By Haaretz — Jan. 21, 2014
The Anti-Defamation League on Monday urged editors of The Economist magazine to issue a “full-throated apology” for publishing an editorial cartoon that observers have deemed anti-Semitic.
The renowned magazine “cannot repair the damage of publishing an anti-Semitic image with only half-measures,” the ADL said in a statement.
The cartoon depicts U.S. President Obama as “hindered in his efforts to reach an agreement with Iran by the machinations of a United States Congress under the control of a nefarious Jewish lobby,” according to the anti-racism watchdog group.
The Economist initially published the cartoon by Peter Schrank on Saturday, but removed the offending image from the article following a backlash from readers.
The website added an editor’s note to the article, about the Obama administration’s efforts to reach a final nuclear deal with Iran, which reads: “The print edition of this story had a cartoon which inadvertently caused offence to some readers, so we have replaced it with a photograph.”
The cartoon still remained the top image on the site’s Middle East & Africa section on Tuesday morning (Israel time), but was removed in the afternoon.
Meanwhile, Jewish groups said the editor’s note does little to reverse the damage.
“This was nothing less than a visual representation of the age-old anti-Semitic canard of Jewish control,” the ADL statement said. “And it conjures up yet another classic anti-Semitic myth – the accusation that Jews have ‘dual loyalty’ and will act only on behalf of Israel to the detriment of their own country. This is the stuff of the ‘Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion,’ recycled for a modern-day audience.”
Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, told the Algemeiner that “the cartoon fails to deliver anything but the classic ‘Israel controls Congress’ stereotype.”
“The cartoon’s effect is to reinforce anti-Israel stereotypes,” he was quoted as saying.
The Economist has been accused of anti-Israel bias in the past and of distorting matters related to Diaspora Jews and Israel.
Courtesy Peter Myers