As the U.S. Presidential campaign moves into its final frenetic weeks, political cartoonists across the Arab and Muslim world have made clear that they see little to differentiate President Obama from Governor Romney, nor Republican from Democrat. In their view, the candidates and the entire U.S. political system are indistinguishable in their subservience to Jews and Israel.
In expressing their distorted views on the 2012 campaign, the cartoonists from across the Middle East frequently feature candidates Obama and Romney kissing the hand or foot of the “Jewish lobby” or Israeli leaders. Other cartoons depict Jews/Israeli’s controlling the U.S. ballot boxes. While many of the featured cartoons include classic anti-Semitic imagery and stereotypes, others exhibit a more nuanced, yet still defamatory, portrayal of Jewish control over the upcoming US presidential election.
The 2008 campaign featured similarly themed caricatures, but many focused exclusively on then-candidate Barack Obama as enslaved by/in the pocket of Jews and Israel.
The allegation that Jews manipulate and control governments has been around for centuries. The canard is a centerpiece of anti-Semitic literature from The Protocols of the Elders of Zion to Hitler’s Mein Kampf to the Hamas Charter. Modern iterations of this charge abound among extremists and hate-mongers, but nowhere as prominently, or in mainstream acceptance as in the Middle East, where “Jewish power” is the reason commonly relied upon to explain U.S. support for Israel. On a daily basis, the editorial cartoons which ADL compiles from media outlets across the region feature stereotypical Jewish figures (sometimes depicted as Israel or Israeli leaders) as puppet masters of the region, the international community, and most particularly, the United States.
The message on these caricatures are clear: when it comes to the U.S. election, the party or the candidate doesn’t matter. Jews control the candidates and the process. Jews and Israel determine the outcome of the election and will determine the policy set by whoever wins on November 6.