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Editorial Cartoonists blossoming in Iraq

I tend not to pay attention to international cartooning news, but I thought this one is newsworthy because of its uniqueness. Editorial cartoonists in Iraq are enjoying their new found freedom of expression.

With few restrictions on speech now, dozens of newspapers have blossomed in Iraq, and all the major ones seem to run one or two cartoons a day, The New York Times reported.

A deep cynicism — about politicians in general, and policies that have turned Iraq into a sectarian bloodbath — emerges in virtually every cartoon, the newspaper said. Cartoonists target venal politicians, heavy-handed American soldiers and dreaded suicide bombers.

One of Iraq’s most famous cartoonists, Muayad Naama, died of a heart attack in November, but the daily newspaper al-Mada posthumously printed one of his cartoons. It showed a love-struck man trying to impress a paramour by decapitating himself, and the woman chastising him for his banal gesture — a statement on how beheadings have become an everyday occurrence.

Another of Naama’s cartoons showed a car salesman pointing out to a prospective customer which vehicles are best for use in car bomb attacks.

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