THE BLOG

Palestine Bloggers On The Obama Tour And The New Yorker

07/30/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Jillian York Director for International Freedom of Expression at the Electronic Frontier Foundation

Barack Obama is making headlines this week in the Palestinian blogosphere: partly for his visit to the West Bank and partly for his turn on the cover of this week's New Yorker.

Of the former, Gaza Strip: The Untold Story says:

Finally, we Palestinians and Arab Americans have to look over this race to the White House wisely. We have two choices now. Barack Obama who is slightly supporting the Palestinians and their promising state. In the other side, we have one of the biggest new Bushes, John McCain, whose stances are more extreme than Bush and all the new conservatives in the US. One of McCain' s advisors said a couple of weeks ago that Palestinians should go to Jordan and establish their own country. Thus, McCain is so dangerous for us and his ideas are so malicious. So, let's pick the less worse of the two...Let's endorse Obama.

Referencing Obama's upcoming visit to the West Bank, Window into Palestine remarked:

It happened once to Jimmy Carter, who visited the West Bank, and look what happened to him !! Carter became an honest US politician!!

The New Yorker cover art featuring Obama and his wife, Michelle, as flag-burning militants was an even hotter topic this week. KABOBfest parodied the story with a headline that read "Obama Campaign Outraged By KABOBfest, Attacks Cover As Tasteless, Offensive." The headline appeared with an image featuring Obama with, among other things, horns and a swastika. The blogger quipped:

Barack Obama's campaign decried Monday a satirical cartoon on the cover of KABOBfest showing the Democratic presidential hopeful wearing Islamic turban, a suicide-bomb vest, sporting a Bin-Laden beard, swastika, and Lucifer's horns.

The influential blog defended its cover, titled "Say no to Obama," as a critique of politics of fear and unfounded allegations during the campaign that have attempted to paint Obama, who is Christian, as a closet radical Muslim

Desertpeace sincerely questioned the cover art, saying:

Satire or racism?
Politics of fear?
Islamophobia?
All of the above??
Just what message is the covertoon of the New Yorker magazine trying to convey? Listen HERE to what talk show hosts had to say..... needless to say, the above questions remain unanswered.

In response to an earlier post by Desertpeace in which the blogger decries the cover art as offensive, adamdenker says:

Get a life! They are defending Obama and attacking the bigotries and prejudices that the right-wing hold! THEY AREN'T ATTACKING OBAMA! They are attacking prejudice! Why can't you see this? Or do you WANT to be offended?

Another commenter, scarlett, responds:

They aren't attacking prejudice. Would it have been more offensive if the picture had shown Obama with oversized lips, eating a slice of watermelon?

...

No -- they chose the one they could get away with in this age of Islamophobia -- painting him as a closet Muslim. If the picture had been one of a redneck/KKK type imagining President Obama in that manner, perhaps they could have passed it off as satire.

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