Tag Archives: terrorism

Comic Creators React to Charlie Hebdo Attack

The comics community is still in shock after the attacks on the French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo resulting in the deaths, the murder, of at least one editor and four cartoonists, twelve total individuals (including two police officers), as well as the injury to many more.

Tom Spurgeon summed it up best:

This is awful beyond words, and monstrous beyond imagining.

Below you’ll see the reaction by many in the comics community to the horrific news. The short version, this is an attack on free speech and expression, violence is never a proper response to satire and free speech, and our thoughts to the friends and families of those lost and affected.


Terrorists Attack Charlie Hebdo. Kill at Least 12 Including Editor and Cartoonists

Charlie HebdoGunmen attacked the office of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo killing at least 12 including an editor and cartoonists. Ten others were injured in the attack, some critically. According to police, three hooded men stormed the building using Kalashnikov rifles and a rocket launcher, though more may have been involved in the attack. The terrorists escaped in a getaway car, and remain at large as of this posting. They did exchange fire with police in their escape.

Charlie Hebdo has been the center of controversy on many occassions for printing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed. Their offices were firebombed in 2011 over a caricature of Mohammed on the magazine cover. Recently the magazine Tweeted a cartoon of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the purported leader of ISIS. It’s unknown if that has anything to do with the attack. The magazine has been under police protection for years due to threats.

This week’s issue features a cover story on French author Michel Houellebecq whose latest book has been called anti-Islam. It is being reported that Stéphane “Charb” Charbonnier, Charlie Hebdo‘s editor-in-chief and the cartoonist who drew the Mohammed cartoons who was named Al Qaeda’s most wanted in 2013, was among those killed. Also killed was Jean “Cabu” Cabut, Georges Wolinski and Bernard Verlhac.

According to eye witnesses the attack lasted five minutes and the assailants claimed to be from Al-Qaeda.

Video has surfaced of the gunmen running through the streets shooting their weapons shouting “Allahu Akbar.” You can watch the video here, but some may find it distressing.

Paris has raised its terror alert to the highest setting after the attack.

Our thoughts are with the employees of Charlie Hebdo and to the families and friends of those lost.


Around the Tubes

It’s Cyber Monday! What deals are everyone going to grab today? Any geeky goodness so far?

Around the Tubes

HNGN – FBI: Rare Comic Books Stolen By Police Investigators – Our public servants at work.

Inside United – Graphic novelist thrilled to work with United – Very cool gig.

Star Advertiser – Jordanian’s comic book tales counter terrorist ideologies – Seems to be a growing way to deal with these issues.


Around the Tubes Reviews

Talking Comics – Capture Creatures #1

Talking Comics – Dawn of the Planet of the Apes #1

Seattle Pi – Operation Redux

Talking Comics – Scarlet Spiders #1

The Battle Against ISIS with Comics

Suleiman Bakhit, speaking at the TEDGlobal 2011 TED Fellows Talks, Monday, July 11, 2011, in Edinburgh, Scotland. Photo: James Duncan Davidson / TED

Suleiman Bakhit, speaking at the TEDGlobal 2011 TED Fellows Talks, Monday, July 11, 2011, in Edinburgh, Scotland. Photo: James Duncan Davidson / TED

While bombs are being dropped, and bullets are flying in an attempt to stop Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), others are taking a more peaceful approach to shape the hearts and minds of those on the ground.

Suleiman Bakhit is a Jordanian social activist who thinks we can fight the terrorist organization with comics books. Bakhit thinks that narratives and myths are a key. Bakhit thinks that a toxic shame is a lot of what drives the violence.

In an interview with Wired.com UK, he explained:

Healthy shame is a source of learning, it lets you know boundaries. Toxic shame says you are unworthy as a human being, you are unworthy of human connection. This leads to violence in an attempt to replace that toxic shame with pride.

After Bakhit began publishing his own comics, he was attacked with a razor blade by extremists.

I had to cauterise my own wound with a piece of steel. But two good things came out of this. One, my dating life improved exponentially. And the second thing was that I realised that they were trying to mark me with shame, to transfer their own shame to me, and replace it with pride.

The idea of taking on the terrorists with comics came from asking kids who their heroes were. When first asked, they named people seen in extremist propaganda. Bakhit then gave out free comic books. Three months later, those extremists were replaced with comic book characters. The simple issue as he sees it, a huge need for positive role models and positive narratives. Fight extremist propaganda with a counter mythology filled with men and women, and most importantly make it positive and personal.

Bakhit ended his interview with this thought to ending the extremism.

The best way to accomplish this. The best technology we have to cultivate heroic motivation is this medium right here. The comic book.

ISIS Calls for the Killing of the Creator of The 99

Dr. Nayef Al-Mutawa has 99 problems and ISIS is one. The creator of the comic/cartoon series The 99 has been deemed “slanderous to Islam” by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria as well as Al-Qaeda. The terrorist group has taken to social media calling for the assassination of the creator. Al-Mutawa has defended the work, even going so far as receiving clearance from sharia scholars who said the comics do not insult Allah or Islam.

Al-Mutawa is taking the threats seriously, going as far as seeking legal action against those behind the Twitter account. The Kuwait Times even said:

The head of the Human Rights Basic Elements Society Dr Yousef Al-Sager stressed that such fatwas must be issued by courts because it is very dangerous to follow fatwas from such anonymous social media accounts.

The comic was created to present a positive portrayal of Muslims, and provide Muslim children positive role models with each character embodying a pillar of the religion.

In March, the series received a fatwa against it and in February the series was highlighted in a positive way by the United States’ State Department. When the series launched it was attacked by the right as a way to indoctrinate children into Islam among other claims.

We hope Al-Mutawa remains safe and sound.

Around the Tubes

I’m recovering from a midnight showing of the Avengers (expect a review later today).  Who else went and what did you think?

Around the Blogs:

The Huffington Post – Which Is Scarier: Terrorists or Superheroes?Another article on something we’ve been hitting over and over.

Bleeding Cool – Green Arrow TV Pilot Picked Up For Series This Autumn?Congrats.

Comics Alliance – Stan Lee on Michael Jackson’s Desire to Buy Marvel and Play Spider-ManNot sure about this.

Robot 6 – Stan Lee embroiled in legal battle for POW! EntertainmentStan Lee is to lawsuits as a child is to Pokemon, “gotta catch em all”

The Vancouver Sun – Camosun College starts comics, graphic novel programMore proof comics are legit!

Digital Spy – ‘Anomaly’: World’s longest graphic novel announcedPretty cool and interesting but there has to be longer.


Around the Tubes Reviews:

CBR – Earth 2 #1

Comics and Batman Inspire Terrorist?

Convicted terrorist Tarek Mehanna was sentenced to 17 and a half years in prison on Thursday by U.S. District Court Judge George A. O’Toole.  The Massachusettes resident claimed in his statement during his sentencing that the values that lead and inspired him to support al-Qaeda came partially from comic books and specifically Batman.

Mehanna was convicted of seven counts, three for providing false statements to the FBI, conspiracy to commit murder in a foreign country and conspiracy to provide support to al-Qaeda.  Mehanna translated numerous al-Qaeda documents into English and posted them online.

From his statement before the court:

When I was six, I began putting together a massive collection of comic books. Batman implanted a concept in my mind, introduced me to a paradigm as to how the world is set up: that there are oppressors, there are the oppressed, and there are those who step up to defend the oppressed.

I’m sure Frank Miller is cringing at this one.

Four Charged for Plot to Attack Danish Paper that Printed Muhammad Cartoons

Greater Copenhagen in Denmark

Danish prosecutors charged four Swedes living in Denmark with a plan to attack the Danish newspaper who had printed controversial cartoons about Muhammad.  The four planned a shooting spree inside the Copenhagen offices of the Jyllands-Posten newspaper.  Swedish and Danish intelligence officials had been following the men for months.

The suspects wanted “to seriously frighten the population” and kill “a larger number of people.”  The Danish Security and Intelligence Service described some of the suspects as “militant Islamists with relations to international terror networks.”  The men were also arrested and charged with possession of

illegal weapons.

The Jyllands-Posten had asked Danish cartoonists to draw the prophet as a challenge to self-censorship.

The trial would start on April 13 with the verdict is expected on June 14.

Around the Tubes

I don’t know about you, but I’m stuffed.  Maybe it was the lack of athletic workout for skipping the Black Friday madness.  Hopefully you got some deals.  While you ponder what to do for the next two days, here’s the news you might have missed.

Around the Blogs:

Daily News & Analysis – Terror stripped: Increase in comics based on fighting terrorInteresting…

LaGrangePatch – Spiderman Comic Found in Attic Worth Over $10,000Anyone know someone something like this has happened to?

Koatku – Batman: Arkham City’s Guest Appearance On The Simpsons – So cool.


Around the Tubes Reviews:

Comics Alliance – Fantastic Four #600

Man Charged Over Threats To South Park Creators

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South Park MohammedJesse Curtis Morton, also known as Younus Abdullah Mohammad, was charged with “criminal threats” in Virginia last week.  Morton is the co-founder of a radical Islamic group and the threat was focused towards the creators of the Cartoon South Park over their depiction of Mohammed.  Morton is believed to be in Morocco, where he maintains Islampolicy.com, an English-language website propagating pro al Qaeda views.  That website is a successor to Revolutionmuslim.com.

Morton is the second person charged with this incident.  Zachary Adam Chesser admitted to posting threats and in February was sentenced to 25 years in prison.  Chesser encouraged jihadists to attack the creators as well.

Sadly this is just on instance of cartoonists threatened or attacked by Muslim extremists over the depiction of Mohammed.  CNN has more on this particular incident.  As always, we stand for free speech and condemn the use of threats and intimidation like this.

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