An editorial cartoon published in the Daily Mail that appears to equate refugees with rats prompted outrage on social media Tuesday. The drawing depicts a handful of silhouetted figures -- featuring turbans, beards, prominent noses and even the tip of a rifle -- crossing a borderline marked by a sign reading “Welcome To Europe: Our Open Borders and the Free Movement of People.”
Scurrying through the feet of the figures are several rats moving in the same direction. The cartoon has been widely criticized as a racist portrayal of the refugee crisis and has been compared to Nazi propaganda, the New York Times reported.
Comparing a religious minority in Europe to rats because that's how Daily Mail does it. pic.twitter.com/6Zg23IlmJA
— Arash Karami (@thekarami) November 17, 2015
The cartoon comes amid international debate following Friday's terror attacks in Paris over what to do with the hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees fleeing civil war. The grisly attacks left at least 129 dead, and a Syrian passport was found near the body of one of the suspected bombers, leading many to believe that one of the attackers had entered Europe through Greece among the wave of refugees.
World leaders are contemplating closing their borders to Syrian refugees in the name of preserving national security, and more than two dozen U.S. governors have said in recent days that they would oppose efforts from the federal government to resettle Syrian newcomers in their states.
One of these was in today's Daily Mail and one is nazi propaganda. Take your time. pic.twitter.com/VjPYrwYKvS
— Pete Fraser (@petefrasermusic) November 17, 2015
Daily Mail cartoon showing hooked-nosed refugees & rats crossing into Europe has chilling echoes of Nazi propaganda pic.twitter.com/jAQb9SkcKW
— Stefan Simanowitz (@StefSimanowitz) November 17, 2015