Friday, December 30, 2005

Happy Jew Year!

Dry Bones cartoon - Terrorists

Calendars are very interesting.

The Christian calendar does indeed date not from Jesus's birth but from the day of his circumcision.
The Jewish calendar dates not from the birth of the world but rather from the creation of Adam.

The word Brit (short for Brit Milah) is pronounced in Yiddish-flavored Hebrew as Bris. In this cartoon I chose to use Brit. Having the terrorist say Bris might have implied to some that he was Jewish. You never know what folks can read into the use of a word.
When I titled the cartoon I had the funny thought that since Jan 1st is the anniversary of Jesus's circumcision (or Brit, or Bris...) the proper greeting for Jews is not Happy New Year, but rather a traditional Mazal Tov! (Good Luck!).

Of course that meant that I had to choose between the Yiddishy Mazel Tov and the Israeli Mazal Tov. I chose Mazel which gives, in my mind, a more folksy feel.

The characters in the cartoon are two terrorists. The a-hole on the left with the condom-shaped head originated with the photo of one of the creeps at Munich. The image was burned into my mind and it is one that I often use when depicting Palestinian terrorists. I already showed the photo in a recent posting but I think it needs to be shown more these days, so below is the photo of evil at the Munich Olympics that "inspired" my cartoon character.

The Face of Evil at Munich

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Protect the Troops (1994)

1994 Dry Bones cartoon - Protect The Troops
1994. The cartoon mocks a health campaign in the Israeli army. We want our boys (and girls) to have the best protection, the most modern armor, the safest procedures... And sometimes we on the homefront (in Israel, America, and wherever) discover that they don't have the equipment that they should have.

Sometimes reworking an old joke can help in writing a comic strip script. I built this cartoon on an old joke about the battle-weary Russian army unit whose Captain reads them orders from headquarters. "The troops will all receive a long-needed change of underwear," he reads.
Hurray! Shout the troops.
"Okay," says the Captain, "Igor, you change with Vladimir, Ivan, you change with..."

For the cartoon to be funny, I felt that I had to leave the last panel for the reader to contemplate the soldiers' reactions to what they've just heard.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Munich Movie Travesty

Dry Bones cartoon - Palestinian Terror
For a more detailed examination of this latest media smear of the Jewish State read Andrea Levin's film review. Andrea is Executive Director and President of CAMERA, (Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America) which monitors key information sources related to the Arab-Israeli conflict including television and radio as well as journals and popular magazines.

Being a comic strip cartoonist is very much like being a film maker, you've got to decide on a story, write a script, pick your actors, and write the dialogue they'll speak. The "actors" used in today's cartoon are two guys I think of as the "Old Codgers." History is being rewritten at such a rapid pace that these days the only folks who seem to know the truth are those old enough to remember it, so I invented these two oldsters to appear in cartoons like this one.

In case you're not old enough to remember, below is the photo of evil at the Munich Olympics that chilled us all.

The Face of Evil at Munich

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Tuesday, December 27, 2005

We Were Tricked! (1994)

Dry Bones cartoon - We Were Innocent 1994
The above cartoon is from 1994. We'd been fooled at Oslo and tricked into believing the sincerity of Arafat's handshake on the White House lawn some months before.

Well it's now months after Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza strip and it would seem, on the surface, that I could run the same cartoon today.

The fact is that I would not run that cartoon today. Sharon did not pull us out of the Gaza Strip to curry favor with the Palestinians. It was a unilateral act taken when we/he determined that we had no real partner for peace.
The ongoing violence is a surprise to no one. I personally believe that the goal was to start getting the wagons in a circle in preparation for the next mid east war. We are going to have to set our own borders and then attempt to defend them. With the Iranians threatening to destroy us, the Palestinians falling deeper under the influence of the Islamofascists, al Queda blowing up Jordanian hotels, and the Syrians murdering Lebanese leaders in the once peaceful country to our north, we no longer are feeling the disappointment expressed in the 1994 cartoon above. We didn't expect more. We're living in reality these days.

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Monday, December 26, 2005

Happy Chanukah

Dry Bones cartoon - Chanukah

When I was a kid growing up in Brooklyn, at Christmas, newspaper cartoonists did special spreads with visions of Christmas Trees, miniature flying reindeer, and stockings "hung by the chimney with care." My Chanukah was an almost subversive recognition of the survival of my people through the long centuries of our victimization by civillizations and peoples which massively outnumbered us, hungered to destroy us, and yet could not stamp out our will to survive, fight back and be free. It shined brightly in the little lights of freedom that we lit and placed in our windows.
When I became a newspaper cartoonist in the world's only Jewish country It was natural that I would publically gush at holiday times, delighted to express joy in our culture in an open, in your face, normalcy.
I guess that's a good part of my Zionism.
Meanwhile permit me to wish you Christians out there a very Merry time, filled with peace and love and good will towards men.

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Friday, December 23, 2005

'Tis the Season...

Dry Bones cartoon - Ariel Sharon

It used to be much simpler.

When I was a kid growing up in Brooklyn I went to P.S.67.
We had "assemblies" where the entire school sat in the auditorium and sang Christmas Carols. "Silent Night", "Oh Come All Ye Faithful", "Little Town of Bethlehem", etc. We'd previously been taught the words by "the Music Teacher" in "Music Appreciation" class.
It did not prevent me from loving Chanukah or growing up as a proud Jew who would one day decide to live in Israel, his ancestral Jewish homeland.

Like I say, it used to be much simpler.

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Thursday, December 22, 2005

Peace Demonstrations (1991)

Dry Bones cartoon - Peace Demonstrators 1991
The above cartoon is from 1991.
"Anti-War" demonstrators in Europe and America were clamoring for "Peace" and marching against the First Gulf War
Fourteen and a half years ago.
Obviously I could run the same cartoon today.

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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Sharon's New Party

Dry Bones cartoon - Ariel Sharon

According to all the polls Sharon's new party, Kadima, is way ahead of everybody else. After the Prime Minister's stroke, incredibly, he went UP in the polls. His party is really a one-man party with lots of other folks joining the about-to-be winning side.

In order to describe the situation in a cartoon I chose to take what the public seems to be saying and turn it into an announcement being made to the public.

I LOVE doing "Good News, Bad News" cartoons.


Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Justice (1995)

1995 Dry Bones cartoon - Justice 1995. Ten years ago.
O.J. has pretty much disappeared, while the released Palestinian killers are still happily killing and maiming innocent people.


If you don't recognize the murderer on the right, you'll be hearing about him soon. His name is Marwan Barghouti and he's running for political office.

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Monday, December 19, 2005

A Tale of Two Peoples

Dry Bones cartoon - Elections

This was a difficult cartoon to do.
I wanted to comment on the fact that Hamas "won" three major West Bank Municipality elections and looks poised to win many seats in next month's Palestinian Legislative Council.

Of course I'm in no position to advise West Bank and Gazan Arabs on how to vote, or for whom to vote.

It took me hours to focus on what was really bothering me.
What's really bothering me is that at the same time that Iraqis are marching out of tyranny, the Arabs that we live with are marching into tryanny and Islamofacism.
The cartoon was then easy to do.
Sometimes a simple stating of the truth is enough.

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Friday, December 16, 2005

Holiday Trees

Dry Bones cartoon - Holiday Trees - Holiday Lights

We live in a time of religious war. Western civilization is under attack by militant Islam. At the same time, incredibly, there is an attempt, in the west, to denigrate the importance of our own religions. One indication is the recent disappearence of the word Allah in news reports. Bombers who shout "Allah is great!" are now described as saying "God is great!" As if there were no difference between the God of the Bible and Allah, the god described in the Koran.

Now we have the move to dechristianize Christmas?!

Just when Jews and Christians need to need to rediscover the truths, traditions, and strengths of our two sister faiths.

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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Golda (1973)

1973 Dry Bones cartoon - Golda 1973. Israeli Intransigence. This is a really early Dry Bones cartoon. Notice that the Dry Bones title was in a different typeface and not like today's (Cooper Black). Notice that there are six panels and not like today's four-panel Dry Bones cartoons. But also notice that the text could be used today with absolutely no change!

Golda Meir, PM of Israel
In those days the whole world knew "Golda", Israel's cigarette-smoking, tough, grandmotherly, Prime Minister.
The following is from Golda's Obituary:
"Her term of office as Prime Minister began when Israel was in the throes of the War of Attrition and ended with the Yom Kippur War. The Labour Party to which she was devoted was torn by divisions. Unacceptable 'peace proposals' were being put forward by the Great Powers. The situation was daunting for anyone of her age and her poor state of health. But she thrived on difficulties and once in harness, her health improved."
Golda Meir, PM of Israel

It's a curious fact that we remember folks as they were at the end of their lives and not as they were in their youthful years. I thought I'd share this second photo of Golda with you.
Golda as a sexy 18 year-old Jewess, with her amazing life still ahead of her.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Infidels & Dogs

Dry Bones cartoon - Christmas and Chanukah

The Jihadists are always enthralled by bizarre plots, so, noticing the coming together of the two holidays, I began to ponder what the Islamofascists would make of the meshing of the calendars this year.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Then and Now (1994)

1994 Dry Bones cartoon - Saddam
This time, it looks as if the Iranians won't let us stay out of it.


Monday, December 12, 2005

Iranian Nukes

Dry Bones cartoon - Iranian Nukes

I read the Israeli statement that "at the moment we have no plans...". I used Mr. Shuldig, my "alter ego" to at first read something broader into the cautious Israeli statement and then, in the final panel, to realize the limitations of the Israeli denial.

I assume that readers will "get it" and laugh. Of course this is one of those subtle punch lines that the careful reader gets, the less-careful reader requires a second read to "get", and is dismissed by the rest as "just not funny".

So how did I do with you?

As an after-thought, I added the sound of the ticking clock next to the Dry Bones head... in a way, it is the real message of the cartoon. Time is slipping away and soon the inaction of the world will force us into a preemptive move against the regional giant that has sworn to destroy us.

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Friday, December 09, 2005

The Peace Process

Dry Bones cartoon - Peace Process

Sometimes a simple stating of the truth is enough.
The continuing Bush administration's attempt to see the PA as a partner for peace rather than as a beachhead of the enemy is a case in point.
Condi and Dubblya are doing a lot of squinting these days.

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Thursday, December 08, 2005

Elections (1999)

Dry Bones cartoon - Elections 1999

The above cartoon is from 1999. We were about to have elections, and as the cartoon notes, we were offered a choice of 34 different political parties.

Well, here we are in 2005 and soon we'll be having elections. This time however, there seems to be a less complicated choice facing the voters.
Do we vote for Sharon's new party or don't we?

Less complicated but not any easier.

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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Give Peace a Chance

Dry Bones cartoon - Palestinian Terror

After posting yesterday's "Golden Oldie", news came in about the latest suicide bomber slaughter in the lovely Israeli seaside city of Netanya. I was angry and upset at the light-hearted joke, so I grabbed the cartoon, erased the words, switched panel 3 and panel 4, and wrote in the new text for today's offering.

John LennonI cynically titled the post with the words of the John Lennon Peace anthem. As if simply "giving peace a chance" was enough and as if we in Israel had not given "peace" enough chances already.

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Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Terror in our Streets (2002)

Dry Bones cartoon - suicide Bombers

First Sgt.-Maj. Shoshe Atiya
The above cartoon is from 3 1/2 years ago.
And the world continues to ignore our plight.
Yesterday, again, innocent folks were killed and cruelly maimed by a human bomb sent by the Palestinians for that very purpose.
The woman to the left, in the hospital bed, is an Israeli policewoman, Shoshe Atiya.

As the Jerusalem Post Reports:
"A little before 11:30 a.m., Atiya was riding in a squad car with two other police officers down Rehov Herzl when the driver of the vehicle in front of them reported a suspicious-looking man.

The individual in question, Lotfi Abu Saada from the West Bank village of Illar, was tall, blonde and fair-skinned. "He didn't look Middle Eastern at all," noted Atiya.

Abu Saada was, however, walking in a strangely robotic fashion and had his hand buried in a black video camera case.

Atiya, who is pregnant, pursued the young man, who made his way to the nearby mall. When he cleared the barriers surrounding the front of the complex, Atiya shouted a warning to the three security guards at the doors.

"I screamed 'Terrorist! Terrorist! Get his hand out of the bag,'" she recalled.

People began to scatter. But Haim Amram, the security guard who intercepted Abu Saada, just led him away with a gentle push on the shoulder instead of trying to wrestle his hand from the bomb trigger.

Atiya watched in disbelief as both Amram and the terrorist walked towards her.

"The terrorist was waiting to detonate the bomb when he got close enough to me," she said, "and I planned to jump him and grab his hand." In the end, the bomber was just too quick. The security guard and three others were killed while Atiya escaped with minor injuries.

This would not be Atiya's first close call with a bomb. She witnessed a half a dozen suicide bombings over the years and was lightly wounded in the 1996 attack near Tel Aviv's Dizengoff Center, in which 13 people, including children in their Purim costumes, were killed.
And so it goes.

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Monday, December 05, 2005

Terror on the Web

Dry Bones cartoon - Terror on the Web

Sometimes the news is so bizarre that it defies belief. I found out about this incredible "contest" story from a terrific site called MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute) which provides translations of Arabic, Farsi, and Hebrew media from the Middle East. The link to the "contest" is here.

The "contest" is real, the prize is real, all I did was to add a punch line.
These days "72 virgins" is synonymous with "go kill yourself!"

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Friday, December 02, 2005

Sharon Runs

Dry Bones cartoon - Ariel Sharon bolts the party

Official Sharon portrait
I went off for a week on a trip to Amsterdam where I was able to avoid all newspapers and news reports. Returning to Israel, I discovered that, once again, Ariel Sharon has revolutionized our local political scene. The last time he did this was when he created the Likud party (in 1973).

This time he's done it by killing the Likud. In any case, my problem was to sum up the situation without the benefit of listening to the pontification of our local pundits and political commentators. In Israel that means everyone over the age of 16!

What struck me at first glance was the wide support he was receiving. Thus the horserace metaphor!


Thursday, December 01, 2005

We Worried About The Future (1994)

1994 Dry Bones cartoon - the 21st Century
Notice that in my apprehension about the 21st century (which was then only 6 years in the future), I failed to predict killer hurricanes, massive tidal waves, earthquakes, global warming, an "intifada" in France, an explosion of international anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism, or a world wide Jihadist War against us all.

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