Dieter Hanitzsch’s cartoon published on 15 May in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung
German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung has fired the cartoonist Dieter Hanitzsch (1933) for a cartoon that some have deemed anti-Semitic.
The author denied that his cartoon contained anti-Semitic messages, but the newspaper said the reasons for his dismissal were“unresolvable differences between Hanitzsch and the editorial staff over what constitutes anti-Semitic stereotypes in a cartoon“.
The image shows Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, dressed as the Eurovision winner, celebrating the award and raising a missile as he says:“Next year in Jerusalem!”.
This phrase is uttered every year as a tradition at the end of Passover and was used by Netta to celebrate her victory and also by Netanyahu on his Twitter account.
A Star of David appears on a missile and another replaces the letter V in the text “Eurovision Song Contest”.
According to editor-in-chief Wolfgang Krach:
“This has led to discussions within and outside the editorial board of Sueddeutsche Zeitung, the cartoonist says he only wanted to point out that the final of the 2019 festival will be held in Jerusalem.”
Despite the cartoonist’s intention, the drawing can be understood differently and anti-Semitic, so its publication was a mistake for which we apologise. The Star of David symbolises the people of Israel and Judaism”.
For his part, the cartoonist, speaking to Jüdische Allgemeine, a German-based Jewish publication, said he did not intend to apologise for a cartoon that is only a political criticism:
“Whether the publishers have apologised is their business.
I don’t apologise.
I can criticise Netanyahu’s politics, even as a German.”
Related, more than a hundred cases worldwide: