Cartoonists And Comics Workers Tell Comics Industry: ‘No Business As Usual With Israel’

Statement of solidarity:

We want to express our grief and outrage at the slaying of five cartoonists, Wolinski, Cabu, Charb, Tignous, Honoré, among many others, at the Charlie Hebdo offices. These horrific acts of violence compel us to act even more urgently for a world where the dignity, freedom, and equality of all people are respected and promoted. We reaffirm that the Palestinian boycott movement is one important step towards that vision, and we hope that you will continue to join us in this movement.

Open letter to:

Monsieur Franck Bondoux

Direction du Festival international de la bande dessinée

71 rue Hergé, 16000 Angoulême

We, cartoonists, illustrators, writers, editors, distributors, translators, critics and workers in the comic book industry, alongside people of conscience from countries all over the world, re-affirm our February 2014 call for the Angoulême International Comics Festival to drop all ties with the Israeli company Sodastream. Furthermore, we urge the Angoulême Festival, and all festivals, conventions, and celebrations of comics and cartooning art in which we participate, to reject any partnership, funding, or co-operation with any Israeli company or institution that does not explicitly promote freedom and justice for Palestinians, as well as equal rights and equality for Israeli Jews and Palestinians, including the Israeli government and its local consulates, so long as Israel continues to deny Palestinians their rights.

Today, the Sodastream company proudly boasts of its factory’s location in the illegal settlement of Ma’ale Adumim, which makes it complicit in the crime of military occupation. However, even if Sodastream, thanks in part to the pressure campaign launched last year, moved its manufacturing to the Negev (where Palestinian Bedouins are facing eviction from their ancestral lands by Israeli government’s Prawer Plan) it, and other Israeli companies and institutions, are part of a system built on the mass ethnic cleansing of Palestinian communities and sustained through racism and discrimination. It, and other Israeli companies, contribute to the economy of a state which conducted a brutal military assault against a civilian population in Gaza in the summer of 2014, resulting in over 2,100 deaths, including over 500 children.

We cannot accept our art being used to whitewash these crimes, as the Israeli Ministry of Foreign affairs has explicitly stated it will attempt to do through its “Brand Israel” campaign. Angoulême, a center of appreciation for comics internationally, should not be used in this manner.

We again urge you to sever ties between the Festival and Sodastream, and we extend our call to directors and organizers, editors and associations of comics and illustration around the globe. No “business as usual” with lsrael!


Palestine Comics Festival (Palestine), Leila Abdul Razaq (USA), Zainab Akhtar (UK), Khalid Albaih (Sudan/Qatar), Albertine (Switzerland), Hilary Allison (USA), Enzo Apicella (Italy), Serge Baeken (Belgium), Alex Baladi (Switzerland), Edd Baldry (UK/France), Edmond Baudoin (France, 3 Angoulême prizes), Kate Beaton (Canada), Alison Bechdel (USA), Sofiane Belaskri (Algeria), Faiza Benaouda (Algeria), Khalil Bendib (Algeria/USA), Peter Blegvad (USA/UK, Angoulême prize in 2014), David Brothers (USA), Paul Buhle (USA), Nicole Burton (Canada), Jennifer Camper (USA), Gilles Ciment (France, former director of the Cité internationale de la bande dessinée in Angoulême from 2007 to 2014), Rob Clough (USA), Sean T. Collins (USA), Gianluca Costantini (Italy), Jean-Luc Coudray (France, Angoulême prize in 1990), Philippe Coudray (France, Angoulême prize in 2011), Molly Crabapple (USA), Pino Creanza (Italy), Marguerite Dabaie (USA), Bira Dantas (Brazil), Eleanor Davis (USA), Marcel « Lidwine » De la Gare (France, Angoulême prize in 1999), Guy Delisle (Canada, Angoulême Prize in 2012), Dror (France), Warren Ellis (UK), Magdy El Shafee (Egypt), elchicotriste (Spain), Brigitte Findakly (France), Ganzeer (Egypt/USA), Lucile Gomez (France), Jenny Gonzalez-Blitz (USA), Graphic History Collective: Sam Bradd, Sean Carleton, Robin Folvik, Mark Leier, Trevor McKilligan, Julia Smith (Canada), Dominique Grange (France), Thierry Groensteen (France, former director of the Cité internationale de la bande dessinée in Angoulême from 1993 to 2001), Jeet Heer (Canada), Ethan Heitner (USA), Delphine Hermans (Belgium), Anaële Hermans (Belgium), Jaime Hernandez (USA), Alex Hoffman (USA), Dylan Horrocks (New Zealand, nominated in Angoulême in 2002), Igort (Italy, nominated in Angoulême in 2003), Hatem Imam (Lebanon), Jiho (France), Monica Johnson (USA), Ben Katchor (USA), Mazen Kerbaj (Lebanon), Peter Kuper (USA), Carlos Latuff (Brazil), Wilfrid Lupano (France), Rodolphe « Ohazar » Lupano (France), Lena Merhej (Lebanon), Jean-Claude Mézières (France, 2 Angoulême prizes and Grand Prix in 1984), Katie Miranda (USA), Anne Elizabeth Moore (USA), Mric (France), José Muñoz (Argentina, 3 Angoulême prizes and Grand Prix in 2007), Ernest Pignon-Ernest (France), Jeanne Puchol (France), Maël Rannou (France), Patricia Réaud (France), Helge Reumann (Switzerland), Barrack Rima (Lebanon/Belgium), Mohammad Sabaaneh (Palestine), Salgood Sam (Canada), Amitai Sandy (Israel), François Schuiten (Belgium, Grand Prix in 2002), Gabby Schulz (USA), Siné (France), Jean Solé (France), Philippe Squarzoni (France, nominated in Angoulême in 2003), Sylvain-Moizie (France, Angoulême prize in 2000 and in residence at the Cité internationale de la bande dessinée in Angoulême in 2014-2015), Tardi (France, 5 Angoulême prizes and Grand Prix in 1985), Seth Tobocman (USA), Lewis Trondheim (France, 2 Angoulême prizes and Grand Prix in 2006, creator of the Angoulême mascot), Guillaume Trouillard (France), Willem (France/Nederland, Angoulême Grand Prix in 2013), Willis From Tunis (Tunisia), Jordan Worley (USA), Wozniak (France/Poland), yAce (France), Germano Zullo (Switzerland)