EUROPE > 'Genocide' cartoon in French school shocks Turkish students


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One student said he understood from the cartoon that 'the French do not want to see Turkey in the EU.'

One student said he understood from the cartoon that 'the French do not want to see Turkey in the EU.'

Two Turkish students in a French school have reacted after a cartoon depicting a Turk carrying a basket full of skulls with the words "Armenian Genocide" written on its side was shown in class.
The incident occurred at the College Anatole France high school in the city of Montbéliard in France's Comte region.
A teacher displayed a cartoon during a geography and history class and asked students: "What do you understand from this cartoon? Why can Turkey not join the EU according to this cartoon?"
The cartoon depicted a mountain with the EU flag erected at its peak. Three stereotypical caricatures of Balkan peoples were drawn climbing the mountain. At the very bottom of the mountain was a "peasant" Turkish man struggling to get up from the ground with a very large basket on his back. The basket was filled with human skulls with the word "Turkey" written on it and the words "Armenian Genocide" above. Behind the Turkish character, a slender man with "France" written over his head was shown adding a skull to the already-full basket. 

Turkish students Muhammed Ali Erki, 17, and İsmail Erdal, 14, said they were shocked to see the cartoon. Erki reportedly asked his teacher, "We did not commit genocide, yet you accuse us of it. What do you think about Algerians?" 

“You are right but this cartoon is not my idea, I need to give this class as part of the curriculum,” the teacher said in reply.
Erdal said he understood from the cartoon that "the French do not want to see Turkey in the EU."
The students said they had not been able to concentrate on their classes after seeing the cartoon and added that were especially saddened to see North African students making fun of Turkey and Turks.
The families of the students notified the anti-racism COJEP International foundation. COJEP President Ali Gedikoğlu said they would bring the cartoon to the attention of the authorities in France and file a complaint with the French Education Ministry to have the cartoon removed from the curriculum.  


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Notice on comments

gerard paraghamian

6/5/2013 2:44:37 PM

1) to: johann sebastian / 1 /29 / 13 you are wrong my friend. did not post war germany accept what hitler did to the jews. of course they did and paid billions in reparation and still are. they were practically told to do it. there are still lawsuits to collect as if not enough has been collected, (by the grieving parties). modern day turkey is responsible and there are legal motions taking place as i write for them to pay and pay billions for stollen property and businesses.

Ken Alden

1/30/2013 4:47:52 AM

The easiest way to deal with Idiots is to ignore tem, all they accomplish is to reveal their level of mental development! It is Low, low, very low! I bet you that when they are alone, they conteplate and adore their navel!

Johann Sebastian Philobiblos

1/29/2013 8:38:12 PM

JJ Ahf is absolutely right in saying ".... The armenian genocide was the product of the ottoman empire. Modern Turkey and turkish people can't be punished for this." This however has nothing to do with French racism but with the fact that modern Turkey owes to the world to show sensitivity and to acknowledge that a genocide of all Christians* (Greeks, Armenians, Assyrians etc) took place within its boundaries — once that is admitted Turkey will be acknowledged to have made a great moral leap!

Clear Thinking

1/29/2013 4:56:05 PM

Do you not see that in the cartoon Turkey is the victim and France is the bad guy, overwhelming the poor Turk with talk of the Armenian genocide?

kibrisli TURK

1/29/2013 10:40:46 AM

This is the most despicable example of hate-fuelled, racist, brainwashing I have ever seen in any form of curriculum. How can this possibly be justified as history lesson about topic which is as yet un-proven & ommitting the other side of the story, the turkish suffering at the hands of armenians. In a so-called democratic, forward, developed country this is the most backward, racist, hate inciting material possible. And worst of all, the teacher acknowledges!

Rudi Spermon

1/28/2013 2:51:18 PM

My fellow country men, the Dutch, haven't always been an example of sophistication and some people are likely to use it against us. We have to live with that, it doesn't bother me. In this case I agree with V Tiger (I live in Turkey and know the lack of truthful education in this country)

mike alexander

1/27/2013 5:48:55 PM

Erden Teoman, do not be so ridiculous the world knows that the French and the Greeks fought the NAZIS, while Turkey was "NEUTRAL" !!! Mara McGlothin, please do not bring up the English because Chris Green and his Brit friends will call you Brit hater ! Bottom line, this is not the way to teach history young people in any way or means ! It is just a sad and ridiculous way !

Great Attila

1/24/2013 8:51:13 PM

The Armenian lobby must have paid a pretty penny to put that cartoon in school. Then again, this is France and they are pretty anti-Turkish to being with.

mara mcglothin

1/22/2013 3:19:56 PM

GENERAL SHERMAN As well you should. Everyone should know the nitty gritty about their heritage. BUT do you also teach the savageness of Native Americans against each other? or the fact that other than Native Americans, there were no Americans at the time and were English, Spanish,etc. Also I would hope that you would point out the mayhem between casts of Indians from India, and the ongoing battle between Islamic religions? No man/ethnic group is without its sins. No one is perfect.

Ameer Raschid

1/22/2013 11:37:47 AM

@)Sam Stevens Muslims are a"problem" for you in the West because of your hegomenic,imperialistic policies that seek to dictate what kind of political ystem Muslims should have as in Chile,Iran where you have subverted or overthrown democratically elected leaders and governments either by subterfuge or arms. Hypocritical adherence to truth and democracy is fuel for extremist reaction. Fear of Islamic unity (General Haig) as number one threat.is driving neocon US policy makers supporting Israel.
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