Mohammed Jafaar, Demonstration, acrylic on canvas, 30″ X 24″, 2006
One wonders if the website I found this morning in a search for Iraqi work has incriminated these artists who have posted there. The colorful work of these painters is certainly exquisite, if mildly derivative of past Western art movements, but then, the same can be said for most of the contemporary painting populating Western galleries. We however, must not neglect to record our disgust with these code-bound jihadists of every stripe who have crawled out of the rubble of American intervention to murder and oppress their own people, but this is what we are fighting, people, if not over there, then soon in a neighborhood near you. The only strategy left to even the most rigid of peacemakers is the strategy of total victory.
Because this is the jihadist strategy also.
IRAQI SINGERS, ACTORS, AND ARTISTS are fleeing the country after dozens have been killed by Islamic radicals determined to eradicate all culture associated with the West. Cinemas, art galleries, theatres, and concert halls are being destroyed in grenade and mortar attacks in Basra and Baghdad.
According to the Iraqi Artists’ Association, at least 115 singers and 65 actors have been killed since the US-led invasion, as well as 60 painters. But the terror campaign has escalated in recent months as both Shia and Sunni extremists grow ever bolder in enforcing religious restrictions on the citizens of Iraq…
In November Seif Yehia, 23, was beheaded for singing western songs at weddings, and painter Ibraheem Sadoon was shot dead as he drove through Baghdad. In February Sunni fighters killed Waleed Dahi, 27, a young actor, while he rehearsed for a play due to open at the Jordanian National Theatre this month.
Those remaining are in hiding as they make preparations to get themselves and their families to safety.
Haydar Labbeb, 35, a painter in Baghdad, said he had received five death threats and an attempt was made on his life as he drove his family home from a wedding. He is now trying to get to Amman in Jordan, where he hopes to continue painting.
‘My art is seen by extremists as too modern and offensive to Islamic beliefs,’ he said. ‘For them, every painting has to be based on Islamic culture. But I am a modern artist.
Culture was encouraged during Saddam Hussein’s regime, but no longer. Abu Nur, an Islamic Army spokesman, said: ‘Acting, theatre and television encourage bad behaviour and irreligious attitudes. They promote customs that affect the morality of our traditional society.’