A French cartoonist will go on trial Tuesday facing charges of inciting “racial hatred” with drawings some consider anti-Semitic and anti-Islamic. Maurice Sinet, the cartoonist for the far left weekly, Charlie Hebdo, was at the center of a heated, free-speech debate in France this summer, which some in the French media even likened to the Dreyfus affair. Sinet, better known as Sin??, was fired by his editor, Philippe Val, for refusing to apologize for a July cartoon in which he said the politically ambitious son of the French president, Jean Sarkozy, 22, would “go far” for converting to Judaism before marrying his Jewish fiance, Jessica Sebaoun-Darty. To date, there is no evidence that the young Sarkozy, who is mayor of the wealthy suburb of Neuilly, plans to convert to Judaism.The French human rights group, The International League Against Racism and Anti-Semitism, LICRA, has taken Sin?? to court in Lyon for inciting racial hatred for both the July cartoon and a June drawing that mocks Muslim women who wear head scarves. Major French political and intellectual figures are divided over whether Sin??’s firing was deserved, with petitions signed and circulated over the Internet by both camps.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.