05/08: Olmert's cartoon and the Israel - Lebanon war

I recently came to know about this issue. Apparently, some Norwegian paper printed a cartoon of Olmert, the Israeli PM, depicting him as a Nazi commander indiscriminately shooting Palestinian Arabs in a concentration camp. There has been an angry response from the Israeli ambassador to Norway, Miryam Shomrat. Ms. Shomrat filed a complain with the Norwegian Press Trade Committee arguing that the cartoon exceeded the limits of free speech.

Olmert's cartoon

The cartoon of Mr. Olmert published in a Norwegian paper.

I am astounded by this display of hypocrisy by the Israeli ambassador. While spending my time online at various international forums, I have come to realize the abundant use of the "anti-semite card" by pro-Israeli elements and Jews in general when they are unable to win any arguments for Israel by throwing around links and generally ganging up on anyone who, so much as, criticizes Israel or Jews. We have the example of the issue involving Mel Gibson's supposed anti-semitism in front of us. I do not accept this blind sensitivity and sympathy with the use of the term "anti-semitic". The sensitivity of people over the words "anti-semitic" is ridiculous and an invitation for foul play where anyone can label any other person an anti-semite even when said person is rightfully criticizing Israel or Jews. Criticizing Israel is not equivalent to being anti-semitic in any way or form.

I also do not support these people mentioning the holocaust again and again to garner sympathy for their arguments. I personally feel that people who mention holocaust to garner sympathy are dishonoring the sacrifice of all those who were murdered by Hitler and his followers. I find no reason to sympathize with the Jews any more than a reason to sympathize with the Chinese who were killed in their nationalist movement. People who really suffered in the holocaust are not present today and the people who use the holocaust card today are just abusing the regretable event.

I remember very well the protest by Muslims over the Danish newspaper posting cartoons of Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam. It was taken as an attack on the freedom of the western media and general civil liberties. What the people, who were criticizing the Muslims, conveniently forgot was that there is a difference between western systems and eastern/Middle East systems and understanding of the word 'freedom'. They are entirely different systems which are not directly comparable with eachother. It is like comparing apples and oranges and declaring them to be equal and then questioning why the apple doesn't has an orange skin. The result of foisting the western system of government (democracy - which is arguably questionable in its current form of implementation all over the world) in Iraq can be clearly seen in the civil war which has started in Iraq. This is exactly what happens when one seeks modification of a system without considering or understanding the very people who will be affected by it. Doing such a thing is plain ignorance.

This issue about the cartoon of Mr. Olmert is similar to the issue of the cartoons over which the Muslims protested. However, while Muslims were blamed for the cartoon controversy, the same is not true for Israel. I rightly feel that if the western media takes so much pride in its freedoms, it should consider all infringements on this freedom equal. To do otherwise is just proof of a media bias in favor of Israel.

Even though the cartoon is about Israel and the Palestinian people, if we consider the curent Israeli attack on Lebanon and the murder (and yes, I call it murder) of innocent civilians in Lebanon at the hands of the IDF, the cartoon is certainly true. Killing defenceless people on the excuse that they are Hizbollah operatives is ridiculous. Were the innocent, defenceless children who were murdered in Qana Hizbollah operatives? And if anyone justifies this as being collateral damage, then by that same logic, the dying of Israeli citizens is also collateral damage. Maybe the Israeli citizens have forgotten the injustices rendered unto them during the holocaust?

This disproportionate war between Israel and Lebanon is going to create a lot of hate for Jews in Muslim countries all over the world while the USA dances to Israel's tune. Are you wondering about the last sentence? Read this paper by John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt of Harvard university for more information. It might seem like a conspiracy theory but I don't have any proof or motivation to believe otherwise.

I have often wondered over this issue. Do the American citizens realize that the anti-Americanism prevalent in the Muslim countries has a lot to do with American policies being always in support of Israel even when the American and Israeli interests conflict? Has anyone ever wondered why America vetoes every resolution against Israel in the UN? Read the paper linked above for an answer. Such actions have weakened and undermined the position of the UN which is on the fast-track to become The League of Nations.

I am tired. I am very tired of the killing of innocent Muslims on the pretext of terrorism. Muslims are human beings just like Jews, Christians, Hindus and other followers of various religions. An insignificant minority does not represents or portrays the general or common opinion. History has taught us that the suppressed always rise up in a revolution to inflict severe changes on issues/areas relating to them. It is high time that the world seriously comtemplates fair solutions to issues surrounding Israel. Does the world, at large, really wants a revolution with all its associated losses?
Asad  Politics 
Karma: 396 [Add to karma] 

Comments made

The cartoon also lies in the freedom of expression catagory and Now israel must not protest against it. On a neutral ground i think that the current israel war is nothing but a butchery of the people of lebnon for no reason. Israel is continuously backed by America which is proving to be a real curse on the south east asians.
06/08 20:31:41
It is a matter of freedom of expression. Yeah, there is some contradiction and problems due to America's 'no questions asked' support of Israel. It is creating a lot of problems for those of us in Muslim countries since to us, supporting the US doesn't means that we support Israel's actions in any way.
07/08 13:53:58
the worst ally is the UN , it never does anything for the muslims no matter what country is attacking them, but when it comes to east timor the UN jumped in.This creates a great hatred among the muslims and we protest against each and every move of israel.
09/08 00:56:44

Add comment


Allowed BBCode:[b] [i] [u] [color=] [size=] [quote] [code] [email] [img]

Comments must be approved before being published.


Copyright 2006-2013 Asad Asif - All rights reserved unless otherwise noted.

CSS | XHTML 1.0 Strict | RSS