Israel’s Ambassador to Germany condemned on Wednesday the publication of a cartoon in the Munich-based Süddeutsche Zeitung, depicting Israel as a ravenous monster, The Jerusalem Post reported.
The lurid cartoon has provoked widespread outrage as an expression of blatant anti-Semitism in Germany’s largest daily broadsheet, reaching over 1 million readers.
In a letter to the editor of the left-liberal publication, the ambassador, Yakov Hadas-Handelsman, wrote that the cartoon is a “severe, tasteless and misleading” depiction of Israel which exceeds the the “limits of acceptable journalistic presentation.”
In the picture, the Israel-monster is being served by a woman representing Germany over a caption that reads: “Germany is serving. Israel has been given weapons for decades and partly free of charge. Israel’s enemies think it is a ravenous Moloch.”
The publication has likewise drawn criticism from leaders of the German Jewish community and the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
Writing in the right-of-center daily Die Welt on Tuesday, Henryk M. Broder,
a commentator on anti-Semitism, compared Süddeutsche Zeitung to Nazi-era anti-Jewish publications. Broder noted that no mainstream newspaper has dared since the Holocaust to publish such a cartoon.
In response, the paper’s editors contended that the cartoon had “nothing to do with anti-Semitism,” but acknowledged that since the cartoon “caused misunderstanding, it would have been better to choose a different one.”