Belgian Newspaper Depicts Barack and Michelle Obama as Apes Ahead of President's Visit

Belgian newspaper De Morgen has published pictures of US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama depicted as apes, days ahead of Obama's expected visit to the country this coming week.

The mainstream paper, which was founded in 1978, published a section in its Saturday edition entitled 'The Obama Herald'.

The section was a satirical look at what translates roughly as 'the news even before it happened, unless it's already happened, of course'. It features potential future tweets from the US President, as well as an 'interview' with Sasha Obama claiming that she "hates Beyonce" and "that ugly man of hers too".

But one section in particular may cause controversy for the paper: a picture of Barack and Michelle Obama with monkey faces. 

The picture was published under the 'Opinion' section of the paper under the guise of being sent in by Russian President Vladimir Putin. It qualifies the pictures, satirically stating: Vladimir Putin is the president of Russia. He sent us this attachment at our request, and chose to sent pictures instead of text 'because he doesn't have a lot of time'".

Users of the social networking site Reddit gave mixed responses when presented with the image, with some lauding the press freedom in Belgium, and others rightly noting the cartoon's vulgar and racist overtones.

One commenter noted: "White people are also portrayed as apes, look at recent pictures of George W. Bush. If you find it racist to portray people with black skin as suchs [sic] but have no problem with portraying people of other skin color like that, then I'd have to point out your hypocrisy", while another shot back, "Yeah, but Bush is compared to apes because he's stupid, not because he's white. The caption here is specifically mentions race- the photo is directly implying that black people are comparable to apes, and is therefore racist. Geddit?"

The incident isn't the first time a publication has presented Obama as an ape, with similar controversies arising from a cartoon from last year, and a New York Post cartoon from 2009.

De Morgen's switchboard was closed for calls today, therefore Breitbart London was unable to obtain a comment. 


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