Does Iran Deny the Holocaust?

Does Iran Deny the Holocaust?
Zahra Tohidian Apr 15th, 2013 10 Comments
Ahmadinejad Meeting “Jews Against Zionism” in New York

This history has always been a field of interest for not only scholars, but also humankind. Through stories of history people see a reflection of their future and their aims; sometimes they find their hopes in the darkness of their present by reviewing how bitter ages past have been replaced by light.

But by cracking the pages of written history, points emerge in your mind; fears, hopes and doubts. Yes, studying brings questions and questions demand answers…

Have you heard Napoleon Bonaparte once said: “History is the version of past events that people have decided to agree upon?” Now there is a part of history that is being questioned, and a group of people around the globe have raised doubts, saying they don’t agree upon what is claimed to be “The Holocaust”.

You have heard of (as Schindler’s List demonstrates) all the pains Jews have gone through; all the hatred they are facing even now, as in many American TV series and movies show. You have definitely heard of Iran’s outrage towards this part of history; but is that true?

Questioning the Holocaust is explicitly or implicitly illegal in 17 countries: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, and Switzerland.

Forbidding holocaust denial is justified by attributing it to an anti-Semitic act which cannot be an accurate argument.

There are too many controversies around Iran’s stance towards Israel. Saying ‘Iran wants to wipe Israel off the map’, ‘Iran is to kill the Jews’ etc.

But to understand Iran’s real stance toward this issue, it is worth reviewing President Mahmoud Ahmadienjad’s remarks about the Holocaust.

In an interview with NBC NEWS’s Brian Williams on Sept 19, 2006, Ahmadinejad raised three questions about the Holocaust:

1- In the Second World War, over 60 million people (at least 50 million civilians) lost their lives. They were all human beings. Why is it that only a select group of those who were killed have become so prominent and important?

2- If this event (Holocaust) happened, and if it is a historical event, then we should allow everyone to research it and study it. The more research and studies are done, the more we can become aware of the realities that happened. We still leave open to further studies absolute knowledge of science or math. Historical events are always subject to revisions, and reviews and studies…Why is it that those who ask questions are persecuted? Why is every word so sensitivity or such prohibition on further studies on the subject? Where as we can openly question God, the prophet, concepts such as freedom and democracy?

3- If this happened, where did it happen? Did the Palestinian people have anything to do with it? Why should the Palestinians pay for it now? Five million displaced Palestinian people is what I’m talking about. Over 60 years of living under threat. Losing the lives of thousands of dear ones. And homes that are destroyed on a daily basis over people’s heads. You might argue that the Jews have the right to have a government. We’re not against that. But where? At a place where their people were — several people will vote for them, and where they can govern. Not at the cost of displacing a whole nation. And occupying the whole territory.

The Israeli – Palestinian confrontation is one of the longest lasting world crises in recent times and many believe an end to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict would also be the key to solving the other issues and conflicts in the region.

As Iran’s President has frequently asserted, if the Holocaust happened in Europe, what is the fault of the Palestinian people? The Palestinian people’s lives are being destroyed today in the pretext of the Holocaust. Lands have been occupied, usurped. But what is their fault? What role did they play in the Holocaust?

“Well, assuming that the  happened, then, what does it have to do with the Palestinian people?”

So, What Iran doubts

Let’s review some major points Iran has raised about the Holocaust:

1. The evidence of the honoured history of each nation is always open to study; you have never heard of a ban on studying war crimes; for instance Iran has always presented evidence and proof to the world of what Iraq did to Iran’s people, as most countries do; but the Holocaust is the only part of history, which is kept out of questioning!

2. Let’s consider that the Holocaust is true, and as they say, “six million Jews during World War II, were murdered by Nazi Germany, led by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party, throughout German-occupied territory.” Still we need to ask: Why Palestinians should pay the price?

Though the solution to this dispute is not very complicated! (Churchill once said: “Study history, study history. In history lies all the secrets of statecraft.”) Iran suggests that the Holocaust events should be further investigated by independent and impartial parties;

Iran is against using the Holocaust to justify the behaviour of Israel in the region, and this is a merely a political and humanitarian argument, nothing to do with Jews and cannot be interpreted as anti – Semitic.

Jews, like other minorities are living peacefully in Iran. Jews are protected in the Iranian constitution and a seat is reserved for a Jew in the Majlis (Iran’s Parliament). Iran hosts the largest Jewish population of any Muslim-majority country.And it is home to the second-largest Jewish population in the Middle East.

Your comments are welcome.

*Zahra Tohidian is an Iranian Journalist who mostly writes political articles and analysis.

Originally published on Iran’s view

Brought to my attention by Tanya Roman

CALLING OUT BRAVO-7: Firefighters’ Perspectives of High-Rise Fires and 9/11

A powerful movie on firefighters’ reaction to BRAVO-7 (Building 7). Highly trained to approach fire situations, high-rise building fires in particular, with instincts honed by years of experience in a world that always obeys the laws of physics, firefighters found the World Trade Center on 9/11/01 a shocking departure. Unquestioned confidence that the floor beneath the hot-spot will be safe for set up of an operational base. A base, from which, fighters can dawn breathing gear, then make the clime to the floor above to douse the fire.

Suddenly, the rules of assured firefighting safety are blown away. The laws of physics seem to be different on one day, September 11th.

Days move from the tragedy of shocking loss, to the ritual of honoring fallen brothers, but no one talks about gross mismatch between firefighters’ common experience with high-rise fires, and this glaring day of anomalies. Most firefighters internalize their misgivings, as they don’t want to disrespect patriotic norms by speaking their thoughts aloud.

San Diegans for 9/11 Truth holds a meeting the second Sunday of the month at 6:30 PM at the Joyce Beers Community Center. This event, on Sunday, September 10th, will feature the movie, followed with a discussion. The event is free, although a basket for donations is available for support of operating expenses.

Joyce Beers Community Center is in Hillcrest, 3900 Vermont Ave. San Diego 92103 (between Aladdin’s and Panera.)

Preparing to Win in the Courts: A Three-Prong Approach to 9/11 Justice

The 9/11 Truth Movement is structuring itself to win in the courts. Two new organizations have been formed as companions to the well-recognized Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (AE911Truth). The three, together, will form a three-prong approach to bringing 9/11 Justice.

The two new organizations are Lawyers Committee for 911 Inquiry and 911 Truth Action Project (TAP). The first of these is primarily made up of lawyers, experienced in bringing suit on “truth to power” issues. The lawyers with this experience tell us it is essential to have highly visible support of the grassroots, hence the need to the second major effort.

The second is made up of grassroots citizens seeking truth friendliness in both the Media and the Congress. The short-term purpose of the 911TAP Petition Project is to get the 9/11 Truth community more active in street-level outreach. This is needed to educate the mainstream public about 9/11 and to recruit them into our ranks.

The third prong comes in the form of a major output from an AE911Truth grant. University of Alaska – Fairbanks, the grantee, has produced a landmark study of the WTC Building 7 structure. The final report, planned to be published this month, will explain how the federal agency tasked to study the WTC 7 collapse, came to publish a fraudulent official report.

Dwain Deets, long time member of SD911Truth, and occasionally guest speaker on 9/11 topics, will be the speaker for this event. Deets is 911TAP coordinator for California and Nevada region, and a member of Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth. Deets will explain how these three prongs of the new 9/11 efforts fit together.

San Diegans for 9/11 Truth holds a meeting the second Sunday of the month at 6:30 PM at the Joyce Beers Community Center. This event, on Sunday, August 13th, will feature feature a Powerpoint presentation, then follow with a discussion. The event is free, although a basket for donations is available for support of operating expenses.

Joyce Beers Community Center is in Hillcrest, 3900 Vermont Ave. San Diego 92013 (between Aladdin’s and Panera.)