The Mutilated Book: The Cartoons That Shook the World
But the same forces that long have held much of the Muslim East in thrall, enforcing the most radical of Islamic prohibitions, now are reaching out to dictate to the West, too. And they've found a willing accomplice in
This book was going to offer some needed perspective by including other drawings of Mohammed from centuries past. But it's not just the Danish cartoons that now have been excised from the manuscript but all the others. Despite their historical relevance to the topic at hand.
Among the works that didn't make it into the book: a 19th-century print by Gustave Doré illustrating Dante's "Inferno," another from a children's book, and even an old Ottoman print. All of those, too, were considered too hot for
The moral of this sad story, or at least one of them, is that those afraid to publish commentary on contemporary issues will soon enough be driven to suppress the past, too.
George Orwell knew how this worked. (See how history was constantly being rewritten in "1984" by the Winston Smiths at the
One of the distinguishing marks of an American in the early years of the Republic was simple candor; he was a man unaccustomed to bowing and scraping before the old nobility of
There are so many things wrong with that statement, one scarcely knows where to begin, or end. But one of Mr. Donatich's misunderstandings is that the responsibility for any violence that follows an exercise of free speech falls on those exercising it, not those who commit the violence.
The violent of the Islamic world will only be given additional encouragement by
It's not our enemies who present the gravest threat to Western civilization, but those who would give up their own freedom to appease the tyrants of the world.
Not only is
Meanwhile, the experts who aren't afraid to speak honestly can only shake their heads over
The book's author,
As offensive as some of these cartoons may be, and political cartoons can be tasteless on occasion, they can't be nearly as offensive as the decision not to publish them in this country -- supposed land of the free and home of the brave -- for the most craven of reasons.
No wonder they say courage is the indispensable virtue. For without it, all the others are in jeopardy.
To quote the
Available at Amazon.com: The Cartoons That Shook the World
(c)2009 TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
On September 30, 2005, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published twelve cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. Five months later, thousands of Muslims inundated the newspaper with outpourings of anger and grief by phone, email, and fax; from Asia to Europe Muslims took to the streets in protest. This book is the first comprehensive investigation of the conflict that aroused impassioned debates around the world on freedom of expression, blasphemy, and the nature of modern Islam.
Jytte Klausen interviewed politicians in the Middle East, Muslim leaders in Europe, the Danish editors and cartoonists, and the Danish imam who started the controversy. Following the winding trail of protests across the world, she deconstructs the arguments and motives that drove the escalation of the increasingly globalized conflict. She concludes that the Muslim reaction to the cartoons was not—as was commonly assumed—a spontaneous emotional reaction arising out of the clash of Western and Islamic civilizations. Rather it was orchestrated, first by those with vested interests in elections in Denmark and Egypt, and later by Islamic extremists seeking to destabilize governments in Pakistan, Lebanon, Libya, and Nigeria. Klausen shows how the cartoon crisis was, therefore, ultimately a political conflict rather than a colossal cultural misunderstanding.
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