Cartoon Riots

First, credit where credit is due…much of this post is ripped from an MSNBC blog called DARYL CAGLE’S CARTOON WEBLOG. What follows here is a sort of Cliff’s Notes of all his hard work. If you want the links and a more in-depth look at the story you have to go to his blog and generate hits for him. Thanks!

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A protester demonstrates in front of the French Embassy, over the publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad, which were published after a Danish newspaper editor issued an invitation to cartoonists to submit drawings of the Prophet. The cartoons have sparked outrage across the Islamic world, although Britain’s normally provocative newspapers have so far refused to publish them.

HERE are the original 12 offending cartoons. Very tame by our standards.

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Bangladeshi activists from Oikya Jote, one of two Islamic parties in the Bangladeshi government’s four party coalition, burn a Danish flag during a protest in Dhaka as riot police approach. Appeals for calm in the furor over cartoons went unheeded as police shot dead four more protesters during rioting in Afghanistan.

A French newspaper reprinted the Jyllands Posten caricatures of Muhammad yesterday.
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The paper ran a Headline that read, “Yes, we have the right to caricature God” with a cartoon of Buddhist, Christian, Jewish and Muslim gods floating on a cloud, with the Christian god saying, “Don’t complain, Muhammad, we’ve all been caricatured here.”

Jacques Lefranc, the editor of France Soir, was promptly fired. The BBC quotes France Soir owner, Raymond Lakah, a French Egyptian, saying that he:

” … decided to remove Jacques Lefranc as managing director of the publication as a powerful sign of respect for the intimate beliefs and convictions of every individual. We express our regrets to the Muslim community and all people who were shocked by the publication.”

Journalists at France Soir disagreed with the firing in a front-page editorial that read in part:

“Religious freedom gives people the right to practice their faith or not, but should not become a means to impose the rules of a single religion on society as a whole.”

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The USA took a position on the Muhammad cartoon controversy, on the side of the offended Muslim countries. Reuters quotes State Department spokesman Kurtis Cooper:

“These cartoons are indeed offensive to the belief of Muslims. We all fully recognize and respect freedom of the press and expression but it must be coupled with press responsibility. Inciting religious or ethnic hatreds in this manner is not acceptable.”

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Reuters went on to note:

American Muslims welcomed the U.S. position, although it stopped short of urging American media not to republish the cartoons that include depicting Mohammad as a terrorist. Cooper said he had no comment as to why the United States chose to pass judgment in a dispute that ostensibly does not involve America … The U.S. response contrasted with European governments, which have tended to acknowledge the tension between free speech and respect for religion but have generally accepted the newspapers’ rights to print the cartoons.

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By Feb 6th four had died in Afghanistan as security forces opened fire on demonstrators. At violent protests in Iran the Austrian embassy was pelted with Molotov cocktails and stones. Iran withdrew its ambassador from Denmark and blocked the import of Danish goods.

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A 14-year-old boy was shot and killed in a cartoon protest in Somalia as demonstrators hurled stones at international aid groups. The biggest city in Indian Kashmir shut down all shops for a day of protest as crowds filled the streets, burned Danish flags and hurled rocks at cars. Street protesters in Indonesia threw rocks at a Danish consulate. Muslim leaders in Australia demanded that the News Corporation apologize for printing the cartoons.

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On Tuesday crowds of demonstrators clashed with police near Bagram, Afghanistan as cartoon protesters tried to break into a US base. Some of the protesters shot at the base, and police shot back. Four people were killed and 19 injured. There were more protests at embassies in Iran, Indonesia and Afghanistan with rock throwing and burning Danish flags.

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A Danish lawyer was shot and killed in Moscow by a man from the Muslim Caucasus region of Russia, and the killing was attributed to the cartoons. The Prime Minister of the Russian state of Chechnya announced that Danish humanitarian organizations would be expelled from the state.

For my thoughts on why a comic book (which is different than a cartoon) would incite such anger, in this case in the Muslim world where terrorists amazingly do not, please see my old, and only barely relevant post COMICS! PERFECT FOR PROPAGANDA!!

Alright, I’m off to Wondercon in San Fran… buh bye…

Posted on by Joshua Dysart Posted in Art, Comic Books, Journal, News & Politics

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