REWIND: White House Slams French CartoonsPosted: January 8, 2015
“We are aware that a French magazine published cartoons featuring a figure resembling the prophet Muhammad, and obviously we have questions about the judgment of publishing something like this.”
Carney told reporters during a midday press briefing at the White House.
“We know these images will be deeply offensive to many and have the potential be be inflammatory.”
Carney said in a prepared statement.
The French government reacted to the expected threats by temporarily shutting down embassies and schools in 20 countries with significant Muslim populations.
The White House’s criticism of a French magazine’s editorial choices comes as a wave of Islamist attacks threatened to upset the president’s election campaign, during which has has claimed that his policies have reduced conflict with Islamic countries.
The administration’s new criticism of the famous French magazine Charlie Hebdo follows the administration’s Sept. 14 effort to persuade Google to take down a short and cheap satirical video on YouTube that also angered Islamists.
Competing leaders in the fractious Islamic political movement — which now dominates the governments of Egypt, Sudan, Tunisia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and nearly all Arab countries — say criticism of their claimed prophet, Muhammad, is blasphemous and deserving of the death penalty.
In the last week, numerous Islamist leaders — many of whom are also vying for support from anti-American publics — have also called for Western courts to penalize criticism of their political and religious movement. Several leaders, including Egypt’s prime minister, have indirectly threatened further attacks — perhaps prior to the November election — if Western criticism is not curtailed…(read more)
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