The Spectacle Blog

Cartoon intifada hoaxers: squealing the facts

By on 2.7.06 | 2:59PM

Speaking tonight with Paul Belien of the Brussels Journal, who published within the last hours a stunning account of how the cartoon intifada riots stem in part from a hoax authored by hothead Danish imams.

The original 12 cartoon drawings of Mohammed and Islamic topics were published last September in Denmark. Danish imams, lead by hottest head Ahmad Abu Ladan, boss of the Islamic Society of Denmark, demanded apologies and reparations of obedience from the newspaper, the media, the government, and various ugly ducklings flying by; when that didn't work, Team Danish Hothead took the show on the road. Faxing and distributing the cartoons around the ummah and outposts, the imams added three cartoons that had not been published. When challenged, Team Danish Hothead claimed the additions were Danish original cartoons that illustrated the sort of disrespect that jihad and its pals routinely suffer in Denmark and Europe. The road show turned into an intifada when Damascus and Tehran seized on the Danish teacup tempest and dramatized big in Damascus and Beirut, burning flags, buildings, Euro bridges, swans.

It’s Different in Kosland

By on 2.7.06 | 1:02PM

Michael Petrelis slams the New York Times for not publishing the cartoons at the center of the Inkifada story. Interestingly enough, he cross-posted this to a DailyKos diary -- and the Kos Kidz side overwhelmingly with the Times (except for the one guy who presumes that the Times must be bowing to Bush administration pressure).

What Double Standard?

By on 2.7.06 | 12:52PM

The editors of Hamshari, the Iranian daily running a contest for the best Holocaust cartoon, seem to think that the Western free speech allows smearing Mohammed but would never stand for criticism of "Israel's Crimes." Jason Zengerle recalls a few cartoons in the Western media that the Iranians must have missed.

Lefties for Jesus

By on 2.7.06 | 11:58AM

Over at OpinionJournal, our own Paul Beston reviews a book by "extremist for love" Shane Claiborne. Mr. Claiborne bears more than a passing resemblance to the sort of Marxist-pacifist you might see speaking to a gathering of old hippies in a college town somewhere. All that distinguishes him is his Christianity, and even that's not entirely unique; it echoes the Jim Wallis argument that a genuinely Christian politics amounts to almost unreconstructed leftism, tempered by a dash of abortion heterodoxy and animated by anti-war passions.

Digital-Age Dating

By on 2.7.06 | 11:01AM

The America's Future Foundation is hosting a roundtable on the topic in D.C. tomorrow. Details here.

Lobbying Reform

By on 2.7.06 | 10:33AM

We're hearing about a meeting that was held last Friday among a number of Republican/conservative staff from third party groups that lobby on Capitol Hill, everyone from the U.S. Chamber to the Family Research Council. The intent of the meeting was an update from the staff of Sen. John McCain and others on the Senate side about the lobbying reform effort.

The news from McCain's staff was to be expected: that the process was moving forward, there would most likely be legislation, but that the Senator preferred a tough, comprehensive look at the issue instead of window-dressing.

What was surprising, according to some attendees, was the blunt talk from Sen. Rick Santorum's aide, who essentially said that lobbying reform was inevitable and that everyone should just get in line and take it like a man.

Toons, Tooned

By on 2.7.06 | 10:20AM

This nails it.

(Hat-tip: Andrew Sullivan)

Re: Nepal Falling In

By on 2.7.06 | 10:15AM

That's awful. The so-called "People's War" has created nothing but a cycle of mysery for that poor country. My cousin Geoff goes to Nepal regularly for the Himalayan Cataract Project. Sanduk Ruit, his "stridently apolitical" partner, has good relations with both sides; they can generally move through the mountains without too much trouble. But the worsening situation won't make their amazing work, literally restoring sight to the blind and half-blind, any easier.

‘Europe Won’t Fight’

By on 2.7.06 | 9:51AM

The prevailing wisdom, backed up at the United Nations, in the streets of Paris, and by popular perception, is that when push comes to shove in the clash of civilizations, Europe will not fight. And Europe will lose.

I have shared this fear -- fear because a weak Europe that allows itself to be overrun and brought to heel is a bad outcome for the United States and Western civilization. Not by a long shot am I adequately convinced that a round of terror bombings won't send Europe into a "we deserve it" spiral of preemptive surrender.

Poor Parallel

By on 2.7.06 | 9:45AM

An Iranian newspaper is planning a Holocaust newspaper contest in retaliation for the Danish Muhammad cartoons. Go for it. The contrast will be all too striking: while those with good taste (if not well-formed consciences) condemn them, they won't resort to burning Iranians in effigy or other acts of violence.