Political cartoonist Khalid Albaih and the Arab Spring

· Culture, Politics




Khalid Albaih is a political cartoonist who lives in Doha, Qatar. The subject of his cartoons, satirically called Khartoons, in a reference to Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, is anti-government. In an interview, Albaih made the point that the Arab Spring did not fail, that famous overthrows like the French Revolution took years to unfold. He reports that his greatest influence was Palestinian cartoonist Naji Al-Ali. Subjects of Al-Ali’s cartoons were also anti-government, and also the Israeli occupation of Palestine.


It was social media that put Albaih on the map. This article suggests that there is a definite link between Albaih’s important work and the Tunisian revolution, which would occur shortly after Albaih’s work became publicly known. One of Albaih’s most famous works is entitled “The Rest Will Follow” (referring to revolutions that would happen after Tunisia’s Jasmine Revolution), and depicted a finger on a hand with one finger corresponding to an Arabic flag.


As his work became even more known, Albaih received word from various sources that his work was becoming more identified with the Arab Spring with its anti-government message. Another of his cartoons, “Sudan Needs A Hug,” refers to the disunification of Sudan, which split into North and South. In such ways does Albaih graphically describe Middle Eastern affairs that are close to his heart. Albaih’s work as a protestor extends beyond his drawings, however. He also actively joined the Sudanese in their protest as part of the Arab Spring, and was personally attacked as a result.


If you are interested in his work, you can like him on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KhalidAlbaih?fref=ts


Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/08/world/africa/cartoonists-pen-leaves-a-mark-across-the-arab-world.html?pagewanted=1&_r=0&hp, Author: Ismail Kushkush

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