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Eating babies, now THAT'S funny

As long as I’m ragging on everyone today, can I just say that, even by the standards of this insufferably smug, incompetent, unfunny right-wing comic strip, today’s Day By Day cartoon is teeth-grindingly terrible?

So, okay, we start with one of Muir’s patented scoliosis-stricken women, wearing some variety of floral maternity handkerchief, asking: “Are things turning around in Iraq?”

Instead of answering “Well, considering that 2007 has been the bloodiest year of the war so far, I would say that’s a pretty asinine question”, another of the spine-mangled stroke fantasies replies: “You mean ‘victory’? Sam, it’s not like WWII. You can’t sum it up in some photo.”

Now, leaving aside the weirdness of this response (conservatives are always trying to compare the War on Terror/Iraq/Darkies to WWII, and exactly what photo would sum up the Second World War, anyway? The bombing of Hiroshima? The raising of the flag at Iwo Jima? The Times Square kiss? The pictures of huge piles of corpses in Nazi death camps? The Japanese surrender?), it’s the third panel that’s the real kicker: cut to a photo (taken by highly respected journalist Michael “Al-Q’aeda is Making People Eat Babies” Yon) of Iraqis erecting a cross on top of a church.

There you go. There’s your iconic image of victory in Iraq. Sure, a record number of American troops died this year, and sure, the Taliban is resurfacing in Afghanistan, and sure, no one in all of Iraq is safe, and sure, our own government is saying torture is legal, and sure, we abuse prisoners and let mercenaries and soldiers slaughter civilians, and sure, the Middle East is less stable than ever, and sure, our entire pretext for war was a lie, and sure, hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have died, and sure, radical Islamic terrorism now exists in one of the few Arab countries that didn’t have it before we invaded, and sure, after six years of war, al-Q’aeda is stronger now than it was before September 11th, but FINALLY THE VILLAGERS HAVE A PLACE TO PRAY!

Also, for all the talk about how this isn’t a war against Islam, about how it’s not a crusade or a religious war, it’s pretty telling how Muir and a lot of other right-wingers choose this as their defining image of victory in Iraq. Not the statue of Saddam being pulled down, not the building of a school, not the people turning up to vote in (sort of) free elections – nope, an image of a Christian church being restored. Sends quite a straightforward message about how they perceive the conflict. Nice.


Nov. 8th, 2007 05:02 pm (UTC)
The way the issue of this photo is being framed bugs the hell out of me too for two other reasons: 1) the (alleged) point of the photo, that Muslims and Christians are helping each other, is impossible to accurately convey without outside context, and 2) tensions between Iraqi Christians and Muslims, while I'm sure they exist in very tangible ways, are not a major issue and were not a major issue under Saddam's regime.

Of course, I agree the whole "Look, the Arabs are assisting the true faith!" implication is just infuriating. God knows if you had, say, a photo of Iraqi Christians helping to repair a mosque folks like Chris Muir would just shrug their shoulders.

Nov. 8th, 2007 05:12 pm (UTC)
tensions between Iraqi Christians and Muslims, while I'm sure they exist in very tangible ways, are not a major issue and were not a major issue under Saddam's regime

Did you read the recent flap involving Israel making cash offers to get Iranian Jews to move to Israel? The Persian Jews basically told the Israeli government to go get fucked and said they weren't going to sell off their culture and history for cheap political grandstanding.
Nov. 8th, 2007 05:35 pm (UTC)
Heh, I didn't see that. Thanks for pointing it out.

It ties in with my deconstruction of the newest hilarious Orson Scott Card essay. If you're a Jew or a Christian living in a Muslim country, you have to be oppressed and marginalized, more so than you'd ever be living in Israel or a true Christian nation!

Nov. 8th, 2007 06:03 pm (UTC)
Nov. 8th, 2007 05:27 pm (UTC)
I'm sick of hearing people claim that it's not a war on Islam, when that's about as thinly veiled an untruth as claiming that legislators represent the votes and desires of their constituencies.
Nov. 8th, 2007 05:42 pm (UTC)
Some context from the State Dept here.

A Chaldean clergyman reported in April 2007 that "in the last 2 months many Churches have been forced to remove their crosses from their domes." For example, Muslim extremists climbed onto the roof and removed the cross of the Church of Saint George in Baghdad. In the Chaldean Church of Saint John, in the Dora district of Baghdad, the parishioners decided to move the cross to a safer place after repeated threats.

The Chaldean Patriarchate in January 2007 officially transferred Babel College, the major Chaldean seminary and the only Christian theological university in the country, from the Dora district in Baghdad to Ankawa near Irbil after months of closure following kidnappings and threats against Christians. Between September and December 2006, the rector and vice rector of the seminary were kidnapped in Baghdad; both were released after a week.

Babel College was founded in 1991. Gee, which Christian tolerating society was running Iraq then? And who was running it at the start of 2007?

And just to add to the mess:

Baghdad’s Christian community’s worries have been added to by the US military’s decision to forcibly occupy Babel College, property of the Chaldean Church. The Babel, the only faculty of theology in the country, houses on of the most ancient religious libraries in the region, full of priceless manuscripts. Because of the increased insecurity in the city and continual abductions of religious the faculty had transferred to Ankawa, in Kurdistan January last, leaving the building empty. The US military are now using it as an observation outpost.
Nov. 8th, 2007 05:46 pm (UTC)
Oh, and in that center panel, why is there a hand holding a walking stick coming out of the non-pregnant woman's bum?
Nov. 8th, 2007 06:17 pm (UTC)
The baby's got a limp.
Nov. 9th, 2007 12:56 am (UTC)


flavored with age
Gun-totin', Chronic-smokin' Hearse Initiator
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Leonard Pierce is a freelance writer wandering around Texas with no sleep or sense of direction. If you give him money he will write something for you. If you are nice to him he may come to your house and get drunk.

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