Guardian cartoon defends Jeremy Corbyn and ties Israeli leader to white supremacy

Hours after Jeremy Corbyn finally admitted that he did lay a wreath to honour terrorists responsible for the Munich Massacre, the Guardian published a cartoon by Steve Bell and an op-ed by Owen Jones ardently defending the Labour Party leader whilst smearing his critics.

We’ll deal with Jones’ op-ed in a separate post.

Here’s Bell’s cartoon:

The cartoon is inspired by a twitter battle yesterday between Netanyahu and Corbyn.  In his tweet, the prime minister wrote: “The laying of a wreath by Jeremy Corbyn on the graves of the terrorists who perpetrated the Munich massacre and his comparison of Israel to the Nazis deserves unequivocal condemnation from everyone—left, right and everything in between.”

In response, Corbyn tweeted: “Netanyahu’s claims about my actions and words are false. What deserves unequivocal condemnation is the killing of over 160 Palestinian protesters in Gaza by Israeli forces since March, including dozens of children.

Unsurprisingly, Corbyn neglected to acknowledge that a large number of “protesters” killed were affiliated with Hamas – who the opposition leader has previously referred to as his “friends” and as “brothers” – and that the violent border riots have included firebombs and other forms of violence.

But, leaving the twitter dispute aside, note how Bell not only takes Corbyn’s side in the debate, but employs imagery attempting to associate Israel’s prime minister with apartheid – a smear based, in part, on a gross mischaracterization of the new Jewish Nation-State law – and even white supremacy.

It depicts Donald Trump (with the flat head) on one side of him, and Steve Bannon, President Trump’s former chief strategist and once head of a website he proudly described as the platform for the alt-right, on his other side. The alt-right is a loosely affiliated movement which promotes white nationalism, racism, and antisemitism.

It also includes a man waving an apartheid flag – likely a depiction of P.W. Botha, the former South African president during apartheid.  

But, that apartheid smear is not even the worst of it.  

Standing next to Netanyahu is an American-flag hooded man clearly designed to evoke the Klu Klux Klan (KKK), the notorious US white supremacist group.  Of course, the suggestion that Netanyahu is any way connected to the group’s ideology is an inversion of reality.  In addition to their history of violent anti-black racism, the group is widely known for their antisemitism.  David Duke, a former KKK grand wizard, is among the more notorious anti-Semites in America, and his messages typically include conspiratorial depictions of Jewish power, including alleged Jewish control of the media, banking, world affairs and governments.

He also includes Israel within his rhetorical repertoire of antisemitism.

Interestingly, Duke has actually heaped praise, not on Netanyahu, but on Jeremy Corbyn. In an interview with antisemitic conspiracy theorist James Thring, Duke characterized Corbyn as a ray of “sunshine” due to – you guessed it – his views on the Middle East.  You may recall that, in 2015, Corbyn, then a candidate for Labour Party leader, hosted an event at Parliament where Thring spoke. 

However, there’s actually someone else that comes to mind, who has used antisemitic motifs in the context of criticizing Israel, worth mentioning in response to the Guardian cartoon. 

The 2012 cartoon below, by Bell himself, depicting Tony Blair and William Hague as puppets of Netanyahu, was condemned by the Community Security Trust for its evocation of the toxic antisemitic trope depicting “Jews as puppeteers, controlling the politicians of ostensibly much more powerful nations”.

Note also that Corbyn was recently revealed to have promoted  his own anti-Israel conspiracy, in bizarrely suggesting, on Iran’s Press TV in 2012, that Jerusalem may have been responsible for the jihadist terror attacks in Egypt that year, echoing a similar accusation by the Muslim Brotherhood.

But, this story is about more than simply the hypocrisy, dishonesty and malice in Bell’s defence of Corbyn and smear of Israel’s prime minister.

The Guardian’s decision to rally to Corbyn’s defense, amidst an avalanche of criticism over the tribute he paid to terrorists responsible for the murder and mutilation of innocent Israeli civilians, and other examples of Corbyn praising terrorists, once again shows that senior editors are not ‘merely’ viscerally hostile to Israel. 

Whilst it would be wrong to blindly accuse journalists and editors of being personally antisemitic, some within the top echelons of the media group – though at times condemning antisemitism in the abstract – seem, much like Corbyn himself, to hold the values and concerns of the mainstream British Jewish community – united in the belief that Labour Party leader represents, as The JC phrased it, “an existential threat to Jewish life in the UK”  – in utter contempt. 

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14 replies »

  1. Since the “Manchester” Guardian changed to the Guardian and its one time Editor Michael White took over with his extreme Left Wing views- I expect no less from their columnists.

    • Always expect more. Never let them off the hook, not even this monstrous weed, Bell, with his crayons.
      These ARE Nazis.

  2. Despite @adamlevick’s courteous attempt to ascribe logic to the combination of disparate elements in the cartoon the effect is still Punch and Judy, bash the Jewish state at any convenient occasion location or angle
    (Judy is of course a contraction of Judith/Yehudit. A Jewess)

  3. Bell is just an anti-Israel and – possibly – antisemitic little shite who responds only to ‘pro-Palestinian’ propaganda just like his paymasters. This is totally within his character. No point in complaining to the Guardian which is unlikely to be around for much longer: it’s having to draw on reserves to stay in business.

  4. > The alt-right is a loosely affiliated movement which promotes white nationalism, racism, and antisemitism.

    What’s more RIGHT-WING than MUSLIMS pushing BROWN SUPREMACY, nationalism, racism, homophobia, misogyny, Apartheid, holocaust denial and antisemitism?

    The Alt-Left is OK with the Alt-RIGHT when the Alt-RighT is composed of BROWN people.

    Yesterday, the guy who rammed people by the British Parliament was a Alt-RIGHT BRITISH Muslim from Sudan – similar to the four British Muslims who bombed London transport on 7/7 2005 and the British Muslim who beheaded Lee Rigby.

  5. The error here is to assume that the Munich Palestinian attackers were buried in the cemetery where Corbyn presided. In any case, was it not the German police who opened fire at the airport and killed all concerned?

    • “The error here is to assume that the Munich Palestinian attackers were buried in the cemetery where Corbyn presided.”

      There are photos of the Black September memorial at that cemetery. Corbyn first said he laid a wreath elsewhere, but then other photos were published having disputed his claim. That led to the interviews where Corbyn clearly double talked and contradicted himself.

  6. So what exactly is the appeal of Jeremy Corbyn, after you take away the antisemitism and the support for terrorists and Islamists and his being a former Soviet asset? He slanders and smears Israel, portraying Israeli Jews as nothing but bloodthirsty racists, and gives encouragement to antisemites who kill and want to kill Jews. IMO that makes him, purportedly a man of the left, a Nazi. He is either extremely thick and stupid or completely brainwashed. So the question remains, why would anyone want such a person in power? Labour would do well to dump this monstrous representative of the 20th century’s worst mistakes.

    • Exactly. He is somehow seen as a genuine, caring “real person”, not one of those slick, professional “blue Labour Blairites”, someone with real leftist principles. True, blue he is not, but otherwise those who have swallowed this dream seem blind to the horrid baggage he carries with him as a professional rebel, and agreed, a thick, talentless, sixth-form marxist, obsessed with befriending those he sees as feisty victims, but who are simply murderers.

  7. Israel welcomes black Jews into their land to give them a better life. Saudi Arabia welcomes blacks into their country and turns them into slaves, as does many other countries. Count the few blacks in Russia and China on one hand. So ditch your foul bigotry and racism, Corbyn, and feed that small brain of yours that spouts such stupidity. Israel is a blessing to the world. What’s your contribution? I certainly can’t name one!