Jewish Cartoonist Georges Wolinski Among Hebdo Victims

January 7, 2015  

Among the victims of Wednesday’s terror attack in Paris was a Jewish member of the Charlie Hebdo staff, Georges Wolinski. The son of a Tunisian Jewish mother and a Polish Jewish father, Wolinski was a well-known caricaturist in France, and the subject of a 2012 book.

Looking for an alternative to his university architectural studies, Wolinski began cartooning in 1960, eventually becoming one of the most influential cartoonists in France. His work has appeared in in the daily newspaper Libération, the weekly Paris-Match, L’Écho des savanes and Charlie Hebdo, the publication at whose offices he was killed in Wednesday’s terror attack.

12 people were killed in the shooting attack at the offices of French satirical news magazine Charlie Hebdo in central Paris. The magazine published cartoons of the Muslim prophet Mohammed in 2012, leading France to temporarily close its embassies and schools in more than 20 countries amid fears of Islamist reprisals. The offices of Charlie Hebdo were also burned down on November 2, 2011. A firebomb was lobbed into the offices of the paper at about 1 a.m., igniting a blaze.

On Wednesday evening, tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Paris to protest the terror attack. Many of the protestors carried signs that read “I am Charlie,” a reference to the name of the publication attacked by Islamist terrorists. In a speech Wednesday night, French President Francois Hollande declared Thursday a day of mourning for the victims of the attack on Charlie Hebdo.

Calling the attack “cowardly,” Hollande said that “an act of exceptional barbarism has been committed in Paris against a newspaper. It was an act against journalists who had always wanted to show that in France it was possible to defend one’s ideas, and exercise their rights that are guaranteed and protected by the French Republic.The people responsible for this are now hunted men. They will be hunted for as long as it takes. They will be arrested and face justice for their crime.

“Today France is in shock,” said Hollande, “the shock of a multiple assassination, a terrorist attack. That much is clear; Charlie Hebdo had received threats in the past, and was under police protection. We must all stand together at this difficult time. We must show we are a united country. We know how we must react, and our response will be firm, always taking into account that national unity.”


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