Jon Stewart’s coverage of “March of the Parisians” on the Daily Show the other night was fantastic. His guest was Jimmy Carter, who was his fabulous self, but for an episode packed with multiple hysterically executed clips (Hassan, the ‘denounciest’ Muslim ever! – see below ), for me at least – Mohammad Saba’aneh‘s flash appearance stole the show. Did you recognize him?
After a brief introduction a mini montage of the crowd pencil-photos appeared with Stewart claiming “the march gave Parisians a chance to introduce a new icon of liberty”, that pencils were “the new symbol of freedom of expression was everywhere.”
Stewart emphasized the flagrant hypocrisy of world leaders attending the march, whose regimes are complicit in gross violations of human rights pertaining to the suppression of free speech. Ticking off the names countries — Russia, Egypt, Turkey, blogger-flogging Saudi Arabia, he referenced Israel (renowned for the arrests, imprisonment, and murder of journalists) with a quote “Palestinian cartoonist…work landed him in an Israeli Prison for five months” .. all of the sudden the image jumped off my screen, of the very person on my mind just seconds before; Mohammad Saba’aneh.
Certainly I am not the only person reminded of Saba’aneh in the wake of the attack. However, I wonder if Stewart even knows his name or what an incredibly prolific and versatile artist he is. I wondered if he had ever seen any of Saba’aneh’s cartoons?
— Sabaaneh (@Sabaaneh) January 8, 2015
Perhaps John Stewart could interview Mohammad Saba’aneh on the Daily Show! Or make a movie about just one of the thousands of Palestinian political prisoners locked away in Israeli jails as we speak. Saba’aneh was returning from Jordan when he was picked up by Israel, for the crime of contacting a publisher about a book on Palestinian prisoners. He is a threat to Israel’s security because his ideas, like his cartoons, are dangerous precisely because his mind is unleashed, in Free Reign.
Don’t miss this episode. Jimmy Carter talks about Palestinians, and Stewart along with his team of comedians, Jason, Hassan and Jessica do a mock up on the ridiculous requirement – no, the demand – of moderate Muslims to “unequivocally condemn” the Hebdo massacre that’s worthy of its own coverage. Which reminds me, someone ask Saba’aneh to condemn the recent attack, graciously, he complied.