Is it racist to make fun of Hamas?
The Washington Post’s deletion of an anti-Hamas cartoon has exposed the moral depravity of the left.
Last week, the Washington Post published a cartoon which featured senior Hamas member Ghazi Hamad with women and children tied to his body as human shields. The cartoon featured a speech bubble, in which Hamad says: ‘How dare Israel attack civilians.’
What happened next was shocking, but sadly not surprising in the current climate. Following an outcry in the newsroom and among Post readers, opinion-page editor David Shipley removed the cartoon from the newspaper’s website. In an editor’s note published on 8 November, Shipley wrote: ‘The reaction to the image convinced me that I had missed something profound, and divisive, and I regret that.’
For those not familiar with the leadership of Hamas, the terrorist rulers of Gaza, the following context is important. Hamad, the figure depicted by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Michael Ramirez, is a senior leader and former deputy foreign minister in the Hamas government. At the beginning of November, an interview with Hamad was circulated in which he states: ‘We must teach Israel a lesson… Will we have to pay a price? Yes, and we are ready to pay it. We are called a nation of martyrs, and we prepared to sacrifice martyrs.’ He also said: ‘We are the victims of the occupation. Period. Therefore, nobody should blame us for the things we do. On 7 October, 10 October, one-millionth October, everything we do is justified.’
I do not know for certain if Shipley was aware of that interview when he decided to retract Ramirez’s cartoon, although in his note to readers, he described Hamad as having ‘celebrated the attacks on unarmed civilians in Israel’. So it’s safe to guess that even in Shipley’s safe and warm Washington office, Hamad’s reputation preceded him. Nonetheless, for some reason, Shipley felt the need to respect the acute sensitivities of the, er, terrorism community by taking down the cartoon. Apparently, we mustn’t offend Hamas murderers by suggesting they use civilians as human shields, even when they freely admit to doing this.
It’s glaringly obvious now that Hamas Lives Matter is the hottest new trend on the Western left. Never mind the centuries of persecution, in the eyes of the woke Jews are now thoroughly equated with ‘white privilege’. And so, no horror they suffer through will ever be recognised as such.
It’s time for any remaining old-school lefties and liberals still associated with the left to regroup. The moral rot, especially in the media and the intelligentsia, has been all too visible after the 7 October attacks.
The kerfuffle over the Washington Post’s Hamas cartoon is just a small example of a broader problem. The left’s well-worn playbook is this: take a kernel of truth about the suffering of a group of people and from that extrapolate so that everyone who is not a member of that group is a genocidal colonialist, unless they grovel to be forgiven for some historical sin.
A few years ago, the left took the reality of the mass incarceration of blacks and policing malfeasance and distorted it beyond all recognition. Black Lives Matter activists exploited the public’s concerns about this to turbocharge a thoroughly toxic and racist ideology, which portrayed every white person as personally responsible for the suffering of every black person. Today it is Israel’s turn to be demonised. The suffering of the women and children in Gaza, as a result of the war Hamas started, is taken as bulletproof evidence that all Jews are evil colonisers and all Palestinians are innocent saints – even, it seems, the leadership of Hamas.
Sadly, we live in a culture where pointing out the facts will do little to move the needle. It doesn’t matter to the left that the top three Hamas leaders are billionaires living in the safety of Qatar. It doesn’t matter that some mainstream-media stringers may have been in cahoots with the perpetrators of the 7 October massacre, or that they have praised Hitler. Nothing penetrates the ideology.
It’s very difficult to discern how the non-Jew-hating liberals and progressives (for there are a few of them left) will move forward and away from the terror apologists in their midst. But they need to figure out how to do so as soon as humanly possible. Right now, it is hard to see how the left can sink much lower.
Jenny Holland is a former newspaper reporter and speechwriter. Visit her Substack here.
Picture by: YouTube.
To enquire about republishing spiked’s content, a right to reply or to request a correction, please contact the managing editor, Viv Regan.