Sunday, February 05, 2006
Thanks to Emanuel
That's Emanuel Ben-Zion, who of late has been commenting frequently here. Thanks for blogrolling me... and thanks for pointing me to the Arab-European League website.
Emanuel points out that the delightful folks of AEL, when they're not trumpeting the virtues of Hamas or demanding a boycott of Israel, have begun running antisemitic cartoons... in direct response to the Danish Mohammed cartoons, and in retaliation for them. Here, for example, is one showing Hitler in bed with Anne Frank (a new low in utter tastelessness)... and here's another one, showing two bureaucrats struggling to elevate the Holocaust body-count to six million:
The cartoon itself is not that remarkable. (I saw worse than that when I was in grade school.) But what I find interesting is the commentary that goes with it, which I'll quote here, unedited, in full:
After the lectures that Arabs and Muslims received from Europeans on Freedom of Speech and on Tolerance. And after that many European newspapers republished the Danish cartoons on the Prophet Mohammed. AEL decided to enter the cartoon business and to use our right to artistic expression.
Just like the newspapers in Europe claim that they only want to defend the freedom of speech and do not desire to stigmatise Muslims,we also do stress that our cartoons are not meant as an offence to anybody and ought not to be taken as a statement against any group, community or historical fact.
If it is the time to break Taboos and cross all the red lines, we certainly do not want to stay behind.
Isn't it interesting that, in response to perceived anti-Muslim slurs on the part of the Danish media, they respond... with antisemitism? Where's the logic in that? "If you insult our beloved Prophet, we'll retaliate by insulting your Jews!"
To which I can only say: bring it on, sports. We Jews have endured far, far worse than your silly kindergarten chicken-scratching efforts. Even if you ignore the pogroms, the centuries of Jew taxes, the expulsions from virtually every nation of Europe, the Crusades, the Inquisitions, and focus only on the drawings... heck, we've had centuries of far nastier artwork than that!
I think the Jewish people have amply demonstrated, over the centuries, that nasty illustrations don't bother us that much. (With the President of Iran openly threatening genocide, and the entire world standing by and watching idly, do you really think we have time to worry about such nonsense?)
The Muslims, on the other hand, have amply demonstrated that they can't handle a few simple cartoons, without taking to the streets by the thousands, threatening to cut off heads and burn down embassies.
We're not the ones with no sense of humor, sports. If you want to do battle with cartoons, do your worst... and remember that we can handle it a lot better than you can.
In the meantime, do check out Emanuel's blog, if you haven't already. He's got some good stuff there.
UPDATE: Thanks to Sol for pointing me to this cartoon:
UPDATE II: Prof. Glenn seems to agree with me:
Even in the satire wars these guys are outgunned.Heh. Indeed.
UPDATE III: And now the government of Iran is sponsoring a Holocaust cartoon contest. These folks just thrive on self-parody, don't they?
And again I say: bring it on. There is no cartoon you can publish that would cause Jews to riot the way Muslims already have. (It would also be difficult to come up with a new idea for Holocaust-denial cartoons; the Arab world has been publishing them for decades.)
Bill Bennett made an interesting comment on his radio show this morning: Iranian President Ahmadinejad is a Holocaust denier; he's said publicly, many times, that he doesn't believe the Holocaust ever happened. And now he's calling for cartoons, on a subject that he claims never happened. Hmm... self-parody, anyone?
Oh, and do I really need to point out, yet again, that the original Danish cartoons had nothing to do with Jews? Have Muslims forgotten how to insult and offend people without invoking Jews?
Here's a gentle hint to Iran -- if you want to grab public attention, try not demonizing Israel, Jews, or Zionists for a day or so. Now that would be news!
(Later -- yes, I know that the Iranian cartoon contest is officially sponsored, not by the Iranian government, but by Hamshahri, the newspaper of the Teheran municipality. In a practical sense, it doesn't make a dime's worth of difference. NO Iranian newspaper is going to publish such a thing without at least implicit approval from the Iranian government... and it wouldn't surprise me to learn that, in fact, the contest came at the Iranian government's suggestion.)