Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

September 20, 2007

Your Danish Cartoons Do-Over Update

More links relating to news about Muhammed caricatures and cartoons and resulting protests in Sweden, Bangladesh, and anywhere else that are informed by the 2006 Danish Cartoons Controversy and its political turmoil, boycotts, riots and deaths.

image* Bangladeshi cartoonist Arifur Rahman has been jailed for a month by authorities, because of a cartoon that used Muhammed's name as part of a punchline. Rahman and his editor have been let go by the paper that ran the cartoon. Reporters Sans Frontieres condemns the act and reprints the cartoon.

* to dropkick the Swedish affair into surreality, Abdullah Rashid al-Baghdadi, the leader of the group in Iraq issuing a bounty on Swedish artist Lars Vilks head seems to have been exposed as a fictional character created by those who wouldn't necessarily get folks to trust them were they to do business as themselves. Apparently, even Muslim extremists are familiar with Remington Steele.

* Contingent on Mr. Al-Baghdadi remaining fictional, I'd like to offer to double the bounty for information leading to his arrest.

* Kidding aside, the bounty and the fear and turmoil and threat to an artist's life are all very real. As is the political support offered by non-extremist groups like the one linked to in the previous bulleted point.

* Swedish businesses are reported to have been targeted by the protesters.

* Lars Vilks intended for his art to provoke. Which I guess means he's an artist.

* Luckily, the Association of Turkish cartoonists has Vilks' back. Or not.

image* The Brussels Journal, the single most attentive source to the Danish Cartoons story as it developed in Denmark and abroad in 2005 and 2006, points out in strongly worded fashion that the Swedish government did little in the way of thing usually cited as provocation by those arguing with some measure of sympathy for those objecting to the cartoons.

* Estonian op-ed writer Triin Oppi asks if people just shouldn't realize that some arguments just can't be won.
posted 2:14 am PST | Permalink

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