NOTWITHSTANDING the blasphemous and provocative nature of the movie "Innocence of Muslims" — to use Hillary Clinton's words — the truth remains that saying this would not help avoid the consequences as each deed (whether at the state, individual, or society level) has an objective.
Fourteen minutes of the movie were enough to shake the United States’ image in the world despite the fact that the Muslim Brothers or the ones behind the Arab Spring exonerated Washington from being involved in the nefarious act. Even Qatar was accused by some of having secretly agreed with Washington to paint a negative image of Salafi movements. Interestingly, the interests of the United States, the Muslim Brothers, Syria and Iran converge on this point. Some accuse Qatar of being a behind-the-scene actor for the movie. Some reports say that Qatari Prime Minister Hamad Bin Jassim left Cairo fearing that his life might be under threat.
Syria used the incident to tell Washington that what happened was a result of Arab Spring and also tried to link the Salafi movement with Saudi Arabia. Unlike the Sunnis who demonstrated their aggressive attitude toward the United States, Tehran mobilized the people to hold peaceful protests. Tehran sought to send a message to the United States: Do not bet on the Sunnis in the Middle East. Hassan Nasrallah also used this incident to vent his anger at the United States in a bid to restore his strength and relevancy on the Arab street. He called for Shiite-Sunni unity to foil the design that the movie aimed at.
Western countries are expected to do everything to politicize the issue as long as it suits their long-term objectives. But, a sensible mind should not get provoked in a way that may lead to unwise decisions. It goes without saying that there is a policy to keep this region hostage to extremism, conflicts and proxy wars and these are done on different pretexts.
There are organizers and tools to do so. Many observers ponder the coincidence between the movie and the anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks. Interestingly, the movie came amid a tug of war between the Republicans and the Democrats in the United States and as a proof that the authority of Washington over Google and YouTube has weakened. It also shows that the Internet companies — most of which are located in the United States — have transformed into giants that control the freedom of speech. And that these websites wield more influence than the government.
The social media is created to stir sensation. The new method of stirring passion is based on the concept of creating movements or triggering protests without leaders or symbols.
Interestingly, the CIA and intelligence agencies in Iran and Israel had seen the movie before it was posted on YouTube. Each of the three intelligence agencies had enough time to gauge the consequences of posting the video. And of course, Al-Qaeda was there to be accused. Benghazi was the weakest city in terms of security. It is said that the attack on the American Embassy in Libya was a revenge for the killing of Shaikh Abu Yahya. American sources said that Al-Qaeda issued a statement hailing the attack that coincided with the Sept. 11 anniversary.
The United States had warned a week before the attack about a possible strike against its embassy but had stopped short of pinpointing the place. Some demonstrators in Muslim countries have confirmed that they received support from regional bodies to hold protests and target American embassies. Seen in this perspective, one can understand why Hassan Nasrallah praised the wisdom of Muslims and Christians who opposed the attack. This, it is obvious, was done to create an impression that Iran had no link to what happened.
Some analysts say that the outrage over the movie will reduce the possibility of an American intervention in Syria and will make the Americans realize what would happen in case Washington attacks Iran.
Meanwhile, there are intelligence reports that Iran was planning, through its media centers in Asfahan, to create disorder in the region.
This reminds us of the misleading reports and videos prepared by the Pentagon. Much of the military operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan were produced in the media studios and had nothing to do with reality.
Fortunately, the Arab youth is not obsessed with ideology and possesses amazing abilities to counter any attack. Some think that it is possible to manipulate the current generation. This is not correct as many non-religious youths expressed their outrage at the blasphemous movie. The smartest among them vent their anger through the social media.
A website mentioned that after the movie was posted, the number of Western youths who wanted to know Islam and the Prophet (peace be upon him) increased. This website recruited a number of Muslims to defend the Prophet in a sensible way under the slogan “come to dialogue.” One of the participants said he expected that hundreds of Americans and Europeans might embrace Islam.
According to reliable sources the Russian intelligence sent reports to Damascus and Tehran saying America was determined to strike Iran and also get rid of Assad. The reports said that the US was waiting for the sanctions to hit Tehran hard and for the Syrian Army to get exhausted and reach a state of attrition. The Iranian intelligence sees an organized political upheaval in near future and this forced the Iranian Intelligence minister to brief Ali Khamenei about the bad situation in the country especially amid hike in inflation and the huge military presence in the region.
All indications suggest that the threat of Hassan Nasrallah against Israel and the West is nothing but another move to bring Iran and the West to the negotiating table.
Seen in this context, the movie may serve to avert a US strike against Iran and also delay the day of departure of Assad.