When the story broke about an anti-Islam film that (supposedly) sparked the riots in Egypt and Libya, the AP initially reported that an “Israeli Jew” named Sam Bacile was the producer, and that it was funded by Jewish donors. All day, the questions have swirled over who this mysterious Bacile character was, but many Israel-bashers ran with the claim that the producer holds Israeli citizenship.
In fact, at the Atlantic, Jeffrey Goldberg reports that “Bacile” may not be an Israeli citizen after all:
Klein told me that Bacile, the producer of the film, is not Israeli, and most likely not Jewish, as has been reported, and that the name is, in fact, a pseudonym. He said he did not know “Bacile”‘s real name. He said Bacile contacted him because he leads anti-Islam protests outside of mosques and schools, and because, he said, he is a Vietnam veteran and an expert on uncovering al Qaeda cells in California. “After 9/11 I went out to look for terror cells in California and found them, piece of cake. Sam found out about me. The Middle East Christian and Jewish communities trust me.”
Actually, there’s basically no evidence that “Sam Bacile” even exists. The closest person who fits that description (at least electronically) is a self-proclaimed Egyptian “movie-maker” in California, who calls himself “Sam Bassel” on Facebook. Bassel has been registered on Facebook since 2010, and has posted regularly about the movies he supposedly produces, including the one that was used as a pretext for the Egyptian riots.