New York, NY, October 22, 2012 … With the presidential campaign nearing its final stretch and the last debate tonight focused on U.S. foreign policy, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today issued a new report showing how cartoons featured in major newspapers across the Arab world are continuing the “shameful practice” of portraying the candidates as being in the pocket of Jews and Israel.
In a compilation of election-themed cartoons from the Muslim and Arab press, ADL highlighted the repeated demonization of Jews and Israel and the U.S.-Israel relationship, with offensive caricatures in the daily newspapers of Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Syria and elsewhere. The majority of the images depict the presidential candidates, Democratic President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney, as pandering for votes from Israel and the “Jewish vote,” or showing Jews as conspiratorially controlling the candidates and the democratic election process.
“For far too long, anti-Semitic cartoons have appeared in the Arab and Muslim press, often in countries where the press is tightly controlled by the government,” said Abraham H. Foxman ADL National Director. “It is shameful that this practice continues – even in countries with new governments and leadership – and is so widely accepted in these societies. It is time for political leaders in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and elsewhere to condemn these hateful images and for the owners and editors of the media outlets to stop allowing their publications to promote conspiratorial anti-Semitism and incitement against Israel.”
The cartoons falsely depict Jewish and Israeli control over, and manipulation of, U.S. government officials, U.S. foreign policy and the international community, with some including classic anti-Semitic imagery and stereotypes of Jews.
One image from Syria portrays a stereotypical Jew balancing a ballot box on his finger while accepting cash from “Obama” and “Romney” (Tishrin, Aug. 3). Another cartoon published in the United Arab Emirates shows Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu inside of Gov. Romney’s head with both of his hands on the steering wheel (Al-Ittihad, Sept. 25).
Previous ADL reports have highlighted how the Arab media distorted Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s meeting with President Obama in March 2012, and how the Muslim and Arab Press treated the 2008 U.S. presidential election in a similar manner.
As a 501c3 tax-exempt organization, ADL does not intervene in campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for office.