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In Iran, Political Cartoons Reflect Attitudes Toward IS


One of several Iranian cartoons on the advance of IS in Iraq and Syria. This one by Sajjad Jafari refers to IS's alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Kobani.

One of several Iranian cartoons on the advance of IS in Iraq and Syria. This one by Sajjad Jafari refers to IS's alleged use of chemical weapons in the town of Kobani.

The rise of the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria and Iraq, and the advent of the anti-IS coalition led by the United States and including several of Iran's rivals has inspired political cartoonists in several of Iran's media outlets.

The cartoons are used to express Tehran's various attitudes or viewpoints on Islamic State (IS).

Some of the cartoons are published in English, and are intended for a Western as well as a domestic audience.

This cartoon from Farhang News reflects Iran's allegations that its rivals the United States and Saudi Arabia helped create IS: the U.S. led coalition now has to fight the monster it created (according to Iran):

This image, from Tasnim News, has a similar message. Iran has accused the United States of creating first the Taliban, then Al-Qaeda, and now the Islamic State group (referred to in the cartoon as "ISIL"):

This earlier cartoon, by Tasnim but published in Mehr News, accuses the United States of sponsoring IS in Syria while fighting it in Iraq:

This cartoon by Tasnim News is a response to an unconfirmed report that IS may have used chemical weapons in July to kill three Kurdish fighters in Kobani in northern Syria:

Tasnim reporter Hossein Dalirian shared this cartoon on Twitter, which reflects Iran's accusations that the United States and Israel are behind IS:

In this cartoon, U.S.-sponsored IS militants dance around a fire, over which the word "peace" is roasting on a spit, reflecting Tehran's criticisms that the United States is sponsoring armed groups -- including IS -- in Syria:

This cartoon, in Persian, expresses Iran's attitude toward Saudi Arabia, whose foreign minister Prince Saud al-Faisal recently accused Iran of being "part of the problem" in Syria. Iran has countered by accusing Saudi Arabia of sponsoring regional terror. The cartoon shows a caricatured Saudi atop a tank. The Saudi has a snake marked with the word "terrorism" on his head and he carries a flag marked DAESH -- the Persian acronym for IS. As he crushes someone carrying a sign that reads "Human Rights," he says, "Iran is against regional stability."

-- Joanna Paraszczuk

About This Blog

"Under The Black Flag" provides news, opinion, and analysis about the impact of the Islamic State (IS) extremist group in Syria, Iraq, and beyond. It focuses not only on the fight against terrorist groups in the Middle East, but also on the implications for the region and the world. The blog's primary author, James Miller, closely covered the first three years of the Arab Spring, with a focus on Syria, and is now the managing editor of The Interpreter, where he covers Russia's foreign and domestic policy and the Kremlin's wars in Syria and Ukraine. Follow him on Twitter: @Millermena

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