Followup on the Iranian cartoon contest

Yesterday, I posted about a story indicating that a Danish newspaper had published some of the cartoons from the Iranian Holocaust Cartoon contest, pointing out how, when the original Danish cartoons poking fun at Islam were published, we saw riots, death threats, and demands for punishment. When Iran, supposedly to make fun of the Holocaust and the West’s supposed “double standard” with respect to the Holocaust, holds a contest and publishes a bunch of anti-Semitic cartoons, the reaction is largely a worldwide shrug of the shoulders and some fairly minor protests. Some of the collective yawn from even rabbis could be because of the realization that the President of Iran is well known to be a Holocaust denier. Indeed, an Israeli even responded to the Iranian contest with a contest asking for anti-Semitic cartoons from Jews and even announced a winner this week.

Yesterday, for some reason, the direct link to the gallery containing the Iranian cartoons wasn’t working. Consequently, in the comments of my original post, a commenter provided a link that worked. The problem is, it wasn’t the right link. Rather, it was a link to a different cartoon show, the Occupation Cartoon Festival. I should have realized the mistake at first and didn’t until I had gone through lots of the cartoons and failed to find ones that I had seen before in this story‘s slideshow and on the front page of the Iranian Cartoon website.

Well, i turns out that the original link that I posted was indeed the correct link. Let’s now look at some of the cartoons and see if you don’t agree that they are indeed the typical anti-Semitic tripe that equates Israel with Nazis:

Try taking a look at these cartoons and tell me they aren’t anti-Semitic. It’s all there, the hook nose, the “greedy Jew,” the Jew as vampire:


And here are a few conflating Israel with Nazis, as does the advertisement for the show in which the cartoons are displayed (above):

As for the claim that this contest was designed to make fun of the West’s double standards, I can’t help but find it odd that only around four of the 228 cartoons actually appear to do this:

Or maybe it’s not so odd at all.

It’s certainly legitimate to criticize Israel for its recent actions in Gaza and Lebanon and question whether the response has been proportional to Hamas’ and Hezbollah’s incursions and launching of rockets, but this is more than that. It’s mainly an excuse to trot out all the old anti-Semitic venom to which Jews have been subjected for hundreds of years.


  1. #1 Black Cap
    September 10, 2006


    I’m commenting here because I realize that my comments in the previous thread were unnecessarily rude and uncalled for, and I feel like an apology. I’m sorry. I typically find your commentary insightful and entertaining and I don’t mean to personally insult you.

  2. #2 Black Cap
    September 10, 2006

    Sorry, it should be “I feel like I owe you an apology above.” Could be misinterpreted.

  3. #3 tdoc
    September 10, 2006

    Obviously I havent been following the news. Where were the riots with people burning embassies and killing people because of the anti Semitic cartoons? In fact I sort of don’t understand the two comparing the outrage about the reaction to the two cartoon exhibits. Not!

  4. #4 Space Parasite
    September 10, 2006

    The first two cartoons in the “double standard” section seem to suggest that Islam/Muhammed is of the same nature as the Holocaust. Somehow, I suspect that’s not what they hoped to imply.

  5. #5 csrster
    September 11, 2006

    World History 101:

    When Christians kill Muslims (Sabra & Chatilla, Iraq), the Jews are to blame.

    When Muslims kill Christians (9/11 etc.), the Jews are to blame.

    When Hindus and Muslims kill each other (Kashmir, Gujarat)
    nobody cares.

    Go on, call me a cynic.

  6. #6 Prup aka Jim Benton
    September 11, 2006

    I need to say one thing about the original cartoon controversy — and in saying it, I am not excusing the rioting and boycotts against Denmark, but making it just slightly more understandable.
    You are right, orac, in saying that the Jyllands-Posten cartoons were noticeable mostly for banality and lack of humor — though I did get a smile out of the ‘we’re running out of virgins’ one. But many of the people in the Middle East — who weren’t subscribers to the magazine — were shown a portfolio of the cartoons, put together by a radical imam, which included three forgeries, three cartoons that were never in Jyllands-Posten, and which were far more offensive to the beliefs of Muslims. One was, supposedly, a picture of Mohammed with a pig’s snout — in fact, it was a picture of a weird French entertainer and had nothing to do with Islam — one showed Mohammed having sex with a dog, and one which called him a pedophile. How much of the rioting came from people who thought that these were authentic is impossible to know, as impossible as imagining how this imam could have squared it with his conscience to show and promulgate these images. But it is a footnote that got missed in the chaos and which does make the events a little less totally irrational.

  7. #7 Joshua
    September 11, 2006

    That’s absolutely true, Prup, but in my opinion it makes a point about the free exchange of information here in the West. When we saw the faked, offensive cartoons, we knew they were crap, because we’re not restricted to getting our news only from one source that has a vested interest in controlling what information we receive. (There’s an argument in there about Fox News, probably, but my point is that even then we can just change the channel.) Part of the problem then is poverty. Not everyone in the Middle East can afford televisions or computers with internet access. But the fact is that their governments and the radical imams don’t care about increasing their people’s access to free information, because that would only loosen their control.

    This post isn’t really a slur against the Mid East, though. It’s just about the difference between a free society and an unfree one. Or, as in the title of Orac’s previous post, freedom versus theocracy.

    Certainly there are those in the West who wish things could be run a little more like Ahmadinejad and the other dictators in the region do. And I think they’re just as evil and destructive as their counterparts in the Middle East.

  8. #8 Kiwiwriter
    September 11, 2006

    Black Cap, you might want to put that apology in the original thread as well.

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