The New York Times has apologized for an offensive cartoon following an enormous backlash, which saw it described as “anti-Semitic”.
The cartoon, which caused outrage on Israeli media and Twitter, depicted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a guide dog leading an apparently blind Jewish Donald Trump.
RT reports: The cartoon, which ran in the international print edition of Thursday’s paper, featured Netanyahu depicted as a guide dog wearing a Star of David on his collar, leading President Trump, wearing the dark glasses and skullcap of a Jewish retiree.
The cartoon was printed on its own with no caption, and was not linked to any of the articles on the same page.
Twitter erupted in a wave of indignation. President Trump’s son, Donald Jr, ripped into the newspaper for “flagrant anti-Semitism,” while the US ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, called the cartoon “despicable.”
The New York Times issued a hasty apology, admitting that “the image was offensive, and it was an error of judgment to publish it,” an excuse that the Jerusalem Post called “pathetic.”
“The Nazis also depicted us as animals. They also put Stars of David on us. Anti-Semites have compared us to dogs, pigs and monkeys before,” wrote the Jerusalem Post’s Seth Frantzman. “But now we see how mainstream it has become to blame the Jews and Israel for the world’s problems.”
Of course, the argument that President Trump favors Israel has been made countless times before, in less and more graphic manner. Since taking office, Trump has enacted a number of pro-Israel policies, like moving the US’ Israeli Embassy to Jerusalem, withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, and recognizing Israel’s sovereignty over the disputed Golan Heights region.
Some of Trump’s opponents have been blasted for pointing out the extent of the influence Israel has on the American leadership. Freshman Congresswoman Ilhan Omar was twice accused of anti-Semitism in the last two months, after she suggested the US’ support for Israel was “all about the Benjamins,” and accused Jewish Americans of harboring a ‘dual loyalty’ to Israel.