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In the wake of broader worldwide acceptance of superheroes and comic books, a new hero has been introduced: Captain Israel. Published by the nonprofit pro-Israel education and advocacy organization StandWithUs, Captain Israel #1 debuted at the group’s annual Festival of Lights event in Los Angeles.
In an interview with The Jerusalem Post, StandWithUs CEO Roz Rothstein said the character was introduced because “as Israel’s Jewish connection to Israel and the land is always being challenged, we wanted to reestablish our Jewish roots and make sure that everyone understood the history, stuff we know and take for granted and that others try to chip away at.”
Rothstein goes further, saying the comic was devoted to “establishing a hero, establishing roots, [and] countering the venomous BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement. We’re in the business of branding the movement so that it’s clear that the players that promote boycotting Israel are not well-intentioned.”
Captain Israel was created by Arlen Schumer, a longtime New York City art director and illustrator, who has produced superhero-themed illustrations for publications such as Wired and The Wall Street Journal. This new Israeli hero’s costume bears a strong resemblance to Marvel’s Captain America, and fittingly enough that character has Jewish roots as well; Marvel’s star-spangled hero was created by two sons of Jewish immigrants: Joe Simon and Jack Kirby.
You can view an eight-page preview of Captain Israel #1 on StandWithUs’ website, as well as order the premiere issue.