two months ago, following the cartoon scandal and the outrage
of the Muslim world that ensued, a group of Israelis announced
their own anti-Jewish cartoons contest (http://www.boomka.org).
At the time, they received very wide coverage in the Israeli media
and Jewish supportive press around the world. At the end of the
day, the Israelis in particular, and Jews in general, insist on
being seen as open-minded beings, people who can easily
is now over. More than a few cartoons were submitted from around
the world, many of them made by Jews and Israelis. Most of the
cartoons are hilariously vicious, but how can one put it, the
Jewish and the Israeli media are now far less enthusiastic about
the entire issue of self-mockery.
Two out of the four jurists (Art Spiegelman and Amos Biderman)
were quick to distance themselves from the contest, dismissing
the submissions as disappointing, low quality work. While Spiegelman
suggested that the cartoons were "frightening for being too
real, lack any sense of irony, and look very much like genuine
Anti-Semitic cartoons," Biderman insisted that the illustrations
are not funny at all and fall into the category of "letting
the shit hit the fan."
"We don't think this is the right way," said a spokesman for the
Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem. The Simon Wiesenthal
Center dismissed the contest as "gallows humor." Once it was clear
what the imagery of the cartoons might suggest, Israeli mainstream
press imposed upon itself a complete silence. It is rather clear
that the artists who sent in their cartoons have something to
say about the devastating Jewish reality, something that Israeli
and Jewish media would prefer to brush under the carpet. As it
seems, the two artists behind the contest (Eyal Zusman and Amitai
Sandi) were abandoned. The Israelis and the Jewish media failed
miserably in the 'self- mockery exam'.
In an article
Anti-Semites, Henryk M. Broder, a German and a devoted
supporter of Israel, offered an insight into the content of the
Israeli Anti-Semitic Cartoons Contest. "In the past,"
says Broder, "there were Jewish anti-Semites like Karl Marx,
Otto Weininger and Karl Kraus, yet they were all operating as
individuals, not as a collective. Nowadays," Broder concludes,
"this could change."
Click on the artwork for a better view.
Broder is absolutely correct, this could change, in fact, it has
already changed. In an era in which Jews celebrate their symptoms
collectively, as well as violently, it is rather natural that
a few Jews who happen to be ethically motivated and talented enough
to express themselves would raise their voices. Seemingly, the
morally deteriorated conduct of the Jewish state and its supportive
Jewish lobbies around the world push some Jews towards some manifestations
of collective self-hate. The Israeli Anti-Semitic Cartoons Contest
has illustrated, with a real collection of Kosher anti-Semitism,
a celebration of what I tend to define as proud Jewish self-hatred.
Yet, it is
rather possible as well that Mr Broder was quick to pass judgment
over the cartoonists. It may as well be possible that at least
some of the artists do not stand behind the message their cartoons
may portray. I assume that, at least hypothetically, a Zionist
such as Broder himself is more than capable of portraying a caricature
of Jews that can be considered to be anti-Semitic.
It is crucial
to suggest the following necessary criticism. Rather clearly,
for most of the cartoons, the Orthodox Jew, the one with the caftan
and the beard, serves as a stereotype of the Jewish protagonist
of Zionist crimes. As bizarre as it may sound, Orthodox Jews have
very little to do with the crime they are associated with: the
Holocaust industry, the Zionist sin which oppresses Palestinians,
and American lobbying for Israel. If anything, the converse is
It is a Jewish Orthodox sect, namely Neturei Karta, that collectively
supports the Palestinians and fiercely fights Zionism. The secular
Jewish tendency to stereotype the Orthodox Jew may expose two
fundamental psychological elements within the collective Jewish
secular psyche. First, more than anything else, anti-Jewishness,
and anti-Semitism, are internal Jewish affairs. It is the Jews
who are the first to hate everything Jewish. Second, the so-called
liberated secular Jew is eager to disassociate himself
from any possible ties with the notion of the Jew,
whom he intentionally defines as a Diaspora ultra-Orthodox man
wrapped in a characteristic caftan and covered with facial hair.
Rather than looking in the mirror and engaging in self-reflection,
the secular Jew pins the current crimes of Israel and Jewish lobbies
on a backward-looking and unattractive man with a big nose and
a big black skullcap. As I mentioned above, this is a misleading,
manipulative tactic. The crimes of the Jewish state, and its supportive
Jewish lobbies, are committed by some handsome Sabras and ordinary
looking human beings; people who look more like Mr Broder than
like an Orthodox Rabbi. The Orthodox Jews have no share in this
crime, at least not collectively.
collection of cartoons that follows is a glimpse into the world
of a few morally enlightened Jews and what they feel uncomfortable
with. It portrays as well what seems to be the Jewish notion of
Anti-Semitism. Clearly, three main themes keep repeating themselves.
official Holocaust narrative
more than a few of the cartoonists found a way to ridicule what
they see as a Jewish intent to own the world, to run its media,
to run America and to seek any means of power and control available,
dismissing any possible moral conduct.
Gerils work, it is the Other who refers to the
Jews the intent to own the world.
work it is Jews in disguise that run, what seems to be, the World
American Flag doesnt leave us with much doubt.
We are dealing here with the Jewnited States of JewMerica.
Sherman may have something to say about the real power behind
the American $$$$$s.
Zion is indeed something a proper anti-Semite should never skip.
This time it is an offer no one can refuse: Join now, Circumcise
later. Indeed brilliant work by Mike Eighpe (France).
the cartoonists do not shy away from illustrating that which we
are all banned from saying. Whether they mean it or not is indeed
a difficult question to answer. However, more than enough was
published about the Israeli influence within the American presidential
administration. As evidence that this issue is entering into mainstream
discourse, rather recently, an extensive
work about the Jewish Lobbys influence in America was
published by two major American academics. The cartoons above
were made by Jews and were published in Israel. Thus, I would
maintain that artistic work could serve as a glimpse into the
notion of Jewish and Zionist brutality from a unique internal
narrative cartoons can be divided into three main categories:
the ones that ridicule the notion of Jewish suffering, the ones
that ridicule the official historical narrative (mainly numbers),
and the ones that draw moral conclusions and associate Nazi crimes
with current Israeli brutality.
is associated with the exceptional capability to enjoy, not to
say celebrate, ones symptoms. In practical terms, one may
suggest that Jews may know better than others how to capitalise
on their collective suffering. They have managed to transform
pain into wealth; they were rather quick in turning the Holocaust
into an industrial affair.
doubt, Post-WW2 Jewish politics reduced Jewish agony into an unbeatable
positivist argument backed with many numbers, mountains of shoes,
and piles of glasses and golden teeth.
portrays the process of cold decision-making made by the concentration
who we met before, enlightens the notion of the post-Holocaust
orientated Judeo-centric symbolic order. Within the newly formed
Hebraic world, every perception and lingual expression is Auschwitzly
orientated. Who says that there is no life after Auschwitz?
many of the Jewish cartoonists cant stop themselves from
ridiculing the sacred six figure. Nowadays, when some
German-speaking nations are actively implementing Holocaust denial
laws and arresting historical revisionists, it is rather crucial
to emphasise that many Jews do not take the six figure
and the Zionist Holocaust narrative very seriously. As we will
see next, the Jewish cartoonists portray the Holocaust as an utter
and Elad Cahana from Israel can probably see some clear discrepancies
within the Holocaust tale they learned in Israel.
from Israel is no different. He can see that the numbers do not
may try to tell us that the six narrative is basically
a Jewish orchestrated Hollywood movie.
is no different. He locates Jews in the hub of fake
a very personal and funny way to express his doubts.
Past - Palestinian Present:
Some of the
cartoonists didnt refrain themselves from drawing the necessary
conclusions. The Zionists transformed the Jewish bloody history
into a Palestinian reality of pain and misery.
and Koren Shadmi depict the image of Palestinians queuing in the
entrance to a Nazi-like Israeli employment office.
to AF, from Illinois USA, considering the current Israeli murderous
reality, Adolph may have gotten it right.
the Jewish cartoonists couldnt avoid the very charged subject
of blood libel. Jewish European history is spiced with sporadic
tales of blood libel in which Jews are blamed for making Matzos
for Passover using the blood of Christian youngsters. Indeed,
not many would take such an allegation seriously in the 21st century.
However, the blood-thirstiness portrayed by Israeli politicians
as well as the Israeli society, who time after time votes in war
criminals, raises some major concerns regarding the moral integrity
of the reformed Hebraic people. The cartoonist challenges the
ethical quality of the Jewish state and its Jewish inhabitants.
doesnt leave us much room for doubt. Palestinians are indeed
a necessary ingredient for Passover Matzos.
is concerned whether Palestinian babies are Kosher. Indeed a legitimate
Talmudic question to ask your local Rabbi.
takes it one step forward. He associates Judaism with some clear
knows how to strengthen the so-called Judeo-Christian bond. With
just a little bit of money and luck, every narrative can be transformed
in favour of the Jews...
Broders interpretation into the cartoonists insights,
Jews are capable of anything. They run the show, they own the
world, and they are brutal, monstrous cannibals. As one would
expect, once realising what the contest was about, the Israeli
media was very quick to ignore the event and to dismiss its importance.
Israel is far from interested in letting the world know what Jews
could think of themselves.
speaking, in many cases, the strength of a given cartoon is due
to a very clear method of exaggeration; something verging on Reductio
ad absurdum. It stretches our notions and categories beyond imagination.
Yet, it may be hard for some to admit, the Zionist moral reality
is overwhelmingly stretched and this has been the case for more
than a while. Whether it is the continuous robbery of Palestinian
lands, the endless ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people,
or the merciless daily killing of innocent Palestinian civilians,
all those appalling crimes are done by the Jewish state in the
name of the Jewish People. Undeniably, as far as the Jewish state
is concerned, there is no room left for the absurd. Moreover,
the current state of Jewish ethics is beyond absurdum, it is a
total disaster. It is no coincidence therefore that within the
continuous cruelty towards the Palestinian people, a reference
is made to the plausibility of Blood Libel or there is a comparison
with Nazis. The cartoons may suggest that if world Jewry supports
such genocidal crimes against the Palestinian people, Jews are
probably capable of anything. .
It is quite
apparent that many of the Jewish cartoonists present us with a
very low image of the Jewish character, world Jewry, Jewish interests
and so on. Although it may be possible that many of the cartoonists
are taking a very highly cynical standpoint that is far from what
they themselves believe in, it is as well very likely that we
are dealing here with an outstanding collective manifestation
of Jewish self-contempt. Considering the Israeli reality and the
support from world Jewry of this very brutal reality, such a collective
reaction by honest Jews is long overdue, yet, it is more than
welcome. At the end of the day, it is always the proud self-hating
Jews who transform Jewishness into an ethical message.
Gilad Atzmon was born in Israel and served in the Israeli
military. He is the author of two novels: A Guide to the Perplexed
and the recently released My One and Only Love. Atzmon is
also one of the most accomplished jazz saxophonists in Europe.
His recent CD, Exile, was named the year's best jazz CD by
the BBC. He now lives in London and can be reached at: [email protected].
here to order Gilad Atzmon's CDs and books.
by Gilad Atzmon:
The Tyranny Of Pronouns
The Myth Of
The Open Society: The Politics Of Auschwitz
And Other Marginal Thoughts