Cartoonists Remember Margaret Thatcher, In Their Own Way

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Marco Werman: I doubt any cartoons of Thatcher going clubbing with Cher and Barbra have been produced yet, but The World's cartoon editor Carol Hills has been seeing scores of Thatcher cartoons since the news of her death was announced yesterday. Carol, Thatcher evokes a strong reaction, as we know. I assume you're seeing that in the cartoons you're seeing.

Carol Hills: Really strong reaction, and put that with the fact that most cartoonists tend to be liberal, to the left, and you've got some pretty tough, tough images. Steve Bell, a really noted British cartoonist, his cartoon today, it shows Margaret Thatcher standing in her own grave pit. The gravediggers are standing nearby and she barks at them, "Why is this pit still open?" And of course it's a reference to the coal miners and the disastrous strike and her privatizing the industry, which really just destroyed the livelihood of so many miners, mostly in Northern England.

Werman: Right.

Hills: Now there's a number of images also about Maggie Thatcher trying to enter Heaven. One of them, she arrives in Heaven and she immediately wants to privatize it. In another, she has to go through security to get to Heaven, and the buzzer goes off, because she is, of course, the Iron Lady. And a more positive Heaven image is God is saying, "You can help me get rid of all the evil empires." So it's a range, but I would say pretty much negative.

Werman: So those are tough ones. What about other parts of the world?

Hills: Well, it varies. You get to continental Europe, you get a variety. You get the Western Europe, which is anti-Thatcher, and you get the Eastern Europe which sees Thatcher as saving them from the Soviet Union and liberating them. Now the place I was very keen on getting some reaction was South Africa. They're pretty tough and it goes back to Maggie Thatcher refusing to support sanctions and really hanging in with the view that the ANC and Nelson Mandela were terrorists. So Zapiro, he's one of my favorite South African cartoonists, he does the Rest in Peace image today, showing Maggie Thatcher open casket and she is made of iron and it's "Rust in Peace."

Werman: Those are the cartoons Carol could describe. There are others that can't be mentioned because they are too offensive, and you can see all of the cartoons Carol is curating in a slideshow at TheWorld.org. Carol, thanks as always.

Hills: Thanks, Marco.