Saturday, September 27, 2008

27-Sep-08: Racism - getting to basics

The sickening applause that greeted the unvarnished anti-Jewish racism of the Iranian president's speech at the United Nations this week has a background.
TEHRAN (AFP)Iranians chanted “Death to Israel” on Friday as Islamist students unveiled a book mocking the Holocaust in an Al-Quds (Jerusalem) Day annual parade to show solidarity with the Palestinians.

The book “Holocaust,” published by members of Iran’s Islamist Basij militia, features dozens of cartoons and sarcastic commentary. Education Minister Alireza Ali-Ahmadi attended the official launch of the book in Tehran’s Palestine Square. The cover shows a Jew with a crooked nose and dressed in traditional garb drawing outlines of dead bodies on the ground. Inside, bearded Jews are shown leaving and re-entering a gas chamber with a counter that reads the number 5,999,999.

Another illustration depicts Jewish prisoners entering a furnace in a Nazi extermination camp and leaving from the other side as gun-wielding “terrorists.”

Yet another shows a patient draped in an Israeli flag and on life support breathing Zyklon-B, the poisonous gas used in the extermination chambers.
Given the nature of this blog, we receive more than the usual quantities of vile rubbish from apologists for the haters... statements along the lines of "The Iranians have never said they want to hurt the Jews - they're just sticking up for the Palestinians" and so on.

The reality is that Ahmadinijad and those in his circle are as fully engaged in primitive racism as Hitler and the Nazis were in the thirties. We know where that led. And they're far from being alone in this.

For their own murky reasons, the official organs of Palestinian Arab society have openly embraced denial of the destruction of Europe's Jews as an article of their political agenda. Click on "Hamas Holocaust perversion: Jews planned Holocaust to kill handicapped Jews" for one more in a long series of dispassionate descriptions of the sickening racism that infects all levels of Palestinian Arab society and its apologists. (Thanks to Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook for their indispensable contribution to finding and disclosing this material that was created for and broadcast by the official Hamas television station in Gaza.)

Back to this week's Iranian performance in New York. David Horowitz, writing in Friday's Jerusalem Post, presents the facts of Ahmadinijad's UN rant in his customary dispassionate and clear way:
Ahmadinejad's address, delivered from what ought to be one of the most prestigious platforms on the planet, was cloaked in professions of obeisance to God, justice and human freedoms, but, as in years past, was dishonest, malevolent and threatening. The Iranian president - who, in accordance with the UN's own conventions, should be prosecuted for inciting genocide rather than afforded this annual opportunity to restate his toxic agenda - misrepresented his regime's nuclear program as peaceful and transparent. He gloated at the ostensible imminent demises of the Zionist regime ("on a definite slope to collapse") and the American empire ("reaching the end of its road"). And he dredged up the classic anti-Semitic libel in asserting that a pernicious, secretive act of global puppetry is being perpetrated by a shadowy Zionist cabal, manipulating the finances and the politics of the innocent, trusting masses: "The dignity, integrity and rights of the American and European people are being played with by a small but deceitful number of people called Zionists," he proclaimed. "Although they are a minuscule minority, they have been dominating an important portion of the financial and monetary centers, as well as the political decision-making centers of some European countries and the US in a deceitful, complex and furtive manner."
There's an edited video here from the UN's webcast; somehow seeing the vile outpourings in video form make them more real than simply reading the written words. But there's another reason to click: note the very public actions of the new president of the UN General Assembly, Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann (Nicaraguan diplomat, politician, Catholic priest, former official with the World Council of Churches, and a Sandinista). This man sees so much to respect and admire in Ahmadinijad's hate speech that he stops the proceedings, asks delegates to remain seated and patient, and walks to the rostrum where the Iranian has finished his speech - and embraces and congratulates him.

The president of the UN General Assembly was not alone in his embrace. Among the religious groups honoring Ahmadinejad at a glitzy reception at New York's Grand Hyatt Hotel were the Americans Friends Service Committee, the Mennonite Central Committee, the Quaker United Nations Office, Religions for Peace, and the World Council of Churches.

Winston Churchill famously described the appeasement of Hitler and the Nazis that characterized public life in Europe and North America in the days before World War II as "feeding a crocodile, hoping it will eat one last". Sadly, we're seeing public figures, media outlets and governments not only feeding but enthusiastically stroking and petting this Persian crocodile.

The Washington Post, in a lead editorial this past Tuesday entitled "Iran Slips Away," points out the real bottom line: "Even as its nuclear program accelerates, the impetus to stop it loses steam." Like the Nazis and Churchill's crocodile, the Iranians have a large appetite and their pots are already boiling.

This is not a good time for tolerating the continuing distorted, dishonest and ill-informed apologetics of public figures with agendas. We're running out of time.

1 comment:

Sonia Betancourt Tarmudo said...

Good to see the Germans recognize a racist antisemite when they see one. See

"Last update - 14:49 27/09/2008
German FM: Ahmadinejad's UN speech 'blatant anti-Semitism'
By Shlomo Shamir, Haaretz Correspondent and News Agencies
Tags: Iran, Rice, Gabriela Shalev

Germany's foreign minister on Friday blasted the Iranian president's speech at the United Nations General Assembly as "blatant anti-Semitism" and urged the 192 U.N. member states to join in condemning it.

On Tuesday, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad railed against "Zionist murderers" and dwelled on what he described as Zionist control of international finance.

"The statements of the Iranian president about Israel are irresponsible and unacceptable," German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told the General Assembly.
"The blatant anti-Semitism of his speech this year was intolerable and demands our mutual condemnation," he said.

The Iranian president has previously said that Israel should be wiped off the map.

President Shimon Peres said on Tuesday Ahmadinejad's comments echoed the "Protocols of the Elders of Zion," an anti-Semitic tract from the early 1900s that purported to show a Jewish and Masonic plot to take over the world. It has since been exposed as a hoax.

After World War Two, Germany has made a point of condemning anti-Semitism because of its own Nazi past.

Earlier on Friday, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told a UN Security Council meeting on Israel and the Palestinians that the council should take up the issue of Ahmadinejad's comments about Israel.

Rice made the announcement at a Security Council discussion on Israel's expansion of settlements in the West Bank, called by the Arab League. Rice stressed that the Arab world has an obligation to advance peace in the Middle East.

"If the council feels it needs to meet again on threats to peace in the Middle East, it ought to focus on the Iranian president's remarks," she said, referring to the Arab League's repeated assertion that Israel's expansion of settlements in the West Bank was one of the main obstacles standing in the way of peace.

"The United States of America will be asking that the council convene again to take up the matter of one member of the United Nations calling for the destruction of another member of the United Nations in a way that simply should not be allowed," Rice said.

The secretary of state went on to say that at the top of the list of threats to international peace and security was Ahmadinejad's assertion that Israel "should be wiped from the face of the map, should be destroyed and should not exist."

"That should not be allowed," Rice said.

Ahmadinejad caused widespread outrage for saying in 2005 that the state of Israel should be wiped off the map.