Why I was contacted by Anti-Muhammad Filmmaker
By Walid Shoebat
The controversy over the anti-Muhammad video the Obama administration attempted to blame for the attack in Benghazi on 9/11/12, resurfaced recently when an exhaustive New York Times piece doubled down on the involvement of that video. In his December 28, 2013 piece, Cairo Bureau Chief David Kirkpatrick blamed the video again.
It is for this reason that I felt compelled to come forward about a recent phone call I received from the maker of that video.
Several weeks ago, I was contacted by none other than the maker of the Innocence of Muslims, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. When I asked him how he was able to get my private number, he told me something that was later proven to be false. In light of Kirkpatrick’s journalistic malpractice and Nakoula’s untruthfulness, there is one aspect to that conversation that I feel must be conveyed.
Nakoula wanted me to help him clear the name of my cousin, Eiad Salameh, with whom Nakoula still communicates. Though there is plenty more, that is as far as I am willing to go about the details of our conversation.
But that is quite a bombshell all by itself.
About one month after the Benghazi attacks, Jessica Chasmar at the Washington Times published my claims. A short time later, another reputable journalist at the Times – Kerry Picket – asked some very tough questions about the curious handling of Nakoula’s case by the Feds.
As we have written before, Nakoula has a longtime partnership with Eiad. Ever since the video was introduced into the Benghazi controversy, Nakoula has been portrayed as the victim in a free speech battle. Conservative media has decried his treatment by the Obama administration, saying he was made an example of for making the video but this could all be the result of a political stunt.
If this were true, why had he worked with my cousin – a Muslim fundamentalist who hates Coptic Christians – for so long? Better still, why would he contact me more than a year later in order to help Eiad? In 2011, the Canadian authorities attempted to hand Eiad over to the U.S. Feds on a silver platter but they wouldn’t take him.
This is indeed curious when one considers that Nakoula was given a reduced sentence in 2010 in order to help the Feds nab Eiad Salameh. If the Feds took no interest in Eiad after the Canadians arrested him, why was Nakoula given a lighter sentence?
Getting off easy was not new to Nakoula. In 1997, he was arrested over his involvement in a drug ring that included a terrorist organization.
The Daily Beast reported that Nakoula got off so easy that it was suspicious:
Nakoula nonetheless only spent just two days in jail, getting off with three years’ probation when he could have gotten hard time.
“Sounds like he’s an informant,” observes a law-enforcement official familiar such matters, though not with the particulars of this case.
The bust came around the time the feds were launching Operation Mountain Express, which would become a huge investigation into pseudoephedrine-dealing involving numerous people of a Middle Eastern background. The authorities initially insisted there were no links to terrorism, but suddenly switched and decided that a chunk of the money was going to Hizbullah.
One of the subplots to the controversy over the video was that the actors were deceived. Inflammatory words they never said during the filming of the video were dubbed in later. Does this sound like the work of an honest Christian who is trying to tell the truth about Islam? Deceit is a tenet of Islam, not of Christianity.
My cousin Eiad is a Muslim fundamentalist who hates Coptic Christians. Why would Nakoula be trying to help him to this day?
If Nakoula was willing to deceive actors, would he not be willing to deceive westerners into believing that the movie was produced as part of Christian activism? Knowing Eiad the way I do, it’s the only real explanation I can think of that would explain my cousin’s willingness to partner with Nakoula for so long.
Of all the anti-Islamic materials and content that is available for Muslims to get enraged by, why would the very shoddy work of a man with longstanding, verifiable ties to a Muslim fundamentalist who should despise him? Under the Obama administration, beginning in 2009, the federal government knows both Eiad and Nakoula quite well.
In fact, well enough to make Benghazi about a video.