Arab Terrorism and Israeli Cartoons

There are many ways to laughing at ourselves. One of them is dark humor: if your life is in hell or if you feel miserable have a good laugh and perhaps you feel better.
The dark humor of  “Ahmed and Salim“, a South Park-style cartoon that makes fun of Palestinian terrorists, is supposed to mock terrorists without ridiculing Muslims, and may  provoke your uproarious burst of laughter, boosting  your blood stream to such a degree that your health will only benefit from it.
The Israeli team Tom Trager and Or Paz create this provocative humoristic animated web series, describing the life of an Arab arch-terrorist and his two sons ‘Ahmed and Salim’.  Their web sitcom is becoming increasingly popular with surfers, while at same time stirring much controversy,  see here.
 Well the United Arab Emirates officials have blocked the Israeli-based cartoon Ahmed and Salim from showing on YouTube in that country. Nothing new about that, see here. They blocks anything from Israel, a true Pavlov reflex.
 Tania Tabar’s article “Israeli ‘South-Park’ style cartoon mocks Arabs” was published by Menassat, a Lebanese site. The verb ” to mock” is a trap of pejorative meanings. And indeed, the author in his indirect way, quickly take advantage of that , to show us that dark humor, despite being directed only against Arab terrorism, is synonym of global racism against all the Arabs in the world…Nothing new about that either, see here. I hope that  the learned author didn’t mean that all the Arabs are terrorists..?
 But if we want to delve into carton dark humor, then the omnipresent Google search provides us with his statistical insight about the verb “to mock”.  The phrase “Cartoons mocks anyone” in Google’s search,  outputs,  that mocking Arab terrorism is not only their  privilege but that anyone mocks  anyone and anything… not a great surprise.
 The first 20 entries, from1,050,000 entries in 0.29 seconds, upgraded our knowledge with titles like” Iranian TV Mocks U.S., Britain“, “Washington Post Cartoon Mocks Pentecostal Speaking in Tongues“, “ Crude Palestinian Cartoons Mock America“, “Christians AGAINST Cartoons“… to cite only a few, until the last unknown entry.
So the Israeli team’s contribution is only a drop in the sea of mocking cartoons. A Palestine blogger, Sameh Akram Habeeb, suffering from a mysterious blindness about what dark humor is declare  “These videos are dangerous and full of lies”…”I’ve never met someone like the cartoon character of Ahmed and Salim’s father. And of course, the authors never once mention the existence of thousands of Palestinian prisoners. “…see here.
To this can only be said that I too didn’t met such a real character. They live only in the realm of dark humor, made in Israel by Tom Trager and Or Paz. Only there you met them, ridiculous… or as they said.. ”  if you can take a good look at them without being afraid. Ahmed and Salim are just two nice naive kids who are just trying to make their terrorist father happy. ” see here.
Their real counterpart, a relative small group of Palestinian terrorist live in our real live, hiding in their own natural darkness. To  perpetuate their terroristic goals they dond’ need any sense of humor. …, and as to the Palestinian prisoners: don’t do terrorism and there will be no need to imprison them, mister Habeeb.

Iranian Blogosphere YouTube Music Clips, the most highly cited, 2008

In terms of the daily avalanche of new events “burying me alive”… this is old news from two months ago. Nevertheless it is evolving news pointing to Iran in a particular way, music and pop cultur.
On April 5  2008, the Berkman Center for Internet and Society’ released a study mapping Iran’s blogosphere. .
Reading the full very interesting report, I ‘discovered’ on Appendix C, page 60: .. “YouTube Clips’, the most highly cited YouTube clips in the Iranian blogosphere as of February, 2008.” ..  see here in PDF format.
 I was very curious to listen to the preferred clips of my almost nearby Iranian neighbour.  Many urls where broken but I managed to find most of them. One further remark: I searched only the music clips an left out  the political clips. Well, the music is great, and  to my western Mideast ears surprisingly close to blues an jazz music. 

…And here is the Music… (Click on the pictures to listen)


Kiosk is a Persian Blues/Rock/Jazz band established by some friends , some years ago in a basement somewhere in Isfahan/Tehran. Kiosk has never been limited by music style, location, or band members. It continues to evolve and experiment by using music and lyrics to express itself and connect to its worldwide audience.

Qlick on the picture to hear the music. Kiosk: “Love for Speed”. A music video from the popular group.

 Kiosk, a picture of the group. Here is their site.

Mohsen Namjoo

..”The source of this music and poems is the immense Iranian culture and history. These pieces of music and lyrics refer to, and find their meanings from Iranian culture which consists of four hundred years of battle between modernity and tradition.

Whenever I’ve wanted to laugh at the contradictions in my society I use the laughter and playfulness of the blues scale and its singing style. I blend it with the Iranian scale and singing style. Then whenever I’ve wanted to cry and express my sadness I direct the Iranian singing style towards blues or find refuge in reciting”.. … see more.

Click on the picture to hear the music.   A song that appears to be a classical poem sung by Mohsen Namjoo (A popular jazz musician in Iran among young people). A wonderful song..

Mohsen Namjoo, a picture.  Here is his site.

Shahram Nazeri

Sufi singer Shahram Nazeri
Shahram Nazeri was born in Kermanshah province in 1949. Like Shajarian, his music career started with the help of his father at childhood. He enjoyed the classes of the Persian music masters such as Abdullah Davami, Abdol Ali Vaziri, Jalal Zolfonoun, Mohammad Reza Shajarian and others, see more here.

Click on the picture to hear the music.

Qlick on the picture to hear the music.    A video of Shahram Nazeri singing a song in Kurdish. .

Click on the picture to hear the music.     “Nazeri,” A video of Shahram Nazeri singing a song in Kurdish. .

Shahram Nazeri, a picture.  I didn’t find a personal site, but here is a site with additional information. 

For all the other aspects of the ‘Study Mapping Iran’s Blogosphere’ see here.