August 12, 2009 Special Announcements No. 85

MEMRI Blog Cartoons and Posts

August 12, 2009
Special Announcements No. 85

The following is Part Two of a collection of cartoons and blog posts from the Arabic, Iranian, and Urdu-Pashtu media on the upcoming U.S. presidential election (for Part I, visit ). The posts can be found on The MEMRI Blog, The MEMRI Iran Blog, and The MEMRI Urdu-Pashtu Media Blog.

From The MEMRI Blog

Cartoon In Bahrain Paper: Obama Ahead Of McCain-Palin


Cartoonist: 'Abdallah Mahraqi

Source: Akhbar Al-Khaleej, Bahrain, October 28, 2008

Sudanese Daily: Sudan Prefers McCain

In an editorial in the Sudanese daily Al-Rai Al-'Aam, which is close to the Sudanese regime, commentator Al-Badawi Yousef stated that the Sudanese government preferred John McCain for U.S. president, because a Republican president would be more comfortable for it.

He said that the Democratic Clinton administration had showed hostility towards the Sudanese government, while the Bush administration had acted to end the civil war in Sudan and had found ways to cooperate with the government in the war on terror.

Source: Al-Rai Al-'Aam, Sudan, October 30, 2008

U.S. Green Party Presidential Candidate Cynthia McKinney, In Headscarf, Tells Al-Jazeera TV: Between Obama and McCain, I Would Vote For Myself

Following are excerpts from an interview with Cynthia McKinney, presidential candidate for the U.S. Green Party, which aired on Al-Jazeera TV on October 27, 2008.

Cynthia McKinney: "I am wearing the headscarf as a way of showing my respect, my support, and my familiarity for the audience of Al-Jazeera Arabic.


"The fact of the matter is that President Carter, who has gone, through the Carter Center, around the world, certifying elections as free and fair, has stated that he would be unable to certify that the 2000 presidential elections in the United States were fair, and that’s because it wasn't, and I can tell you why. It wasn't, because the Republican Party targeted for disfranchisement the black vote – such that, across the country, one million black people went to the polls and voted in 2000, and guess what? Their votes were not even counted. What kind of an election is it when your votes aren’t even counted?"


Interviewer: "If you had to choose between Barack Obama and John McCain, who would you choose?"

Cynthia McKinney: "Well, I would choose myself, because I’m in the race too, and I don’t want people to make a false choice, when there is a not-false choice. In 32 states we will be able to receive votes, and I hope people will choose to vote for me as well."

Cartoon In 'Al-Hayat': Palin, McCain Deny Connection To Bush

On sign: "I have no connection to this man"

Cartoonist: Habeeb Haddad

Source: Al-Hayat, London, October 27, 2008

Syrian Daily: Arabs Prefer Obama

Columnist Dr. Eid Abu Sika wrote in the Syrian government daily Al-Ba'th that "it is now the turn of the [U.S.] democrats to be in power" and that "all Arabs prefer Obama over McCain."

He said that if the U.S. did not elect Obama "it will be the biggest country in history that is swimming against the stream."

Source: Al-Ba'th, Syria, October 23, 2008

Cartoon In ‘Arab News’: McCain, Obama Run For Presidency

Source: Arab News, Saudi Arabia, October 30, 2008

Cartoon In Bahrain Paper: Obama Overtakes McCain

Cartoonist: 'Abdallah Mahraqi

Source: Akhbar Al-Khaleej, Bahrain, October 21, 2008

Republican Elephant And Democrat Donkey vs Elections in the Arab World

Cartoonist: 'Imad Hajjaj

Source: Al-Quds Al-Arabi, London, October 18, 2008

Cartoon In 'Al-Sharq Al-Awsat' On Democrats, Republicans, And U.S. Presidential Election

Source: Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, October 16, 2008

Cartoon In 'Al-Hayat': Obama And McCain Ride The Stock Market

Cartoonist: Habeeb Haddad

Source: Al-Hayat, London, October 15, 2008

Antisemitic Cartoon In Saudi Daily: Jews Control Both McCain And Obama

Cartoonist: Jihad 'Awartani

Source: Al-Watan, Saudi Arabia, October 11, 2008

Cartoon In Qatari Daily: Obama, McCain, And The U.S. Economic Crisis

Cartoonist: Elay Saleba

Source: Al-Watan, Qatar, October 6, 2008

Cartoon In Jordanian Paper: Obama, McCain Woo Tsipi Livni

Cartoonist: Jalal Al-Rifai'ai

Source: Al-Dustour, Jordan, October 6, 2008

Cartoon In 'Arab News' On McCain-Palin

Source: Arab News, Saudi Arabia, October 7, 2008

Cartoon In Jordanian Paper: 'How U.S. Presidential Candidates See Middle East'

On figure on left: "Israel"; on figure on right: "The Arabs"

Cartoonist: Jalal Al-Rifa'ai

Source: Al-Dustour, Jordan, October 4, 2008

Report: Obama, McCain Sent Syria Calming Messages

Knowledgeable diplomatic sources told the Qatari daily Al-Watan that Damascus has received calming messages from U.S. presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain.

The sources said that according to the messages, the period of isolation and stagnation in Syria-U.S. relations was nearing its end, and soon there would be intensive contacts between the two countries.

Source: Al-Watan, Qatar, September 20, 2008

Cartoon In 'Arab News' On McCain

Source: Arab News, Saudi Arabia, September 11, 2008

Cartoon In UAE Paper On U.S. Elections – Republicans, Democrats, And Israel

Cartoonist: 'Aamer Al-Zo'abi

Source: Akhbar Al-Arab, UAE, September 9, 2008

Cartoon In Syrian Daily: Obama Invites McCain To Some One-On-One

Cartoonist: Fares Qarabet

Source: Al-Watan, Syria, September 10, 2008

Cartoon in Saudi English-Language Daily: McCain Stokes U.S. Fire

Source: Arab News, Saudi Arabia, September 9, 2008

Cartoon In 'Al-Sharq Al-Awsat': McCain Drives 'Bush Legacy' Jalopy In Presidential Race

Cartoonist: Amjad Rasmi

Source: Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, September 5, 2008

Cartoon In Saudi Paper: Obama, McCain Disagree On Everything But Israel

On pile of documents: "Points of disagreement"

Cartoonist: Jihad Awartani

Source: Al-Watan, Saudi Arabia, September 1, 2008

Al-Arabiya TV Director: President Obama Won't Necessarily Be Good For Arabs, Muslims

In an article, Al-Arabiya TV director-general Abd Al-Rahman Al-Rashed hinted that U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's election as president would not necessarily serve the Arabs and Muslims.

He said that Obama is likely to fear being presented as biased towards Muslims, and this could weaken his standing in conducting negotiations between Arabs and Israel and in handling international Muslim issues.

Source: Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, August 31, 2008

Cartoon In Egyptian Weekly – Barack Obama Loves Israel

Source: Al-Ahram Weekly, Egypt, 7-13 August 2008

Columnist In Syrian Gov't Daily Supports Dems In U.S. Presidential Race

Columnist for the Syrian government daily Al-Thawra Nadia Damiati referred positively to U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and his running mate Sen. Joseph Biden, saying that their campaign slogan of "change and experience" indicated that "the Americans aspire for their country to take a moral stance, be an honest broker, act in accordance with the U.S. constitution, not ignite wars, not spill the blood of innocents in the world, and not deceive the [American] people regarding the danger of terrorism [and the need] to fight it."

Source: Al-Thawra, Syria, August 26, 2008

Report: Contacts Between Syria, Envoys Of U.S. Presidential Candidates

The Lebanese daily Al-Safir reports that recently there have been contacts "far from the spotlights" between Syria and envoys close to U.S. presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama.

Source: Al-Safir, Lebanon, August 19, 2008

Ayman Nour In Letter To Obama: I Am In Prison For My Dream Of Change

In a letter to U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama, imprisoned Egyptian oppositionist Dr. Ayman Nour wrote that he was in prison for his dream of instituting change and of running for president of Egypt, which was had challenged Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's dream of handing the regime down to his son.

He added that U.S. pressures on the Egyptian regime to free him were in vain.

Also in the letter, Nour expressed his support for Obama's stances on the need for a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq, and on relations with Syria and Iran, but called on him to take a more aggressive stand against the dictatorial regimes.

Sources: Al-Ghad, Al-Masri Al-Yawm, Egypt, August 13, 2008

Cartoon In Lebanese Paper: “Obama In Iraq”

Cartoonist: Hassan Bleibel

Source: Al-Mustaqbal, Lebanon, July 22, 2008

Iraqi FM: Obama Reassures Baghdad He Won't Make Dramatic Changes In U.S. Policy In Iraq

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari said that U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's campaign managers had reassured Baghdad that if Obama is elected he will not dramatically change Washington's policy towards Iraq and will take into account the opinions of the commanders in the field.

Zebari noted that this reassurance is important, in light of the widespread impression that Obama is expected to completely overturn current policy.

Source: Al-Hayat, London, June 13, 2008

Cartoon In Egyptian Gov't Daily: Hillary and Obama – A Woman And A Black Run For U.S. President'

Religious Muslim: "Another sign of the collapse of the Western civilization"

Source: Al-Ahram, Egypt

Syrian Columnist: World Must Tighten Seatbelt In Advance Of McCain Win

In his column in the Syrian government daily Teshreen, Charles Kamilah wrote that the expected nomination of Senator John McCain as head of the Republican Party (sic) is sad evidence that the American people has not learned the necessary lesson from George Bush's term as president.

He added that McCain would be a "war president" and that the world must tighten its seatbelt and be on guard in light of the possibility of his being elected.

Source: Teshreen, Syria, February 6, 2008

Survey: 80% Of Muslims In U.S. Will Vote In Presidential Elections

The U.S. news agency America in Arabic released, on February 3, the results of a survey on aspects of Muslim life in the U.S. showing that some 80% of U.S. Muslims plan to vote in the upcoming presidential election.

According to, this percentage is much higher than what is usual for all U.S. voters.

The survey also found that about half of the respondents had not yet decided who to vote for, making them a target group for election campaigning.

Source:, February 4, 2008

From The MEMRI Urdu-Pashtu Media Blog

Cartoon in Pakistani Paper: "Obama after Osama"

Source: Roznama Nawa-i-Waqt, Pakistan, October 15, 2008

Pakistani Paper: '9/11 Was Masterpiece Of Jewish Conspiracy'; Obama Is Expression Of Jesus' Anger At Neo-Cons' 'Muslim-Killing Measures,' Conceals His Islamic Identity 'To Safeguard Himself From Prejudice Of Americans, Jews, and Christians'

In its September 1 editorial, the Pakistani right-wing Urdu-language newspaper Roznama Nawa-i-Waqt focused on U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's speech last week at the DNC.

Noting that "American and British media have already expressed this reality that the event of 9/11 was a masterpiece of Jewish conspiracy," the paper stated that "because of the neo-cons' cruel Muslim-killing measures… and as the expression of Jesus' anger [at these measures], a person whose father and grandfather were Muslims will rule over the U.S. for [next] four years. Due to political expediency [he] is forced to conceal his religious identity in order to safeguard himself from the prejudice of Americans, Jews and Christians."

It concluded, "If the Jews do not [foil Obama's halt of the war with] conspiracies and propaganda, then… the world of Islam will also take a breath of relief."

Source: Roznama Nawa-i-Waqt, Pakistan, September 1, 2008.

Report: President Obama To Significantly Change U.S. Policy Towards Pakistan

According to a report in the Urdu-language newspaper Roznama Jang, there is the possibility of a significant change in the U.S. foreign policy towards Pakistan under a U.S. administration headed by Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama.

According to the report, the Democratic Party has indicated that it will take steps for improving U.S. relations with Pakistan. This point was mentioned in a document presented by the Democratic Party at the Democratic Convention, the report said, but did not identify the document.

According to the report, it has been disclosed in the document that in the event of an Obama presidency, the new U.S. administration will take steps for promoting a close relationship with Pakistan. It said that one such step would be to increase nonmilitary aid to Pakistan.

Source: Roznama Jang, Pakistan, August 28, 2008

NWFP Governor: U.S. Attack In Pakistan Will Be Dangerous For Entire World

Governor of Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province (NWFP) Owais Ghani has said that a U.S. attack in the Taliban-controlled tribal districts will be dangerous for the entire world.

The governor is the non-executive federal nominee in the province.

According to a report in the Urdu-language newspaper Roznama Khabrain, Owais Ghani said that in the case of a U.S. attack, hundreds of thousands of tribesmen would rise up against the American aggression. He also warned U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama and other U.S. officials not to issue any statement against Pakistan.

Source: Roznama Khabrain, Pakistan, July 21, 2008

From The MEMRI Iran Blog

Rafsanjani In Iran Friday Sermon: First Wave Of 'Economic Tsunami' – Slump In Oil Prices; U.S. Presidential Candidates Threatening Iran

In his Friday sermon, Iranian Expediency Council chairman and former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani warned against more negative effects of the ongoing worldwide "economic tsunami," calling it "very serious."

He told worshipers at Tehran University campus, "We should not think that the event worldwide is in our favor, so we should not be happy over the crisis. Rather, we should be careful that effects of the economic tsunami are managed properly."

He added, "The first wave of the tsunami was the drastic slump in oil prices. Regarding the fact that oil prices increased as high as $147 [bbl], [the] sudden fall in the prices should be taken as a big loss."

He advised thinkers, officials, Majlis members and all officials and organs in charge to collectively consider the problem and check its incoming adverse consequences.

He said the country's oil stabilization fund should be strengthened.

"A strong Forex Reserve Fund would help the country's economy in case of eruption of such crises," he added.

He said the "economic tsunami" could sharply increase poverty and hunger worldwide, and raise number of the poor and hungry people, encouraging growth in the unemployment rate.

He added that the global economic crisis had been investigated at the Expediency Council session but more careful study of the subject is necessary because it is a highly important issue.

He also blamed the big countries and economic powers for the problem, and said that the third world should not be blamed for it.

On other matters, Rafsanjani criticized the U.S. presidential candidates for threatening Iran over its nuclear program, and said that the Americans were pressuring the Iraqis on ratifying the U.S.-Iran security pact in order to lengthen their stay in Iraq.

Sources: IRNA, IRIBnews, Iran, October 24, 2008

Iranian Presidential Advisor: Obama Won't Benefit Iran; IRGC Weekly: Neither McCain Nor Obama Will Prevent U.S. Collapse

Iranian presidential advisor Ali Reza Zaker-Isfahani, who also heads the Iranian presidency's Strategic Research Center, has said that there is no difference between the attitudes of U.S. presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain towards Iran.

He said that even though some in Iran prefer Obama, in foreign policy matters the Democrats work together with the powerful Zionist lobby.

The Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) weekly Sobh-e Sadeq stated that there is no difference between the two, and that neither will prevent the collapse of the U.S.

Source: Kayhan, Iran, October 29, 2008; Sobh-e Sadeq, Iran, October 27, 2008

Larijani: Iran Prefers Obama; U.S. Won't Attack Iran

Iranian Majlis speaker Ali Larijani has said that Iran would prefer Barack Obama as the next U.S. president.

"We are leaning more in favor of Barack Obama because he is more flexible and rational (than rival John McCain), even though we know American policy will not change that much," he said. (see also Is Obama Good For Iran?)

Larijani also said the United States is now too busy dealing with a financial crisis to consider attacking Iran over the nuclear program. "The risk was low before," he said. "But now I am 100% certain that the U.S. will not unleash a war against Iran. The economic crisis has cost the U.S. $1,400 billion, Washington is working to resolve its internal problems, and not a war."

Source: Fars, October 23, 2008

Is Obama Good For Iran?

Iranian Majlis speaker Ali Larijani told a press conference in Bahrain that Iran prefers U.S. presidential candidate Barack Obama, because he is "more logical, although we know that American policy will not change much."

Nevertheless, the Iranian research institute Iranian Diplomacy stated that Obama's policy would actually be stricter with Iran because it would focus on human rights and individual freedoms in Iran.

Sources: Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, London, October 23, 2008; IRNA, Iran, October 22, 2008; Iran Diplomacy, Iran, September 30, 2008

NEW FROM MEMRI TV: In TV Interview, Iranian U.S. Expert Praises Obama and Democrats, Describes McCain as 'Absentminded’ and Palin as 'Inexperienced'

Click here to view this clip

Ahmadinejad: Iran Ready To Talk With U.S. Presidential Candidates

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that Iran favors dialogue and thus is ready to hold talks with the U.S. presidential candidates in the presence of the media.

He was speaking at a press conference on the sideline of the D-8 summit in Kuala Lumpur, in response to a question of whether Iran would agree to hold talks with Democratic candidate Barack Obama if Obama expressed his readiness to do so during his upcoming visit to the Middle East.

Ahmadinejad added, "Last year, I announced at the U.N. headquarters in New York that I was ready to talk with Bush about global issues, and now I also declare that I am prepared to debate with the American presidential candidates," the President said.

Asked by Reuters about Iran’s stance on the nuclear issue, Ahmadinejad said, "Our nuclear position completely is clear: law and justice for all... We will never withdraw from our positions even by an inch."

Source: IRIBnews, Iran, July 9, 2008

Obama Nuclear Advisor: Next U.S. President Should Engage Iran In Dialogue Without Preconditions

In an email interview with the Mehr News Agency on July 1, Barack Obama's nuclear policy advisor Joseph Cirincione said that the next U.S. president should "engage Iran in a full and open dialogue without preconditions."

Cirincione told Mehr that the U.S. is not "cooperating" with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana in his efforts to broker a deal with Iran. He added that the Bush doctrine had failed completely; that the region was more unstable now than before Bush became president; the U.S. was bogged down in an unnecessary war in Iraq and was losing the essential war in Afghanistan; and that the dangers of nuclear terrorism had increased as Al-Qaeda has flourished and programs to secure and eliminate nuclear weapons have languished.

He said that standard U.S. policy before Bush had been to talk with our adversaries as well as our friends, and that only in this administration had the principle been established that negotiations were a reward. He added that the next president should consult closely with U.S. allies and then engage Iran in a full and open dialogue without preconditions.

Source: Tehran Times, Iran, July 2, 2008

Iran Friday Sermon: Hillary's Comment – "Psychological Attack"

In his Friday sermon, Tehran Interim Friday Prayer leader Ayatollah Mohammad Emami-Kashani responded to U.S. senator and presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton's recent comment on eliminating Iran from the world map if she is elected.

He told thousands of worshipers at the central campus of Tehran University, "When that lady says that if Iran attacked Israel using its nuclear weapons, America would eliminate the country from the world map, she knows all too well that Iran does not possess, and will never posses, such weapons, and is not a type to launch such attacks – so this is merely a part of their [sic] psychological war against us."

He also pointed out to his audience that "only yesterday, there was a debate between two presidential election groups in America, [and] one side argued that it preferred to hold direct talks with Iran." This, he said, was "proof of the Islamic Republic of Iran's strength, stability, and national sovereignty."

Kashani added that the West "never ceases its campaign against us [Iran and the Muslims] or against our Prophet because they notice how victorious and rapidly advancing Islam is in today's world... The world nations realize that when a government like America that has been engaged in terrorist training activities for a long time, and is the major supporter of the world's greatest state sponsor of terrorism, like Israel, claims to be launching a campaign against international terrorism, those enemies of mankind are definitely telling a big lie."

He stressed that Iran's enemies were counting on low voter turnout for today's run-off Majlis elections.

(For the MEMRI TV page on Ayatollah Mohammad Emami-Kashani, please visit click here).

Sources: IRNA, IRIBnews, Iran, April 25, 2008

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