Opinion

In 1987 in London, a Mossad double agent assassinated Naji Salim al-Ali, the iconic Palestinian cartoonist whose most famous creation, Handala, symbolizes Palestinian defiance and resilience. More recently, cartoonist Mohammad Saba'aneh was arrested at the Allenby Bridge checkpoint in Israel and sentenced by the Israeli Salem Military Court in April of 2013 for "contact with a hostile organization," as he attempted to publish a book of about Palestinian political prisoners.

 

by Liberation news

In a stomach-churning display of sanctimoniousness, imperialist world leaders marched shoulder to shoulder in solidarity with the victims of the Charlie Hebdo massacre and in defense of freedom of expression. Or, perhaps more accurately, in defense of publishing vile cartoons deliberately intended to offend the Muslim community, an immigrant community that has been under attack in France.

It would be hard to say that the leaders actually marched in defense of freedom of expression, at least not for everyone, let alone everyone in France. French Muslim women are prohibited from expressing their religious faith or ethnic identity through wearing the hijab in schools or while working in public service jobs. Last summer, during the brutal Israeli slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza, the French government banned pro-Palestinian demonstrations. So it would appear that freedom of expression is to be defended by imperialist world leaders only if the expression in question is a racist insult to an already oppressed ethnic/religious group, but not if it is the expression of the oppressed.

It is important to understand the context of anti-Muslim bigotry in France. France brutally colonized, conquered and exploited Algeria starting with the invasion of 1830. The Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962) resulted in the deaths of 1.5 million Algerians. While Algeria is no longer a colony of France, the international dynamics of economic globalization have driven many Algerians to immigrate to France, where they along with other immigrants from other former French colonies constitute an oppressed and exploited community, working the hardest, lowest paying jobs, facing institutionalized discrimination, police brutality and day to day bigotry.

 

Netanyahu opposed to slaughtering civilians?

Particularly nauseating at the Charlie Hebdo solidarity march was the sight of Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, in the front line. How dare this war criminal participate in a march to oppose a terrorist massacre of journalists and civilians? Just this past summer, during the Israeli massacre in Gaza, among nearly 2,000 Palestinians who lost their lives, some 17 Palestinian journalists were killed by Israel. And that was certainly not the first time that the Zionist government has been involved in killing or repressing journalists, including cartoonists.

In 1987 in London, a Mossad double agent assassinated Naji Salim al-Ali, the iconic Palestinian cartoonist whose most famous creation, Handala, symbolizes Palestinian defiance and resilience. More recently, cartoonist Mohammad Saba'aneh was arrested at the Allenby Bridge checkpoint in Israel and sentenced by the Israeli Salem Military Court in April of 2013 for "contact with a hostile organization," as he attempted to publish a book of about Palestinian political prisoners.

There can never be an adequate justification for the massacre of civilians, whether the massacre takes place in Paris or Gaza City. But when imperialist leaders line up to condemn violent attacks on civilians and defend freedom of speech, it's time to look critically at the record of these very same leaders, and be prepared for an onslaught of fresh racist propaganda to further imperialist aims.

New Articles

The MKO, the essence of North Korea

The tensions between North Korea and the United States have escalated in the past days. The United States is preparing for all options, including a “preemptive war,” to stop North...

Does Albania have an America problem?

A willing rendition partner, a 'dumping ground' for Guantanamo Bay detainees, and now sending troops to fight IS in Iraq... What won't Albania do for the US?

Iranian film sheds new light on security services

 The Iranian film "Midday Adventures," directed by Mohammad Hossein Mahdavian, begins in Tehran on June 19, 1981, 26 months after the Islamic Revolution and nine months after the outbreak of...

Iran Parliament firmly approves anti-US bill

Iranian lawmakers on Sunday overwhelmingly voted to approve a bill aimed at countering Washington's adventurous and terrorist activities in the region.

President Meta receives US Senate fact-finding delegation

President of the Republic Ilir Meta on Saturday received and held talks with a visiting US Senate delegation led by Senator Roy Blunt on a fact-finding trip to several Western...

Most viewed

Jihad 2.0: the Making of the Next Nightmare

 “Albania is being turned into the center of MKO. John Bolton was recently in Tirana, with other international supporters of MKO, and they are attacking Iran and calling for regime...

Iran terror attack: Who gains?

No terror group could have executed on operation of this sort without the help of one or more state intelligence agencies.

ISIS Attacks in Tehran Expose US-Saudi Lies About Iran

Saudi Arabia’s finger prints are on every trouble sport in the Middle East. Not only did Saudi Arabia support NATO attacks on Libya, it also provided "Arab legitimacy" for it...

The Sordid History Of State Sponsored Terrorism Against Iran

For decades, Western empires have waged a silent war against Iran, using tactics ranging from supporting known terrorist groups to deposing the country’s leaders and leveraging regional rivalries. The war...

Iran and the Holy Warrior Trap

Is the West about to make the same mistake with Iran that it made with Afghanistan when it backed the Sunni mujahedin against the Soviet invaders? The Soviets ultimately were...