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Perceived insults to Islam trigger Muslim anger

Afghan policemen walk past burning tires during an anti-U.S. demonstration in Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Feb. 24, 2012. Thousands of Afghans staged new demonstrations Friday over the burning of Qurans at a U.S. military base in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq)

Afghan policemen walk past burning tires during an anti-U.S. demonstration in Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Feb. 24, 2012. Thousands of Afghans staged new demonstrations Friday over the burning of Qurans at a U.S. military base in Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq)

Muslim anger over perceived Western insults to Islam has exploded several times, most recently in Tuesday's attacks against U.S. diplomatic posts in the Middle East in which U.S. ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed.

The violence, fueled mostly by religious zealots, reflects the tension between Muslims and the secular West that followed the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Here are some of the most serious incidents:

MUHAMMAD CARTOONS

The September 2005 publication by the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad unleashed a wave of violent protests by Muslims, who believe any image of their religion's founder is forbidden. Dozens of people were killed in weeks of protests that included violent attacks against Danish missions in Syria, Iran, Afghanistan and Lebanon. At least six people were killed in a June 2008 suicide bombing at the Danish embassy in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad. Al-Qaida claimed responsibility, citing anger over the cartoons. The Danish government described the Muslim backlash as the country's worst international crisis since World War II.

VAN GOGH ASSASSINATION

Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh, an outspoken critic of Islam whose film "Submission" criticized the treatment of Muslim women, was shot dead in November 2004 as he bicycled in the capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam. A 26-year-old Dutch citizen of Moroccan origin, Mohammed Bouyeri, was convicted of the murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. Van Gogh's assassination set off a wave of more than 170 small reprisal attacks against mosques and churches over the following weeks, according to a report by the Anne Frank Foundation and the University of Leiden.

"BURN A QURAN DAY"

A 2010 call by a Florida preacher Terry Jones to burn Qurans on the ninth anniversary of 9/11 alarmed the U.S. military, which feared the move would endanger the lives of American troops fighting Islamist extremists in Afghanistan and Iraq. Although Jones called off the burning, thousands of Afghans encouraged by the Taliban set fire to tires in the streets of Afghan capital Kabul and other cities and chanted "Death to America." Police in a province near Kabul fired shots in the air to disperse a crowd trying to storm the governor's residence.

Jones' congregation went ahead with a Quran burning in March 2011, triggering protests across Afghanistan after video of the ceremony was posted on the Internet. In the most violent protest, hundreds of protesters stormed a U.N. compound in Mazar-i-Sharif in northern Afghanistan, killing seven foreigners, including four Nepalese guards.

MORE QURAN BURNING

In February, U.S. soldiers at Bagram prison in Afghanistan burned 315 copies of the Qurans and other religious materials that had been taken from Bagram's facility library for disposal. Word of the burning, which the U.S. said was unintentional, triggered scores of anti-American protests across the country which left more than 30 Afghans and six U.S. soldiers dead. They included two U.S. troops who were shot by an Afghan soldier and two U.S. military advisers who were gunned down at their desks at the Afghan Interior Ministry. Six U.S. Army soldiers received unspecified administrative punishment for the burning, the Pentagon announced last month.

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Associated Press correspondents Karl Ritter in Stockholm, Jan M. Olsen in Copenhagen, Sebastian Abbot in Islamabad and Deb Riechmann and Patrick Quinn in Kabul contributed to this report.

Comments

Sister_Ruby 2 years, 1 month ago

Radical Islamists are the biggest threat to Democracies and their essential freedoms all over the world.

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FryarTuk 2 years, 1 month ago

How very sad for these Americans. Religious zealots threaten democracy and freedom around the globe. The United States of America should examine our strategic interests internationally and withdraw the thousands of people that are placed where we have minimal interest. The resources we squander on nation building and diplomatic adventurism would go a long way toward reducing our national debt and rebuilding our economic infrastructure.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 1 month ago

Let me just honestly say that I DO agree with Ron Paul that we should STOP sending big bags of money all day every day to all these overseas countries.....most of whom HATE US anyway.

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 1 month ago

......for that matter I agree with Ron Paul on many things. But he's not the Second Messiah. Sorry.

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FryarTuk 2 years, 1 month ago

I thought Joseph Smith was. LOL

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billybob 2 years, 1 month ago

If these people were atheists, the ambassador would still be alive.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 2 years, 1 month ago

If there was no God then no one would be alive.

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billybob 2 years, 1 month ago

Oh please. That's utter nonsense.

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Sherwood_Eagle_Alum 2 years, 1 month ago

The notion that being atheist somehow makes you intellectually superior is utter nonsense.

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bigbob 2 years, 1 month ago

Just think these deaths to americans is being done by Obumma's muslum brothers. He will apolagize to them before the week is out for the U.S. citizens not understanding. Yet these useless liberals will still vote for him.

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rightasrain 2 years, 1 month ago

Can we say "D A Bomb"! On Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia? Just wait and see if the grand pile of poo who's squatting in OUR White House doesn't tell Holder to make it a crime punishable with immediate incarceration if anyone even so much as mumbles the word muzzelim! It's ok to attack, make fun of , denigrate and outlaw Christian beliefs; but DON'T MESS WITH TRAUMA OBAMA'S RELIGION!

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billybob 2 years, 1 month ago

Which Christian beliefs have been outlawed? Last time I checked, you couldn't swing a dead cat in Albany without hitting a church. And the vast majority of this country self-identifies as Christian. Heck, there are people in this country who believe the earth is less than 10,000 years old! And all of that is legal. So please tell me how oppressed Christians in the U.S. are again.

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USTPC 2 years, 1 month ago

Prayer in school for Christians is not allowed....but special rules allowing Muslim children in our schools to pray at the required times is allowed.

Abortion is allowed which goes against what Christians believe and is getting to the point where even though it goes against their belief they will be forced to pay for it.

No longer pray at sporting events, concerts, etc. because you might offend someone who is not a Christian.

Need I go on?

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Sister_Ruby 2 years, 1 month ago

Simply put, the solution to these issues lies in the moderate Muslims to rise up and say "We're mad as Hell and we're not going to take it anymore" and fight back against the extremists. Put them in jail and then put them to death.....legally.....using the Courts....

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MRKIA 2 years, 1 month ago

OBAMA SHOULD ADOPT MY "1" CONCEPT, WHICH IS VERY SIMPLE AND EFFECTIVE. IT CONSISTS OF 1-PILOT, 1-PLANE AND 1-HUGE BOMB AND THE WILL TO USE IT.

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TrixibelleBento 2 years, 1 month ago

No more money to the Middle East PERIOD until they start acting like humans. Arab Spring? What a bunch of chumps we are! We continue to believe that they genuinely want democracy and they stab us in the back again and again. When will we ever learn? Let them live in the 12th century and get OUT. Oh yeah, and block them from coming in here and messing up our reality.

Drill baby drill so we can stop sucking off the OPEC teat!

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