Thursday, February 02, 2006

Owner of France Soir Fires Editor Over Cartoons

The furor over Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten's publication of cartoons depicting the prophet Mohammed continues to grow. The owner of France Soir has fired the managing editor who decided to run one of the cartoons, and Palestinians have threatened violence to Danish, Norwegian, and French nationals in Gaza.

It's tempting to chalk up the editor's firing to the common Gallic collaborationism that resulted in Vichy France, but that may not be the case.

France Soir has been financially troubled for years, and went into bankruptcy last October, so perhaps the decision to fire the editor is purely business. However, few news sources are reporting that owner Raymond Lakah is a Franco-Egyptian Muslim.

Reporters Without Borders is, typically, admittedly clueless:
Reporters Without Borders voiced “incomprehension” today at the decision by the owner of the French daily France-Soir, Raymond Lakah, to dismiss his editor for publishing the 12 caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed that were previously published in a Danish newspaper.
At least they're aware that there's a problem, despite their "incomprehension".

Here's a simple parallel to help the borderless reporters get a handle on it. Just as not all Germans were Nazis, not all Muslims are Islamists. The question for journalists today is, do you maintain your fashionable stance of moral equivalence, or do you finally realize that freedom of the press requires, first of all, freedom.