Moral Low Ground


Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif Condemns Nazi Holocaust, Israeli ‘Massacre’ of Palestinians

Zarif condemns the Holocaust (Photo: Flickr)

Zarif condemns the Holocaust (Photo: Flickr)

Iran’s foreign minister has condemned the Nazi slaughter of millions of Jews during the Holocaust, as well as Israel’s ongoing “massacre” of Palestinians.

Mohammad Javad Zarif recently took to Facebook to express Tehran’s condemnation of Germany’s World War II-era campaign of Jewish extermination, a marked departure from the controversial Holocaust denials repeatedly made by former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

“We condemn the massacre of Jews by the Nazis, and we condemn the massacre of Palestinians by the Zionists,” Zarif, who serves under President Hassan Rouhani, the moderate who succeeded Ahmadinejad after winning June’s presidential election, wrote on his Facebook page.

Zarif also wished Jews a happy Rosh Hashanah, or Jewish New Year, via Twitter.

In an interview with the Tasnim news agency, Zarif asserted that Iranians “have nothing against Jews and Judaism.” But he said that Iranians “do not allow Zionists to present Iran as being anti-Semitic and bellicose in their propaganda so they can continue to repress the Palestinian people… and have their crimes forgotten.”

Although Ahmadinejad’s penchant for Holocaust denial made him something of a global pariah, he never threatened to “wipe Israel off the map,” as was widely reported by US and other Western media and was widely cited by hawkish Israeli and American politicians and pundits as a reason to wage war against Iran.

Additionally, claims made by US and Israeli Zionists and their supporters that Jews are the victims of anti-Semitic repression in Iran have been roundly refuted by Iranian Jews.

As for Zarif’s comparison of the Holocaust with the Zionist massacre of Palestinians, while the scope and number of victims of Israel’s conquest, occupation and repression of Palestine pale in comparison to what occurred during Hitler’s campaign of Jewish extermination, critics of Israeli policies and actions liken them to a form of ethnic cleansing. The modern Jewish state was founded and secured largely by terrorism and ethnic cleansing, as was Nazi Germany. More than 700,000 Palestinian Arabs were forced from their homes and villages, never to return. Like Hitler’s ‘Final Solution,’ this campaign was well-planned, and sometimes achieved by terror attacks and massacres that for sheer barbarism rival the work of the dreaded Nazi SS.

Today, many critics, including some Holocaust survivors, claim Israel continues to act in a manner reminiscent of Nazi Germany. They cite Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestine in the face of international condemnation, Israelis’ support for apartheid policies and actions, the ongoing illegal colonization of Palestinian territory by Zionist settlers seeking their own lebensraum in the West Bank, brutal blitzkriegs against vastly overpowered neighbors resulting in large numbers of innocent deaths, widespread Israeli racism and the vilification of Arabs as inferior to Jews, and the crushing physical and economic oppression and daily humiliation suffered by millions of Palestinians as similarities between the two seemingly opposite forces of Nazism and Zionism.

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