Libertad, blasfemia y violencia

PARIS – Los ataques violentos a las sedes diplomáticas de Estados Unidos en el norte de África y Oriente Medio una vez más plantean el interrogante de cómo responder cuando estadounidenses y otros occidentales son partícipes de una expresión provocadora que otros consideran blasfema. Si bien el ataque a la misión diplomática estadounidense en Benghazi, en el que fueron asesinados el embajador J. Christopher Stevens y tres miembros de su comitiva, bien puede haber estado planeado, como sostuvo el Departamento de Estado, los asesinos claramente aprovecharon la oportunidad generada por la indignación en respuesta a un filme anti-musulmán producido en Estados Unidos.

Ha habido varios episodios en los últimos años en los que percepciones de blasfemia han conducido a amenazas de violencia o a asesinatos reales, desde la publicación de la novela de Salman Rushdie Los versos satánicos hace más de dos décadas hasta las caricaturas del periódico danés Jyllands-Posten del profeta Mahoma. En Holanda, Theo Van Gogh fue asesinado en una acera de Ámsterdam en represalia por su película Sumisión, que criticaba el trato de las mujeres por parte del Islam.

Incluso algunos de los que defendían la libertad de expresión en esos casos pueden no sentirse inclinados a hacerlo ahora. Esta vez, la película que desató los disturbios en El Cairo, Benghazi, Sana y otras partes es tan cruda e incendiaria que da para pensar que claramente estaba destinada a generar la indignación que produjo.

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