Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Iranian Daily Shut Down over Cartoon

The Washington Post reports that the above cartoon, titled "The Other Rules of the Game," precipitated the closure of the Iranian national daily Sharq for "publishing articles insulting to religious, political and national figures and fomenting discord in violation of orders of the Supreme National Security Council."

According to the Paris-based Iran Press Service, "most Iranian political analysts, including some of the journalists at the paper said the most important thing that the Government did not like was a cartoon ... showing a chess board where a horse and a donkey, with a halo of light around its head are debating the regime's handling of nuclear issue with the West."

Though cartoonists say the "halo" is actually an effect to separate the animals heads, it seems that censors at the Iranian judiciary have made a link between the donkey in the cartoon and comments by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad last year that he felt a heavenly beam of light embracing him during a speech at the United Nations General Assembly. Ahmadinejad made the remarks during an exchange with a cleric that was captured on videotape and circulated over the internet. You can view an excerpt here.

No comments: