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US students are having a hard time in Germany, as they find themselves having to justify Washington policy from day to day. A new pilot project in German schools is meant to help Americans deal with the endless drill writes Jan Friedmann in Sp [Read More]

Comments

The better had printed this one.

Outrageous. It seem almost as if the author was implying that in the US, people don't blow themselves up in order to kill as many other people as possible, but use guns instead. I cannot fathom how Mr Tomicek came up with this strange and obviously incredibly anti-American idea!

Oh, btw, since you mention Markus Günther; strange coincidence: On the day before this cartoon appeared, he wrote this in the Heilbronner Stimme. It's a (surely extremely anti-American) account of a massacre at Virginia Tech that took place on the 16th of April. If I remember correctly, it was carried out by a terrorist with an explosive belt, but I'm not really sure...

/sarc off

This cartoon is fair comment. Are you afraid of a little free speech? Or is it the message you object to?

Haven't run across any articles to misrepresent lately, so you're appealing to your "readers?" You still haven't addressed the hatchet job you did on that objectophilia article in Spiegel a few months ago.

Yeah, fuchur, that was a tragedy. And in a "gun free" zone, no less.

Of course, something like that would never happen in Germany...

...or anywhere else in Western Europe, for that matter...

...only in America, right?

Notice how the masked bomber is terrified of the unmasked American with two hands and a number of weapons that he can't use? Perhaps he's terrified of the thought that the American can only use two weapons but can use them accurately. BTW, for our ignorant friends fuchur and ian, those guns are what we call six-shooters or revolvers and are normally a single action weapon because the trigger pull of a double action is too hard for good aim when firing the pistol rapidly. Now the Glock on the other hand, does well in the semi-automatic mode and can kill bunches more people at one time. Germany is really an excellent weapons manufacturing area. I understand the Iranians like to get their weapons from there. /bare sarc off

Oh yeah, comparing the actions of terrorist suicide bombers with gun laws in the US. Very fair and well thought out comment indeed - if your audience are idiots. Or is this just another case of famous German "humor"?

I wonder what country's way the little figure on the right above the signature represents. It's sort of hiding, far away from the terrorist, almost hoping that the USA figure takes care of the problem for him. So I think the cartoon is fairly accurate. I have no problem with it.

The guy with the bombs seems to be pretty scared of the "cowboy". I think that's a good thing. I wish the American guy wouldn't turn his back on the threat though.

*Sigh* Ok, in plain English, for everybody to understand:

Ray left out the context. This cartoon was published on April 19th. Obviously it refers to the Virgina Tech massacre on April 16th. So, if you (like several commenters here) have no clue what happened at Virginia Tech, please read it up before embarrassing yourself...

I think the author has a point: There's not much difference between a guy who puts on an explosive belt and blowing himself up, and a guy who grabs a couple of guns and kills 32 people and then himself. Maybe you think it's unfair to compare the Virgina Tech murderer with a terrorist? Well, I don't think so.

@Scott
"Of course, something like that would never happen in Germany"

Nobody claims that it happens only in America. However, the simple fact is that this particular incident happend three days before in America.

Besides, when you look at this lists of recent massacres (scroll down to "Criminal and non-political massacres") or school shootings, you'll notice that indeed quite a lot of them took place in the US.

The point is that the typical amoklauf kid is precisely what the nanny media want you to think of the typical suicide terrorist: a desperate loner with no backing in society.

On the other hand, behind the suicide bombers there are entire organisations who indoctrinate them from kindergarten on, control the mass media, supply their training and their bombs, bribe their families, masquerade their acitivities as charity and resistance, provide religious justification for the murder, and all the rest of it.

Only seen from underneath the Iron Burqa of the nanny media Hamas appears to be as harmless as a Cho Seung-Hui.

PS: The list you linked does not mention the Sebastian Bosse case, how many more may be missing?

@ fuchur,

So - if this is supposed to represent Virginia Tech - shouldn't the man on the right be a young South Korean and not an old white guy? Secondly - how does the insane act of one person translate over to an entire nation?

You might legitimately argue that, factually speaking, there is more gun violence in the US than in some other nations - but this cartoon is essentially a smear on all Americans - caricaturing them as primitive, violent and gun-obsessed.

Finally - the Virginia Tech killing was the act of a deranged loner with no obvious ties to a larger ideological movement. The Islamic suicide bombers (whether Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Islamic Jihad or others) are part of an organized collection of sects out to implement a very real ideology worldwide - the destruction of Israel and the United States and the implementation of Sharia law over democratic society. In the process, they have intentionally targeted civilians on all levels for death. How anyone could compare that to - or place it side-by-side with - an "American Way" is beyond me and utterly disgusting. Try as you might to argue context or mitigate this hate in some other way - it is what it is.

I sincerely can't believe that fuchur needs Ray's detailed explanations in order to understand why this cartoon is primitive. I simply can't understand how anyone can fail to notice the absurd correlations that this cartoon is making. Nevertheless, many do, even though they consider themselves to be astute observers of events.

There can be only two reasons for this: either one agrees with the message, and thus defends it no matter how outrageous it may be, or one simply lacks an analytical mind, no matter how shrewd he might consider himself.

P.S. Let's not forget that the Islamic suicide bomber is the symbol of the current Palestinian government of Hamas, carrying out the will of the Palestinian people, while the South-Korean killer was a lone demented soul acting against the will of the American people. For fuchur only, I will add that the South-Korean people was not carrying out the will of the American government either.

WDIK, try this:

America is evil (indoctrinated premise). Anything against America is a good thing. This cartoon attacks America, so it is good. If someone critizises the cartoon, defend it.

As you can see, "make sense" is not part of it. The defense itself is actually irrelevant and comes as an after thought. The "facts" that matter have already been established before.
So when we really try and argue with the subject about his defense, we are missing that HUGE ASS premise up in front.

fuchur, I'm glad to hear that the constant news fixation on the Virginia Tech shootings wasn't educational. I'm glad that I and others in my country didn't have to sit through the final manifesto of the shooter and listen to his garbage. Can you tell us what else it is that we don't know about the subject? Can you tell us perhaps what his parents thought of his actions? How about when he came to the country?

I think that your defense is rather thin and in need of a modicum of depth (called a defense in depth and used when meeting a superior enemy (we are the enemy aren't we fuchur?)). Go learn about the tragedy yourself before going off half-cocked.

@Ray

"this cartoon is essentially a smear on all Americans - caricaturing them as primitive, violent and gun-obsessed"

How do you make out "primitive" and "violent"?? Please don't make things up.

"Gun-obsessed" we can talk about. First of all, IMO the author merely claims that American homicidal maniacs prefer guns to suicide belts.
Besides, in the very same sentence you write that "You might legitimately argue that, factually speaking, there is more gun violence in the US than in some other nations". Therefore, I don't understand why you would consider the claim that Americans are "gun-obsessed" as hateful and totally over-the-top.

Surely there are differences between a homicidal maniac like the Virginia Tech murderer and an Islamist suicide bomber - but IMO, the similarities are much more striking (especially from the victims' perspective). At any rate, it's ridiculous to claim that such a comparison is totally absurd.

"Try as you might to argue context..."

Sorry. I wasn't aware that context is a bad thing. So you think it's totally irrelevant that this cartoon was published three days after the Virginia Tech massacre?

"it is what it is"

Well, duh.

@ fuchur

"How do you make out "primitive" and "violent"?? Please don't make things up."

How do I make out violent? Well - um - how about the fact that the guy is walking around with like 20 guns strapped to his belt - and he looks like he is about to reach for them. How do I make out primitive? Well - if this isn't the most obvious caricature of the primitive, baseball cap wearing American, than I don't know what is. I guess he has to look like a caveman and walk on all fours to satisfy your requirements...

""Gun-obsessed" we can talk about. First of all, IMO the author merely claims that American homicidal maniacs prefer guns to suicide belts.
Besides, in the very same sentence you write that "You might legitimately argue that, factually speaking, there is more gun violence in the US than in some other nations". Therefore, I don't understand why you would consider the claim that Americans are "gun-obsessed" as hateful and totally over-the-top."

OK. Let's examine this. There is more gun violence in the US than in some other countries, particularly western countries. Now to you (and perhaps the cartoonist) that apparently makes ALL Americans gun-obsessed, even though a tiny minority actually engage in violent, criminal acts with guns. The fundamental problem here is that an issue (gun violence) that is perpetrated by a tiny segment of the community in the United States (or in any other nation for that matter) is being superimposed on the entire society. Saying that - however - does not exclude us from openly discussing why the rate of gun violence is higher in the USA. The point that I would make is that ugly and demeaning caricatures and stereotypes are hardly the way to conduct a constructive dialog.

"Surely there are differences between a homicidal maniac like the Virginia Tech murderer and an Islamist suicide bomber - but IMO, the similarities are much more striking (especially from the victims' perspective). At any rate, it's ridiculous to claim that such a comparison is totally absurd.

"Try as you might to argue context..."

Sorry. I wasn't aware that context is a bad thing. So you think it's totally irrelevant that this cartoon was published three days after the Virginia Tech massacre?"

I stand by my original argument on this: The Virginia Tech killing was the act of a deranged loner with no obvious ties to a larger ideological movement. The Islamic suicide bombers (whether Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Islamic Jihad or others) are part of an organized collection of sects out to implement a very real ideology worldwide - the destruction of Israel and the United States and the implementation of Sharia law over democratic society. In the process, they have intentionally targeted civilians on all levels for death. How anyone could compare that to - or place it side-by-side with - an "American Way" is beyond me and utterly disgusting. Try as you might to argue context or mitigate this hate in some other way - it is what it is.

As far as context goes: You would have an argument if this cartoon did not take a horrific crime committed by a South Korean loner and attempt to extrapolate that onto the entire American society. These sorts of crimes are exceedingly rare and do not reflect any society. The attempt to connect it to a so-called "American Way" - thereby smearing all Americans - is not defensible by any reference to context.

Simply amazing... fuchur needs even more detailed explanations... No wonder there can not be any meaningful discussions with people like him.

I am not too sure that there wasn’t a connection between the Virginia Tech shooter and
Arab suicide bombers. Both were/are young. Both meant to kill themselves and others. Both were losers. Both seem to not ‘fit in’. In the Virginia Tech shooter he was Asian, not well adjusted or integrated with campus life. The Arabs are also not adjusted to the modern world. Both are known for poor quality for relations with women. Both talk big, bad talk but come/came across as loser wimps that only could kill the defenseless. The Virginia Tech shooter had spent years in Saudi Arabia. Odd. The Virginia Tech failed out of engineering. Arabs aren’t good with technology.

So in general we have two groups that have trouble with women, pick on the weak, can not do technology, and make martyr videos of themselves and have lived in Saudi Arabia.

Losers is the fundamental definition. Islam just insures it more, like swamps do malaria. We might not be in so much a War on Terror as much as a war against Arab loserism, manifesting itself in Islamic terrorism.

Mohammed Atta( he of the eyeliner) loser. Osamma, loser. All these loser males talking about women they’ll have after they die. How much loser can you get? I can not even remember the VT shooters name. What a loser.

Since the 9/11 terrorists were all recruited and trained in Germany, can we say that was the "German Way?"

Since German police with machine guns are always present to keep the peace at Bundesliga matches, can we say this is the "German Way?"

Since neo-Nazi skinheads attack blacks, gays, and Jews in today's Germany, can we say this is the "German Way?"

Since aggresive German driving makes early each autobahn accident in a multiple fatality crash, can we say this is the "German Way" but that they use cars instead of guns?

Since another German rider has just been banned from the Tour de France for doping, can we say that all German athletes dope and that it is the "German Way?"

Since a Bundesliga referee plus some players were caught fixing matches, can we then say all German footballers cheat and that this is the "German Way?"

Do you see the dangers and distortions of using the actions of a few to condemn an entire society?

Carl Spackler -

The Virginia Tech shooter had spent years in Saudi Arabia.

Really? This is the first time I hear this.

IMHO, the similarity between the two examples is the underlying cult of victimhood. Both see themselves not only as a victim of some kind of unspecific oppression, but the idea that being a victim entitled them to equally unspecific violence is of spiritual significance to them.

But then again the difference, in Islam the cult of victimhood is an essential part of the culture, in the West there is at least some kind of culture that goes beyond it.

fuchur is a victim too, hence it needs to maintain the illusion that the Arab way and the American way or Islam and Christianity were equally evil.

You mean the Germans are once again victims?

The German Way of Life: Here are incidents of European school shootings prior to 2002. For some strange reason, German and European links do not seem to update the list past 2002. I am curious if there has been more shootings Europe wide. Note that all but the Scottish incident happened in Germany:

Scotland, March 1996: Gun enthusiast Thomas Hamilton shoots 16 children and their teacher dead at their primary school in Dunblane, Scotland before killing himself.
Germany, November 1999: A 15-year-old student in Meissen, eastern Germany, stabbed his teacher to death after taking bets from classmates he would dare commit the crime.
He was later jailed for seven years.
Germany, March 2000: A 16-year-old pupil at a private boarding school in the Bavarian town of Branneburg, shot a 57-year-old teacher, who later died from injuries.
The teenager - who also shot himself - was facing expulsion from school after failing a cannabis test.
Germany, February 2002: A former pupil killed his headmaster and set off pipe bombs in the technical school he had recently been expelled from in Freising near Munich.
The man also shot dead his boss and a foreman at the company he worked for before turning the gun on himself. Another teacher was shot in the face, but survived.
Germany, April 2002: Seventeen people killed after a gunman - a former pupil - opens fire in a school in Erfurt, eastern Germany. He then turned the gun on himself.

Then again, school shootings are kind of an American thing, made famous my Michael Moore in Bowling for Columbine. Germans are more creative when one of their kind wants to cause havoc for some perceived social slight. Germany has the Geisterfahrer. Geisterfahrer are people who travel in the wrong direction on the Autobahn, causing horrific crashes such as this recent incident: http://www.yoome.de/news.8253.html

joe, I would say we are in a parliamentary snafu.

Have a look at the election poll results.

This is a five-party system with two big parties (conservatives, socialists) and three small ones (liberals, greens, communists).

No two-party coalition can get a majority, except the two big parties.

And no three-party coalition can get a majority, except liberals + conservatives + greens.

So the only development which can bring about change from the Grand Coalition to a Jamaica Coalition is when the socialists lose voters to the communists. I.e. to get better it must get worse, oddly enough.

IMHO, we´re stuck in this, but victims? Feeling that way requires to appreciate the Iron Burqa.

"I think the author has a point: There's not much difference between a guy who puts on an explosive belt and blowing himself up, and a guy who grabs a couple of guns and kills 32 people and then himself. Maybe you think it's unfair to compare the Virgina Tech murderer with a terrorist? Well, I don't think so"

Then why isn't the gun toter Oriental? I mean if he was going to make a point about the Virginai Tech shooting?

Of course if he just wanted to USE the tradgedy to demain regular Americans then it makes sense doesn't it?

You know, looking at the cartoon again today, I think my interpretation that this had something to do with Virgina Tech was wrong.

See the little bird at the right side? It's Tomicek's trademark, and it represents the author himself. It apparently wears a "suicide belt" made out of pens. That simpy doesn't make sense in the Virgina Tech context.

So, the message seems to be: Islamists wear suicide belts, the US uses guns, I'd prefer the pen.
Or maybe: The US fight the terrorists with guns, I fight the terrorists with pens?
Or maybe it just says: The terrorists have put on their suicide belts, and the US have responded by putting on their gun belt (and whether that's good or bad is up to the reader to decide).

At any rate, I fail to see any anti-Americanism. It's not even clear whether we're supposed to approve or disapprove of the USA guy. At least the terrorist guy seems scared, so that's not bad, is it?

Ray claims that the USA guy looks *primitive* and *violent*. I cannot see evidence for either: The attribute for the "primitive American" would be a cowboy hat. This looks more like a drill seargent's cap. Also, the face would look contorted, the tongue would hang out, the eyes would look weird - there are countless possibilities to make a comic figure look violent or primitive (look at that one for a comparison). This guy looks calm, composed, determined, maybe a bit scared.

>> The US fight the terrorists with guns, I fight the terrorists with pens?

So we have to decide whether the cartoon is a sign of Anti-Americanism or pure stupidity of the drawer? "Fight terrorists with pens", yeah right. As if our media in general or this (average) drawer would even try that.

>> It's not even clear whether we're supposed to approve or disapprove of the USA guy.

It's not even clear whether we're supposed to approve or disapprove of the Islamofascist terrorist guy.

The mental gymnastics some are going through to explain this away is bizarre/scary and humorous all at the same time.

It seems that the only response that will work is for Americans to reciprocate. Cowboy capitalism? The response is "Jackboot Socialism"

Neo-nazis? "The German Way" - "Deutsche Verhaeltnisse"

Doping German cyclists? Typical Germans - "Deutsche Verhaeltnisse"

German school shootings? "Deutsche Verhaeltnisse"

High unemployment? "Deutsche Verhaeltnisse"

The possibilities are endless...

Carl Spackler, you wrote: "I am not too sure that there wasn’t a connection between the Virginia Tech shooter and
Arab suicide bombers. Both were/are young. Both meant to kill themselves and others. Both were losers. Both seem to not ‘fit in’. In the Virginia Tech shooter he was Asian, not well adjusted or integrated with campus life. The Arabs are also not adjusted to the modern world."

Understand that the difference is while the Asian VT shooter did not fit into his OWN society he lived in, the suicide bombers very well fit into the society they are RAISED from within. The VT shooter was a lonely, deranged outsider. He harbored a personal hatred, he had a personal axe to grind with that world, so he went on a rampage. The Arab suicide bomber, on the other hand, is neither considered deranged in view of the forces who indoctrinate him to act as such, nor is he considered an "outsider" by the masses who believe in his acts. Instead, after his death, he is considered a hero. Show me how that Asian VT shooter is considered a hero. The comparison is totally off. There is NOTHING even remotely comparable. OK, maybe that both actors are idiots when you view them in a vacuum. But for VERY different reasons. ANd it is "the reasons" which are the point of this.
This cartoon simply is totally off. Not so much because it insults the US, but more because it shows that the artist either had NO clue at all, or that he doesn't *want* to have a clue, both of which is almost equally bad - especially for someone who is in the business of representing world events and such influencing peoples' minds.

This picture says this -
The terrorist looks on with a question in his eye- "What is he doing with that gun belt? I use dynamite."
The man is not primitive, but he is a hick. You can tell that by the USA baseball cap.
Of course he is a white man, those are the only evil men on this planet, but his shoes are not very hick like. The shoes are more business like, so maybe this represents some kind of a businessman.

The picture is saying that terrorist are violent etc...usually Germans will at least admit that much, but this picture says that the "American Way" is also violence, just a somewhat different form, gun belts not bomb belts.

To say the "American Way" is violence, comparable to bomb belt terrorist, is an insult to all Americans, case closed. Even a dumb hick such as myself can see that.

But so what? This is nothing compared to the anti Americanism coming from the hate Bush crowd. Kerry, Murtha, Durbin all called our troops terrorist. Who said abu grab is doing the same as always, just under new management? Ted the swimmer Kennedy I think. I just watched the recent web cast of Meet the Press. The Russ Feingold segment will make you sick, even for a hick. When the Worldwide MSM hears this garbage from a "respected" US Senator no wonder they hate us. To cure the problem of anti-Americanism you have to start at home. President Bush should instruct his AG to start treason proceedings for leading Democrats, then maybe some of this tripe would subside.

Carl Spackler, actually your observation was right in that Cho was emulating the suicide bomber with the only weapons system that he could come up with. His intent was to kill as large a number of people and to do it with as much notoriety as he could achieve. His manifesto was done in the same vein as the taped messages of the pathetic maggots of the Religion of Human Sacrifice. His desire was to look as heroic, in a wagnerian sense, as he imagined the terrorists to be. A product of his twisted mind.

It occurs to me the suicide bomber is pointing at the armed american and looking scared?

@ Everyone who doesn’t see the problem with this caricature:

What if the caption was "Islamic Way" ?

Would Muslims have a legitimate objection to the portrayal of their ways as suicidal terrorism?

Secondly - how does the insane act of one person translate over to an entire nation?

As you should know, isolated incidents are adequate proof of whatever stereotype you're trying to validate (or craft), regardless of whether it's a lone gunman, the Inquisition, or a passenger who couldn't take asprin on an airplane.

Unless, of course, you're observing something like incessant episodes of mass murder committed by Arab Muslims. Those are freak occurrances, not at all representative of any culture of religion.

Cho did not spend years in Saudi Arabia. His father spent 10 years in S.A. oil fields before he ever married Cho's mother. Cho arrived in the U.S. from South Korea when he was 8 years old.

At any rate, other than the publication date, I see no evidence that this 'cartoon' was provoked by the events at Tech. I'm not prepared to argue it either way.

What I will argue is that the German public is evidently not terribly demanding. This same trope has been trotted out for decades. It is beyond me that Germans still find it amusing. I just find it dull, lazy and lacking any indication of creative thought.

First of all, IMO the author merely claims that American homicidal maniacs prefer guns to suicide belts.

Nothing in that cartoon singles out homicidal maniacs in any way. The caption is "American Way", not "homicidal maniac way"; the gun-laden figure is representative of "American", not of "homicidal maniac".

Pamela -

What I will argue is that the German public is evidently not terribly demanding. This same trope has been trotted out for decades. It is beyond me that Germans still find it amusing. I just find it dull, lazy and lacking any indication of creative thought.

That´s correct, but it leaves out one important point.

Reaffirming dumb people in their stereotypes is where the money is being made in the media business.

What would this artist live from if he was honest?

@FranzisM
That´s correct, but it leaves out one important point.

Reaffirming dumb people in their stereotypes is where the money is being made in the media business.

Good point. Unfortunately, the U.S. media is just as guilty as the German/European media. Currently, there's a big brouhaha over here about an article run by The National Review written by one 'Scott Thomas' - a nome de guerre intended to protect this 'soldier' from retribution from his superior officers. Among other things, he claims some soldiers are using Bradley fighting vehicles like bumper cars - crashing thru concrete barriers and turning on a dime to run over dogs. He also claims that there was a woman in the mess hall whose face was severely scarred from some sort of attack. The soldiers at his table were supposedly engaging is jock talk about whether or not she was 'hot'. Thomas claims he couldn't tell if she was a soldier or a contractor. This is a story that has two major flaws. Injured personnel are removed from theater and all soldiers are in iniform. And now 'Scott Thoms' has some 'splainin' to do. Preferably before a courts martial.

The premise of all media bias is that the audience is stupid. The difference between the U.S. and Germany/Europe seems to be that is a premise with fewer untoward consequences on your side of the pond.

The interesting thing is that the really stupid people in the audience think only of the rest of the audience as stupid but not of themselves. In the example you gave, a certain number of readers will think good that somebody lectures those stupid conservatives that war is hell, even when the story is fake but accurate. Same with the cartoon, whose equally subtle message was torn apart in the discussion above. These are the readers that bring in the money, because the satisfaction they achieve from that fantasy is addictive.

This is called the third-person effect, and guess who graduated over it.

Hi FranzisM, thanks for the link to the third-person effect. I have observed it very often, and I have often wondered what and if there was an official name for this phenomenon. With regard to journalists who report based on how they think their stupid readers will react instead of reporting objectively, till now I called it "pandering to the stupid". A good example of this was the reply by Markus Günther:
"I do, by the way, share your concern that there is a highly problematic bias in German coverage of the US, and I am very much troubled by that. However, making me an example of this bias is going to confuse my few fans and many critics alike."
He actually believes that he himself is especially enlightened, and that his fans and critics alike are too stupid to understand why he should be criticized for writing outright falsehoods.

So... this third person effect. Would evidence of that look something like "Americans are sheep brainwashed by their right-wing propagandistic media"?

Former White House intern Monica Lewinsky, whose sexual relationship with President Clinton led to his impeachment, has graduated from the London School of Economics, her publicist said Wednesday.

Clinton was not impeached for sex. What led to his impeachment was purjuring himself and obstructing justice in the Paula Jones suit.

And is it just me, or is Monica looking a bit... masculine these days?

Pamela, erratum, Scott Thomas at 'The New Republic.'

The National Review has no connection to him.

@Mike H
Pamela, erratum, Scott Thomas at 'The New Republic.'

The National Review has no connection to him.

Oh, fuck me. Absolutely inexcusable on my part. It is the New Republic.

Shock Troops

Here is a nice tidbit from ZDF:

In the same vein....


Recently when ZDF reported that Tour de France rider Alberto Contador won a stage, he was referred to as a Spanish rider. Two days later, when Vinoukorov was tossed from the race while others, including Contador, were suspected of doping, ZDF then referred to him as a rider "for the American team Discovery." Sometimes it is the subtle differences (like this) which add up over time..

Contador now appears poised to win the Tour de France so I'm sure ZDF will make him Spanish once again. LOL.

Gosh...as a gun-owning American, I took a different take on this cartoon altogether! I didn't find it insulting at all...it appears to me to show a terrorist fearful of a well armed American who's ready to defend himself, whether it represents a Civilian or America as a nation.

...sort of like when someone derisively refers to Americans as "cowboys". Here in Colorado, as in most of the USA, cowboys are still regarded as heroic figures prepared to fight when necessary, honest and plainspoken. Call me a gun-crazy cowboy all you like...we're proud to be so.

Paperpunchr, American citizen, husband, father of two, a retired chemical engineer...and a proud "cowboy."

London Times/Times Online 08.09.2007

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/comment/columnists/guest_contributors/article2409817.ece

An excerpt:

"In Britain, however, the image of violent America remains unassailably entrenched. Never mind the findings of the International Crime Victims Survey (published by the Home Office in 2003), indicating that we now suffer three times the level of violent crime committed in the United States; never mind the doubling of handgun crime in Britain over the past decade, since we banned pistols outright and confiscated all the legal ones.

We are so self-congratulatory about our officially disarmed society, and so dismissive of colonial rednecks, that we have forgotten that within living memory British citizens could buy any gun – rifle, pistol, or machinegun – without any licence. When Dr Watson walked the streets of London with a revolver in his pocket, he was a perfectly ordinary Victorian or Edwardian. Charlotte Brontë recalled that her curate father fastened his watch and pocketed his pistol every morning when he got dressed; Beatrix Potter remarked on a Yorkshire country hotel where only one of the eight or nine guests was not carrying a revolver; in 1909, policemen in Tottenham borrowed at least four pistols from passers-by (and were joined by other armed citizens) when they set off in pursuit of two anarchists unwise enough to attempt an armed robbery. We now are shocked that so many ordinary people should have been carrying guns in the street; the Edwardians were shocked rather by the idea of an armed robbery.

If armed crime in London in the years before the First World War amounted to less than 2 per cent of that we suffer today, it was not simply because society then was more stable. ..."

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