Ali Ferzat is a Syrian political cartoonist. He was born in Hama, Syria in 1951. He has published more than 15,000 caricatures in Syrian, Arab and international newspapers. He serves as the head of the Arab Cartoonists Association. In 2011 he received the Sakharov Prize for peace. Ferzat was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine in 2012. In August of 2011 he was reportedly pulled from his car in Damascus and beaten and his hands broken, likely in retaliation by Assad’s security forces for his criticism of the regime.
Ferzat's drawings are centered around themes involving criticism of bureaucracy, corruption and hypocrisy within the government and the wealthy elite. His drawings, typically without captions, are noted for their scathing criticism and for depicting types rather than individuals. Through his cutting caricatures he gained the respect of many Arabs while drawing the ire of their governments. However, since the uprising in Syria began Ferzat has been more direct in his caricatures, depicting actual figures including the President of Syria, Bashar al-Assad.