The 12 cartoons of the profit Mohammed certainly have proven controversial. This is not at all surprising, but I think a necessary stage in the development of free speech and the throwing off of religious dogma. It is interesting to compare what is happening now in terms of outrage in the Muslim world to the outrage caused amongst Christians when people spoke out against the church. This outrage continued even relatively recently when the Monty Python Film, The Life of Brian was nearly prevented from being shown by a prosecution under blasphemy laws.
It must be a condition of speech that if you wish to promote one way of thinking, then others must be able to offer another or even poke holes and make fun of yours.
Ironically the very prophets that these people now follow so dogmatically had to overthrow the dogma of their time to ascend to their present position. How do we know now that we are absolutely right have the one truth, any more than the people of the prophets time did.
What are the followers afraid of, surely these newspaper editors will be punished by the very god they parody? Surely a picture can't damage a prophet a god, to argue that it can is surely demeaning to that god.
I entirely support the newspapers that published these caricatures and believe it is a necessary confrontation. Free speech must not be constrained by fear that you may offend someone, or some group of people, or it is no longer free.