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News organizations wrestle with whether to publish Charlie Hebdo cartoons after attack
by Paul Farhi
Ever since a Danish newspaper drew death threats and incited protests by publishing cartoons satirizing the prophet Muhammad in 2005, American news organizations have wrestled with a question: to publish or not to publish the offending, if clearly newsworthy, cartoons?
The issue came roaring back Wednesday with the attack on a satirical Paris publication that had republished the Danish cartoons and created its own in the face of violent threats from Muslim extremists. The attack by three gunmen on the publication, Charlie Hebdo, left 12 people dead, including its editor, Stéphane Charbonnier, who once defiantly posed with a copy of his magazine featuring a cartoon of an Orthodox Jewish man pushing Muhammad in a wheelchair.
In the wake of the atrocity, a few Western news sources reprinted some of Charlie Hebdo's cartoons. Those included BuzzFeed and the Huffington Post, which headlined its compilation, "These Are The Charlie Hebdo Cartoons That Terrorists Thought Were Worth Killing Over."
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