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French cartoonist rails at ‘stupid’ NYT ban

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Acclaimed French cartoonist Jean Plantu called on the New York Times Tuesday not to ban political cartoons from its pages after a furore involving a caricature of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The artist who founded the Cartooning for Peace charity, told AFP the newspaper was wrong to bow to pressure and remove a drawing by Portuguese illustrator Antonio Moreira Antunes from its site.

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“Humour and unsettling images are part of our democracy,” Plantu said.

Not having biting cartoons was “as stupid as asking children not to do drawings for Mothers’ Day,” he added.

The cartoon of Netanyahu published in April in the Times’ international edition was deemed anti-Semitic by some.

Israel’s ambassador to the UN likened it to the content of Nazi propaganda tabloid Der Sturmer.

It depicted Netanyahu as a guide dog wearing a Star of David collar and leading a blind Donald Trump wearing a kippah Jewish skullcap.

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Opinion page editor James Bennet said the paper had planned for a year to stop running political cartoons — which already no longer appear in the US edition.

From next month it will no longer run political cartoons, Bennet said Monday.

– Threat to freedom of opinion –

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Plantu, chief cartoonist of France’s Le Monde daily, said he was “worried about the future of our democracies and freedom of opinion” adding “one cannot imagine a newspaper without political caricatures.”

The artist, who set up Cartooning for Peace with the late UN chief Kofi Annan, is campaigning to have the UN’s cultural organisation Unesco declare political cartooning a fundamental human right.

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Reporters Without Borders have thrown their weight behind the drive.

Patrick Chappatte, one of the Times’ leading cartoonists, said the newspaper’s decision was directly related to the Netanyahu cartoon.

He condemned the publication of that caricature but said he was concerned that media outlets were increasingly buckling under political pressure and criticism from “moralistic mobs” on social media.

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“Over the last years, some of the very best cartoonists… lost their positions because their publishers found their work too critical of Trump. Maybe we should start worrying,” Chappatte wrote on his website.

Plantu said that he supported both “Antonio who has been censored by the New York Times… and Chappatte, who is an immense talent.”


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‘No sound basis’: Georgetown law professor explains why Alan Dershowitz will crumble under Senate questioning

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Georgetown law professor John Mikhail suggested on Sunday that the portion of President Donald Trump's defense which is being covered by Alan Dershowitz to fail because it has "no sound basis" in history and law.

"There is no sound basis for Alan Dershowitz to claim that abuse of power is not an impeachable offense. In addition to being at odds with common sense, this claim is contradicted by a clear and consistent body of historical evidence," Mikhail stated.

The law professor cited the impeachment of Warren Hastings in the 1780s.

"Some of the best evidence comes from the case of Warren Hastings, which informed the drafting Art. II, Sec 4," Mikhail wrote. "The fact that he was not guilty of treason, but still deserved to be impeached, was a major reason 'other high crimes and misdemeanors' was added to the Constitution."

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Ex-White House aide describes Trump’s abusive tantrums when he doesn’t get his way: ‘Not normal at all’

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Appearing on MSNBC on Sunday afternoon, former Donald Trump advisor Omarosa Manigault Newman backed up assertions in the book " A Very Stable Genius" that the president is prone to tantrums when he doesn't get his way and becomes abusive to staffers and cabinet members alike.

Speaking with host Alex Witt, Omarosa -- who wrote an insider's account of life in the White House after she was unceremoniously fired -- said there was little in the new book that surprised her.

Digging into her Oval Office days, the former adviser and longtime Trump associate described the president's "zero to 200" screaming jags when displeased.

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Ex-Bush aide admits GOP would have removed Obama if he did ‘one tenth of what Trump has done’

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A former strategist for former President George W. Bush accused Republican lawmakers of hypocrisy on Sunday for for failing to honestly consider the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

Matthew Dowd, a campaign strategist-turned-media-analyst, made the remarks in a tweet on Sunday.

"Deep in their hearts the Republicans in Congress know that if Obama had done one tenth of what President Trump has done they would have voted to impeach and convict him," Dowd wrote. "And Fox News would have been cheering them on. And Trump would have been pushing for it from the sidelines."

Deep in their hearts The republicans in Congress know that if Obama had done one tenth of what president trump has done they would have voted to impeach and convict him. And Fox News would have been cheering them on. And trump would have been pushing for it from the sidelines.

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