Robot 6

Gunmen kill 12 at office of French satirical magazine [Updated]

This cartoon was the last tweet sent out by Charlie Hebdo before the shootings

This cartoon was the last tweet sent out by Charlie Hebdo before the shootings

Masked gunmen attacked the Paris headquarters of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo this morning, killing at least 12 people — 10 employees and two police officers — and wounding eight others. The three attackers remain at large after fleeing the scene and hijacking a car.

Paris has been placed on highest alert following what Francoise Hollande described as “a terrorist attack.”

According to French media, Charlie Hebdo editor Stephane Charbonnier (aka “Charb”) and three other of its best-known cartoonists — Cabu, Wolinski and Tignous — are among the dead.

While the specific motive for the shooting is unclear, Charlie Hebdo has a history of satirizing Islam, and Charbonnier was included on a “most wanted” list published in the Al-Qaeda magazine Inspire. The last tweet sent out on the Charlie Hebdo account before the shooting was an image of ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, and this week’s magazine included an article about Michel Houellebecq’s new novel Submission, which depicts a future France under Islamic rule. The Guardian notes that there had been an uptick in threats against the magazine in recent weeks, and security at the Charlie Hebdo offices had been increased.

The magazine’s offices were firebombed in 2011 when it published an issue “guest-edited” by the Prophet Muhammad. The following week, the magazine responded with a cover image of Muhammad kissing a male Hebdo journalist. In 2012 Charlie Hebdo published cartoons of a naked Muhammad, and in 2013 released a serious cartoon biography of the prophet. News reports at the time noted that Charbonnier had received death threats and was living under police protection.

Comments

21 Comments

Ruthless bastards.

I assume everyone will now apologize to Brigitte Bardot.

If they were doing an article about a book where Islam takes over France, then I think this magazine was doing a lot more than just “satire”, where “satire” becomes ‘let’s make fun of those weird foreigners and their threatening religion over there’. Then, when there’s blowback they’ll hide behind free speech and defending secular Western Civilization just like the Jyllands-Posten did.

thank fuck your metric as to what constitutes satire has absolutely no fucking bearing on anything.

Get over yourself

My heart goes out to the friends and families of the victims.

The religion of peace at it again! It’s over for Europe, they allowed these Muslim pukes to infiltrate and take over….this is the result! America is next!!!!

It will probably be categorized as simply “Workplace Violence”

Some great editorial cartoon responses here – love the one from the Spanish cartoonists:
http://www.vox.com/2015/1/7/7508387/cartoonists-respond-charlie-hebdo

Not sure why this is slotted under an article trumpeting Agent Carter’s tv show ratings. This needs to be up top.

CD- So what if they went beyond satire? That is their right and ours! “Hide behind Free Speech”? They weren’t hiding! Stop apologizing for murderers, stop defending terrorists!

I think CD is saying that these weren’t nice people, but the face of French Xenophobia, not that they should be murdered for it. As for their rights, the French declaration of rights of man states:

“The free communication of thoughts and of opinions is one of the most precious rights of man: any citizen thus may speak, write, print freely, save [if it is necessary] to respond to the abuse of this liberty, in the cases determined by the law.”

The ‘cases determined by the law’ usually almost always favour white protestants. France has a history of state Xenophobia wrapped in a sweet liberal and secular rhetoric. So when turning these guys into martyrs, you should remember their values.

CD, Mudassir, what you wrote is both ignorant and unfair. To start with, where the article says that their last issue was about a recent novel depicting an Islam-conquered France,

it means that it mocked said novel. This magazine (think MAD or cracked) laughed at Islam, naturally, but also, and quite as often, at Christianity, Judaism, Europe, the US, Al-Qaida and France itself.

The very existence of Charlie-Hebdo comes from an earlier magazine being sequestered in the 70’s, for mocking the recently deceased French president De Gaulle, and writers and artists co-opting a magazine that reprinted Peanuts strips (hence “Charlie” as in Charlie Brown).

So there you have it: Charlie Hebdo’s journalists laughed at Yaweh, Allah, Mohamed, Jesus, the prophets, the Pope, Nixon, the Bushes, Clinton, Obama, Jacques Chirac, David Cameron, Tony Blair, Nicolas Sarkozy and they probably poked fun at their own expense too.

In short, they mocked Islam, Judaism and Christianity but only a third of said “targets” of their humor justifies their murder.

I wonder what are you doing in a comics site, when it’s obvious you stand against everything comics stand for.

Shame on you.

Brigid Alverson

January 7, 2015 at 12:50 pm

Just to be clear, these cartoonists and Charlie Hebdo in general were outspoken opponents of racism and the National Front. So it’s not just that they offended everybody, they also stood up against hate. When the French government tried to ban a Muslim protest in 2012, Charbonnier spoke out against that, too.

I’m french and I’m very saddened by some of your comments. I know this magazine was sometimes labelled as provocative or even racist (!!) by people who have never read it but that was SO far from the truth.
I’ve beena reader of Charlie Hebdo for 20 years so pease believe me : they were the good guys, fighting racism and stupidity and promoting joy and generosity. Yes they were making jokes about religion, but they mere not mocking islam : they were mocking terrorists.They were hitting hard on the catholics too when they were hiding their paedophile priests. What’s wrong with that ?
As a former Charlie journalist said, they were just happy people trying to make people happy.
We needed them. This is devastating.

CD and Mudassir, you’re mixing up a lot of things (we’re not a prostestant country for instance). Please travel to France and I’ll happily buy you a drink. you’ll see we’re not (all) racist.

There is no way to justify this. These masked gunmen are monsters.

And you know what else? By their actions these gunmen did a lot more harm to Islam and to peaceful Muslims than a million issues of Charlie Hebdo could ever do.

I don’t see the part where I said their deaths were justified. My comment was colored by my ignorance, and with my past experience with French ‘egalite’. So I apologize. However, you can already see the hatred drip from all the comments coming from mainland European publications, so I am not off.

Seb, thank you for the offer, and I can only respond with my offer to show you around Karachi, the world’s biggest metropolis according to UN estimates, and show you how that not all Muslims are wild murderers, but that wouldn’t solve Islam’s violence problem, just like your drink won’t solve France’s xenophobia.

Egalvan, comics stand for a lot of things, because it’s a medium. For Example, Herge was forever embarrassed about ‘Tintin au Congo’, and for good reason, because it stood for tyranny and subjugating the weak.

Anyway, sorry for hijacking this conversation with a tangentially related that has nothing to with comics. I do again apologize for my previous comment.

I apologize and admit that I have never read an issue of Charlie Hebdo. However, I live in a country where Islamophobic rhetoric was used to justify killing women, men, and children year after year after year. Where people could not even say that they were Muslim in fear of being ostracized or even killed. Where people were assumed to be Muslim and therefore it was okay to beat the shit of out them, burn down their temples, spray hate-filled graffitti, and the like. The peddlers of hate hid behind free speech to justify their rants about the need to intern (as in internment) Muslims and mock them as weird and “irrational”. So when I saw the mention of the book I figured, ‘Oh great more of this shit again’. No, the deaths of the twelve people were and are not justified but it looks like only Mudassir got what I meant to begin with. No one wakes up one day all of sudden and decides “Oh I’m gonna go and shoot up the headquarters of a magazine.”

So your polemic was grounded in the inscrutable fact you’ve never read an issue, but you’re all too ready and willing to hitch your ideological invective to this horribly unfortunate incident like its a ready-made platform for your rhetoric. Got it.

Anyone happen to be aware of France’ “No Go” Zones? Pretty interesting info. and quite a problem with the religion of peace.

“Anyone happen to be aware of France’ “No Go” Zones? ”

No, and looking online the only people I see talking about the “No Go” zones are far-right “news” sources. Nothing I’d trust.
More to the point of the thread, though, I find it nauseating that people are going on about the cartoonists. They were murdered for what they drew. If you don’t find that a problem, then you are part of the problem.
Also, I’ve seen cartoons done by muslims about jews. Let’s not pretend they’re above satire tinged with racism. No, not all muslims are bad, only a few, far-right people will say that. But defending (even a little) terrorists murdering cartoonists, or critiquing the cartoonists instead of talking about assaults on Western freedoms gives people room to wonder about you.

to Mudassir and cd : thank you for your answers, it’s very conforting to see that we can still listen to each other and debate. We really need to so ; this is the only way things can go in the right direction.

Let me insist on one thing : Charlie is NOT a xenophobe newspaper. No media in France has done more to fight the far right. They tried to find legal ground for the dissolution of the national front party and started a national petition. They even bought the rights of the name of the party just to piss them off.
But all you see on TV are the muslim mocking cartoons…
Yes they are mocking religions, among other topics. But ALL religions. Islam is not their only subject, far from it : these last years catholics sued them 14 times ; muslims only once.
So if you tell me that joking about religion shocks you, that’s your right. I’Il disagree with you but it’s true that they do.
But xenophobia ? They spent their lives fighting against that .

And to Chris : yeah, Ben is right, this is National Front propaganda. Of course there are some violent neighborhoods in France but it’s nowhere near these made-up stories created to frighten people.

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