The head of Egypt’s State Information Service isn’t pointing the finger for Mideast violence at his own repressive government, ISIS, al-Qaida, Sunnis, Shiites or – heaven forbid – Islam itself.
No, the waves of beheadings, bombings and beligerance can be laid at the feet of two American cartoon characters, Tom and Jerry.
“Tom and Jerry” portrays “the violence in a funny manner and sends the message that, yes, I can hit him … and I can blow him up with explosives,” SIS head Salah Abdel Sadek said in a Cairo University speech this week, reported the Washington Post.
“It becomes set in [the viewer’s] mind that this is natural.”
Social media was quick to respond with references to the Egyptian military’s crackdown on dissenters.
“Egypt’s rulers must have been watching a lot of Tom and Jerry if this is the case,” tweeted Sarah Birke.
But Sadek also received support for his view, with the newssite Egyptian Streets noting an article published following Sadek’s speech titled, “Five Accusations Tom and Jerry Face in Egypt.”
The author added that “Tom and Jerry” “warps the idea of justice, helps children come up with sinister plans, and encourages violence and the use of sharp instruments such as knives, guns and chainsaws.”
With the terror group Hamas bragging of one knife attack against Israelis every three days, that Tom and Jerry are responsible for the current “Stabbing Jihad” will come as a surprise.
This is not the first time the lovable American cartoon characters have been blamed for problems in the Mideast.
In 2006, WND reported the cat and mouse stars were accused by an Iranian official of being part of a Jewish conspiracy.
Professor Hasan Bolkhari, a cultural adviser to the Iranian Education Ministry, delivered the news on Iran’s Channel 4 during a broadcast of a film seminar where he was lecturing.
“The Jewish Walt Disney Company gained international fame with this cartoon,” said Bolkhari. “It is still shown throughout the world. This cartoon maintains its status because of the cute antics of the cat and mouse – especially the mouse.
“Some say that the main reason for making this very appealing cartoon was to erase a certain derogatory term that was prevalent in Europe.”
According to the professor, “Tom and Jerry” was created to irradicate the association between mice and Jews created in the minds of Europeans by Hitler.
“If you study European history, you will see who was the main power in hoarding money and wealth in the 19th century,” continued Bolkhari. “In most cases, it is the Jews. Perhaps that was one of the reasons which caused Hitler to begin the anti-Semitic trend, and then the extensive propaganda about the crematoria began. … Some of this is true. We do not deny all of it.
“Watch ‘Schindler’s List.’ Every Jew was forced to wear yellow star on his clothing. The Jews were degraded and termed ‘dirty mice.’ ‘Tom and Jerry’ was made in order to change the Europeans’ perception of mice. One of terms used was ‘dirty mice.’
“It should be noted that mice are very cunning … and dirty.”
“Tom and Jerry,” the creation of Joe Barbera and Bill Hanna, was created in 1939, the year World War II began and while the Holocaust was in full force, for the MGM cartoon studios, not Disney. During the next 18 years, Hanna and Barbera created over 200 cartoons featuring Tom and Jerry, earning the pair seven Academy Awards. Today, “Tom and Jerry” is owned by Turner Entertainment.
“If you happen to watch this cartoon tomorrow, bear in mind the points I have just raised,” said Bolkhari, “and watch it from this perspective. The mouse is very clever and smart. Everything he does is so cute. He kicks the poor cat’s a–. Yet this cruelty does not make you despise the mouse. He looks so nice, and he is so clever. … This is exactly why some say it was meant to erase this image of mice from the minds of European children, and to show that the mouse is not dirty and has these traits. Unfortunately, we have many such cases in Hollywood shows.”
Indeed, it is not so much Jerry the Mouse’s character that is the problem, but merely that he is a rodent – unclean, according to the Quran.
“The mouse is one of Satan’s soldiers and is steered by him,” he said.
“If a mouse falls into a pot of food – if the food is solid, you should chuck out the mouse and the food touching it, and if it is liquid – you should chuck out the whole thing, because the mouse is impure.
“According to Islamic law, the mouse is a repulsive, corrupting creature. How do you think children view mice today – after Tom and Jerry?
“Even creatures that are repulsive by nature, by logic, and according to Islamic law have become wonderful and are loved by children. Even mice.
“Mickey Mouse has become an awesome character, even though according to Islamic law, Mickey Mouse should be killed in all cases.”
In the case of the recent criticism against “Tom and Jerry,” Egypt’s Sadek blames the cat as well as the mouse for their depiction of violence, linking it to video games and violent movies.