Israel has demanded an apology for a cartoon that likens it to Nazi Germany and the North Korean dictatorship. The cartoon in Norway's third most-read newspaper, Dagbladet, compares oranges from Israel to Nazi German pizza and macaroni from North Korea.
Norwegian cartoonist Ola Lysgaard depicts a woman standing in front of an organic food store saying, "Organic food, huh? But who cares if the food is produced unethically?" In the first panel the woman holding oranges says: "These oranges come from Israel! You are supporting murderers."
In the next panel, the woman is seen holding a carton that says: "This macaroni is produced in North Korea?! How did you even get a hold of these??" And in the final panel, the woman is seen holding a pizza box, which highlights a swastika shape, with the label on the bottom stating: "Made in Nazi Germany".
"The cartoon puts Israel in the same category as Nazi Germany and North Korea," Dan Poraz, a first secretary at the Israeli Embassy in Norway, was quoted as saying by Dagbladet. He said: "There is a fine line between freedom of speech and hate speech and this cartoon crossed that line, it's about time that editors take responsibility. An apology may be a suitable way to start." Portraying Israeli products as "unethical" is both "incorrect" and "offensive," and can be "damaging because it can incite anti-Israeli bias that can lead to violent reactions", he added.
Lysgaard, who drew the cartoon told Swedish newspaper The Local: "I've never experienced people missing the point to this extreme level." He added: "I don't know if the offended people read a bad translation, or just didn't get it. Either way, I can't help but find the whole situation utterly amusing."