Videoen om Muhammed med engelsk tekst har ligget ute på YouTube siden 12. juli uten å vekke oppsikt. Det var først da den ble oversatt til arabisk at det tok av.
Spørsmålet er om YouTube vil fjerne videoen. Vanligvis har YouTube hatt lav toleranse for filmer som provoserer den muslimske verden, slik som Geert Wilders Fitna.
A a 14-minute trailer for the English-language film, which was posted on YouTube in July, attracted little attention until last week, when a version dubbed into Arabic was posted on the same YouTube channel and then copied and viewed tens of thousands of times more.
Det som gir filmen en spesiell brodd, er påstanden om at to koptere i USA skal ha bidratt til produksjonen.
Last week, an Egyptian-American Copt known for his broadsides against Muslims drew attention to the trailer in an Arabic-language blog post and an e-mail newsletter in English publicizing the latest publicity stunt of the Florida pastor Terry Jones, reviled in the Muslim world for burning copies of the Koran. Reached by telephone in Florida, a representative of Mr. Jones seemed unaware of the film, but hours later the pastor sent The Lede a statement by e-mail in which he complained of the attack on the embassy in Cairo and announced plans to screen the trailer for the film on Tuesday night. He said that it “reveals in a satirical fashion the life of Muhammad.”
The Coptic activist, Morris Sadek, did not respond to a request for an interview, but he is an ally of Mr. Jones and his blog post features a photograph of the two men at a tiny, anti-Islam protest outside the White House in June. Later, he told The Associated Press that he planned screenings of the film.
En egyptisk TV-stasjon plukket opp videoen og viste utdrag av den. Ifølge en blogger var dette en programvert som liker å fremstille alt som et angrep på islam.
The same day, a scene from the film — in which an actor playing a buffoonish caricature of the prophet Muhammad calls a donkey “the first Muslim animal” — was broadcast on the Egyptian television channel Al-Nas by the host Sheikh Khaled Abdalla.
Last year, the Egyptian-British journalist and blogger Sarah Carr wrote, “Sheikh Khaled Abdalla is part of a school of particularly shrill religious demagogues who turn every possible event into an attack on Islam.” She added that Sheikh Khaled regularly attacked Egypt’s Coptic Christian community.