Vive Charlie repulses readers with mag cover of ‘Jihadi nanny’ holding toddler’s head
British satirical magazine ‘Vive Charlie’ – published anonymously online – has paraded a fresh cover depicting the Moscow babysitter as a ‘Jihadi nanny’ holding a toddler’s head. Many social media users were clearly not amused.
The new issue was announced to have gone online on March 1.
BOOM - Issue 25 of Vive Charlie is now live and FREE to all— ViveCharlie (@ViveCharlieMag) 1 марта 2016 г.
Please read and sharehttps://t.co/xMcjVvM1wxpic.twitter.com/mlN5y3ImYm
If the editorial board hoped to stir controversy, it managed to touch the nerve.
“It’s over the top! What kind of a freak could publish things like that?” one Twitter user wondered.
Это уже перебор! Каким уродом надо быть! Это обложка журнала Vive Charlie pic.twitter.com/FD2EY77yMh— Александр Мушуров (@2Lucifer) 3 марта 2016 г.
“Those who defend the European values, have you seen this magazine’s cover??” another tweeted.
Защитники европейских ценностей вы видели новую обложку Шарли??? Как вам????... https://t.co/A2BHNfMZ8N— Anton Semyonov (@AnSemyonov) 3 марта 2016 г.
The ‘Vive Charlie’ journal was established online following the last year’s deadly attack on the ‘Charlie Hebdo’ headquarters in Paris.
Russian users weren’t alone in taking to Twitter to express disgust.
Nice to see Vive Charlie publishing top quality "satire" once again.— Blobpool (@BrumBlobfish) 2 марта 2016 г.
They couldn't be less like Charlie Hebdo if they tried. Horrible.
MPs at the Russian State Duma, the lower chamber of parliament, also voiced their outrage over the “shocking magazine cover.”
“[There], the carriers of European values allow themselves to sneer at the girl who died tragically, and it’s not just an evil and cynical thing to do, [but a] purposeful rocking of society’s moral grounds, a goal to ingrain in people’s minds that moral deformity is a fine form of self-expression,” MP Elena Batalina wrote on her Facebook page Friday.
“If Europeans don’t lack moral immunity, they’ll reject this outlet in the same way as a healthy organism rejects a tumor. We’ll see,” Batalina added.
The MP’s outrage was echoed by Irina Yarovaya, head of the Duma’s Anti-corruption and Security Committee, who believes that the authors “not only are joyful about the crime, as vultures, but also make a fire of hate for new crimes.”
“When a mentally ill person commits a crime, it’s a tragedy. When full-bellied and cynical sirs make fun of the victim and replicated the perverted madness, as Vive Charlie magazine did on their cover, it’s like a mirror of their soul, which basically doesn’t differ much from that of a mentally ill person,” Yarovaya wrote on her VKontakte (InContact) page. VKontakte is a popular Russian social network.
On Monday, after dealing with a fire at a flat in Moscow, firefighters discovered the decapitated body of a four-year-old girl.
Later, the toddler’s 38-year-old babysitter was detained near a nearby Metro station, Oktyabrskoye Polye, with the child’s head in her hands and promising to blow herself up. She was detained at the scene, and no explosives were found.
.@RT_russian Our illustrations often raise awareness to Islam inspired atrocities, which are suppressed by our media pic.twitter.com/O5CUjfTDTX— ViveCharlie (@ViveCharlieMag) March 4, 2016
The nanny has pleaded guilty to murder and arson, claiming she killed the girl in response to Russia’s strikes in Syria. Later it was revealed that she had been a mental hospital patient in her native country, Uzbekistan.
Russia’s LifeNews channel says it obtained a comment from the caricaturist behind the controversial image, who agreed his work was a “provocation.” The work provoked “hundreds” of angry letters with threats coming from Russia, the channel quoted the caricaturist as saying. People thought the work glorified the killer.
The caricaturist said the magazine is “very likely” to publish another cartoon depending on the public’s reaction.
“If they continue to ignore this event, we’ll do it again,” the caricaturist added.
Independent political analyst, Gearoid O'Colmain, told RT that this situation is quite an ugly reflection of what freedom of speech is like in the West.
“Freedom of speech, as it is interpreted in Europe, seems to me the freedom to insult victims of war and aggression. This is a very disgusting example of it. This is an absolute disgrace.”