The Daily Mail has launched a no-holds-barred attack on its erstwhile rival The Guardian for suggesting that its news coverage helped inspire a terror attack on a mosque this week.
The Mail accused Guardian cartoonist Martin Rowson of implicating them in the vehicular attack which saw a man ram a group of Muslims outside the Finsbury Park mosque in North London in the early hours of Monday morning.
Latest Graun toon here https://t.co/X8xlPprlZx
— Martin Rowson (@MartinRowson) June 19, 2017
The cartoon reworked photographs of the accident scene, replacing branding on the van used in the attack with logos for Britain’s two best-selling newspapers – The Sun and The Daily Mail.
Describing the work as a “calumny”, a front-page trailed Mail comment article said:
The implication was as unmistakable as it was poisonous. The Guardian was telling its followers that the Daily Mail and its readers are vicious bigots with the blood of innocent, peace-loving Muslims on their hands.
— Helena Lee (@BBCHelenaLee) June 21, 2017
In turn it accused the Guardian of being the real purveyors of hatred, noting recent occasions when its writers spoke of looking forward to “a future in which the Daily Mail readers are all dead” and described the paper as “an open sewer”.
It further claimed that – unlike itself – the Guardian had actively imperiled national security by collaborating with Julian Assange and Wikileaks, and acting as the conduit for NSA leaker Edward Snowden.
It also reminded the Guardian that thanks to some “criminally stupid business decisions” it has “lost hundreds of millions of pounds over the years”. The paper is due to move its headquarters from London to Manchester as it copes with massive debt. It is also about to change its size from Berliner to compact to save cash.
There has been bad blood between the two papers for almost time immemorial – despite the surprisingly large degree of crossover between the organisations’ staff.
Rowson himself seemed unmoved by the criticism. As the row gained traction on social media, he tweeted to say: “Never complain about a cartoon; everyone will think that you’re a nutter. ‘Nuff said.”