obama administration take legal action against the filmmakers, echoing the request of the Muslim Brotherhood, which has long insisted that such "blasphemy" of Islam be criminalized.
The obscenities that I have referred to that were recently released as part of an organized campaign against Islamic sanctities are unacceptable. We reject this. We cannot accept it. We will not allow anyone to do this by word or deed. [emphasis added]
Morsi's angry pronouncements and the ensuing prosecution and convictions of those actually (and/or allegedly) involved with the production and promotion "Innocence of Muslims" producers by an Egyptian state security court are predictable, if ugly, and liberty-crushing consequences of Sharia mores, and "jurisprudence." What should be of far graver concern to Americans is the extent to which the cowering Obama administration will further accede to Morsi's Sharia supremacist demands.
Recall that professed "Innocence of Muslims" filmmaker Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a 55-year-old Egyptian-American Coptic Christian, was arrested in September 27, 2012 following global Muslim riots in response to the film, and ultimately imprisoned (in early November , 2012) for violating his probation on a prior fraud conviction.
Just two days ago (11/26/12), Nakoula stated defiantly from prison he harbored no regrets "at all" for having made the film, and communicating the "actual truth" about Muhammad. Now, if the Egyptian government, angered further by Nakoula's defiance, seeks his extradition from a US prison, how will the Obama administration react?
A USA Today report raised the number convicted to eight. In addition to Nakoula, the admitted filmmaker, Florida-based pastor Terry Jones was also convicted, along with Morris Sadek, a US Coptic Christian who posted the video trailer on his website. As the report also notes, with understatement, "[t]he connection of the other five sentenced by the court was not immediately clear." The others convicted include two of Sadek's colleagues from a Coptic group in the U.S. which seeks an independent Coptic state, a priest who hosts TV programs from the U.S., and a lawyer living in Canada who earlier sued the Egyptian state over an anti-Christian Muslim pogrom in 2000 that left 21 Copts dead. The final person was identified as a woman apostate from Islam who converted to Christianity, and was described by USA Today as a "staunch critic of Islam."