Philip ZecPublished: 2016-01-12 | Original Article
Attribution Victor Navasky - Buzzfeed
On Jan. 8, 1942, Philip Zec’s cartoon in London’s The Daily Mirror showed an exhausted, torpedoed British sailor adrift in the Atlantic. The caption: “The price of petrol has been increased by one penny — Official.” Great Britain’s home secretary described the cartoon as “worthy of Goebbels at his best … plainly meant to tell seamen not to go to war to put money in the pockets of the petrol owners.”
Winston Churchill believed that the cartoon, which he interpreted as saying that the merchant marines’ lives were being put at risk to increase the profits of the oil barons, would undermine the morale of the merchant marines, and ordered an investigation to discover who owned The Daily Mirror. It led to “one of the stormiest debates in the wartime parliament,” when in fact all that Zec had meant to say was that gasoline shortages would put lives at risk.