anti-semitic cartoon 248.88.
(photo credit: ADL)
The Muslim and Arab media are manipulating the swine flu epidemic to demonize Israel and its leaders, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) charged on Monday.
The ADL, which monitors global anti-Semitism, accused large-circulation daily newspapers such as Al Watan in Qatar and Al-Quds al-Arabi in the UK of "exploiting" the epidemic to provoke anti-Israel and anti-Semitic attitudes.
An Al Watan cartoon cited by the ADL had a caption saying: "The World Health Organization is warning about a world-wide epidemic - the swine flu," and showed Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu with a pig snout.
"One theme of the anti-Israel cartoons related to the swine flu is ironically picturing Israeli leaders with faces of pigs, reflecting the disdain for the pig in Islamic culture," the ADL said in a press release issued Monday.
"Once again, the Arab press is not just content with reporting the news of a serious and potentially deadly global epidemic," said ADL National Director Abraham Foxman. "They are exploiting the swine flu epidemic in an effort to rile up anti-Israel and anti-Jewish sentiment in the Arab street. And they are using the most powerful tool in their arsenal - the visual, the cartoon - to incite hatred for the Jewish state and its people."
Last week, the ADL condemned media commentators and anti-immigration groups for blaming the outbreak of swine flu in the US on illegal immigrants. "Such inflammatory and hateful rhetoric against Mexicans in particular and Latinos in general should be condemned as unacceptable and un-American," said Foxman.