Charlie Hebdo risks further Muslim wrath with 'gay kiss'

A week after its offices were firebombed, Paris paper comes storming back with new cartoon

LAST UPDATED AT 09:03 ON Tue 8 Nov 2011

YOU HAVE to hand it to the staff at Charlie Hebdo, the French satirical paper whose offices were firebombed only a week ago when they announced that the Prophet Muhammed would be “guest editing” their latest issue.

Despite the attack ruining their modest headquarters in Paris (above), and despite a follow-up threat from the Turkish hackers’ group Akincilar, Charlie Hebdo is back this week with a new issue which, as Business Insider puts it, carries ‘A Truly Shocking Cover’.

Under the coverline ‘Love is stronger than hate’, a cartoon depicts a Charlie Hebdo artist kissing a Muslim on the lips. The illustration can be seen here.

That’s taking the tame view. While the French papers have noted that the new cover adds insult to injury, the US site Gawker has gone further, claiming the cartoon shows not just any Muslim, but a “gay Muhammed”. Gawker calls Charlie Hebdo “the world’s ballsiest magazine”.

There’s no word yet from Charlie Hebdo’s enemies. After the firebomb attack, hackers from Akincilar took over the paper’s website temporarily and left a message saying: “You keep abusing Islam's almighty Prophet with disgusting and disgraceful cartoons using excuses of freedom of speech... Be God's Curse On You! We Will be Your Curse on Cyber World!"

As Gawker says, “This is not going to end well”. · 

For further concise, balanced comment and analysis on the week's news, try The Week magazine. Subscribe today and get 6 issues completely free.