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Friday, March 10, 2006

Time for Tea, Time for a Khartoon

Click Continue .. for a long story on Khartoum, Holger Danske Cartoon Awards, Hans Christan Andersen, Arab narcissism - and finally a cartoon

By Poul Højlund, March 10, 2006:

In grave times cartoons do well. Almost anywhere.

Why spell cartoon Khartoon? Well, in the past month or so, the Khartoon Battle has become the designation of what elsewhere is called Cartoon Jihad or just the Cartoon War.

I was checking some facts - oh, I will get back to the cartoon, promise – because what I remember about the Battle of Khartoum is mainly from memoirs and biographies on Churchill, - and as Churchill never trusted statistics he had not personally falsified, well, you know…

So: The Battle of Khatoum took place during the Egypt Campaign and became famous for what in the classic English world is known as General Gordons Last Stand, Khartoum 26th January 1885. The Sudanese were led by Muhammad Ahmad. The Sudanese captured British-occupied Khartoum.

Get it: The Battle of Khartoum was one that the British lost.

It’s funny, Khartoon Battle, it hangs to your lips – but it better be a wrong designation. We’re not going to lose this one, we cannot afford it. There is no coming back as the British did at Khartoom - that’s where Churchill enters the stage, - there’s no second chance on this one.

And then back to the cartoon: I received a mail from someone signing with a pen name, let’s call him Charles, who works on setting up a cartoon contest, a poem contest and more here.

You compete in different groups. The cartoon contest is called “The Holger Danske Cartoon Awards”, and if you never heard of Holger Danske, he is an old symbol of Denmark, way back in time.

Holger Danske sits in his chair in the casemates beneath Hamlet's Castle of Kronborg, part of the World Heritage, sleeping in gypsum, and he only wakes up in times of mortal danger to the old kingdom. During WWII, one of the most famous resistance groups took the name Holger Danske.

Hans Christian Andersen, yes him, has the whole story here, you know him by the very first words: In Denmark there stands an old castle named Kronenburg, close by the Sound of Elsinore, where large ships, both English, Russian, and Prussian, pass by hundreds every day. And they salute the old castle with cannons, “Boom, boom,” which is as if they said, “Good-day.” And the cannons of the old castle answer “Boom,” which means “Many thanks.” In winter no ships sail by, for the whole Sound is covered with ice as far as the Swedish coast, and has quite the appearance of a high-road. The Danish and the Swedish flags wave, and Danes and Swedes say, “Good-day,” and “Thank you” to each other, not with cannons, but with a friendly shake of the hand; and they exchange white bread and biscuits with each other, because foreign articles taste the best.

Now, the Holger Danske contest is split in three categories: (a) Ligthearted, to be run in Readers Digest, (b) “Clintonian Category on the other hand, should be sardonic, sarcastic, or satirical, and related to the political appeasement and Dhimm-witted idiocy that has bloomed since the cartoon war began” and (c) – well, taste differs, but - ”Satanic Category would be like those of Dante, who placed Mohammed squarely in hell, with his entrails hanging out. These are the kind that celebrate the freedom of the press and belief, and are not concerned with "offending" people who can't take a joke or defend their beliefs with persuasion”

Go check it; maybe it’s just it for some of you. Actually, quite funny entries so far.

I went for the Readers Digest cartoon, - coming up soon - and it came to mind that I read an article by an Arab psychologist recently, diagnosing the Arab problem as that of a case of severe narcissism. Can’t remember where, though, maybe someone can help?

Well, finally, last but not least, the cartoon, hope you can read the text, else go the contest version here, scroll down


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