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Thursday, November 02, 2006
 
Who Really Won the Holocaust Cartoon Contest?

Finally, the news we've all been waiting for! The Toronto Star reports:

TEHRAN, Iran — Ignoring widespread condemnation, Iran awarded the top prize in a Holocaust cartoon contest to a Moroccan artist for his depiction of Israel's security wall with a picture of the Auschwitz concentration camp on it.

The organizers of the exhibit — meant as a response to the Danish cartoons of Islam's Prophet Muhammad that enraged many Muslims — awarded Abdollah Derkaoui $12,000 (U.S.) Wednesday for his work depicting an Israeli crane piling large cement blocks on Israel's security wall and gradually obscuring Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. A picture of Auschwitz appears on the wall.

I would have written this article a bit differently. That the judges fancied Mr. Derkaoui's cartoonistry above all others' is interesting, but it misses the point. According to one of the contest's co-sponsors, the real goal of the contest was to "to test the West's tolerance for drawings about the Holocaust."

Considering that there has not been one riot, murder, boycott, or retaliatory contest in the wake of this offensive spectacle, I'd say the West has passed the test. Can Muslims say as much for their reaction to the Danish cartoons of Muhammad? Who should really be getting that $12,000?

Of course, Western tolerance is no suprise to anyone. The more instructive part of the article comes later on:

The contest generated little coverage in the Iranian press and many ordinary Iranians expressed little interest, or criticized the exhibit as unnecessarily provocative.

...

The exhibit drew few crowds, apart from students in state-run schools who were brought by their teachers.

Iranian media didn't comment on the competition Thursday apart from reporting its outcome. None reproduced the winning cartoons.

"The exhibition had no remarkable impact on public opinion,'' said Gohar Dashti, a professor at the Soureh Art University in Tehran. "It was neither a concern of students nor of the media.''

Some people on the streets of Tehran voiced skepticism about the contest.

"Drawing cartoons ... isn't a good way to solve real and old problems," said Ahmad Nasiri, a 23-year-old student. "Denying the Holocaust through cartoons doesn't contribute to humanity.''

This goes to show how top-down the anti-Semitism in Iran is. The coverage of reactions may not be exhaustive, but I don't think it's insignificant that the only enthusiastic people quoted in the article are Iran's Minister Of Culture and the cartoon exhibit's own curator. They may not realize it, but those who launched this competition and those who've supported it have achieved nothing more than to show their own intolerance, insensitivity, and desperation for a cause. And in doing so, they've lost their own contest.


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Comments:
Shalom javer.

I am the publisher of Herut, blog in spanish. I invite you to visit Herut and to leaving your commentaries. Excuse me, but my English is very bad. The direction is:

www.herutx.blogspot.com
 
I quite agree with you. They could not prove what they were trying to prove.

Keep blogging!!

This is Nancy from Israeli Uncensored News
 
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