Canadian paper apologises after running ‘antisemitic’ cartoon

Canadian paper apologises after running ‘antisemitic’ cartoon

Edmonton Journal says sorry over illustration which pictured a man sitting inside a wallet, with a large black beard and nose, reminiscent of a Jewish caricature

Screenshot of tweet from Deborah Lipstadt including the offending cartoon printed by the Canadian paper.
Screenshot of tweet from Deborah Lipstadt including the offending cartoon printed by the Canadian paper.

A Canadian newspaper that ran a cartoon seen as antisemitic has apologised following backlash from the local Jewish community.

The Edmonton Journal cartoon nearly two weeks ago by Malcolm Mayes was about a data breach that exposed personal information belonging to millions of Capital One customers featuring a “data hacker” sitting with a laptop inside a wallet. The hacker had a black beard and a large nose reminiscent of antisemitic caricatures of Jews.

“We are disgusted with Mr. Mayes’s cartoon, with your tacit approval of it in your willingness to publish it, or, alternatively, we are astonished by your wilful blindness if you did not see the harm that this cartoon would cause,” Jewish Federation of Edmonton President Steven Shafir wrote to the paper’s editorial staff, according to the Canadian Jewish News.

According to Honest Reporting Canada, a pro-Israel advocacy group, “Mayes has a history of anti-Israel caricatures,” including one in which hands labelled Israel and Hamas are illustrated as pushing Palestinians into a meat grinder.

The Journal apologised on Friday, saying in a statement on its website that it has “been pointed out that the image of the person bears resemblance to antisemitic tropes prevalent in some anti-Jewish propaganda. This resemblance was entirely unintentional, but given that association, the Edmonton Journal apologises for the publication of the cartoon. We are re-examining the procedures we have in place to vet editorial content to avoid future such occurrences.”

World-renowned Holocaust historian Deborah Lipstadt wrote on Twitter, that it was “blatant antisemitism” and that it “doesn’t get much clearer than this. Not in Poland or France, but in Canada.”

Earlier this year, The New York Times apologised for running what it called an “antisemitic political cartoon.”

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