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Papers' DVD ad inserts rile swing states

September 28, 2008|DeeDee Correll | Special to The Times

Newspapers should not have accepted the advertising, said Marianne Weigand, 50, of Arvada, Colo., who complained to the Rocky Mountain News in a letter to the editor.

If she wanted to watch such a film, she would have sought it out, she said.

"If you're going to send something out, it's a sample of Tylenol, not a movie full of something so violent, something that not everybody wants to watch," Weigand said. "It's propaganda about terrorism. . . . I don't see anybody benefiting from watching that."

When the film was released in 2006, shown primarily on college campuses, its supporters called it eye-opening; opponents called it inflammatory and unfair. The documentary -- which begins with a disclaimer that "most Muslims are peaceful and do not support terrorism" -- draws a parallel between Islam and Nazism and shows images of Sept. 11 and the terrorist bombings in Madrid and London, as well as footage of suicide bombers, children chanting about jihad and crowds railing against America.

Muslims across the United States have expressed anger about the film and concern for their safety. At the Northeast Denver Islamic Center, Imam Abdur-Rahim Ali said the dominant emotion was disappointment.

"People shake their heads and say, 'Here we go, it's election time,' " he said. Though the McCain campaign has denied any involvement, Ali doesn't believe that.

"It's hate-mongering," he said. "I think good American citizens should stand up against that type of behavior. I love my country; I'd fight for it, I'd die for it."

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deedee.correll@latimes.com

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