March 31, 2008 § Leave a comment

In the wake of all this Mickey-Hamas-Promoting-Terrorism stuff, I think now is the time to clear up some misunderstandings about Islam, children’s shows, and politics. The above graphic is from a children’s show called “al-Manar al-Saghrir” (the little Manar — or lighthouse) broadcast on Hezbullah’s satellite station al-Manar. Besides the scary-looking sun, there’s nothing “terroristic” about this show.

I also think the Hamas children’s show was taken out of context and judged unfairly. Any children’s show that is produced from the Gaza Strip must be understood in the context of daily violence, family deaths, widespread unsanitary conditions, and military occupation. The whole “leave the children out of it” argument is essentially null. Political ideologies shouldn’t be forced on to children, but it is understandable that explanations for daily living conditions are included in broadcasts.

Either way, the Hamas program is a very small slice of children’s programing in the Arab world. Below are some clips which show just how dangerous those Arabs really are!

Here is a show about a “strange car” named “Boumbo” which is pretty much the cutest thing I’ve ever seen:

Here are the opening credits for the show “Iftah ya Sim Sim” or Open Sesame:


Syrian newspaper publishes obscenely long article on the Damascus Summit

March 28, 2008 § Leave a comment

Syrian newspaper al-Thawra has unnecessarily published an epic-length article on the Damascus Summit which is scheduled to begin tomorrow. Several Arab governments have sent low-level ministers to the summit in order to express disapproval of Syria’s role in Lebanon’s presidential crisis. Lebanon has boycotted the summit entirely. The article from al-Thawra is just like twenty press releases jumbled together: Peace, blah blah, Israel, Golan, blah blah, Arab ministers, Occupation.

Here is Lebanon’s empty seat at the Summit. (al-Nahar)

Al-Jazeera has an article on Syrian cartoonist Ali Farzat whose work is quite controversial. (Here is his homepage.) The cartoon below depicts his sentiments on Arab summits in general.

But, resistance is futile.

Somebody had to say it

March 3, 2008 § Leave a comment

The text on the uniform reads “Olmert” as in the Prime Minister of Israel Ehud Olmert.

From al-Jazeera.

The text reads: Gaza Holocaust (Mahrakat Gaza).

From al-Quds al-Arabi.

Disney’s Arabs

February 21, 2008 § Leave a comment

Here is an image I scanned from Dorfman and Mattelart’s 1971 out-of-print book “How to Read Donald Duck: Imperialist Ideology in the Disney Comic.” The above strip depicts the “Aridians” or Disney’s comic-book version of Arabs. Here is an excerpt from the book (parentheses are included in the actual text):

Moby Duck and Donald, captured by the Aridians (Arabs), start to blow soap bubbles, with which the natives are enchanted. “Ha, ha. They break when you catch them. Hee, hee.” Ali Ben-Goli, the chief says “it’s real magic. My people are laughing like children. They cannot imagine how it works.”

“It’s only a secret passed from generation to generation,” says Moby, “I will reveal it if you give us our freedom.” (Civilization is presented as something incomprehensible, to be administered by foreigners.) The chief, in amazement, exclaims, “Freedom? That’s not all I’ll give you . . .” The Arabs consent to their own despoilation. “We have jewels, but they are of no use to us. They don’t make you laugh like magic bubbles.” While Donald sneers “poor simpleton,” Moby hands over the Flip Flop detergent . . .

There they are in their desert tents, their caves, their once flourishing cities, their lonely islands, their forbidden fortresses and they can never leave them. Congealed in their past-historic, their needs defined in function of this past, these underdeveloped peoples are denied the right to build their own future.

Dorfman and Mattelart’s analysis of the role of the female in the Disney comics is equally interesting:

Since [the men] can never fully possess [the women], they are in constant fear of losing them. It is a compulsion of eternal frustration, of pleasure postponed for better domination. Women’s only retreat in a world where physical adventure, criticism, and even motherhood has been denied her, is into her own sterile sexuality. . . Her only raison d’etre is to become a sexual object, infinitely solicited and postponed. She is frozen on the threshold of satisfaction and repression among impotent people.


February 19, 2008 § 1 Comment

I’m trying to tell if this cartoon from al-Sharq al-Awsat is sexist or not. The Arabic word on the tidal wave of women crushing the man reads “al-‘anoosa” or loosely translated, singledom — a reference to a growing “problem” in the Arab world of women remaining single for whatever reason.

I honestly don’t know much about the “phenomenon” of women remaining single in the Arab world or how people interpret this but my first instinct is to say that the idea of a single woman being a “problem” is ridiculous.

Remember Saddam Hussein’s trial? Yeah, me neither

February 3, 2008 § Leave a comment

Here’s today’s cartoon from al-Hayat:

Caption reads: One million Iraqi martyrs since the American invasion of Iraq (Bush and Cheney).
In case you missed the visual connection…

Welcome Mr. Bush

February 1, 2008 § Leave a comment

I’m a little late in posting this comic, but I thought it was worth it. From al-Quds al-Arabi.

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