antisemitism

The Internet’s Favorite Anti-Semitic Cartoon, Explained.

Warning: The reporting linked in this post includes blatantly Antisemitic cartoons.

If you know anything about internet conspiracy theorists, it’s that they’re absolutely ridiculous. But you may also know that they’re incredibly Anti-Semitic and don’t try to hide it. I’ve documented Reddit’s Antisemitism in-depth previously; one thing I didn’t cover was their favorite cartoon, Le Happy Merchant or Jew-bwa-ha-ha.gif. A disturbing hook-nosed caricature that wouldn’t be out of place in the pages of Der Stürmer, it’s enjoyed wide use among the denizens of certain dark corners of the internet. It’s as essential a part of a conspiracy theorist’s repertoire as their boundless paranoia, contrarianism and horrific lack of self-awareness. The image even gained currency among the vicious fools of GamerGate, who edited the image to portray Anita Sarkeesian, who in their minds the ringleader of a grand conspiracy to critique video games on Youtube.

Buzzfeed’s Joseph Bernstein has uncovered the origins of the image – which does not date back to 1930s Germany, but comes from a far more recent vintage. And make sure you keep reading until the last image.

Later, he broke down how a Finnish meme mocking Americans became part of the internet’s Antisemitic cartoon world. Everything is terrible.

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Reddit Hates Jews

This blog has been quiet so far this year, but not for lack of material. Just CRUSHING DESPAIR.

The Charlie Hebdo attacks prompted the usual cries of “FALSE FLAG!” from the top minds of r/conspiracy. It also inspired the usual antisemitism.

The top voted post about the attacks this month was…this cartoon:

Antisemitism

 

How does this relate to the attack? Because Charlie Hebdo once fired a cartoonist for making an antisemitic joke, and r/conspiracy is obsessed with it: of the top 25 posts this month, three out of four posts dealing with the Charlie Hebdo attacks were about the cartoonist fired over antisemitism.

But maybe they’re just really concerned about freedom of speech. After all, the r/conspiracy crowd rarely says anything about Jews. They just think there’s a Zionist conspiracy, not a –

r/isrconspiracyracist‘s users have discovered that certain users, like the terribly named Antiochus88, will post antisemitic videos or links – but swap out “Jew” for “Zionist” in the post’s title. They are interchangeable to this crowd.

I am not cherrypicking any examples of r/conspiracy being terrible; I’m just looking at what their users upvoted in the last week.

There are entries about the attack being a false flag. Guess what nation they blame?

antisemitism2

The link goes to an International Business Times article – that’s been retracted for being erroneous.

The theory du jour: Israel ordered the attack in retribution for France potentially recognizing Palestine. One wonders why there were no strikes on Sweden, or Iceland, or the 133 other countries across the world that actually recognize Palestine.

The top 25 posts this week contain four posts about murdered or jailed Palestinian journalists and cartoonists; one post about Israelis plotting to blow up the Mexican parliament in 2001 (more on that later); two posts on a French comedian banned from performing due to his antisemitic act; and three more posts about various instances of Israeli censorship.

To be fair, some of these are valid concerns. The murder or arrest of journalists is abhorrent anywhere. Accepting any kind of racism is hypocritical. But if they were focused on the rights of journalists, they’d probably be talking about more than just abuses in Palestine. Many people have pointed out the anti-journalist actions of the world leaders who attended the Paris march. There is no reason to focus on Israel – they had nothing to do with the attacks, and their leaders were just one of many to attend the Paris march. There is a reason they’re so focused on these incidents specifically.

The Mexico story, it turns out, does not involve two Israelis plotting to blow up Mexico’s Parliament. It involves one Israeli and one Mexican Jew – since, again, these words are interchangeable to this crowd and attacking “Israelis” makes them seem not quite so antisemitic. This story never caught on with the mainstream media, another sign of their bias against stories that aren’t true. But one user explains why the media ignored it:

MSM

Ah yes, the ol’ “Jews own the media” canard. With just a dash of “Jews did 9/11!”. What’s next, blood libel? Wait, they’ve already done that?

Though I sadly didn’t screencap it, for a time every other link on r/conspiracy’s main page was about Israel, Jews or “Zionists” – in response to an event that did not involve Israel, and where Jewish people were inarguably victims (the kosher market attack, far as I can tell, went unmentioned). And among them was this entry:

antisemitism3

They’re not saying Jews did 9/11, they’re just saying some Jews were adjacent to 9/11!

If you can discern anything from this blog post, I salute you. I just gave up when I saw that it descends into one gigantic block halfway through.

This is a subreddit that marked Rosh Hashanah by making a six-hour documentary about how Hitler was misunderstood their featured documentary. A photo of a Holocaust survivor turns into a opportunity for them to slam the “paid shills” of Israel. This blog’s first post was a moderator’s defense of David Duke. An entire subreddit exists solely to collect their racism.

r/conspiracy is a goddamn cesspool, home to edgy 17 year olds (I hope, but I sadly think a lot of these people are much older) whose knowledge of the world derives from South Park and obscure blogs. And they think they’re smarter than everyone else because of this. They’re proud of their ignorance. In their minds, they’re better than you because they draw their entire worldview from nonsense.

Hating Jews lets them be edgy and shocking, but it’s also what they believe: r/whiterights’ userbase overlaps with r/conspiracy, and the most visible members, at least until 3 months ago, included “Antiochus88” – named after a historical oppressor of Jews and a code for “Heil Hitler”, respectively.  r/conspiracy is big with the Stormfront crowd. And so r/conspiracy continues to lash out at “Zionists” and Israel and sometimes, when they don’t bother to disguise it, Jews. It’s impossible to tell who’s just parroting what they hear and who earnestly believes it, and it doesn’t matter.  Both followers and leaders march against Jews in Germany. Both followers and leaders vandalize synagogues. Both chant “Jew, France is not for you”.

Of course, that’s not to say that the users of r/conspiracy engage in such behavior. The only thing more powerful than their racism is their slacktivism.