The uploading to YouTube of an American anti-Muslim movie titled “Innocence of Muslims”, which presented the Prophet Muhammad in a derisive and demeaning manner, incited a tidal wave of Muslim anti-American protest against the US and the West on September 11, 2012. Most of the protest was violent, subsuming attacks on symbols associated with the West – such as the torching of a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant in Beirut, and the attempt to storm the US and German embassies in Sudan. To date, the protests have culminated in the death of US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, who was killed when rockets were fired at the US embassy in Benghazi on September 12, 2012.
It is our assessment, based on past experience, that global jihadist elements will in the short term strive to perpetrate terrorist attacks against American and Western targets worldwide, and parlay Islamic rage into additional support for their cause, all while whipping up a frenzy of violent protest against the movie. In the medium and long term, it is possible that they will also try to assassinate those who made and acted in the movie.