Denmark has not been in the news as of late, so perhaps in a bid to stir up some more interest in the northern European country, major newspapers are, as of early this morning, reprinting the infamous Muhammad cartoons – or if you take their word for it, they are responding to an alleged attempted assassination plot against the original artist, Westergaard. From CBS News this morning:
The Jyllands-Posten newspaper, which first published the 12 drawings on Sept. 30, 2005, reprinted Westergaard's cartoon in its print edition Wednesday. Several other major dailies, including Politiken and Berlingske Tidende, also reprinted the drawing.
“We are doing this to document what is at stake in this case, and to unambiguously back and support the freedom of speech that we as a newspaper will always defend,” said the Copenhagen-based Berlingske Tidende.
Tabloid Ekstra Bladet reprinted all 12 drawings.
At least three European newspapers – in Sweden, the Netherlands and Spain – also reprinted the cartoon as part of their coverage of the Danish arrests.
The decision by the Danish papers came in response to Tuesday's news that intelligence police had arrested two Tunisians and a Danish citizen of Moroccan origin for plotting to kill Westergaard.
The suspect has been released, but as the history of humanity has shown, repeating mistakes is what we're all about. While the response to the cartoons when they first appeared was arguably sensationalized by western mainstream media, there is no doubt this move will open up wounds in Europe that run deep, have never been attended to in any sustainable fashion, and will once again make Danes look like petty bigots and some Muslims like reactionaries.
The image at top is Art Spiegelman's response to the original debacle – his artwork appeared on the cover of the June 2006 Harper's and depicts racist caricatures of various “minorities” throughout the ages.