An Arab superhero in a wheelchair

The promoters of a new fiction comic have done what world leaders have been unable to achieve: to sit in the same table Syrian and American citizens and urged them to work together for a good cause, for the benefit of all.

A year ago, an organization created by a philanthropist who advises the Washington authorities in matters related to diplomacy, organized a meeting in Damascus which brought together a group of twenty-six young Syrians and Americans with physical and intellectual disabilities. One of the objectives of the meeting was to gather proposals for the creating a superhero who had a disability. From all that discussed in Damascus, has been created the Silver Scorpion, a character who lost his legs in a tragic accident and has the incredible power of manipulating the metal with the mind.

We can not rule out that this organization works hand in hand with the State Department and U.S. intelligence services. In fact, the White House has spent the last years a lot of money on similar projects in the Arab world, to promote a positive image of the West and encourage a change of attitude of Muslims about terrorism. For example, in 2002, in response to the 11-S attacks, the State Department devised a campaign called Shared values, with a series of short films showing the life of Muslims living in the United States. In that case, the campaign was a failure because most Arab media refused to broadcast the ads. It was then that arose among the Americans the idea of creating an Arabic network of their own. The most successful projects have been the Radio Sawa (Together) and the television channel Al-Hurrah (The Free), plus several ad campaigns to combat religious extremism, very generously funded by the Pentagon. However, beyond the political implications of the comic project, the result is what matters, and it is positive and everyone benefits from it.

The Silver Scorpion is the alter ego of Bashir Bari, a young Arab and Muslim who, after the accident and a period of personal privacy, witnesses the murder of a person who had the power to control the metal, that will be transferred to him and that Bashir will use to lower to protect the world.

The director of the company that financed the project emphasized in some interviews that the young people particularly surprised him when, during the brainstorming, no one suggested that the superhero could fly, read minds or be too strong, or that could be powerful enough to cure his condition. Jay T. Snyder notes that the young people who participated in the project feel strong with their disability, and do not believe that it should be seen as a source of weakness.

From the meeting in Damascus also came out a guide to implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The work done is great, pity the credits in the trailer of the series refers to the guys who devised the project as “children”.

The comic has been edited by Liquid Comics and can be read and downloaded from its website. For their part, the musical tv MTV has already presented four episodes of an animation series based on the comic, that you can see below (Flash Player required to visualize this content):

Introduction

Episode 1

Episode 2

Episode 3

Episode 4

Author: Jordi Llaonart

(source: http://blocs.mesvilaweb.cat/arabislam)

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