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Indie comics powerhouse Fantagraphics has denounced the genocide in Gaza.


January 26, 2024, 1:21pm

Fantagraphics—the Seattle-based indie comics juggernaut and publisher of Daniel Clowes, Charles Burns, and Joe Sacco (whose landmark work of graphic journalism, Palestine, was released by Fantagraphics in 1993)—has issued a forceful statement denouncing the ongoing genocide in Gaza and calling for an immediate ceasefire:

We want to state clearly and emphatically that we stand with the innocent people of Gaza. At the same time, we emphatically condemn the massacre of innocent Israeli civilians by Hamas on October 7 as a war crime and acknowledge with deep regret the grief and trauma Jewish people are enduring in its aftermath; but this barbarous act does not warrant Israel to commit its own war crime and to inflict exponentially greater grief and trauma in return.

Finally, as citizens of the United States, it is both emotionally agonizing and morally objectionable to watch our nation’s complicity in the ongoing genocide of Gaza.

With the release of this statement, Fantagraphics becomes one of the highest profile US publishers to publicly call for an end to Israel’s war on Gaza, which has so far claimed the lives of over 25,000 people, including more than 120 writers, poets, and journalists.

 

Here is the Fantagraphics statement in full:

In 1993, Fantagraphics began publishing Palestine, Joe Sacco’s landmark work of graphic journalism, a first-person chronicle that gave voice to the voiceless and dispossessed people who were living and suffering in Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem—the Palestinian territories.

Considering that we have believed in the deeply humanistic perspective of this book, that we have considered it our responsibility to keep it available to the public continuously in 25 printings in 31 years, and that we have boundless respect for its author, we consider it a moral imperative to make our position on the current “Israel-Hamas/Gaza war” publicly known.

We want to state clearly and emphatically that we stand with the innocent people of Gaza. At the same time, we emphatically condemn the massacre of innocent Israeli civilians by Hamas on October 7 as a war crime and acknowledge with deep regret the grief and trauma Jewish people are enduring in its aftermath; but this barbarous act does not warrant Israel to commit its own war crime and to inflict exponentially greater grief and trauma in return.

Finally, as citizens of the United States, it is both emotionally agonizing and morally objectionable to watch our nation’s complicity in the ongoing genocide of Gaza. We respectfully submit that:

• There should be an immediate ceasefire

• Israel should immediately allow humanitarian aid into Gaza

• Israel must end its apartheid regime

• Israel must stop looking the other way as West Bank settlers murder Palestinians

• Israel’s illegal West Bank settlements must be dismantled

• Negotiations in good faith must begin toward a two- or single-state solution in which both Israelis and Palestinians share the same sovereign rights.

• Israeli and Hamas prisoners/hostages should be released

• Those who speak out on behalf of Palestinians should not be silenced, retaliated against, or smeared as antisemitic

• Slippery new terms like “humanitarian expulsion” and “voluntary migration” should be denounced for what they are—oxymoronic euphemisms for ethnic cleansing

• War crimes should be investigated and vigorously pursued by the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice

“Before the terrifying prospects now available to humanity, we see even more clearly that peace is the only goal worth struggling for. This is no longer a prayer but a demand to be made by all peoples to their governments—a demand to choose definitively between hell and reason.”

— Albert Camus, Combat, 1945

[This statement does not necessarily reflect the opinions of our staff or our authors, who are entirely free to agree or disagree and to make their own beliefs known.]

Gary Groth
Publisher, Fantagraphics Books

Eric Reynolds,
Associate Publisher, Fantagraphics Books



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