Tübingen University has named its annual "Speech of the Year." This time, the honor goes to Pope Benedict's controversial homily in Regensburg, which outraged the Muslim world in September.
In the speech that went down in history as a milestone in cultural gaffes, the pope's references to the teachings of a 14th century Byzantine emperor unleashed a torrent of Muslim fury.
"Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached," he quoted.
The Vatican stressed that the pontiff had simply meant to explore the historical and philosophical differences between Islam and Christianity and the relationship between violence and faith. But his words caused grave offense across the globe. The controversy stoked hostility towards the pope within the Islamic world and even left staunch Catholics aghast at their leader's apparent insensitivity.
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