It has been over a week since the Charlie Hebdo massacre when all the world’s eyes were on Paris in the aftermath of a murderous attack on the satirical magazine, and the resulting shootings in a Jewish supermarket.
Despite the tragedy, the magazine’s remaining staff will publish an issue this week, with a print run of 3 million. According to the BBC, normally 60,000 copies are sold per week. Such a response sends a clear message to the type of people who felt such an atrocity is justified – Charlie Hebdo cannot be silenced.
For the cover, the Prophet Muhammad is depicted holding a sign which says ‘Je suis Charlie’ – similar to what Helen Mirren and Diane Kruger held to the cameras on the red carpet at Sunday’s Golden Globes ceremony and a familiar sight across the major cities of the world as citizens and journalists united to defend the freedom of speech in rallies. Above the illustrated Muhammad the words “All is forgiven” are emblazoned. It’s a simple, childish image, but the message is powerful. Charlie Hebdo will exercise its right to free speech despite threats, despite the fact that a German paper which republished the images that provoked the first attack was firebombed in recent days.
As George Clooney said in his Golden Globes speech, “We will not walk in fear. We will not do it. Je suis Charlie.”
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