Iran Should Confront Its Own Racism

(Commentary) Michael Rubin - In recent days, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has taken to his Twitter feed to condemn American racism. The Islamic Republic of Iran is today among the world's most racist and religiously intolerant countries. Culturally, many Iranians look down upon all the other peoples surrounding them. Whereas Iran once counted Baha'is among its cultural and economic elite, Revolutionary leader Ruhollah Khomeini and Khamenei, his successor, have ushered in an era of state-sanctioned religious discrimination. And let us not forget all of the Christian pastors whom the Khamenei regime has murdered. Of course, Jews also suffer at the hands of Khamenei's regime. The Jewish community is just 20% of what it was before Khomeini seized power. Nor has Khamenei showed particular enlightenment toward blacks, either in his own country or abroad. When President Obama won election in November 2008, the Iranian press dismissed him as a "house slave." Jomhuri-ye Eslami dismissed Obama as merely "a black immigrant." In Iran, speaking openly about anti-Semitism, discrimination against Christians and Baha'is, seeking justice for Afghans, or preventing discrimination against minorities like the Baluch or Kurds will lead to lengthy jail terms. It's time to call Khamenei out on his racism and bias. He is an embarrassment to what Iran could and should be. The writer, a former Pentagon official, is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.

2015-01-02 00:00:00

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