The Curious Response to Ahmadinejad at the UN

[Weekly Standard] Matthias Kuntzel - At the United Nations - an organization born out of the struggle against Nazi Germany and intended to embody the lessons of the Holocaust -a head of state openly spouts anti-Semitic propaganda in an address before the General Assembly. His speech is greeted with acclaim, and neither the UN secretary-general nor any Western head of government bothers to object. The media are mostly silent. The Zionists, Iranian President Ahmadinejad told the assembly, are the eternal enemy of "the dignity, integrity and rights of the American and European people." Zionists "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 United States in a deceitful, complex and furtive manner." "The great people of America and various nations of Europe...need to obey the demands and wishes of a small number of acquisitive and invasive people. These nations are spending their dignity and resources on the crimes and occupations and the threats of the Zionist network against their will." The German and French foreign ministers criticized Ahmadinejad's "blatant anti-Semitism," and Barack Obama expressed disappointment that the Iranian president had been given "a platform to air his hateful and anti-Semitic views." Otherwise Ahmadinejad's misuse of the UN to spread anti-Semitic propaganda didn't even register as a provocation. The Iranian president uses the term "Zionist" in precisely the way Hitler used the term "Jew": as the embodiment of evil. Whoever holds Jews responsible for all the ills of the world - whether calling them "Judases" or "Zionists" - is propagating a potentially genocidal creed. In fact, anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism have gone hand in hand for over 80 years, not only in the annals of Nazism but also in the intellectual foundations of the Iranian revolution. The writer, a Hamburg-based political scientist, is the author most recently of Jihad and Jew-Hatred: Islamism, Nazism and the Roots of 9/11.

2008-11-12 01:00:00

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