Amatrice Pasta, Yet Still, Je Suis Charlie

Yet again idiots around the world write clueless articles that incite horendous tweets, one actually suggesting Italians go and shoot up the offices of Charlie Hebdo [sarcastically, I’m assured] .

CharlieHebdo-ItalyMafiaShooting the messenger because YOU don’t get the power of satire? You are squandering the opportunity to address the problem, in such a manner you will fall silent with embarrassment for getting it so wrong (see later).

Amatrice sits in an unstable region of Italy, and this is well known. The techniques to retrofit safety measures to the houses in these old villages is available. It’s not as if it’s a new phenomenon. Accumoli, Posta and Arquata del Tronto.

It’s not Charlie Hebdo that built your homes , it’s the mafia!
Why isn’t the money spent on making these villages safe? What’s the politics behind it?

And who suffers?


The dark humour of the Charlie Hebdo satire portrays the victims as the pawns they are at the hands of those with the power to avoid or fix the problem.

In this case the lazy and corrupt politics that has been common in Italy’s history.

In another case lampoonig the oppression of minorities within minorities – especially Islamic clerics and organisations that oppress women, homosexuals, and powerless Muslims accustomed to doing as their religion tells them.

How about that other misfire of Twitter rage, Charlie Hebdo’s dipiction of Alan Kurdi. Who? Many of you posting outrage about him then and now now will have forgotten his name.

There was, or course, the disgraceful way in which Alan Kurdi image was manipulated by the press and the Twitterverse for the cause of Syrian refugees – but, funny how it’s fine to show dead Syrians or anyone from anywhere else in the world, yet the Nice victims were too close to ‘home’ to bear viewing. Mangled bodies from around the world are quite common, on TV, in the press, on Twitter when trying to stir the interest of the West – unless they are European bodies.

But the real target of Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons of Alan was the way in which Syrian refugees are disregarded – as summed up in the response of Maajid Nawaz [h/t 2OceansVibe – read it.]

Taste is always in the eye of the beholder. But these cartoons [of Alan Kurdi] are a damning indictment on our anti-refugee sentiment. The McDonald’s image is a searing critique of heartless European consumerism in the face of one of the worst human tragedies of our times.

The image about Christians walking on water while Muslims drown is (so obviously) critiquing hypocritical European Christian “love”.

Fellow Muslims, not everything and everyone are against us, every time. But if we keep assuming they are by reacting like this, they will surely become so.

The shocking voyeuristic cartoon portrayal of the victims of disasters and war echoes their utility as symbols for our causes.

The Charlie Hebdo satire is meant to wake us up, to make us pay attention. Sadly, many of us don’t have the wit to realise what it is saying, but would rather express our outrage – rather than to check, to think, to find out who the target is.

The second cartoon above isn’t disrespecting the victims of Amatrice, but satirically showing the disrespect the Italian government has towards its own people that live in a well known unstable region. They are no more than touristic curiosities, like their unsafe buildings, like Italian pasta.

In many ways those of us that rage at Charlie Hebdo rather than try to think about what it is saying are also the targets of its ridicule. Pay attention. Think a little harder before passing judgement … isn’t that the usual mantra of the do-gooders

Of course there have been other occasions when it’s been necessary to explain Charlie Hebdo:

And, here, from the horse’s mouth … Who is Charlie Hebdo?


2 thoughts on “Amatrice Pasta, Yet Still, Je Suis Charlie

  1. Sorry, but “You fucking idiots” et al destroys the profound content and your aim.

    Although some deserve such a kind of insult, you always have to consider that
    people are mislead, mistaken or just make errors.

    I suggest you alter so nothing to regret if this article survives you.

    Take care

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